I had been speaking with model Lee Ann Herring-Olvedo for quite sometime. Lee Ann is Miss Kentucky 2011 and is a wonderful, beautiful person inside and out. Speaking with a Texas twang, she came to me months ago about shooting some pieces for her portfolio. Soon enough we had a date set a concept laid out and a location in place. We brought Scooter Ray on board for hair and makeup and I was very excited for the opportunity. I arrived early, as always and began setting up shots. The Peterson Dumesnil House is a crazy big vintage house, with rooms galore and texture for days. I hate shooting on yellow, so a few of the places I wanted to shoot we’re just off limits for me personally, like the stairwell and outer hallways. Not too mention, a good friend of mine, Joey Goldsmith had just done a shoot in the Peterson house a few months earlier and I didn’t want to double his shots or locations.
The first room I choose was a challenge, a cornered white vintage chair and dark teal walls. Using my three speedlights, I tried almost 10 positions and lighting setups, beauty dish, beauty dish with a sock, umbrella, bare flash and more. I really didn’t nail it until Lee Ann got in the room and I worked it out. Reflective umbrella camera right low, Beauty dish w/ sock camera left high and bareflash at ¼ power behind the chair.
The second setup was on a bare brown wall, this I knew I could get right and for the most part I did. This is where I learned though, I need some softboxes and stripboxes, something to really diffuse my bare flashes. Anyway, going into this we really stuck by the inspiration of “Vouge Italia” so I experimented with my continuous lights for extra dramatics. Cross lighting played a big part in these shots.
The third setup: Dark basement, red chair and a look that reeks attitude. This was also a challenge, very close quarters and I really didn’t have much room to work, probably a 5x10 area. Regardless, I worked with what I had and got some great results. I shot through an umbrella for extra diffusion on the front and bare flashes for kickers.
I worked hard in post to give it a really edgy vintage look, with some texture work and gradients.
The whole session was definitely a learning experience, but I’m glad I experimented and did a few things out of the norm.