Behind the Shoot – Janessa & Sara At Red Rocks

The confession: I don’t take a lot of photography gigs.

Lately it’s been a matter of time. Before that, imposter syndrome. Before that, the lack of camera.

A more complete gallery is available through my Patreon page. I dish out all kinds of good stuff – Words & Images mostly – and am always trying to elevate the content experience. I’d love it if you joined me there.

When I do take the time to book I always budget a bit so that I can rent something fun. Or maybe a second camera body or a flash kit. Typically, I’m renting lenses that I wouldn’t dream of affording otherwise. The client shoot usually lasts anywhere from four to eight hours, then I have 6 days and 16 hours to mess around with the toys.

A restaurant had hired me to put together a portfolio of their dishes. A long day adjacent to the kitchen was followed by a longer next day where my kit was right back out the door at 6 in the morning to meet my favorite model and her good friend at Red Rocks.

Red Rocks on a Saturday morning – particularly a *nice* Saturday morning can be a bit of a chore. Early enough and you’re competing with the fitness junkies running sprints up and down the amphitheater stairs. Later, the short little trails that snake through the brush and meadows are packed with the “trail runners” in training, and the enormous groups of tourists in a dozen different languages. All of them are curious about the well made-up models and the man with the giant lens taking their photos. Most of them linger as though they will get to see something *extra*.

 

There is a bit of performance anxiety. Everyone watching (who would unlikely ever find their way to this page) wondering about the end result, having enough serviceable exposures at the end of the morning to share with the models, working with lenses with more capability than I’ve ever dealt with before. In the end, through all of that, I don’t get many highs like I do after a solid portrait shoot. It’s a great way to find out how people work, how to direct them a certain way, and to capture a side of them they (or I) may not be ready to see.

But there it is, a collection of pixels that are YOU.

I haven’t shot a ton with macro lenses before, especially on a Sony. Working with both 50mm and 90mm primes resulted in some crispy lines I wasn’t expecting. Working with remote flashes, especially in the changing conditions and with the ever-strengthening sun, was nothing short of a challenge, but totally a learning experience worth having. In some shadows, the diffuser wasn’t quite diffus-y enough, resulting in some strange grid patterns.

Shot on:

Sony a7II

Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 G OSS Macro Lens

Sony FE 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

 

A more complete gallery is available through my Patreon page. I dish out all kinds of good stuff – Words & Images mostly – and am always trying to elevate the content experience. I’d love it if you joined me there.