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from the February 2010 category

We are super excited to announce that the next city we will be traveling to with our IN-CAMERA Photography Workshops is Hartford, Connecticut!

To see the class schedules, dates, and to register, visit the IN-CAMERA Photography Workshop Website.

Connecticut Photography Workshops, New York Photography Workshops

If this is your first time hearing about our IN-CAMERA photography workshop series, you will actually learn how to shoot images that amaze right in the camera. We will show you how we shoot photos like the one on the right, below, with no Photoshop work and next to zero post-production time (you can see more images from workshops on the workshop web page). These workshops feature class time, hands-on shooting with professional models, on location studio lighting, post-production  and much more. These workshops are super fun, informative, and a great time to hang out with and meet other photographers who want what you want – great images without having to spend hours behind a computer screen editing.

These workshops will sell out fast and have limited seating,  so be sure to sign up now to ensure a seat!!

Connecticut Photography Workshops, New York Photography Workshops

We are super excited to be coming back to this area! Last time we were in town we spoke at the CT PUG to a full house, had an awesome shoot by Justin & Mary Marantz and loved everyone who we met! We can’t wait to see you all again and visit!!

Sponsored by:

PS. As of now we have one more state in the books for Spring… Announcement will be made Thursday at noon!  If you are interested in bringing the IN-CAMERA workshops to your area, email us at!

Today we are going to take a look at an image that I (Zach) shot for new Squint recording artist Joel & Luke. These guys are really amazing and shooting them was a blast! Joel (who is in the shot below) and his brother Luke are incredibly talented and have an amazing sound. We will do a full post on their shoot soon so stay tuned for that!

The image below was a complicated shot done with 3 lights on-location inside Healthways company in Franklin. This is simply an office space that we turned into a studio for the shot.

Here is the set up.


As you can see from the behind the scenes image, there were offices, signs, and tons of junk in the background that we did not want in the shot.  Also, you could also see right through the chains, so just lighting it from the front would not have been sufficient. I knew that lighting the back of the gold chains would create this highlighted effect with light shooting around in the background and would make the shot look like it was right out of the studio.

We set up one light in the front that was almost straight on (glamor lighting) and used a huge light source that makes the light super soft  and gives it that painted on look. The soft box above is 5 feet in diameter and that is why the shot has this look. We then added two kicker lights (or separation lights) at 45 degree angles coming in and hitting the background to light it up, and then also lighting Joel’s shoulders and face. These lights are bare bulb which is why they have that contrasty effect and make the image really pop out.  It makes the background look the way it does and also makes Joel look very 3 dimensional.

We metered the main light at f/11 which gives it tons of depth and makes the shot look super sharp (there is no sharpening done in post on this shot), then we metered the background lights so that they both also metered at f/11 which makes them very obvious that they are there and makes the shot very “high-key” looking.

This is the actual JPG of the image and there is no post-production done to this shot. After metering the shot, I had Joel hop in for a few and this was one of the first three shots I took with no lighting adjustments (that is not always the case, but knowing your lights and the style you want can make things go very fast).

GEAR USED: Canon 5d Mark 2, 100mm macro 2.8 lens, ISO 100, f/11, three 500 watt powerlights (front light has 5 foot Octobank, back lights have 7 inch reflectors attached), all powered by the Vagabond 2 from Alien Bees

Below is one more image from the shoot that has both brothers in it. This shot has an in-camera texture that was applied by shooting through the chains to give it this effect.

We hope that this post was inspiring! It is amazing what you can do with just some cool light! Happy shooting!!

A little bit ago we announced our mentoring sessions, and thought that we would share the latest session we had with you!

On Saturday, Jody and I had the awesome privilege of spending the day with Courtney Helton who is a photographer from Mount Juliet! We had a great time at the studio talking about business, relationships, photography, and how to balance all of those things while making them all truly successful. We love getting the chance to pour into other photographers and share those things that have helped us get to where we are today, and every time we do something like this, we end up learning a ton of things ourselves from those who we meet. We are all in a constant state of learning and growing into not only better business owners and photographers, but people as well.

