The end of November is always a bitter sweet affair. As an American living in the UK, we celebrate (kind of) Thanksgiving as my wife (she is English) loves the tradition that we can pass on to our son. But it also marks the last monthly competitions with The Societies. This makes a lot of photographers scramble to enter images into the competitions, and I am no different. I had a lot of different images that I entered into the competitions and the first time in a long time I was able to enter a concert / gig photo. So let’s see what the results were for the month of November and talk a little about the images as well….I haven’t blogged about any of these shoots yet!!
November Gold – Open Avante Garde
The “Open Avant Garde” category is a bit of a free for all category. It is essentially about awesome images and it doesn’t matter if it’s a portrait, landscape, or wildlife shot. If it’s awesome and technically correct you can win a gold. This is the case with my Gold in the Open category for the month of November. You might recognise the guys in the photo as I have worked with them numerous times over the year. Norwich pop-punk sensation Keep It Secret. Keep it Secret have recently signed with a publishing company and I was commissioned by them to produce some new, exciting promotional portraits of them…and this was the result.
This image was shot just around the corner from my house at a little park that I take my son to all the time! The original concept for our shoot was more about being in a wide open space and just trying to show the personalities of the different band members (we did achieve this in other shots). But when we walked past this park to get to where we did the other shots, we all decided that we would come back and do a few shots here. As you can tell from the sky, it was getting pretty late when we did this. This was also shot the day before the “hurricane” that battered the UK. It was easily the windiest shoot I have ever done. It was so windy that I broke two lights on the shoot as they blew over, without any modifiers on them! I have never had that happen before, so you know it was VERY windy.
As a result, this shot was done a little different than I normally do. I used only 1 light and that 1 light was completely bare. This resulted in a slightly more grungy look with the lighting, but it really works well. And we had a great sunset going on behind them!!
Highly Commended – Events
November also saw me enter an image into a category I hardly ever enter, events. This came about as I had received a last minute phone call to go out and photograph the Vans Warped Tour. Needless to say I jumped at the opportunity, even if the phone call came a couple of hours before I needed to leave! 😀
This was actually one of the first images taken on the day, if you can believe that. I must have just been warmed up already!! This image of Japanese band Crossfaith, who were simply brilliant I might add. For the first band on the main stage of the day, Crossfaith had the best lighting setup and they were simply awesome showman. The guitarist here rolled his eyes into his head and I just managed to grab the photo. Quite pleased with it, and really pleased for it to have been awarded Highly Commended for November.
Highly Commended – Portrait Avant Garde
Arguably my most popular and best category (some might remember this image being nominated for Photographer of the Year in this category last year). A good friend, and fellow photographer and I recently did a services swap. He took some awesome portraits of my son and I took this portrait of his family.
It is very similar to the one that I did of my family, but different enough that it really shows off the fun personalities of this family. Obviously the kids always enjoy doing these types of shoots. Who wouldn’t when you get to jump off the sofa a few times? The image was shot in a similar method to my own family portrait in that it was shot as a single space composite. What that means is that everyone was shot exactly where you see them, only shot individually.
I will be doing a 2013 retrospective post soon. Just waiting for a few things to finalise in December before I do that. A couple of news related things to point out coming up.
The Societies annual convention is coming up in January and I have made the commitment to submit a panel for my Fellowship. This would be huge if I pass the panel as it’s a qualification held by less that 2% of qualified members! It’s a printed panel of 20 images and judged by 5 Fellowship holding photographers. This is going to take place on Jan15th so I will let everyone know the results when that happens!
I am also presenting a Masterclass at the convention in January as well. So if any fellow photographers are reading this and want to learn a little bit about how I create some of my images, be sure to come along.
There will be a lot more posts in December, so keep reading. Please leave some comments or questions below!