Posts Tagged ‘Portrait Photography’

“I think that life has plans and you only have to be awake and aware to follow them” – Alan Faena

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine on South Beach and Lincoln road.

 

Hmmmm.  My kinda of portrait subject.  How can you not be inspired to photograph Alan Faena.  He’s an Argentine hotelier and real estate developer who is creating and building a billion dollar arts district called Faena district on Miami Beach, Fl.  That’s cool!  But what I enjoyed most about meeting photographing Alan, was talking to him about his spiritually and yoga practice.  I also practice yoga and it’s my brief that a mindfulness practice is very important for an artist or in my case a photographer who would like to grow his art.  It’s pretty simple.  When you shooting a portrait or setting up a shot it helps put you into the “zone” by being present, in the moment.  Clearing your mind of yesterdays ghosts or debris and of tomorrow’s dreams.  Observe and embrace the moment.  You won’t always have a subject as charismatic as Faena.  But by truly embracing the time you have with someone, you will perhaps be able to find out what’s makes a person special.

 

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Alan Faena at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach, Fl.

I enjoy using a tripod.  It slows me down and helps in fine tuning just the right angle or viewpoint.  This carbon fiber tripod is the TVC-24L from RRS or Really Right Stuff.  Its rugged, strong and light weight, well suited for double duty, I take it  with me on my landscape photography trips as well as my commercial and advertising photography commissions.  Between the tripod and camera, is my favorite bullhead.  The Arca-Swiss Monorail Z1 dp  has a quick release, very fluid and precise adjustments.

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Alan Faena at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach, Fl.

For the opening photo we shot underneath a stairway that had a skylight which provided a nice soft overhead light.  The curved shape of the winding stairway created some nice shadows creating a wonderful flowing depth.  Those shadows worked well on the background, but Alan’s face needed a bit of pop.  My photo assistant John Karp, handheld a B1 profoto with an 36″ Octabank fitted with a grid.  This gave a directional crisp soft light which brought out Faena cheekbones and added a bit of kick to his eyes.  For this portraiture I used a medium format digital camera called the  Phase One IQ260 XF Camera with a Schneider Kreuznach 55mm LS f/2.8 .  The 55mm lenses is equivalent or has about the same angle of view as a 35 mm wide angle lens in 35mm DSLR format.  I prefer to shoot at a low iso, in this case I at iso 100 and the tripod allowed me to use a slow shutter speed to get the right amount of ambient light balanced with the strobe.

In terms of directing Alan, it was more about building a connection.  I did a bit of pre-shoot research and found out about a retreat his family has in Argentina, and I knew that he was very much interest in yoga.  I asked him questions and talked to him about my yoga practice.

 

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Alan Faena at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach, Fl.

 

The second set-up was in the Faena theater.  We had pre positioned the lighting so all Alan needed to do was sit down and immediately get to work.  When my team receives a photography commission we try to figure out ways to get the most set-ups in the shortest time.  The subjects are more likely be willing to do more looks if you they don’t have to wait around for the lights to be moved from set-up to set-up.

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Alan Faena at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach, Fl.

The dramatic curtains provided an excellent backdrop!  No need to bring out the seamless.  A profoto beauty dish as a key light  provided just enough pop to sculpt Alan’s face, combined with a large 74′ Elinchrome octabank behind the camera to fill in any shadows.

 

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Alan Faena at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach, Fl.

An important part of my digital workflow includes photographing while tethered to a laptop.  This allows instantly review of the image and is done using a professional capture and digital raw processing software called, Capture One, with its solid image capturing I have never lost an image on set.

 

 

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Alan Faena at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach, Fl.

 

Alan always wears white and with his trademark hat.  With this image I wanted to portray his grace and balance spirit. I think the blue color grade added a coolness to the image, but the straw toned hat manages to float, giving the image a three dimension feel.  It’s useful to  carry a small roll of seamless paper or neutral tone fabric and do a simple clean photograph, to give the  photo editor, in this case, Ronnie Weil of  The Wall Street Journal a cover option with room for type treatment.

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Alan Faena at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach, Fl.

The penthouse house glass balcony doors let in a beautiful layer of soft light for the seamless set-up.  My first assistant, John Karp stands beside me, keeping a watchful eye open and ready to make any adjustments to the camera or set-up.  A silver fabric on the wooden floor bounces a bit of pop into Alan’s eyes and blocked some of the brown spill from the floor.

 

Miami advertising and portrait photographer Jeffery salter who is a Miami based commercial and magazine photographer photographed Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine on South Beach and Lincoln road.

This is how it ran in the The Wall Street Journal.  Thanks to Ronnie Weil, the most excellent photo editor for this assignment.

Thanks for reading!  Any questions feel free to give me a shout.  I get most of my gear from the good folks at Capture Integration.


Advertising campaign by Miami lifestyle photographer Jeffery Salter. This is a rum advertisement shot on Miami Beach, Florida

 

I recently received an advertising commission to photograph a rum called Pito Rico.The rum is widely known on the island of Puerto Rico,  but they wanted to expand into the New York City market.  We worked with an awesome team from Dunn Co. who also designed the label on the bottle.  On the creative side the rum which is produced in the mountain side near Jayuya, needed to glow from the inside.

