portraits

Paradigmatic Menswear - The Classic Man Editorial | Raleigh, North Carolina Photographer

The concept for this photo shoot is: the enduring paradigm and nuances of well-tailored men’s suiting, that distinctive and unrelenting model of the well-dressed gentleman; timelessly iconic and prolific, if you will - perennially contemporary, always fashionably relevant, and consistently classic, yet modern with clean, sharp lines and remarkable tailoring.

The goal of the creative director and wardrobe stylist - Nicole aka Carlton Eliza Charles - was to showcase men with unique features, well-groomed facial hair, suited up and looking dapper. Nicole’s extensive and consummate research led her to tailored men’s suiting; she then infused her own aesthetic to finesse the concept and implement the vision.  With her network connections and substantial budget, she was able to source a great shoot location, and provide high-quality items for the wardrobe options.

The venue was available for shooting for three hours, and we had three models to work with – small window of time, with the expectation of yielding great results.  Upon arrival at the shoot venue, I quickly determined what type of images I wanted to execute and where.  Initially, one image I knew I wanted to capture was a shot with one of the models walking into the venue; so, I setup my lights for that shot.  Once that image was created I pretty much knew where I wanted to go next, and the creativity kept flowing.  My main light for that shot and all the other subsequent images was my Westcott 43 inch Appollo Orb.  Generally, I try not to plan any poses, lighting, etc. before a shoot, because the environment most often impacts and guides my decision process.  Common 414 incorporates great ambient lighting in their decor, and I didn't want to dilute the ambiance so, with every image, it was important for me include what makes that environment so unique and special.  Although this was a very short photo shoot, we had a great deal of fun; everyone worked as a team and we executed perfectly.

Thank you, to the following individuals; I cannot reiterate enough the importance of a talented, multi-faceted, and supportive team as an essential aspect of a successful photo shoot:

  • Wayne Wonder for capturing the BTS video, which will be published in the near future.
  • Anthony Coriale and Najee Fevecque - were behind the camera, they assisted our videographer, Wayne with capturing the wonderful BTS video coverage that will be available shortly, be on the lookout for that.
  • Palani Mohan - who was super attentive to every detail, and was very hands-on with everything I needed to help create the images.  
  • Chenee Jones - this was my first time working with this very professional and knowledgeable MUA. She came prepared with a checklist of questions for the models, to allow her to gauge any allergies or skin issues she should be aware of prior to make-up application.  She laid down some subtle and impressive make-up applications.
  • DaNia Pebbles King - was the hair stylist on this shoot; I’ve worked with her before, she is always a pleasure to work with; very confident and talented.  She is always keen on team collaboration and input, to ensure the images match the concept/vision.
  • Nicole Sue aka Carlton Eliza Charles – whose burgeoning talents as creative director and stylist were evident with this shoot.  She did an amazing job; with her networking connections, and substantial budget, was able to source venue and wardrobe. 
  • Brian Whitley – first time model and really great at it.  He was generous enough to grant access to the venue for shooting.
  • Ravon Derelle Johnson – he has some modeling experience and is one of the most laid back, easy-going talents I’ve had the pleasure of working with.
  • Darius Ruffin – this was his first time in front the lens as a model and he was awesome.

If you want to attend one of my workshops, please become a member of my meetup group and RSVP for any workshop that you are interested in.

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One-On-One Workshop With Mario Guzman

In this one-on-one workshop with Mario Guzman, I explored 4 different lighting techniques:

  1. I used the sun as the hair light and the reflector as the main light 
  2. I used the sun as the main light and the reflector as fill 
  3. I used the omega reflector as our main light and the speed-light as the hair light 
  4. I used the flash as the main light and the ambient light as fill.

For more on these techniques and other educational/useful tips, you may view my YouTube channel.  Mastering these techniques requires repetition and proper application.  That's right!  Practice.  If you don't intend to put in the hours it takes to enhance your technique and augment your skill-level, you may as well not invest any finances in attending workshops; without thorough investment and dedication, you will not gain any additional knowledge or get any better at your chosen craft.  With the advent of smart-phones, and the smorgasbord of social media, it has become commonplace for some individuals to be easily convinced that they are photographers.  So, what makes you a "professional photographer"?  Better than the millions of "photographers" out there?  It's certainly not the camera or all the gear you have or even knowing lighting.  What gives you the edge and finesse, is your hours of work and mastery of all the techniques that encompass being brilliant at your craft.

While I am not a master photographer, I take pride in the earnest I apply to curate my craft and the work I put in.  In these one-on-one workshops, it's my goal to inspire attendees, show them techniques that I have learned overtime, which have worked for me, and instruct them on posing techniques that will bring out the best in their subjects. 

Thank you to Milica Guceva and Quionna Byrant for being our wonderful models for this workshop.  I also want thank Thang Ryan Le for assisting me on this workshop.  Big thank you to Wayne Myers for BTS video.  Lastly, thank you Mario Guzman for attending, I hope you were able to walk away with some valuable information that you can apply on your future photo shoots.

Here's what Mario had to say about the One On One Workshop:

"Being in this workshop with Ernesto was a great experience. Ernesto took the time to teach skills like using sunlight to illuminate the hair using a reflector as the main light. As a beginner in portrait photography, I thought that sunlight is used as the main light. Seeing the results of the techniques that Ernesto taught me I realized how great it is to manipulate light. Also learned how to use the sun as the main light and reflector as fill light. Ernesto is a great photographer and teacher of photography. I participated in some workshops with him and it's always a great experience."

One last point, light is light, you can create great images with just a camera and any beautiful quality of light, so don't get caught up with expensive lighting equipment.  In this workshop, you will notice I didn't use any expensive strobes; I used the sun, a reflector, and a single speed-light.

If you want to attend one of my workshops, please become a member of my meetup group and RSVP for any workshop that you are interested in.

If you like what you see, please share with your friends and family.  Also, please click the heart button and/or post some feedback below.

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BEHIND THE SCENES VIDEO

Alex Portrait Session | North Carolina Photographer Ernesto Sue

Alex was very accommodating, he patiently sat while I calibrated the lights to match the scene and his features.  Working with a male subject is very easy, all they want is to express the traditional qualities of a man which is strength and to look cool.  With that in mind, approaching posing and lighting was easy.  Lighting for me is not about illuminating the entire scene, it's about defining depth in the image with light and shadow.  My images must have some depth, it cannot be flat. 

Please check out the behind the scenes video that shows how these images were created.

If you like what you see, please share with your friends and family.  Also, please click the heart button and/or post some feedback below.

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BEHIND THE SCENES VIDEO

Vision | North Carolina Photographer

Sometimes vision or the lack of it makes an interesting subject.

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