Headshot Photography

Drew • Headshots/Business Portraits

Drew • Headshots I've known Drew for a few years now.  He had hired me to photograph the outside of his newly-purchased home all decorated with Christmas lights so he could send some nice images to his mother for the holidays.

When he he needed some new business portraits, he came directly to me.

Drew • Headshots

 

 

 

Lacy Kay • Musician Session for Hot Mess

Lacy Kay • Musician Session for Hot Mess

I've been developing a relationship with the band HOT MESS over the months, and they were so happy with the work we've done so far that when a new member of the band came into the mix, Jason, the head of Hot Mess, contacted me asking if we could create some new head shots for Lacy, but he also needed one other thing: he wanted a photograph of Lacy in the style of the group shot we did months ago so that she could be inserted into the group photo we had taken months before.

Let's give it a shot.

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Mike • Head Shot/Business Portrait Session

Mike • Head Shot/Business Portrait Session

Mike came to me by way of my buddy Jeff.  Mike was looking for an updated Head Shot/Business Portrait, and he met me here at the studio one late afternoon, along with Jeff, and we chatted and make some photographs and when we were done we all went out to grab some good pizza and have some laughs.  This was an exceptionally easy session, because look at Mike - so classy.  Handsome and so easy on the camera.  he just fell right into place during this session.  Almost effortless.

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Strength and Power

Headshots • Client Stories

There is a lot of photography that I don't get to share sometimes that is done for larger companies and corporations.  That is just the nature of the beast.

But I did want to share this image, which I shot back in March of 2016.  It was for a very large company who had  hired me to photograph some of their clients on white, to match up with some video work another company down the hall from me was producing on the same day with the same clients.  These were portraits of survivors of trauma or sickness in one form or another.

When this gorgeous woman stood in front of my camera, she kinda took my breath away; she was really tall, towering over me, and she had this incredible jawline (I have a thing for jawlines - I have a weak chin which is why I have a beard: to cover it up), and as I had her stand straight and look directly at me, there was great strength and power coming from her.  You could feel it.  It was remarkable.

She nailed this in like two shots.  Some people are natural in front of cameras.  Look at that jawline.  Look how the light from the background traces the outline of her jaw.  Crazy powerful.  Crazy strength.  I love this portrait in black & white.  Being exposed to people like this, for however long or shot, is partly why I love photography.

Shelly Hudson

Shelly Hudson • Headshots

Shelly Hudson is doing some awesome stuff.  She's the Executive Director of Red River Theatres.  She's an actor and a director.  She directs stage plays.  She's creating a new theater company in the Concord NH area.  She loves movies, and talking about movies, and I love being around her.

Shelly needed a new head shot and we got together at the studio, talked a whole bunch about Mad Max and the Oscars and Academy Awards, and had a bunch of laughs while doing it.

See a few more images from our session together on my Flickr feed HERE.

Hot Mess

Hot Mess

Let me introduce you to the gang that makes up Hot Mess, and give you a little behind-the-scenes of our session earlier this year.

Hot Mess came to me via musician Tim Paul Weiner, who came to me by way of Elise McDonald.  Elise used to run Studio 99, a local music venue that I miss terribly and I cherish all the friendships I made when it was open - both professionally as well as personally.  Tim and I met and talked about creating some images to be used for a new website and other promotional needs for his music.  During our conversation he told me he was part of a larger band that was going to be re-doing their website and branding and he'd share my work with them.

Jason Silverman is the man in charge of Hot Mess. He looks a little like actor Tom Hardy.  I'm a big Mad Max fan, so any chance to photograph someone that looks like Tom Hardy is kinda cool to me.  Hot Mess is a cover band out of Boston and were recently voted 2016 Wedding Wire Couple's Choice Award.

Jason was looking for something they could use as a splash page image on their soon-to-be-new website.  Something simple with everyone in a row.  I love keeping things simple, and we set up a time here at the studio.

I had never photographed a group of seven before (though recently worked with Fever Pitch made up of 7 smaller people).  Up until now, I think the most I've ever photographed in my studio was the Mwano brothers or the Brooks Young Band.  I knew that fitting 7 people on a nine-foot roll of seamless paper wasn't going to cut it, so the day before the session I went into the empty studio space next door to me and I took a roll of seamless and I ran it along one of the walls in there.  It let me go past the 9 foot restriction I would have faced here in the studio so that I could get everyone lined up along side each other.  I forget what the exact dimensions were, but it was pretty long.  So I gaff tapped the paper to the wall and we were good to go.

