This is Bobby. Bobby is a model, actor and friend who needed some fresh imagery created so we spent a day together last month laughing and listening to angry rap music.
This was actually a great exercise for me as I don't usually shoot model comp card sort of things. I ended up pulling four lighting schemes out of my bag of tricks, that are apparently my go-to setups.
Octobank over forehead on charcoal seamless:
Daylight-balances flurescent tubes on either side of subject:
Single directional large umbrella with fill card:
Small gridded softbox up high:
It's nice to take a step back every now and then and realize that I'm super comfortable with strobes, and I barely ever rely on daylight anymore. In a weird way it's so much easier. Give me a shout if you're interested in getting on touch with Bobby for any projects.
Just completed a feature assignemnt for NJ Monthly Magazine on Cigar bars. It involved a mix of portraits, interiors and still-lifes and I'm super psyched how well it came out.
Here's the final layout:
I went into this assignment wanting everything to be rich, punchy and dark with a lot of atmosphere, so I lit everything with grids and really shot for the shadows. It helped that everyone was awesome and I had a bunch of great things to work with.
Chef/Owner Nick Vazquez of Azucar in Jersey City:
Owner Jonette Kraft of The Smoking Dog Lounge in Maple Shade, NJ:
Luis Cortez of Cortez Cigars in Shrewsberry, NJ making cigars:
Composited interor shot from Porter House Steakhouse and Cigar Bar in Montvale:
I had the opportunity to photograph Lidia Bastianich at her restaurant Felidia in NYC last year, for a feature article in Long Island Pulse Magazine. For those unaware, Lidia is a well known chef, TV host, author and TV personality - and her latest opening is Eataly next to the Flatiron Building with her son and Mario Batali.
Lidia couldn't have been nicer or more gracious. She gave us plenty of time to do what we needed and all in all it was a fun shoot. Unfortunately only a few images could run, but here's some I wish could have seen the light:
Vernick Food & Drink is easily one of my favorite new spots that's popped over the past year in Philly. It's owned by Greg and Julie Vernick, who recently moved back to the area after graduating from the CIA, working at Per Se, and opening restaurants around the world for Jean-Georges Vongerichten.
The man can cook.
Craig LaBan gave Vernick three bells in September and they seem to be killing it. Psyched to get back there soon.
We attended a holiday party at The Adventure Aquarium over the past weekend, and it was pretty awesome to have a private run of the shark tunnel. As a family we've been there many times, but it was really special just us, and my camera. Very, very cool. Aquarium, you should call me for a shoot...
I had the opportunity to head up to NYC a few weeks ago, to shoot an amazing art deco staircase in the new Ted Baker 5th Avenue store - designed and built by Amuneal Manufacturing. Super challenging shoot, not the least of which was catching at 5:30am train. We had to be there by 8am, and out by 10am before the store opened for business.
The toughest thing to tackle was the lighting. I knew I didn't want to take the easy route and simply capture long exposure shots with exisiting light, even though behind the camera was all windows and there were spotlights on the stairs. I just felt that daylight was going to make everything look really mucky, the spotlights were going to be really yellow and hot, and the color balance was going to be all over the place. I also felt that seeing the staircase as it is in real life in a wide shot wasn't going to do justice to the workmanship and details put into this piece of art.
So to produce more a "hero" shot, we bulit the image from scratch and used our strobes to light exactly the pieces of the staircase we wanted. Then did an exposure for the chandelier to drop in later. The above final image is a composite of close to 10 shots, and I'm really pleased with it. You'd never guess this was shot in bright morning daylight with crowds of people walking by.
The final ad in Metropolis Magazine:
Just wrapped up an awesome feature shoot on bread, for Long Island Pulse Magazine. Very psyched to have had my buddy Nick Macri (of Southwark) create most of these breads and food style for me. Little known fact: he's also the reigning US National Bologna Champion. And thanks to Arwen Spargo for the prop styling.
