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And Now for Something Different: Portraits

For those of you relatively new to my blog and/or website, you probably know me as a landscape photographer. Most of my posts here and the bulk of my portfolio is all nature stuff. But it may be news to you that I not only shot portraits professionally in a previous life, but I also currently coach dozens of private students on portraiture technique. I've photographed just about everything in my years as a photographer and although the majority of my energy is currently devoted to landscape photography (and always will be), I still enjoying taking pictures of people on occasion.

Portrait by Nick Carver

As you'll read in this previous post of my portraiture work, I'm part of a group called GroupShoot. It's based out of LA and consists of amateur and aspiring photographers and models who get together to take pictures - just for fun. We meet in cool locations, go with a theme and just photograph the crap out of each other for the day. It's open to all who are interested, so click the link above to get more information.

We had a shoot this weekend in Chatsworth at a park called "Stoney Point." It was hot, dry and tons of fun. I worked with 3 models for the day: Jessica Baus-Paget, Jeffrey Riemer and Akane Denise. They were all fantastic and I had a blasty photographing them. None of these pictures have received any air-brushing, touch-up, dodging or burning. With the exception of the black and white versions which were done in Aperture, all of these pictures are pretty much straight out of the camera.

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

These next two are my personal favorites from the entire day. The breeze came by at just the right time...

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

Portrait by Nick Carver

In the Orange County area and interested in learning how to take portraits? Check out my private lessons.

Models:
Jeffrey Riemer
Jessica Baus-Paget
Akane Denise

I Got Good Portraiture Chops

Most of you know me as a landscape photographer. It's where I devote the majority of my photographic energy, I'm very skilled and experienced at it and it's where my passion lies. But you might not know that I used to shoots portraits professionally. You also might not know that I've coached dozens of students on portraiture photography - including several that now do it professionally. And what you probably don't know is...

...I still got it, baby.

There's an awesome group based out of LA called GroupShoot that organizes fun photo shoots between photographers and models. Basically, a bunch of photographers get together with a bunch of models in a cool location, shoot all day, then share the results. There's no pressure, no fees and no stress. It's organized by some friends of mine and is open to all who are interested. Click the GroupShoot link above to learn more about it.

I attended the most recent GroupShoot meet this past Saturday at Orcutt Ranch in the San Fernando Valley and got some great portraits to share with you. Keep in mind none of these have ever set foot in Photoshop. I tweaked the levels and added a vignette to a lot of these using Aperture, but that's it. No airbrushing, no dodging or burning, no plugins or filters and, oh yeah, no artificial lighting. This is all natural light with just good technique and a sharp eye.

The following set of pictures are my personal favorites from the day. I really had a lot of fun playing with the backlight and letting the sun peek through just a bit between the models. It created a gorgeous glow around and behind them. This type of extreme back lighting is difficult to shoot without proper training in photography and without the full knowledge of how to use your camera. And these bad boys are practically straight out of the camera. All I did was boost contrast a smidge' in post.

That sunburst coming through the female model's hair on the left (Shannon) was achieved very carefully and all-naturally without filters. Gotta love that star shape.

If you want to learn how to take great portraits, too, check out my private lessons.

Models:
Jacqueline Corcos
Kelan Liparoto
Suzie Riemer
Katya Prinsterr
Stephanie Schafer
Jerome Garot
Shannon Rogers