I wanted to keep the lighting simple, so I set up three lights.  I lined them up so that I created a single bank of light all flashing straight ahead towards where the subjects would be located.

Lights arranged in a line to create a bank of light, aimed at the wall with the backdrop paper.

Lights arranged in a line to create a bank of light, aimed at the wall with the backdrop paper.

Once they arrived it was just a matter of lining them up and visually making sure I had them in a good arrangement and getting to work.  When dealing with a group of 7 people, your rate-of-return when it comes to usable shots is going to be low, because you have seven sets of eyes that you need to make sure aren't blinking, seven faces that need to be looking at me and looking good, seven facets of seven people that need to be in check, etc.  After each shot I tried to take a peek at the back of the camera, but sometimes you get into rhythm of the shoot and don't check as often.  I had them pushed right against the wall at the start.

Hot Mess
A shot taken during the start of the session with some text added as a mockup for them

After getting some shots with them against the wall, I pulled them away from the wall a few feet and then took my two side lights and moved them around a bit:

Hot Mess
the view from my perspective
Hot Mess
Hot Mess

Once we got some good shots, I then started to play around a little bit, and bought out my prism and started moving it around the front of my lens:

Hot Mess

I was really liking the reflections that the prism was picking up and took a few different shots moving the prism around and picking up reflections and little light blooms (like the one in the above image in the left corner).

eyeballing the shots to make sure everybody is in focus and not blinking

eyeballing the shots to make sure everybody is in focus and not blinking

By now we were starting to fall into the groove.  I knew that we had the shot they wanted for their website, but I was just feeling like I was getting to what I wanted from the session, so I started to pull them a little further away from the background and stagger their arrangements.  Jason was the head of the band, so I knew I wanted him in focus, and if the focus fell off a bit, I was okay with that.  Not everyone had to be crystal-sharp for me.  I wanted to add a little dimension to the group shot.

Hot Mess

And that was the shot I was looking for.  Visually I was interested in the composition and layout of all the members.  Jason was tight and in focus, and everyone else starts to go out of focus.  Visually I liked how my eye started on Andria in the left of the image and you can feel your eyeballs move up and down as you move across the image to the right.  This was the shot for me and after I got this, I knew we were good.

I also played around with the prism a little more:

Hot Mess
“look that way”

“look that way”

Once the group images were good to go, I wanted to get individual shots of each band member that would go on the website's "About Us" page.

Hot Mess
Hot Mess
Tom Hardy. Totally.

It was a really great session and I think they were very happy with the images we created.

Their website went live and it looks pretty darn good:

Thanks gang, you guys were great to photograph, and I'm looking forward to working with y'all again in the future.

To see a few more shots, take a spin over to my Flickr feed.

Christ John Otto

Christ John Otto Christ John Otto is an author and the founder of Belonging House.  He contacted me after seeing the work I've done with Ian Ethan Case and we've developed a friendship while preparing to work together.  Christ (rhymes with "wrist") was looking to have some promotional photography created in the form of head shots for his website and upcoming books.  During our session, he let me play around a little bit and diverge away from our head shot session and take a little more freestyle approach.

Christ John Otto

Christ John Otto

For the image above, I slapped the Petzval lens on the front of the camera and took Christ into an empty studio next door to mine.  I love this look he is giving me here.  I love how the background gets kind of messy and circular because of the Petzval.  I don't use the Petzval enough and have to remember to put it on the camera more often.

Then I tossed a prism in front of the lens and started picking up reflections and refractions.

Christ John Otto

I love when a client allows me to play a little bit during our session.  I'm usually very lighthearted during all my sessions, but the people that let me break out a little bit and try this and that hold a special place in my heart.

Christ John Otto

Christ is currently on a multi-month sabbatical in Scotland right now.  Color me jealous.  He told me before he left that he's already anxious to hire me for another session, which is the best compliment in the world to get.

See you soon, Christ.  Make magic while in Scotland.  See you when you get back.