Monday, April 20, 2015

The Art of the Headshot

Growing up, I always thought photographers were people who spent all day shooting beautiful, glamor-shot like headshots of people in big, airy photography studios.

The way TV represented the industry, photographers looked like they had the coolest, easiest funnest job in the world (oh, and every single one of them knew how to make any person look amazing) and I loved everything about that.

Fast forward to today, and I'll be the first person to tell you that my warped view of the photography industry and the ease of taking a basic, good headshot was 100% completely and totally warped.

See, as an event-journalism style photographer, I find posed photography challenging. Taking headshots, shooting family photos, etc. isn't exactly hard -- but it requires a different type of thinking and approach than event-based shooting.

That being said, I'm currently trying to amp up my portraiture and posed photography skills, and have recently had a couple headshot shoots to kick off my campaign to improve my portraiture skills.

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of shooting a mini headshot session with the lovely Susan Gasper who lives and works in Washington, D.C. We headed to the Rosedale Conservancy in Cleveland Park for her photoshoot and captured a few really nice shots on a bright and sunny April morning.




Later that same week, I did an evening mini headshot session for a dear friend of mine, Moira Dhaliwal, at the gardens near the Smithsonian Castle. She really wanted to capture the blooming magnolias in her headshots, as well as some of the interesting surroundings.



All and all, I'm happy with the work of these two shoots, although I'm constantly trying to improve.

Photographer friends out there, what tips do you have to make my natural light posed photography even better?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

California Dreamin' in San Francisco with Jackelyn Ho

In case you were wondering, it's totally possible to become besties with someone who lives on a different coast than you who you've never actually met in person.

Don't believe me? Enter the awesome Jackelyn Ho.


You might know Jackelyn from a Nike fitness class, or perhaps for a guest appearance in a Blogilates video, but I know her as the founder and awesome editor and chief of the 2014-2015 online publication, Fiterazzi Magazine.

Jackelyn and I first met through Fiterazzi Magazine, when I first applied to be a writer in January 2014, and everything just took off from there.

From helping brainstorming crazy story ideas, to coming up with the next best thing for Fiterazzi, I had a total blast working for Jackelyn. She totally fostered my crazy and pushed me to be the best fitness writer/photographer I could be! Eventually, when I became Fiterazzi's Assistant Editor, we got to work on more strategic plans together too which was so so cool and helped us to become pretty good friends.

It's so cool when you get to meet other people who love the things you do and have a drive to do something awesome too, right?

Even now, with Jackelyn working at Spright (the site the acquired Fiterazzi), I still get to talk to her on a regular basis, which is fab. I'm telling you, finding people who you can be friends with AND work with is so rare and awesome! I'm super lucky to have met and gotten to know Jackelyn -- she's gonna do great things!

Anyway, a few weeks ago, I got to go to the West Coast and finally visit Jackelyn and her man in San Francisco, which was awesome!


We did all the silly touristy things like Golden Gate Bridge (silly Karl the fog)....


... seeing the Full House house....



... eating...

... and selfieing...

... and eating....

... and hanging out and just having a BALL!



It was so cool to be in a new place with awesome friends just enjoying all the awesomeness that is life.

Hopefully, Jackelyn and her man will have some time to come an visit me and Mr. Man here in DC -- I think I can show them a good time, don't ya think?!

Springing into New Beginnings with Spright!

What a better way to kick off the spring season than with new beginnings at a brand new company?

Yeah, that's what I thought. NOTHING.

After saying farewell to Fiterazzi Magazine last month and watching it transform into Spright over the past few weeks, I'm so happy to announce that I'll finally start writing for Spright as a freelancer later this month. Yay!

Despite all the crazy that was March (moving, traveling, etc.)  I've really missed writing, researching and reporting about all things heatlh and fitness, so I'm really looking forward to kicking things off with a bang with Spright.

(Side note, I still need to write about my trip to San Fransisco to visit the lovely Jackelyn Ho and share some BIG NEWS with you. Yikes! I'll jump on that ASAP guys, sorry!)

When one door closes, another always opens, right?


Monday, April 6, 2015

Behind the Shoot: My First Engagement Party Shoot!

A few weeks ago I had the chance to shoot my first ever engagement party, which was a total blast.


Now, I'm no novice to shooting events -- I have plenty of experience doing that for companies and nonprofits all across the DMV area -- but shooting an engagement party was certainly a first for me. Luckily, the family I was capturing the photographs for made my first engagement event a breeze!


They held their special day at Taberna del Alabardero, a Spanish restaurant in the Foggy Bottom area. I was tickeled when I saw the amazing floral arrangemnts and wall decor the restaurant had to offer -- it made for a lovely backdrop for the candida and posed shots from the day. 



Also, all of the food arrangements were picture perfect and delicious, if I do say so myself.



All in all, I think the photos from the day turned out quite nicely, although I always worry about these types of events...

I think every photographer understands that at personal events, like parties, weddings or other special occasions, there's an added pressure to capture everyone and every moment, which can be a lot to take it. It's a big deal to be solely in charge of making sure someone has tangible memories so they can remember their special day. If you mess up or drop the ball, you're disappointing A LOT of people, and that's not easy to deal with.

That being said, a sharp shooter rarely has to deal with those problems. But still, the worry is there...