Monday, November 5, 2018

While packing my belongings

  Even if I kind of love to get out there and make a few dramatic portraits in let's say for example some old abandoned buildings, there still is something in that lazy me who enjoys staying at home. If there is a good reason to shoot inside the four walls, why not! Technically I wouldn't say that my home is a very dramatic backdrop for any image. Just plain white walls and a few furniture. But as we are at the moment in the process of moving, I thought I'd execute one idea I've had already for quite awhile. Now when moving your stuff from place A to place B, it means that there's a bunch of boxes around, at least that's how the situation is here, and that means you could make a backdrop from those already filled or to be filled boxes, and that's precisely what I did. Piled the boxes, placed a small carpet on the floor, added some props to show what's our next destination, and then finally had my model, a.k.a. my wife to sit down on the floor. Nothing very ingenious, but a lot of fun and a good break between packing. To light my scene I used one speedlight with minimal power setup shot through an umbrella, and this from up and camera left. The main light was an orange geled speedlight, softbox and a grid combination, from camera right and a low angle. Here's the resulting image...


Friday, November 2, 2018

Heading for a head shoot? Why you should!

  When did you have your head shot last time? If the answer is ”Recently!”, that’s good. But as it is, most people don’t even think of finding a professional photographer to make a head shot of them. So why consider to do it? There’s quite a few situations when you need an image of your face. The most obvious nowadays is probably a profile picture for social media, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. Then there is the possibility that you need to write a CV,  and it might be a good thing to ad a picture of yourself to your resume. And then your own website, ID-cards, just to mention a couple more places were we might have to place a picture of our beautiful face. Some might argue that they don’t need a payed photographer to make a picture for them, they do have plenty of good images of them self on their computer or in their mobile phone. Just pick up a picture you like, post it like that or crop it if necessary and there you are. So what could there be possibly that a hired photographer can give you more? A good experience! Working with a professional can be and should be a nice empowering experience, which can be fun and you will have good memories. Good images! A pro knows which lens to choose, that means good sharp images, with no distortion in your face. He knows how to use light to flatter your facial features, bringing the best out of you. He chooses the background with care, no distractions or poles sticking out from the head to take the attention from the your beautiful or handsome face. Education! From a photographer you can learn how to pose for photos, so you will have an advantage of your photo shoot even next time when someone makes images of you. So in the end you will benefit quite much of hiring a photographer to shoot your head. And if you are a pro then it's even more important that a pro makes your images, for professional appearance. Here's a couple samples how a head shot could look like...

Thursday, October 25, 2018

A different kind of a family portrait

    For each their own style, right? But to find the style and the idea can be a bit hard sometimes. And then the time could be a factor you need to consider as well. It’s completely different when you do a photo shoot and you agreed for one or two hours with the client, but how about when you know that you need to work fast and you won’t have the luxury of time? That’s when it’s good to have your goal and idea in your mind ready Before you begin the shoot. For this image I had a pretty straight forward ready to go idea in my mind. One speedlight with a softbox and a grid to camera right. One test shot to see if the power is what it needs to be. Brought my models one at a time to the scene, placed them on the right spot, tried to get them relax, focused and fired. This time it worked like a charm, even the cat part which I thought would be hard if not even impossible. Two images of everyone, then a bit of a postprocessing for the chosen images and there it was, the final image. The photo shoot didn’t probably last more than 5 minutes, and that’s mostly because I had a plan and my models did an excellent job. The post processing part was a different story due to some technical problems, but in the end the image was there, ready to be shared. So, from where did the inspiration come from? If you are familiar with the pop culture you most likely got it already. You can see the original here.

Sunday, October 21, 2018


  One of those places you read about, you see a few pics and you want to go there by your self... and that's what I did! Dvigrad is an abandoned medieval castle in central Istria. The last residents left the place somewhere about 1700 and ever since the place has been falling apart. Plague, malaria, siege just to mention a few things this place went through before it was left by its inhabitants. Before driving to the site I was pretty sure it will be a big disappointment, just as it has been a few times before when I've been anticipating to see a new place, but not this time. I really could sense the atmosphere and it was a perfect spot for the imagination to fly. It though would have been cool to have a model with me, maybe dressed in a medieval dress, but maybe next time.


Friday, October 12, 2018

Some family photo fun! (How precious are memories?)

