Natasha’s Portrait Session

Saturday, 9 July 2011

One of the yearly events I help out with is the Surrey International Writers Conference. As a fundraiser for them, I donate a portrait session for their silent auction. This year’s winner was Natasha Hoar, an urban fantasy / paranormal romance writer, and she wanted to get a variety of different pictures to fit her work. She also surprised me by bringing along her rapier (she takes lessons!) and did a few slightly scary lunges towards me. Her My Little Pony shirt was pretty cool and nicely incongruous.

Here are some photos:





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Surrey Spotlight on the Arts Cover Shot

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

It was my unique pleasure to shoot my wife, Kathy Chung, for the cover of the Surrey Spotlight on the Arts magazine. She’s the co-ordinator of the world-renowned Surrey International Writers Conference (SiWC), held yearly in, oddly enough, Surrey. It’s gained an international reputation for having great presenters, lots of fun, and a very supportive atmosphere, and from what I heard and saw through the social media feeds, this year’s was a great success. I also contributed a portrait session as a silent auction fundraising item. She told me she consented to the cover shot because she knew she could have me do it and thereby exert full creative input over how she looked. Apparently she has that sort of control over me or something.

Here’s the original studio shot from the D3x + 70-200VRII, using a clamshell light setup with a large softbox on top and bottom to give some really nice, even, flattering lighting. We borrowed from the library as many books by the author presenters as we could find.


The shot was then edited to remove the softbox from the top of the image, the background cleaned up to a consistent colour, cropped slightly, and levels slightly tweaked.  The resulting spot proof (the magazine substituted the orange background texture) looked great:

Spotlight Cover Shot Kathy

It was a shame not to take advantage of the lighting setup to do some long-overdue self-portraits: