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Another Santa Fe Week…

Jul 15

In Lighting at 6:14am

Finishing up a week long lighting class. I’m only teaching one more week of lighting for the rest of this year, in St. Lucia. One of the biggest reasons I return to Santa Fe is re-connecting with the model community down here, many of whom have become my dear friends over the years. Deidre, who I once described as a “one woman Cirque du Soleil,” and I have worked together for about nine years. I’m writing a story in my new book called “Working with D.” It’s really about building trust, and the collaboration of imagination. So, when I ask her if she has any crazy fashion duds with her (she always does) and would she mind climbing up on an industrial strength boiler in an abandoned electrical plant, she simply says “Yes!”

Lighting here is simple stuff. Almost all the gear was out in the field with the lighting teams, so I built a soft box out of a big umbrella and a Lastolite 6×6 diffuser. Fill is two SB-900 units banged off a silver reflector on the ground. She did the hard part.

Earlier in the week I showed the class a bit about putting lights far away, and up close. An Elinchrom Ranger is out in the parking lot, and that in turn is driving two units up front, a deep Octa, and an SB-900 in a ring flash. The light outside is gelled warm, and we just played with the power on the inside lights. I keep changing the ratio virtually every frame, just to show the class how small, incremental power shifts, along with juggling shutter speed and f-stops can have powerful effects on the feel of the photo. Almost never shoot more than one frame of any combo, so the dozen frames I shoot end up being a bit of a mess, but Yvette saved the day here with a beautiful expression.

More tk…

Kyle jerichow says:

on July 15, 2011 at 6:19 am

That ranger does some amazing stuff, coming through the windows it looks just like a harsh afternoon sun.

Andor says:

on July 15, 2011 at 7:20 am

Yes, if you don’t mention, i was to believe that’s just ambient sun from outside…
Great one anyway, indeed beautiful expression.

Gregg says:

on July 15, 2011 at 7:42 am

Wheeeee! Another Joe book!

@shankdub says:

on July 15, 2011 at 7:46 am

New Mexico sun is a tough cookie…beautiful images, lovely article and glad I’m now a Santa Fean (although I’ll never NOT be a Jerseyi Boy)

Bob says:

on July 15, 2011 at 8:12 am

‘small changes..whatever it needs”

works for flying too.

Great post!

Damien Jemison says:

on July 15, 2011 at 8:28 am

I love the shot of Yvette. What a difference a week makes, huh? I’d love to join you one year down in Sante Fe, seems like a much more personal and hands-on experience than PSW or a packed seminar.

Craig says:

on July 15, 2011 at 9:47 am

Joe, I sure do enjoy your work. On this bloc, I wish you would occasionally do one of your sketches showing the subject, light locations, and of course, numnets’s location. They really help me understand your thinking. I’m an amateur and have been shooting since 1964, and am still learning everyday.

freckledtoad says:

on July 15, 2011 at 11:08 am

Santa Fe is one of my favorite places ever.. on my list of top place to be

Alex Zyuzikov says:

on July 15, 2011 at 1:42 pm

Stunning work Joe! I love the shot of Yvette as well, the light is just gorgeous!

barbara says:

on July 15, 2011 at 2:53 pm

As always, your work is amazing…hard to believe you would ever find a need to delete an image.

Kent says:

on July 16, 2011 at 12:49 pm

That shot of Yvette is beautiful! I too thought that was ambient coming from the windows. Amazing balance between that, the key and fill.

Paco & Stephen at the airport says:

on July 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm

Thank you for the week Joe, the locations, the models, the assistants an you have all made this one an unforgetable week. I can´t wait to see that shot of D published.

We will be back on your classroom soon…

Paco & Stephen (and I am sure Dasha, Katjia, Justin, Mark…. and the gang)

Sharif Putra says:

on July 16, 2011 at 8:48 pm

Awesome photo..i like this idea

Mickey says:

on July 17, 2011 at 7:48 pm

Joe when will you be doing another Santa Fe class?

John A. says:

on July 17, 2011 at 9:02 pm

I love both of these compositions …and can’t wait til you finish your next book!

However, forgive me for sounding stupid, but in the first portrait of the model on the boiler, it almost looks like there is a grid spot on her face. I’m a bit confused by your description of how you lit her, how did you achieve that spot of light? Was it the reflected light by the SB-900s giving that focused light?

indium says:

on July 19, 2011 at 1:15 am

amazing picture!

Kajsa says:

on July 25, 2011 at 4:31 am

It was awesome Joe. I’m sure the team will sign up for the superduperadvanced class 😉
Be sure to claim your beer in Holland end of the year!

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