  Family or couple photos, - when did you last time have yours taken? Why should you invest time and money in a photo shoot as a family, as a couple, with your kids, with your parents? As an answer to the first question, I’d guess never. Most people have their family photographed most likely when there is a big family event, and that’s usually exclusively a wedding, but after that... never! But why should you consider hiring a photographer to make a few photos of your family and loved ones? Because of memories! Of course we take lots of photos of our close ones with our smart phones, but what happens usually with those images? They end up forgotten on a hard drive or they are stored in the cloud and we hardly see them anymore. Just one failure in tech, and they are gone! Memories gone with the wind! So how about a photographer concentrating on you and your family for an hour or two? Lots of fun and some unforgettable memories? How much fun it will be to look at the pictures later when time passes, when we get older, our kids grow up, see how everybody have changed... precious memories on paper, something you can touch, look again and again, or show to other people, and feel a bit proud! There's just something in those photos showcased on paper. Yes, I know, it is luxury to hire a photographer, and even if the one making the images wouldn't take any money for hes / her services, you still need to find that time for the shoot from other important things, and time is precious. But then how precious are your memories? A small investment for something that will be priceless after awhile... I'd say it has to be worth something!
  From the "memories worth something" -talk, to the shoot we had this past Monday. Close friends of mine wanted their family to be photographed, and to be honest, it was one of the best shots I've ever been involved in. It was lots of fun, they were relaxed and I think they enjoyed the shoot just as much I did. The scene for the shoot was a sculpture park near the town of Labin in Istria, Croatia. Even if I had speedlights and a stand with me, in the end I just went with natural light, and mainly one fast 85mm lens. As I got the images transferred on my computer and started editing them, I still could feel the relaxed, fun and loving atmosphere, and I pretty much had a smile on my face from the start to finish when editing the images. I guess that's for me a sign of good photo shoot. Here's a few images...

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Still life is still alive!

  One cool way to hone photography skills is to shoot still life photos. Of course in the field, there are those moments when you find some interesting things or items which for sure can be seen as still life subjects, then you shoot them, edit them and eventually showcase them, but in my opinion it's a different story to make up something by your self than just rely on something you just found by chance, something that was made by someone else. First you need to have an idea, so it trains your imagination. Lately I've got some fruits from people I know, so I've used those as a starting point for my images. It's always possible to use just one item, but I usually try to see if there are at hand some other items I can use together with the start subject. Then I just start building my still life scene while shooting and trying different combinations and angles. The other thing where still life photography helps you is lighting. It doesn't matter if you are using available light or artificial light, when shooting still life you have all the time you need to change and see which lighting looks best, and I'm pretty sure the subject won't come up with any complaints. So next time when you are bored and don't know what to shoot, or maybe the weather makes you want to stay at home, why not try a still life shoot. Here's a few of mine, inspired by pumpkin, pomegranate and grapes...


Sunday, September 30, 2018

Torpedo launch station

  There's places you just need to go to when you hear of them. One such place for me has been the abandoned torpedo launch  station in Rijeka. Built in 1930's and now just falling apart, this is just an amazing place to visit. Sticking up from the sea like some kind of a skeleton, it somehow feels a bit creepy. Then when you know that it wasn't just an ordinary warehouse, but a place where they used to test torpedoes, weapons meant to destroy and kill, it just ads to the feeling some new dimension. If you want to go there, just use Google maps. We left our car in a nearby shopping mall, but it definitely would have been better to drive there as close as possible, we definitely would have saved a lot of time. This time I hauled quite a bit of equipment with me there, and in the end I just ended up using one camera, one lens, no flashes, tripods or stands, just and only natural light provided by the setting sun. I just didn't want to make it an urbex or architectural shoot, so I asked my lovely wife to model a bit. Despite of the mosquito, she did a wonderful job. Here's a few pics...


Saturday, September 22, 2018

Katarina naval base

  I guess for a change I should be blogging about something else than Urban exploration and abandoned buildings, but because I love to combine things I love, in this case photography and UE, please forgive me, one more text and a few images of decay...
  As I told in a my last post, to find places to explore internet and Google Earth are good tools. For a while ago when checking out if there would be something interesting to explore near Pula, I came across this former naval base somewhere near the town. Just opened Google earth and started scouting. Established somewhere in mid 19th century and abandoned in the late 20th century this place have probably seen lots of things going on. Austro-Hungary, France, Italy and finaly Yugoslavia have been using this base for their military purposes. The area is huge, and to be honest I could have spent some more time there easily, but the clock is usually ticking and you have to know your limits. ("The kid is healthy when it plays, but sick if it don't understand to stop", that's what they say back home.) All the movable stuff is gone and the place for sure have seen pretty much vandalism during the years it have been abandoned, but there still is that pretty light, interesting colors, windows, stairs, some interesting communist era murals, paint that's cracking and that "you never know what's lurking behind the next corner" feeling. You can access the place by car if you don't want to walk too much. Everything is open and it seems that no one cares if you enter the buildings, so no fear of someone popping up and making inconvenient questions. So if you ever visit Pula and you are interested in abandoned places and history, why not to take a walk in Katarina naval base.