How do we grow as an artist? By putting ourselves under pressure in a situation where failure is potential. Through out my career I have faced several situations like this, some where I have excelled and some where I have failed. Some situations have technical challenges such as how to light a scene or subject. Sometimes the challenge may be earning your client's trust so they open up to making a connection and you are able to tell a genuine story. Other challenges may be throwing your self in a situation that you don't have total control of. On Tuesday September 12th I did exactly that, I hosted a live photoshoot at the Louisville Bespoke Open House. It would be the first time I did anything remotely live, let alone with a packed venue. I planned to stream my live tether to the overhead projector but the images were blurry and distorted from lack of a wide screen aspect ratio, at this point I began to sweat. I always pre-light my sets before the models walk on to work, and in this case it couldn't of been more needed to get the shoot rolling. The strobes started to flash which attracted the guests, I could feel the crowd horseshoe around my set. I'm not going to lie, I was nervous, dozens of eyes were on me and it was nearly impossible to verbally direct the model because the music was overpowering my voice. At this point I took a deep breath then I rolled up my sleeves, drowned out the noise and owned my environment. The designer, Frances Lewis, had made all the final preparations on her design already, now I just needed to place my faith the model's experience. After I would envision a pose I would run up to her and explain what I wanted, give some direction and then run back to my camera to photograph her. I would do this every few minutes switching up my direction and the emotion I wanted the model to convey. Time appeared to slow down when in actuality we photographed for maybe 15 minutes. When it comes to selecting which image to retouch, I know the shot when I see it, and in this case, the team knew it as well. I could not wait to get into the digital darkroom and retouch!
Team work definitely makes the dream work and as the photographer we are looked at as the team captain, one to lead and direct. With that responsibility I’ve always felt the need to deliver more than one image on collaborations, so that the entire team can have a complete body of work. Initially I was only going to release one image from the Open House. Why? Because when culling for a second image I faced yet again another challenge, it was a matter of retouching a part of the image I didn’t think I could navigate my way around. After some thought, I talked with Frances about the issues I was looking and she was ok with just releasing one image, I could have been too… easily. But something inside me didn't feel right, something told me to keep trying, and although we learn from failure this was not a time I would let failure get the best of me. I had a team to represent who also donated their time and talents to the Open House. So I poured a bourbon, sat back down and was determined to deliver one more. This is Louisville Fashion and this is what we do my friends!
Now that it is all said and done with, I have a milestone under my belt that I can be quite proud of. I've never been fond of public speaking or working in front of large crowds, but with overcoming this challenge I have found a new level of confidence. It's been said that the reward is in the risk, my risk was putting myself in front of dozens of folks while I worked but the reward is this amazing sense of accomplishment and knowing that I can (and will) do this again!
Thank you to Yamilca Rodriguez of Louisville Bespoke for hosting me, and to the creative team Frances Lewis, Tiffany Nelson, Lisa Hickerson and Dominique Joy Thompson, your talents are greatly appreciate, for none of this would be possible if it weren't for each of you bringing your talents.
And a huge special thanks for two of my biggest fans and supporters, my parents Dan & Pam Barragan, thank you for coming out, love you guys!
Designer - Frances Lewis
Make-Up Artist - Lisa Hickerson
Talent - Dominique Joy Thompson
Assistant - Tiffany Nelson
"There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure." - Colin Powell
Left - Designer Frances Lewis, Right - Assistant Tiffany Nelson, Not Picture - Lisa Hickerson
Gear - Profoto Lighting, Canon 5D Mark IV and Oliphant Backdrops
Key Light - B1x w/Profoto Umbrella Shallow White Medium
Fill - B1x w/Profoto Umbrella Deep White XL
Kicker 1 - B2 w/Profoto OCF 2 x 3 Softbox w/Grid.
Kicker 2 - B2 w/Profoto OCF 1 x 3 Stripbox.
70-200mm f/2.8L @ 70mm
ISO 200 - 1/200 sec - f/5.6
ISO 200 - 1/200 sec - f/5.6
KMAC Couture V, it has come and gone full circle now, but that's not to say the story ends. As with any milestone, it's only the close of one chapter and the beginning of the next. It has been one exhilarating ride, from the discussions that drew the first breaths of the concept to capturing the last team to grace the runway as they stepped down off it. Every year the designs become more intricate and the talent becomes more fierce, and as always it was a humbling experience to capture this evening. Now, on behalf of the entire KMAC Staff, designers, talents, hair stylist and make-up artists, I'd thrilled to share the official production photography of KMAC Couture V! Thank you again for making my job something to live for!
You can read the other blogs here...
KMAC Couture V, Part I of III
KMAC Couture V, Part II of III
Below is the link to the Dropbox for social media sharing, please feel free to download and use at your leisure. I only ask that when you post your image to please credit your team along with myself as the photographer. Thank you!