A few months ago I had the opportunity to collaborate with Philabundance and LevLane Advertising on the 2011 Philabundance Annual Community Report. You can view the full .pdf here. Levlane did a great job on layout and design - and everyone from Philabundance was great to work with. If you're not familiar with what they do, head on over to their site and check them out - really great organization fighting food poverty here in the Delaware Valley.
A few month ago I had the opportunity to travel to Newark, NJ and photograph the owners of Manischewitz for New Jersey Monthly. Super nice guys, and it was pretty awesome roaming the factory in whites and beard catchers seeing how all the stuff I grew up eating every passover holiday gets made. The hot macaroons right out of the oven are amazing, warm matzoh tastes just like room-temperature matzoh, and you've never truly lived till your lenses fog up in the gifilte fish room.
All in all, it was a really fun day and one of the many reasons I love what I do.
Kleinbard Bell & Brecker, one of the top Philly law firms, recently launched a redesign of their website. For this redesign, we shot portraits of all the attorneys - both formal and casual, along with some lifestyle imagery. Here's a sampling of some my favorites:
Everyone at the firm was great about letting our team infiltrate their offices for a few days. It's always interesting to see what happens when you put people that are used to being in control of their environments in front of the lens - where they suddenly feel awkward, self-conscious and unsure of what to do. I have to say, this crew was great and I think everyone enjoyed the experience while carving some precious time for us out of their hectic days.
I also want to thank Masters Group Design for bringing us into the project, and creating a great site.
DiD just (re)launched their brand spank'in new website (here) that we shot a few months ago. It looks awesome, and it features huge full-screen composite shots that we created over a few shooting days. They highlight various employees and locations of DiD, and include the company's mascot, Micah, in all the shots.
Here's the shots:
And don't forget to go check out their website.
Just completed a series of still life images for American Mortals. Instead of using headshots of the stylists for the website, they decided to use depictions of their tools along with personal items. I love the idea, and I'm really psyched how well the images came out.
The 2012 Philadelphia Burger Brawl is almost here. It's an amazing fundraiser for The Meredith Public School, and I'm psyched to have been able to shoot some cool publicity shots for them. If you're not familiar, it 20 of the top chefs/restaurants in Philly competing for the best burger - and this year Jim Beam and Dogfish Head Brewery are sponsors. All you can eat & drink, and proceeds go to a new computer lab for this public school in dire need of funding (as with all of them). Get you tickets here, for Sunday May 6th. Trust me, it's awesome.
Jenn Carroll (Defending Champion)
Jason Cichonski (Ela) vs. Marcie Turney (Barbuzzo, 13th Street Empire)
Matt Levin (Square Peg) vs. Chris Scarduzzi (Table 31)
Robert Aikens (Dandelion) vs. Samuel Noh (Rouge)
All the chefs were so great to work with, we had a blast. See you on May 6th.
Let's get something clear...I find "magic" completely unamusing. It's such a trial for me to look interested with that fake smile on my face, as someone repeatedly makes me follow a ball, or select cards. It's the same feeling I have when someone tries to tell me a joke that takes 5 minutes to act out - I'm just not that interested. I agree, I'm a bad person.
That said, I had the opporunity to shoot Will Fern (yes, a magician) for Park Place Magazine a little while ago. Super nice guy. And despite my fears, I'm really pleased with the final shot, which is a composite of many takes with Will flipping the cards into the air.
He's excellent at 52 card pickup. Thanks Will for being such a good sport.
Just got back from Las Vegas where I was shooting for one of my clients, Amuneal Manufacturing. They had an unbelievable booth at the 2012 GlobalShop show and we used it as an opportuniity to shoot some beautiful tabletop still-lifes.
Here's my favorite spread:
The image on the left is the base detail of a tabletop/display case necklace holder, and the image on the right is a hat stand.
They're really killing it right now, and I'm so proud to be shooting this beautiful stuff for them.