Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Perfect Photo Location Could Be Right Around the Corner

Locations and backgrounds can be vital to creating an awesome photo...sometimes, equally as important as the subject itself. The setting can dictate the mood of a photographic image.
This photo, below, almost appears to be a painted studio backdrop, but don’t be fooled.

 I realize that I am blessed to live 7 miles from the beach so opportunities exist for lots of gorgeous shots, however a creative type never falls back on the expected. We are always seeking new locations and cool places to shoot photos. For me, an amazing discovery proved to be right around the corner, one that I have driven by thousands of times over the past 8 years. The farm that backs up to our suburban community is sort of out of place. It sits on the roadside of a fairly busy road. There are horses in the stables and occasional cows in the fields. It is a reminder of my days out in Kansas when we drove to Zimmerman’s farm to pick out our pumpkin and enjoy Fall festivities.

Since I don’t know the owners, I thought about just stopping on the side of the road to start shooting a sunset photo session with my daughter, Kylie. We had plans to go to a park near the base of the causeway, but she agreed to try a few shots. We quickly discovered that there was no need to drive any further than right around the corner. Check out the amazing photos we took and the variety of looks simply by walking a few feet in one direction or the other.

In the shots below, which you can view larger by clicking on, you see the changes in lighting creates different mood & overall feel to the shots. This was accomplished by positioning the model in different scenery with the light falling in different directions. When shooting in manual mode this requires constant monitoring and changing of aperture and shutter speed...and as light diminshed, even changing the ISO for a few of the shots.


After we got just a wee bit too close to the farm and were chased off by some very large, not-so-friendly dogs, we scurried across the street where we saw the perfect fence and scenery for some brighter lit sunset shots...some of my favorites of the day! After applying a few actions and doing some post editing, you can see how different a look these images have. Remember, they were shot all within the same hour, just a change in scenery with actions applied. Pretty amazing, huh? Out of all the pictures we took, both Kylie and I agreed that these were our favorites of the night. Imagine that — my 17 yr. old and I agreeing on something! Pretty special.

So when you are struggling to make your photos fresh and new, a walk around the block may open up your imagination to some new photographic possibilities. Or if you are limited in new background settings, simply change the viewpoint, or position your model in different lighting, to create some fresh new images!

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