Saturday, July 25, 2009

Photo Essay: Shooting a portfolio in 2 nights

This past Thursday and Friday night we had violent down pours in our area. Working very late these past few nights, we had a chance to see Holyoke in a rare calm. The down pours kept people from wandering the streets. Most nights the streets can be covered with a variety of different types of people. But the rain kept most people sheltered of in their homes. We took two breaks from the work were doing in our studio to take a few minutes to make some photographs. Thursday night we just happened to take a break by chance and grabbed our cameras to see what we could come up with. I started out by making photographs with the intentions of converting them to black and white during post-production. However, I decided, why not use the in camera black and white setting to see what I can come up with? So I set my camera to black and white and started making photographs of the elements in the street. I was concentrating on how the light was playing off the street with the rain. Making photographs after the rain has just fallen or while it is still coming down can make a huge impact on the quality and the visual elements of a photograph. Just image how much more different these photographs would like if it was completely dry outside. They wouldn’t have the strongest impact.


11 (8)  1 (3)   1 (4)  1 (5)1 (2) 1 (6) 1 (7)  1 (12) 1 (13)1 (11)1 (9) 1 (14) 1 (15) 1 (10)

The very last image was made very quickly. I shot this on Thursday night. We were both startled by some commotion on the street behind us. His expression is one of fear and unknowingness. The lack of people on the streets kept us from including portraits of people passing by. So, we used each other as a way of making some portraits using the ambient light from the windows of buildings, the street lights, and the light reflecting off rain covered elements of the street.

On Friday night, I started shooting still images of the vehicles passing by to produce video clips of the rain falling and the cars passing by. I will be uploading those later today. This essay and mini portfolio are just one example of how a project doesn’t have to be long at all. We did not have any intentions of creating a portfolio out of two nights worth of rain and thunderstorms. It just happened to be a chance coincidence that allowed us to make these photographs.

More to come…

1 comment:

patrickd said...

Jeff, I love your photos of Holyoke. I'm a writer at the Republican and I'd like to talk to you about a story I'd like to write about photos of Holyoke. What do you think? Your photos could offer a different angle into the city. My name is Patrick O'Connor, and I can be reached at 413.775.3277 or Thanks.