Tuesday, August 31, 2010

New Boston Ballet Dancers

Boston, MA 082510 New Boston Ballet dancers: Lasha Khozashuili (Cq) foreground/ gray sweats, Adiarys Almeida (cq) all in black, Kenna Kampa (Cq) all in white, and Joseph Gatti (cq) other male dancer with dark clothes on. They were photographed at one of the Ballet's studios on August 25, 2010. (Essdras M Suarez/ Globe Staff)/ MET Behind the Scenes: I love photographing dancers. To me they always look like beautiful sleek sports cars ready to take off. I was pretty happy when I got this assignment. I only had about 30 minutes with them and as soon as I saw their height differences I knew I was going to have to get creative fast; thus, the from below angle. TECH STUF: 4 Prophoto heads off a 1200 Prophoto Pack, there are three lights on stands to their left. The light furthest away from me had the biggest honeycomb grid in it since I wanted this one light to highlight at least two of the dancers. Then the other two heads, also with grids but smaller, one is pointing to the side of one of the dancer's face and the third one, the closest one to me, is pointed to the side of the principal dancer who is located the closest to me. The fourth light is on a baby boom with a large softbox coming from above and slightly from the left. This softbox is what created the "baseline" metadata for the image. ISO: 100, Speed 1/320th, Shutter 8.0. MORE ON TECHNIQUE: I think what makes these portraits work is the attention paid to keeping a clean background around each one of the subjects... hope you agree with me on this.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Tough Dog

Boston, MA 082610 A combat-boot clad James Fluhr (Cq) ,originally from Tennesse and now in Boston while attending school, walks his twelve-week old Chihuahua named "Bitbit" on Newbury street during a balmy day in Boston on August 26, 2010. (Essdras M Suarez/ Globe staff)/ MET BEHIND THE SCENES: Today I'm the 3:330PM-shift guy. As it usually happens by the time you come in to work this late most of the assignments have already been shot. So its up to you to come up with feature photos. The other duty of the late guy is to listen to the scanner in case news break in the city. TECH STUFF: Shot with my trusty 80- 200 2.8; ISO 640; aperture 4.0; speed 1/320th. PHOTO THEORY: The obvious reason this photo works is the subject matter: the cute puppy and the juxtaposition of the "tough" look of the owner's shoes. Also note this was shot from a very low angle to emphasize the disparity in size between the boots and the petite canine plus this angle offers a clean background.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Glamorous Jujubee

Boston, MA 081210 Draq queen Jujubee who recently gained national notoriety with her participation in RuPaul's Drag Race was photographed along with male models Zack (dark hair) and Ian (blonde) at the Oriental suite at the Mandarin Hotel in Boston on August 12, 2010. Photo by:(Essdras M Suarez/ Globe Staff)/G section cover/ Photo assistant:Ryan McBride/ Globe Fashion writer: Christopher Muther
BEHIND THE SCENES: Having just come back from an assignment in Haiti the previous week and then to have to immediately have to plan this big-production photo shoot should give you a good idea of how versatile one must be as a newspaper photographer. I also learned that I apparently need to watch more TV since I didn't know who Jujubee was and my two little nieces in Oklahoma were all excited when they found out I was going to be photographing Juju.' On location were a total of 9 people plus myself: I had an assistant, the writer had another assistant, Jujubee showed up with a make-up artist and two assitants. We had two models and a very helpful PR woman from the Mandarin Hotel. My assistant and I arrived 2 hours prior to the scheduled photo-shoot time to set up the and test the lights. This took about one hour. Once Juju arrived we shot for about three or so hours counting the time it took her to change from one outfit to the next. TECHNICAL STUFF: We used a 1200 ProPhoto pack with four heads. For the bed shot we used: One 36" x 48" x 24" Calumet brand soft box for Jujubee and two heads with grids for the models. For the round table shot: One bare bulb light with a medium reflector coming straight from above (high noon angle) and then two bare bulbs with reflectors and grids for each model coming from the sides and head level in order to create more of a sculpted look on the guys. For the bathtub shot: Three heads with reflectors and grids. We didn't use a softbox due to the limitations of space in the bathroom (even though this was a pretty big bathroom). The round table and bed shots look was inspired in Film Noir. The bathroom shot was meant to evoke more of a party scene with harsher light. CONCEPT: Jujubee and her boytoys... writer came up with the idea. EQUIPMENT: 24 - 70mm 2.8/ Lens. ISO 100./ WB Strobe./ Speeds: max synch speed of 320th of a second to about 60th of a second to capture a little bit of the ambient light. Personal note: Juju and the models were true professionals with a lot of energy and easy to direct. All in all a great shoot!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Haiti General: Downtown Port-au-Prince

Port-au-Prince, Haiti 080310 The Our Lady of the Assumption Cathedral was among the structures destroyed during the January earthquake. Destroyed building in downtown Port-au-Prince. (Essdras M Suarez/ Globe Staff)/ MET Behind the scenes: Part of my job during this trip to Haiti was to get general photos of how Haiti’s capital looks like now 8 months after the earthquake. So I spent a little bit of my time in-between my other three assignments, going to the downtown area- one of the hardest hits- and simply watching daily life. TECH STUFF: All shot with two cameras. One with the 70-200 2.8 and a 24-70mm 2.8. ISO varied from 400 to 5000 depending upon the lighting situation. WB: Cloudy and AWB.

Haiti: St Therese Park Tent City August 2010

Port-au-Prince, Haiti 08/10 The St. Therese Park tent city has a population, according to official documents, of over 4,000 residents.The camp is one of many erected around the city after the January earthquake. The camp is an amazing testimony to the strength and resiliency of the human spirit. Among its residents, we met a man who lost his leg in the earthquake and now lives in a 8’ x 4’ space with his wife and two children. A rat recently bit their youngest one so they send them away to stay with relatives in the Haitian countryside. There was the single mother of a 10-month old baby who lost her husband in the earthquake who told us when it rains her mattress would get so wet she had to stand up while holding her child in her arms to keep him dry. Yet I saw laughing children who had not toys yet used blown-up condoms as soccer balls. Adults laughing and going about their lives. People would take showers out in the open yet still managed to perform such simple task with an air of pride and dignity. Haiti was a country plagued with problems before earthquake. It just made things worst for Haitians but at least it brought the attention of the world back to a country which needs its help. We as journalist are duty bound to tell these stories with our words and pictures in the hopes that others will not forget and to remind the rest of us of how lucky we really are. BEHIND THE SCENES: A writer and I were sent to Haiti to follow up on a couple of earthquake-related stories on specific subjects. On top of doing these I suggested we do a third story on a tent city by spending time at one of these places and documenting daily life. I managed to visit this camp about four times and I was surprised on how welcoming most of the people were to yet another group of journalists. TECHNICAL STUFF: ISOs went from 100 to 12,800, speeds varied from ½ a second to 2,000th of a second, WB: cloudy and AWB. OTHER TECH NOTES: I know modern DSLRS have an amazing range of light sensibility but I was left to wonder: what good does it do for A photographer when your camera can see in almost-complete darkness yet when you look through the view finder it is so dark you can barely focus? I also came face to face with the harsh realization that a camera sensor needs contrast in order for the AF function to work and that this feature is rendered pretty much useless in such darkness. YOU CAN ALSO FIND THE STORY AT http://boston.com/bostonglobe/photos/photos_galleries/petionville_haiti_tent_city_2010