Monday, August 05, 2013

Models, Horses & Fabulous Costumes and then Starry Night Skies

I've been working on assignments, dressage shows and farm calls for several weeks straight.  The big shows are the most work and therefore the most stressful, so I was more than ready for some FUN.

First up was the Narnia Farm Workshop, what a blast we had!  Super models, horses and costumes galore.  It was perfect weather and light for it.  We had a beautiful forest and a golden field of grass at the top of a hill to set up in. Thank you Marla Eden for sharing your lovely property with us all. 

 I had kept the group small so that it would be easier for everyone to have a good view of our subject matter.  The new experience for me was to step back and let the participants have their way with the angles and to let Kim art direct.  Not in my nature!  But making sure that this was a great experience for everyone by helping to set up for the light conditions by remaining aware of positioning was tops on my list so I learned a little restraint.  *smile*   I have seen some great work coming out of this workshop from those that have chosen to share so far.  Very encouraging!   

Thank you so much to Stacie Burgess and Maeve Callahan for co-ordinating all the wonderful costumes and dressing our models.  Thanks to Desiree Fitterer for providing two bags of costumes to play with as well.   Thank you Stacie for allowing us to use your wonderful mare Nadia, Tonna Farrar and the magnificent Friesian stallion Vogue, what a pair!  Thanks to Sheryl Ruddolph for providing the wonderful Welsh Cob Monty as our "chestnut in the sunset" horse.  Thanks to Amelia, Sam, Sophia and Morgan for modeling so well.  Thanks to Kim Vickrey for sharing some of her portraiture techniques with us all.  Last but not least, to all of our participants who took a chance and came to this crazy "models and costumes" photography workshop. 

Amelia, started out in Kim's famous tutu and listened so well to direction.

 Tonna Farrar and Vogue were a fantastic pair in a wonderful costume.  Tonna's feathered headdress was just "her". 

 Amelia Winkelman made great strides in learning how to model for the camera.  She started out eager to do whatever was asked and it showed in her face in a questioning manner and by the time this photograph was taken, she was practically a pro.  She had the moves, the expressions and the 'tude to look straight into each camera.  A great transition.

This is probably my favorite image of Morgan Carver.  She looks rather impish here.  Perfectly at home on or beside a horse (even ponies who insist on eating the grass) I think that Morgan has lots of  different "looks".  Wish we had more time to explore some of the possibilities.  But the sun slipped behind the trees and it was time to wrap it up!

I have more models and scenes to add later but this is all I had time for this week.

Starry Night Skies!
I had Kim Vickrey and Marie Cobb visiting me and once the workshop concluded, we had some free days.  I just happened to have my ready to travel Airstream Trailer that I felt should spend a couple of days housing us up in the Columbia River Gorge while we explore a bit.   So I reserved a space in the Maryhill State Park, bought a Groupon to the Maryhill Art Museum and we set off on the following Monday to show Kim the "dry side" of what was once the Oregon Territory.

 My 1958 Airstream set up at our camp. Wherever we go, it always attracts attention.   It was important to have it nearby because after dinner and setting up our cameras, we dressed as ninjas with headband lights and lots of camera gear and drove the 2 miles to the Stonehenge replica to spend the night trapsing around in the dark setting up long exposures with our cameras.  The monument sits out above the Columbia River Gorge with wonderful views.  It is just a monument sitting in plain view in an undeveloped area that serves as a parking lot for the various travelers that seek it out.  At night its a bit spooky at first, but we soon got comfortable.

   This was our first foray out into the night to photograph the starry sky.  Alas, it was a bit cloudy and there was smoke in the air from a large fire north of us.  But we did get to see some stars, learn a lot about our cameras and exposures, and had a super great time.  We got to bed about 4am and with the trailer all snug and so close, there was no 2 hr drive back to Portland happenin that night!   We slept until about 9am when the camp was just a bit too awake to ignore anymore.   What fun!  I think we are addicted.  There will be more adventures. 

 The Stonehenge Monument erected by Sam Hill to honor those that fought in WW I.  You can see that the Milky Way is trying to peek out from the clouds.  The moon was rising by then so it was not going to get any more defined that night.  Another time.

 The happy accident, a flash went off during one of my long exposures, just frosting the edges of the monument.  The red lights to the right are windmills lit up for aircraft.    So much fun!  If you want to play around with your camera out shooting night skies, check out Ben Canales site, he has a tutorial to get you started.  I am already thinking of a variety of locations away from city lights that  I am going to haunt with my camera in the wee hours of the night.

Now, lets enjoy August! 

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