Courtney is amazing and has a real heart for her family first which is super important in this business. She also loves what she does and has been killing it already in only her first year of business and we cant’ wait to see now where she takes her business!  Courtney, you rock! Thanks for hanging out with us and we can’t wait to see you at our Shooting & Post workshop!!

If you are a seasoned photographer who has a desire to take your business to the next level, want to get a great jump-start in your new business and don’t know where to start, or have a business that runs you, instead of you running your business, then check out one of our mentoring sessions HERE for more information! We would love to spend the day with you and give you the tools that you need to have the dream job that you want to have!

Jody and I snapped a few quick shots of us all together in the Panera parking lot after lunch and I wanted to use a new piece of gear that we had just received from the amazing folks over at Westcott, so I set up the new reflector stand and took two shots of us so you could all see the before and after! Notice how the reflector fills in the shadows – oooh ahh….

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Tuesday Tips and Tricks blog  :)

Check them out below!

Illuminator Reflector Arm kit from Westcott


After with smiles!


Friday Fun – Fort Building Adventures with Camera Equipment

by Jody on February 12, 2010, posted in Friday Fun

Earlier this week at 11pm at night we found ourselves bored. Bored our of our minds.

We had caught up on all of our TV shows on, had watched all of our movies (our favorite way of vegging after a hard working day), didn’t feel like doing a puzzle, playing a game, making food (it was after 11…) … so what to do?

Instead of just going to bed like normal people do, my brilliant husband had the idea to make an awesome, engineering feet of inhuman proportions super fort! When in the world was the last time I built a fort?  When I was a kid?  Babysitting as a teenager?  Regardless, it was a GENIUS idea!  We headed into the bedroom grabbing blankets and sheets and then Zach headed to our office using his creative genius picking out camera gear that would serve us well in our fort building adventures.

20 minutes later, there was little to no floor space in our living room and we had ourselves a killer fort (Christmas lights and all) and a bed fit for a King and Queen to sleep on…. ok, it was a thick airmattress with blankets and a down comforter, but if royalty were roughing it I can image this is what it might be like.

Soooooo, with no further ado – we present to you our super fort!!

We realized the cool thing about being photographers is we had great equipment that serves well in building a killer fort!!  So for those photographers out there who want some camera equipment fort building tips, this part is for you…

Tip #1:  Utilize a light stand to be the center points of your tent and tie down with cheap belt!

Tip #2: Using the Vagabond II is a great way to weigh down your stands so they don’t tip over!

Tip #3:  Use clamps to help hold your sheets on the poles so you don’t waste sheet space tying knots around them!

It was fun building the fort and yes, we even slept in it that night… well, until like 6 am when we were both super uncomfortable and cold and crawled back into our real bed, but nevertheless we had a lot of fun!!

Now go, spend time with your family and build your own forts!  …. and take a picture for us while you’re at it :)


Nashville Photography Workshops Launched!!

by Jody on February 8, 2010, posted in Photography Workshops

You all have been anxiously waiting, so wait no further!  The IN-CAMERA photography workshops have once again been launched in Nashville, TN and this time with a BRAND NEW class, IN-CAMERA: Light 2!!

Everyone signed up for our newsletter was able to begin registration yesterday and the seats are selling lighting fast!

To view the brand spankin new website and to Register, CLICK HERE or on the below image.

These workshops will cover not only how we are able to achieve the look of our images without the aid of Photoshop, but our Light workshop will cover on location one light strobe skills so you can nail some shots like the ones below taken at our Southern California workshops!

Due to the demand, we have ADDED for the first time ever  an additional lighting class called IN-CAMERA: Light II.  This class will be more extensive and take lighting to the NEXT level. We will cover on-location multiple strobe techniques, and equip you with reception lighting techniques and skills that will make your images stand out.  Sometimes dark lit receptions are the biggest challenge to a photographer (or how about those end of the evening exit shots with NO light and everyone blowing bubbles?…) and we will equip you with the knowledge to rock a reception so that you have no problems handling any lighting situation ever again.

We are also going to show you how to shoot those tricky detail shots fast and efficiently so that they look like they are right out of an ad.

Why do we do these workshops? Because we love photographers and love business and want to give back everything that has been so generously given to us. We can’t wait to see you there so sign up fast because seating is limited!!