Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Hot Pink Hair, Bubbles, Coke, Guns, and Sleeper Holds

A couple of months ago I was at a friends crawfish boil when I looked across the crowd and noticed a girl that had just shown up with hot pink hair. She was on the other side of the yard so I didn’t pay much attention to her -- until I got up closer to her. She wasn’t just a chick with hot pink hair -- she was a beautiful chick with hot pink hair. After speaking with her briefly I realized that her personality seemed to be as sweet as her looks.
After leaving that day I got to thinking about the cool stuff I could do with her portrait wise, so I messaged the mutual friend about having her contact me if she was interested in working with me. She did contact me and I explained that I had in mind -- this being a very color based “Pin-Up” style shots. Something that had a old time Americana look -- with a modern flair to it -- like her pink hair and the awesome looking red-toned tattoo on her arm. She was excited over the idea and seemed to be down with whatever I wanted to do.
So, I set things up and ended up getting exactly what I was looking for. The shots were a combination of ideas I’ve had floating around in my head for a few years now. One being a very color based shot with a girl blowing bubbles. Another being a shot of girl in a 50’s type dress drinking a coke, and another being my general love for how greens and reds complement each other color wise. 
I couldn’t have been happier with what I got! Emily -- thank you for being awesome. You could not have done a better job modeling for me.
Check out the shots I got of her -- I’m having a hard time deciding which ones to show on my website and in my portfolio. Please feel free to give me your vote if any stand out to you over the rest.

Click on any shot to see it larger.

This was the third shot I took of her that night. I could have stopped with this and been happy.

Her tattoo is just awesome looking to me.  Love it.

Yes, I made sure it was unloaded before I had her point it right at me. 

Emily's husband was there while I was doing the shoot and asked me to do some quick shots of the two of them. Well both of them are into martial arts, and this shot kinda shows that. What you see here is Emily putting a sleeper hold on Ethan. When done correctly it cuts off the blood to your brain and it's lights out for you within a few seconds as a result. The expression on both of their faces is just perfect. It is one of my absolute favorite shots from the shoot.

I know, this is pretty twisted and sadistic looking. We were just having fun at this point.

And last but not least. This is the series I got of her blowing bubbles. I 'd had this  idea in my head for years. So glad I finally came across the perfect model for it. Thanks Emily!

For those of you that are interested in how I  lit and shot these. First and foremost, I made sure the only actual colors in the shots of her were red or green. Everything else is either her skin tone or the neutral white and black tones of her dress. Somewhere along the line I learned that it is best to keep your color palette down to no more than two or three dominate colors in a shot when possible. It was a valuable lesson and couldn't be more true in this case. These shots wouldn't have the impact they do if they were full of just random colors. I have her standing a few feet in front of a 9' roll of key lime green seamless paper. I toned down the color saturation some in post to give it more of the feel I was looking for. 

Lighting wise: I had a strip box on each side of her -- maybe 10 feet behind her which creates the highlights you see on the sides of her arms and face. For fill and main light I had a 5' octobox right behind me and a 3' octobox boomed out over the set just in front of her and above my camera. This gave it a more sculpted fashion look by the shadows it created. This style of lighting is really common these days -- it's kinda overdone at this point actually. I just lit it the way I saw it in my head though -- it works for the look I wanted. Not saying there is anything wrong with lighting like this -- it's really cool looking actually. I just wonder if some photographers have any clue how to NOT light something like this -- it's good to have other tricks up your sleeve, that's all I'm saying.


JT Keel (Jeffrey Todd) said...

Keith you amaze me dude. The Coke Cola shots are amazing. I would slip these to someone at Coke if I were you. Great better than Great AWESOME now GFY you talented SOB.

Em Thomas said...

My favorites, hrm... 1,...2,....3.... the gun... uhm, yeah, all of them. I can see why you'd have a hard time choosing! Great job with this gorgeous gal. :)

Keith Taylor Photography said...

Thanks y'all!

misha said...

My favorites are 2, 5, 8 and 9 (although all of them rock). =D

Gayle said...

Love the shots!

Gayle said...

Love your pictures!

Smccown said...

I love the third one keith!