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Tim: “Super Senior” kitty

This is my friend Kat’s 17-year-old cat named Tim. She calls him a “super senior” cat, hahah!

It’s funny to see how age progresses in animal, since it seems to show up more prevalently in animals than it does in humans, in terms of in a span of say, 5 to 10 years or so. Some don’t seem to age a bit, or at least to know how old they’re getting. Others lounge around and spend most of their time gathering their energy to make their next move around the house. Thankfully TIm is one of the former, so it made it super easy for me to be able to snap some shots of him.

Even a few years ago when I first met him, he was scampering around the house, mewing for attention. His owners love kissing him on the head, so whenever he hears a kissy sound, he bobbed his head up (he still does that now). He loved lounging on the ironing board, loved scampering around outside (untethered), loved wandering around the house.

And now…

And then he fell asleep (sort of, he kept eyeing me and giving me a look telling me to leave him alone, haha).

Photographed March 1, 2010.
Equipment: Canon 7D and 50mm 1.2 lens
Handheld, no supplemental lighting (just window light).
Minimal retouching (some contrast and slight color correction).

I hope you like these pictures, Kat! I hope Tim lives to be the oldest cat in the world.

Kat - My beautiful Tim <333

Thanks for taking these shots. They'll be invaluable in years to come T~T

Photographing in Open Shade

Quick photography tips (as requested by Trinh)
She recently purchased a D3000 and asked me for some quick tips on how to best photograph make up.

Well, Trinh, hopefully you’re applying make up during the day! This will make your life much easier when you’re photographing it after you’re done. If not, no worries; I’ll make another post in a few days about photographing with available artificial light.

The model’s name is Jennifer (or Jenn) Lynn.

You can see that the light is coming from the right side of the photograph… while the model is standing in shade, the area is still near light–open to light–thus the term “open shade“. Good locations typically have a ceiling and walls, and are open to light; think of a garage with its door open (in fact, it’s a great exercise, just to get yourself to see light). Go into your garage… or any place with an over hang (covered parking; under a tall tree–think of something with a “dome” or overhang like a weeping willow; etc) and take a mirror with you; keep turning around and around, looking at how the light changes on your face.

The good things about open shade versus just shade (standing in the middle of, say, a heavily wooded forest or in a dark room) are:
1. There’s still light coming in! In most cases, just this simple fact will reduce camera shake (blurry pictures).
2. The fact that the light is coming in from ONE direction makes it “directional light” — much better looking. If her face were the same tone (in terms of lightness/darkness), it would kill the photograph.
3. The light in shade (I know, it sounds like an oxymoron) is much softer on the features than say, direct sunlight. Blemishes/etc are much less noticeable.
4. The light is less harsh on the model’s eyes–less squinting!
5. Ever have problems with your background looking WHITE or faces looking DARK (or both)? Being in shade makes tones more similar (more towards “grey” if you will, instead of being white or black), alleviating the problem.
6. Basically, it gives YOU more CONTROL. Control separates professionals from amateurs. Anyone can see light, anyone can photograph light, but if you can control it, it is one step closer on the long journey to mastering the art of photography.

Photographed January 25, 2009.
Equipment: Nikon D300 & Sigma 70-200mm 2.8 lens.
Handheld. No supplemental lighting or fillers.

trinh - thank you! as for lenses, i don’t have to necessarily buy lenses from nikon, right?

Chiri mo tsumoreba yama to naru

First post here on my first OFFICIAL photo blog…

I’ve had a few here and there, but never got around to really taking the time to update as often as I would’ve liked. I guess you can say that updating this is one of my new year’s resolutions! Yes, I’m aware that it’s already mid-February.. picky, picky!


Here in week 6 (of 7) here at Brooks, things are starting to get busy!

My current class (Advanced Tabletop) is quite nice in the fact that we are able to shoot whatever theme or subject we want, as long as we stick to it. Basically, we’re in the class to create a body of work. It helps keep the class interesting and it’s fun to be able to work on personal projects, instead of just class projects and getting burned out on my end. My chosen theme was originally going to be jewelry, but I decided that it didn’t have enough life for me. All jewelry shots feel so still! Not for me; at least not now. I’m definitely not giving up on it; more like putting it on hold temporarily.

My theme for the class? I definitely had a bunch floating around in my head, but I decided to go with… *drum roll*… creating landscapes with food.

Anyway, enough with the words. More pictures, huh?
I haven’t chosen a title for the collection yet, but here’s the first photograph (of 6, so far).

My boyfriend played around with the colors, and came up with this version:

There’s a Japanese proverb that comes to mind:
Chiri mo tsumoreba yama to naru” (even dust amassed will create a mountain)

I forgot to take set shots, but I used 2.6 lbs of rice, the hot light on an Alien Bee ring flash, and four empty glass bottles.
Oh, and I shot this with a 50mm 1.2 on the Canon 7D.

To creativity,

trinh - i can’t wait for more pics! i’m gonna get my nikon d3000 tomorrow. my brother ordered it and will be bringing it to me =) my friend has a masquerade party in 2 weeks. i am gonna do her makeup and hair and i wanna take pics. i need your help in how to take good makeup pics and also good pics of people, in general =)