It was a night of shimmering streamers, pastel colors, groovy music and high energy, I'm talking about Laura's Kirkpatrick's charity fashion show, Laura's Angels Disco Fever. Not sure really were to begin, other than this would not of been possible if it wasn't for the all the volunteers who donated their time and talents to make this happen. Given we all volunteered, this means 100% of the proceeds will go to benefit the Beautiful Minds Dyslexia Charity, Family & Children's Place and Fund for the Arts! With 8 designers showcasing over 100 pieces of their work, I definitely had my hands full trying to capture everything possible, however I welcomed the opportunity to take this event on! Arriving on set, I was able to set up a lite studio, "pop up" if you will, within a short matter of time. Knowing that we would have streamers as a backdrop, I knew immediately I would go all gels on my strobes. Once I had everything in place and set up, it was like Disco Fever began to thrive straight out of my camera, we wanted a groovy 70's feel, and that's exactly what we accomplished. Now, let me say that this, along with the main runway was my area of responsibility, we had 5 other photographers covering behind the scenes, the introductory runway, alternate runway shots, not to mention video (Be sure to follow the entire photography team - Joey Goldsmith, Bob McKinley, Annalara Fischer, Jessica Budnick, Jenni Harper Young and Blake McGrew on social media for their content as well). There's going to be plenty of content out there coming in the next few days, but for now here's a few of my favorites, but the entire set can seen and downloaded via the Dropbox link at the end of the blog!
Lite Studio Tech Schtuff
Canon 5D Mark IV w/50mm f/1.2L
Key - Profoto B2, Umbrella Shallow White M w/Peacock Blue Gel.
Kicker - Profoto B2, Barndoors w/Rose Pink Gel
Runway Tech Schtuff
Canon 5D Mark IV w/70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II
Canon 5D Mark III w/16-35mm f/2.8 L II
Light - Available
On Friday October 21st, I had the privilege to document exclusive Behind the Scenes of an event that's the first of it's kind here in Louisville KY... Louisville Bespoke, held at Design Terminal in Historical Portland. A collaboration that aims to bring together the fashion community and like-minded talents. Yamilca Rodriguez, who discovered the immense talent pool in our fashion community wanted to bring us closer together, so with the help of Gil Holland and Lisa Kahl-Hillerich, Louisville Bespoke came to be. Last night had an amazing turn out and I definitely look forward to what the future brings with this new chapter for the Louisville Art Scene community. Here are just a few of my favorites, but the entire set can seen and downloaded via the Dropbox link at the end of the blog!
These are free to be used on social media only, please no cropping or filters. I also ask that when you post, you fully credit your teams - designer, make-up artist etc, and myself as the photographer. Thank you!
Link - http://bit.ly/2dXFfAX
This year when I found out I'd secured the principal photographer's position for a fashion show I've long admired, I was filled with an overwhelming sense of humbling joy and excitement. I knew this wasn't something that came easy and furthermore, it was a chance to document one of the region's most notable fashion shows. Having an idea of what all goes into the making of KMAC Couture, I felt I had an opportunity laid out before me, to document the Behind the Scenes (BTS) leading up to the runway show on Saturday April 16th, 2016. After discussing my idea to capture BTS starting at rehearsal with Event Coordinator D'Ante Tinson, I was given the green light. Showing up the the rehearsal, and witnessing the coordination between the staff, artists and models, I knew this would be a show not to miss. Even though this was rehearsal, I could tell by the energy that everyone was on top of their A game as if they were actually walking the runway that day. Along with getting some strong BTS stills, I managed to film a few tidbits and piece together a little teaser from that day as well. My goal in all this was to capture and present to the audience visual content that showcased the art as if they were actually there in the event. It has truly been an honor to work KMAC Couture in this capacity, and I look forward to the future with such an immense amount of gifted artists. Cheers!
KMAC Couture · Transient Beings
"The relationship between art and clothing is one of the most creative and constantly evolving areas of human activity. It is a zone of transformation where fashion designers like Alexander McQueen explored fantasy and theatricality, where artist Nick Cave challenges our ideas of race, class and gender, and where artist Andrea Zittel finds personal liberation through the effective use of the uniform. Over time, as our lives become altered by the environment, conflict, success and setbacks, we modify our surroundings to accommodate our changing world. We are all, in a sense, transient beings in a constant state of flux. Artists and designers demonstrate the unlimited potential for clothes to empower us all to move forward with strength and conviction, even during times of uncertainty and instability." - as described on www.kmacmuseum.org
Candid and Detail Set Up
Canon 5D MIII
Canon 50mm f/1.2L
Canon 24-105mm f/4L
600 EX RT with a Gary Fong
ProMedia Boomerang Flash Bracket
Black Rapid Sling
The images below are just a few of my favorites but the entire event can be view at this link - http://on.fb.me/1zUmLsD.
A personal journal about any given day in my photography career where I will write about anything from portraits and headshots to sharing my educational experiences. Thank you for taking the time to stop by, it's my pleasure to share my stories with you!