Tag Archives: Studio 35 photography

Obsessed photographer vs. camera geek – Janice Meyers Foreman

In my last post, I mentioned about my philosophy when I am working on portraits, “For me, you, and them”.  Actually, I was writing about “me part” in the last blog but it became too diverse and I left the part to this blog. So at the times when I started photography and switched to digital, the “me” part was huge because I had to learn so many things and no space for me to think about other people. For  experienced photographers , experiments can be the “me” part as well. I want to try different lighting technique all the times. Can I use pinhole or infrared photography for portraits? Experiments are fun and TASTY, but the quality may not meet the level to please other people.

So let me introduce the wonderful photographer and my friend, Janice Meyers Foreman. I met her at Stampede Western Photo gallery 2011 and we have been working together so often lately. Janice (and myself) are not sure to be entitled as a professional photographers, (even though both of us are the accredited photographers by Professional Photographers of Canada).  However, she set her mind to the professional level and create quality PRODUCTS. I guess it is truly important to raise the level from an amateur with an artistic eyes more than the title itself. She calls herself an obsessed photographer and I often call myself a camera geek. I am learning many things from her.

However, our styles are completely different. Please check out her photo in her blog (http://jmeyersforeman.wordpress.com/2012/03/16/taleeta-waiting-to-smile/), and my image below. We had an opportunity to photograph the same model, Taleeta, at Studio 35 in Airdrie, Alberta. You can see the difference so easily.

Taleeta 02 by Hiroaki  Kobayashi (Hiro-K) on 500px.com
Taleeta 02 by Hiroaki Kobayashi. Please click the photo for the larger size.

My image is bright, lively, comical and capturing a moment of the motion. Her image is more like subtle, faded, static…if static is not a good choice of the word…timeless or eternal. The other examples are found in the links below :

Can you see the differences? I guess her photos are beyond talking about only photographic techniques. Even I feel they  have power to portray inside of model’s.

So back to concept of the “Me”. After the TASTY experiment process, a photographer has to digest and put the intake to bones and flesh. This is style making process. So “me” as a photographer cannot be forgotten in terms of the creation of the images . And If people appreciate my photos and say “I want to be taken pictures by you because I like your style”, that must be happiest moment more than obtaining winning ribbons.  It is like the style becomes the “brand”. By the way, Taleeta and her mom really liked both Janice’s  and my photo, and there was no winner between us.  Rivalship will be continued…but please check out her blog. She takes not only portraits but also babies. And  travel photography! They are truly fabulous.

Fashion photography – Taleeta

When working on a portrature, I often think about “me, you, and them”. “Me” is obviously myself as a photographer; “you” is a photographic subject, and “them” is other viewers. As an experienced photographer, I want to create great images. However, I believe that the desire itself is not enough. When I ask models about impression of the photos, if they replied “they are great”, these photos are just “so so” to me. If the models respond “It is cool, I love it” I achieved something. If I cannot please people in the frame, it is unsuccessful. Then if I win a contest or I get 100s of hits on my blog post, they are just bonuses.

I had an opportunity to photograph a nearly brand new model, Taleeta, last week. This session was organized by Studio 35 in Airdrie, Alberta. The photo below is the one of shots form the photo-session. Please click the image for the larger view. I hope she likes this image.

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Actually, I would like to talk about “me” part a little bit more. It will be next time. Please check out  Janice Mayer Forman’s photo from the same session. She will appear in my next blog.

Fredau Hoekstra – Photo session at Studio 35 (3)

I have been Beatle mania since I was 14, and read widely anything about the Fab Four. They left so many episodes about their album covers. For example, their 2nd album, “With The Beatles”. You will find episodes like “B&W photo for an album cover was revolutionary in early 1960”, “the photographer was Robert Freeman”, “he used only window light” and so on. Anyway, for some reason the half lit faces of the Fab Four left an impression on my mind.

Now I know that the lighting technique of the half lit and half shadow is called split lighting. I like the dramatic lighting maybe because of the Beatles album. I tried to use the lighting technique for Fredau Hoekstra at the model photo session at Studio35. However, she was so classy and split lighting looked too dramatic for her. So the key light was moved to higher than split lighting and it became close to Rembrandt lighting. I think I could achieve bewitching but still classy Fredau.

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Fredau Hoekstra – Photo session at Studio 35 (2)

I would like to talk about Fredau Hoekstra, the model for the photo-session at Studio 35. Before that, I would like to talk about Jazz. I am a Jazz aficionado. Why I love Jazz? Because it is conversation with musical notes! Players decide which song to play so they have a fundamental melody and chord progression. As a tune goes, it moves to solo part by each players. This is the true charm of jazz because the solo is played by improvisation. While a player is improvising solo, they actually listen to each other and quickly response to what other players are doing. That is why jazz is so thrilling.

Fredau Hoekstra is a full-time model from Edinburgh. Just google her name and you will find so many her images. For the photo-session, I brought a photo frame for some poses. While I was checking my equipment, she was passing her body through the frame. As soon as, I saw what she was trying to do, I quickly changed lens to wide-angle and I lie on floor and shot some images.

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I like this type of interaction. Model-photo-sessions are like jazz, collaboration work among a photographer, models and assistants. I had concept like a song to play, but outcome was not the one I predicted.

In addition, I tried time-lapsed photography of the photo-session. Stupid myself, I forgot charging a battery for the camera so I could not take the frames of images as many as it is supposed to be, but just for fun.

Model – Fredau Hoekstra (www.fredauhoekstra.co.uk)
Hair & Makeup – Mallory McGowan (www.mallorymcgowan.com)
Wardrobe – Maria Serpico
Location – Studio 35 Photography