Noir

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It Girl

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I was fortunate to be taking my mom sabbatical
from commercial photography when shooting models
as if they were mannequins, was literally and figuratively in vogue.
Blank faces and empty eyes have never held any appeal to me.

When you take a picture of someone,
you are asking them to give you a piece of their soul.
I want to see what they are feeling behind their eyes.
When they are willing to share that with you,
you just can’t help but care about them.

Every once in awhile, someone comes along who has something more.
You sense them before you see them,
they change the energy in the room.
It is something that you can’t describe, and “it” is the “IT” factor.
Having someone with “IT”, in front of my camera
is one of my greatest joys,
I am completely 100% in the moment,
and the rest of the world disappears.

I used to have to have an assistant stand behind me “just in case”,
when I was shooting with one particular male model.
When I would ask him to look into the camera and stare me down,
my legs would buckle beneath me!

Recently I have been lucky enough to shoot
with an incredibly special “IT” girl.
She is a sixteen-year-old student at a high school of performing arts,
is a talented ballerina and actress, and just plain has it.
I have shot with her for a client a few times,
and plan to do a test shoot with all of the bells and whistles soon.
Even at 5’7”,  she could still be a successful model,
and if she really goes for it and works for it,
she will be a tremendously successful actress.

This is Isabella. Watch for her!

Recent Obsessions

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I have two recent obsessions.
Could it be a case of OCD?
Perhaps it’s hyperfocus due to a virulent form of ADD?
I just don’t know.
What I do know is that one obsession is feeding the other!

It started with Flicker, an online site consisting mostly of photographers,
the majority of whom openly share their work with the community.
My next post will be more about this amazing group.

This post is about the wonderful things that have I seen on Flicker that
have inspired me to dig much deeper into the endless well of Photoshop.
Hundreds of tutorials, all in a quest to figure out,
“How did they do that?”
There are many different ways to create identical effects in Photoshop,
All that is EXCEPT for beautiful magazine skin.

In the spirit of sharing, which I will also talk more about in my next blog,
here is a link to the absolute best tutorial that I have found on beauty retouching.
(P.S., and by the way, I skip the paint smoothing and dodging layers,
I find that they they are unnecessary in my photos.)

I have been playing with textures and overlays &
below are some of the fruits of my happy labors!

A Little Twisted

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I just can’t help myself sometimes!
My youngest son is in 7th grade this year,
and this is the year that many of his friends are
celebrating their Bar and Bat Mitzvah’s.
Couldn’t I just buy a a card to give to these kids
with a check inside? Of course not!
Instead I found this amazing scan of a cancelled
letter from Tel Aviv that is dated 1949.

I added text with two fonts, JaneAusten & Saeculum,
printed it out on a mat finish paper, soaked the whole thing
in coffee, and turned it into an envelope.
Voila! The finished piece below!

Farewell to Summer

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The boys started back to school today, which in my mind makes it officially the end of summer.
One of the places where we can escape the city is in South Haven,
so I am posting some photo reminders for myself to sidestep winter when it comes, and for you to enjoy!

Michael & Michael

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Years ago I did a shoot for Vidal Sassoon.
Before I could work for them, they insisted that I have my hair cut by them so that I would understand the Sassoon philosophy.
Ah well, you do what you have to do!
The lead stylist in America cut my hair,
and it was truly the most amazing haircut that I have ever had………until now.
I don’t express my creative side through trend-setting hair,
I don’t have any body piercings or tattos.
I just want a beautifully cut, easy to style haircut.
During a recent shoot, the great hair and make-up artist Cathleen Healy, who’s hair is always enviable, set up an appointment for me with her stylist Michael Jacobson, of Michael and Michael Salon.
Michael Jacobson is the owner/stylist, and partner Michael Crowley commands the business end.
While the VS salons leaned towards stark,
the Michael and Michael salon is warm, welcoming and beautiful.
And the light, oh the light in the salon, I could just move right in!
The haircut you may ask? Beyond what I could have hoped for.
Michael and I talked about shooting together, and below are a handful of some of the photos from our first session.