Photographing a Photographer: Collaboration

Guests at the Studio

I had another beautiful day in the 213 Fayette Street Studio on Wednesday!  My Gallery was full of lovely ladies, two of whom I had opportunity to photograph.  I am working with a group of artists in a two state area to host an event on June 4 here in Morgantown.  The guests at the Studio included Kay Fanok, from the Visitor’s Bureau, Letitia Keyes Roberts, a photographer from Craigsville, WV, Crys Sowell, a model from Morgantown, Tracy Michelle Jones, an aesthetician and owner of The Nail Beauty Lounge in Star City.  We were meeting to talk about our upcoming event with the CVB, but once the work was done, the empty camera case fell to the floor (as all good empty camera cases should) and photos were had and images created!

I always enjoy a multiple person shoot, but it can be a bit distracting, especially when they know each other and are interacting (talking) while you are trying to get your subject posed and ready for the shot.  I was even more distracted on Wednesday as one of my subjects is a terrific photographer from Craigsville, WV who specializes in photographing beautiful, young women.  That is kind of like fixing dinner for Iron Chef Bobby Flay or playing pickup basketball with Stephen Curry.  Letitia thought it was nerve racking on her end of the camera, and I was grateful guessing it helped hide my anxiety about creating an image for her!

The Aforementioned Event

So if the last paragraph seemed a teaser for our upcoming event on June 4, it was!  If 79PMCyou want to learn more about the 79 Photographer Model Collective and our June 4 shoot here in Morgantown, you can find details, registration, lodging and agenda info on Facebook.  We’ve arranged to use the Monongalia Art Center (click for a MAC 3D View) for the main shoot location, registration center and Green Room, but we have additional venues lined up as well.  I will be shooting in my Studio at 213 Fayette and Rock Top and the Chestnut Hotel are on the list!  On top of that, registered attendees who stay overnight at the Hotel Morgan will get a GREAT $89 dollar a night room rate and have a place to park!  Be sure to check out the event, register and pay your registration fee to guarantee your spot (attendee numbers are limited) and receive your Hotel Discount Code. Commercial over (sorta).

The Setup

I had a hair light and backdrop light set up in combination with a very large octi-box using a m4w7b0108-edit-x2ix of strobes and a speed-light.  I was shooting against a black muslin drop and my Studio lets me kill all other light.  I was pretty happy with the results, but I got some expert advice for improvement through, you guessed it, collaboration!

Letitia suggested a flat look with just a softened beauty dish.  She went to a black top, which added drama to the shot.  A little light meter adjustment for the intensity of the beauty dish and the results were dramatically improved.


Back to the Commercial

So, if you were wondering why anyone would set up an event where models, photographers, hair and makeup artists might get together to collaborate and help one another create beautiful images, now you have your answer. From start to finish, this mini-session took about 10 minutes, including warming up the lights and a top change.  Why the dramatic improvement so quickly?  The answer is collaboration!  That’s why we are working together – to collaborate and build our portfolios by working with other highly talented and eager artists!

You may still be nervous or apprehensive working around people with more experience in their field or in a specific genre, but that’s OK.  We are all in the collaborative to learn, push our creative edge, and help one-another grow as artists (and we have fun).

You can reserve your spot right now, before they are all booked!

Until next time…




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