The brief or storyboard was for 4 different set-ups to be done in two locations including a bar / nightclub and a beach.  The talent would be 18 models  for the bar scene and one model for a pin-up / swimsuit photograph.  All had to look Puerto rican.

A key element to doing a shoot like this was having a great producer.  My go to guy when shooting advertising productions in Miami and South Florida is David Segui, seguidavid@msn.com.  He is always well prepared and has wide resources in regards to modeling  agencies and locations.  Next I secured Kristina Larson  a fashion and a topnotch prop stylist who was brought on board to create just the right mood for the nightclub.

Miami Advertising photographer Jeffery Salter casts models for a rum advertisement in Miami, Fl

We casted over 100 models at Aperture studios.  The idea was to have a diverse group for the club scene. Some would be in front holding the rum bottle or in the background. Afterwards we set up a web gallery for the Ad firm and Client to review in Puerto Rico.

On an advertising photography shoot many steps needed to be taken before the first frame is snapped.  On this advertising shoot we:  Scouted locations, casted models, assembled the production team, everything from first photo assistants to caters.  Submitted tests (to find the right amount of glow for the bottles) to ad agency.  Due to the tight deadline, most of the effected needed to be in camera.

Jeffery Salter location scouting for an advertising photography shoot

We scouted over 10 locations to find the “perfect” night club and bar.  Well what exactly does “perfect” mean?  The bar had to be approachable in the sense that it had to be the type of bar that the drinkers of PitoRico would most likely to go, not one in which there was a velvet rope or  too space age or high tech.  It  needed a space that was dark so I could control the light in order to capture the glowing bottle.  We found a great place called Prohibition which had high ceilings to suspend any lights I was to add in the background for effect.  The furnishing in the bar was contemporary but didn’t over power the rum bottle or the talent.

Miami Advertising photographer jeffery salter shoots models for commercial and advertising Jeffery Salter location scouting for an advertising photography shoot

Figuring out just the right type of light to create the bottle “glow” took a fair amount of testing.  It was achieved several different ways.  For the orange colored rum we attached glow sticks to the back and sides, for the clear liquor we used “Mini Morris” strobes and for the coconut as well.  To create the light trails I used a light blade created by an artist in Canada.  Who personally packaged and shipped via FEDEX it to me so I would have ample time to test and learn the different creative effects that could be done via long exposure and flash.

Advertising campaign by Miami lifestyle photographer Jeffery Salter. This is a rum advertisement shot on Miami Beach, Florida

 

Advertising campaign by Miami lifestyle photographer Jeffery Salter. This is a rum advertisement shot on Miami Beach, Florida

 

miami based lifestyle photographer jeffery salter photographs rum advertising campaign for Pito Rico

 

Advertising campaign by Miami lifestyle photographer Jeffery Salter. This is a rum advertisement shot on Miami Beach, Florida

 

The final set-up was on South Beach. It was important that the key light, in this case a beauty dish didn’t wash out the rum which was lighted by three Mini Morris strobes.  One was attached to the back of the bottle and the other two were held slightly off camera by my photography assistant.

Advertising campaign by Miami lifestyle photographer Jeffery Salter. This is a rum advertisement shot on Miami Beach, Florida

 


This is called hooking the big one…when you get a call to photograph “The Iron chef”. Miami is rapidly becoming known not only as city with great beaches, but a destination with many fine restaurants. Chef Masaharu Morimoto aka “The Iron Chef” is opening a new south beach restaurant at the Shelbourne Hotel.

Miami photographer Jeffery Salter photographed Iron Chef Morimoto for Ocean drive magazine.

Photographer: Jeffery Salter
Picture Editor: Jennifer Pagan


Steve Harvey is a multi-talented entertainer, who is successful in radio, comedy, acting and as a host on television with the “Family Feud” show

“June 4th shoot Hey man, are you available on the 4th (next week) for a shoot in Atlanta?”  Yes.  “Stay loose, I’m trying to make this work.  Be in touch on it soon.”  That’s it.  Thats how this assignment came to be.  In this case it’s a portrait of Steve Harvey, a multi-talented entertainer.  Dudley Brooks, the picture editor gave me the gig and told me the story was for EBONY’s Black wealth issue.  He said to me you are photographing a media mogul.  The first image which popped into my head was of a Russian Oligarch sitting in a gold throne between two Siberian tigers (the gold ones or rather ones who would allow themselves to spray painted gold) with four nubile Russian beauties wearing nothing but gold spray paint…..The editor would only okay the “Gold throne”.   I managed to get in a shot during the two hour shoot Steve with a gold frame as well.

I’m not an etch a sketch master….a quick reference drawing.

A doodle can move the visual process along.  I like the challenge of creating a meaningful image from a few  words, sometimes descriptive, sometimes not.  Some of my visual tools includes implying  meaning through subject expression, lighting, subtle tones and prop choices.

"Larger then life, echoes of Citizen Kane"

This is my slightly surreal take on Steve Harvey. A larger then life gold frame, floating in a sea of red velvet.

 

Lighting diagrams are a big help. I try to previsualize the assignment as often as possible. It helps when work with a team. Puts everyone on the same page.