Portraiture Blogs

* Jessi & Mitch's Engagement; at`Splash' Tapas bar. December 17 2014

  Jessi contacted me in mid-September, asking me to quote to shoot their Engagement Party. What followed was, for a Photographer, a dream Gig. The Party was held at `Splash' Tapas, in North Cronulla, in late-November, 2014. The venue is an indoor-outdoor restaurant, & was the perfect setting, with lots of yummy-looking Food, open-plan & roomy ... The Light was variable, so needed care, but giving beautiful tones.  



There was a terrific turn-out, with friends & family of all ages busy congratulating & catching-up. Jess & Mitch were in high demand.  




The Selfie - that's a classic, right there, people...!!!

The whole afternoon was like that. It was huge ...!!!. So much Fun. 



I was surrounded by beautiful images, with beautiful Light. A photographer agog !




It's always tough to pick favourite images from a shoot, but being a Softie at heart, I'm going for this 1. Fellas; don't ever doubt the value of a kiss ...!!!


As time passed, people began to accept the idea that this was a gathering that needed to be recorded. The posing became more committed by the minute !! 



I got a USB of finished images to the engaged couple the next week-end. They were thrilled to watch their Engagement unfold all over again, on iPad, as we enjoyed a meal, at `Pure & Wicked' cafe, in the Cronulla Mall. Jessi's week was catching up with her. They'd been busy all week, as you are when such a momentous milestone is announced. As we parted, Jessi & Mitch were off again, catching-up with yet more friends ... Best wishes, Jessi & Mitch. Thanks for inviting me to shoot your Engagement. It was terrific !! Your mates RULE ...!

From a technical stand-point (ok; I'm a nerd, but you've gotta be if you're a Shooter !), I shot with a Nikon D700 body, a Nikkor 24-70mm F/2.8 Zoom, & SB-900 Flash, with a Diffusion Dome above a Wide-Angle Flash Adapter, with 3 strobes of pre-Flash. Not 1 Red-Eye image, with the Light being beautifully soft & diffuse...  

* Lily - 4 weeks old, & totally gorgeous ... March 25 2014

   Lily was born on Friday, February 14th, 2014; the first-born for Sophie & Brett; neighbours where I live, in Cronulla.  I was invited to photograph Lily for their Family record, & accepted eagerly.  I was struck by the flawless beauty of Lily’s complexion; skin as smooth as the finest Porcelain, & with a soft texture that I hoped I’d capture  – a far cry from the sun-kissed skin of this 60 year old Photographer. 

   Photographing new-borns is an exciting experience. The shoot progressed from an early calm & tranquillity, to an energetic state that challenged us all. The formal compositions coincided with such a period. Grandma Jan assisted lovingly, wardrobe changes came & went, & Lily gave us periods of calm & crying, in equal measure.  And, throughout the shoot, one thing remained constant. Lily looked beautiful. 


   Photographers see all, sooner or later. The act of Photographing someone usually exposes a subject’s frailties & strengths, & all Photographers will agree surprising moments are revealed during image Processing. Whilst processing the `Lily at 4 Weeks’ shoot, I was struck by the number of times Lily connected with us, giving eye contact with an apparent mind-connection (at 4 weeks of age) that surprised me. 


   In compiling this Blog, it was always going to be challenging deciding what to leave out. So many images of Lily had an appeal of some sort. And, once the Crop begins, Processing can go on forever. I always ask myself, towards the end of a shoot’s processing, which images are my favourites. Certainly, the 2 images of Lily on Grandma’s shoulder; giving us eye-contact & then doing a `Super-woman’ pose .. The images you see here are only part of the answer.  I had in mind a Blog of perhaps a dozen images. I got the field down to 19 !! So many terrific images `hit the floor’, & every culled image hurt.

   Early prints looked stunning, straight off the printer. The inevitable cuteness of new-borns wrapped in soft fabrics & pastel colours, enhanced by maximum Aperture. 


Lily; looking amazing



   My sincere thanks to Sophie & Brett, for allowing me to photograph their Lily. Sophie, Brett & Jan gave lots of themselves, at a time when a household works to a very different beat. 

Best Wishes to all, especially Lily.

Lily was amazing. 




* The Lindsay-Thus Family Portrait session. March 17 2014

For this Portraiture shoot, I was delighted to have a charming & most accommodating Client, in the Lindsay-Thus family. From a photographer's point of view, a more photogenic Client simply couldn't happen. But the real beauty was within. The Lindsay-Thus family gel nicely; 4 members of a family, all individuals & comfortable with themselves, & clearly at ease within the family.



The shoot took place on a Sunday evening, the 23rd February, 2014; at Salmon Haul, on the southern end of the Cronulla Peninsula. Bundeena Bay & the Royal National Park was the back-drop, with the light switching between diffuse overcast, & sharp-ish late afternoon Gold. Fill-flash was used throughout, with 3 stops (!!) of compensation required at 1 point.




One of the pleasant dilemmas I had to contend with, was the decision whether to go colour, or B&W. My initial processing was in colour, & I loved it straight off. Ellie, in choosing 6 images for Printing, requested B&W's across the board. The Tonality of the Greyscale version straight off the printer (my beloved Canon Pro-1) took my breath away, increasing my dilemma. The image below, of Ellie & David, is ever-so-slightly-desaturated. 






Both Yasmin & Jess were relaxed, as they took instruction (!). 




Speaking for myself, the Lindsay-Thus shoot was a lovely way to spend a Sunday evening. Thank you's to Ellie, David, Jess & Yasmin. Their tolerance of the Photographic process was greatly appreciated (it can't be fun, can it ...; spending your evening trying to look your best, whilst someone points a Lens at you & tries to blind you with Red-Eye Flash ..!).

Best Wishes, you Guys ..


Footnote. December 2014. The image at the head of this Post, of Ellie & David, is 1 of my favourite-ever images. It captures the bond between a husband & wife perfectly, & every time I see it, I marvel at the smoothness of the tones. Beautiful...