Advertising, corporate and editorial photos of people.

Comcast Assignment, to photograph Wilson Contrera of the Chicago Cubs.

What a great assignment! We had a few adverse conditions to deal with. We set up lights in a garage while the city of Scottsdale was repaving that street. This made it difficult to get the equipment to the house and to pack it out. Comcast needed the photos on green screen. Lighting for green screen requires even lighting across the background. This is a challenge when you are photographing an athlete in a garage with limited space. The Comcast video crew recorded footage of Wilson inside the home. When they finished I had less than 5 minutes to work with Contrera to get several poses with different props such as his face mask, glove, bat and cell phone before he had to leave for spring practice. My assistant and I practiced these poses ahead of time so we knew how to fit Mr. Contrera and a bat in a garage with a 9’ceiling. With noisy paving trucks in the street I yelled directions to Wilson and got about 45 shots for the Comcast ads. Years of experience allow me to be flexible and fast.

2018-10-11T18:59:22+00:00Photography, Photography, People|

Photographing Technology

What are the challenges when photographing technology at Versum Materials, a facility with clean rooms, research labs and chemicals? First, we must comply with OSHA’s safety rules which is standard in most manufacturing plants like Intel, Microchip and AT&T, which means we must wear the safety gear which restricts our movement. The glasses can restrict your vision when using the camera’s viewfinder. My assistant and I also wore orange vests in the warehouse so we would not get run over by a forklift; all of this is a normal part of the OSHA safety standards.

Protective gear

The second thing is Versum Materials’ plant in Tempe, Arizona is full of complex machinery and high-tech equipment. Combine that with safety stations and caution signs and it can make for some busy backgrounds. Our job is to make a simple, clean composition by removing distracting objects from the scene and choosing the right lens and camera angle. Luckily I did not have to operate their complex equipment, just photograph it, but they do some awesome things like polishing wafers or magnifying the surface of a wafer, right down to the atoms!

We had about 40 topics to photograph. 50 – 60 photos would be adequate for brochures and web site. We produced 250 photos to satisfy the needs of media-hungry social media.

Getting the right angle for a clean shot.

We may use color or repeating shapes in a composition to hold the eye of the viewer.
See more photos of people in the work-place here.

2017-09-25T22:22:02+00:00Photography, Photography, People|

The Grunge Look

The grunge look is perfect for football photos. The original image was captured on a Canon 5D mkIII at ISO 25,600 at F5.6 with a shutter speed of about 1/640. A 150 – 500mm lens is my favorite for covering most of the field.

I start the process in camera raw by desaturating the image and then adding contrast. I open it in Photoshop. Working with 2 layers I add noise and mask out part of one layer so the athlete pops out of the photo.

2017-05-19T23:56:10+00:00Photography, Photography, People|

Lighting Equipment

Whether you have a microchip or a 30 foot RV we have the lighting equipment for your product photos. We have enough strobes to light almost any room or building.

A few of the different lighting options from diffused to spot.

A few of the different lighting options from diffused to spot.

I personally enjoy the challenge of lighting different subjects in various locations as well as in the studio, and it doesn’t matter if the product is reflective or translucent. We have photographed people in just about every place for business portraits, lifestyle and sports. Give us a challenge, we’re ready for it.

Usa a GoPro for social Media Photos

Beach day 2 wave 600wThis summer you know that you, your family and friends are heading to the beach, lake or pool. You also know that you are going to post photos on social media. How do you get that perfect shot? Here is a great way to get the perfect shot while you are splashing about. Get a GoPro. Put it in video mode, 1080 HD or 2.7k, and do selfie movies. Then go through the frames one at a time and export a still frame. You will have 30 images per second to pick from. It will be a good size for social media at 72 dpi. In the sun the GoPro will use a shutter speed of 1/2000 second which freezes the wave crashing on your head as in the above photo of my son.
Just push the shutter button to start recording as the wave slams you. keep recording until you come up for air. Remember to stop recording. Of course you get more dramatic images if you are surfing or water skiing.

Beach Day 3.Bianca 600wMy daughter prefers to dive under the waves

The GoPro software is easy to use. After you import the clips in step 1, do this;
1. Step 2; Edit.
2. Select the desired video clip so that it is displayed in the Player window.
3. Scrub through the footage till you see the perfect image and the frozen splash. Place the playhead so that the frame you want to export is displayed in the player window, then selecting Share > Export Still.
4. Then just select the image Name, Location and Size to Export (small, medium, large, & native) and click Export.
5. Check out the location you specified to verify that the image was created.

Use burst mode for high res images for printing

In continuous photo mode you can capture up to 10 photos per second but it will stop at 30 photos, or 3 seconds. It needs a few seconds to write all that data to the SD card. you can miss some good action with this mode. Here are directions from GoPro’s web site.
Getting Started – Changing Burst Settings
1. Navigate to settings screen using the ‘mode’ button.
2.Select using the capture button.
3. Press the ‘mode’ button three times, you should notice a small camera icon at the top of the LCD display, a number divided by another in seconds. Eg. 30/1s meaning 30 frames per 1 second.
4. Press the capture button to enter this where you will see a range of settings to choose from.
5. You then choose the setting which best suits what you wish to capture.
Beach day 2-crop 600wVideo cameras normally use a shutter speed of about 1/50 second which blurs most action. The blur helps to give the illusion of smooth motion. The GoPro may record at 1/2000 second which freezes the water splashing for crisp still photos. They are low res but perfect for social media.
If you plan to use a GoPro for social media photos you should buy a floaty ($9), or, I would suggest the “handler” ($29) to keep the GoPro afloat, a must for young children. Be sure to stop recording.

 

2017-05-19T23:56:11+00:00Photography, Photography, People, Video|

Retouching Photography Services, Architecture

You want your marketing photos now but the weather doesn’t co-operate or you are still under construction what do you do?

Hire me. 🙂 I provided 50 architectural photos for Ashton Woods homes in Atlanta when it rained for 2 days and then frost covered everything for the next 2 mornings. I got all the shots during the 4 production days scheduled. Then I spent a few days retouching. Aside from what I normally do, which is to remove the sales office and trap fence, I had to remove puddles, wet streets and cover bare trees and dead grass. The Photoshop terms are compositing, layering and masking.

Retouch_Atlanta_greenville_front_B4_flat
For the images shown here I had to recreate the garage door which was mostly covered with bushes and bare tree branches. (There were no completed models of this elevation in the new community.) Once the landscaping was removed I had to redraw the rest of the door. Then the door was copied twice to cover the other garage entrances. I removed much of the landscaping and signs and added 2 driveways. I melted the frost off the roof by cloning good roof tiles. I removed the bare tree branches on the left and added leaves to a few trees in the background. I brought the dead grass back to life and added some new sod.

woodstock_knoll_greenville_front_final__72dpiAshton Woods’ customers  will buy THIS home, not the sales office.

Retouching architectural photos is just one of the many photography services that I offer. I retouch portraits and product photos as well.

See more samples in the “Retouching” Gallery here.

Dangerous locations for Photoshoots

2 portraitsIf you are looking for rustic locations for photoshoots be careful when you are close to the border. I recently drove 35 miles south of Phoenix and stopped at an old gas station along route 8 about 29 miles west of Casa Grand (I-10). We were about 65 miles north of the Mexican border. The rustic weathered gas tanks were the perfect background for these portraits of my 2 kids. Little did I know I was putting them in danger. 2 vigilantes from the Arizona Civil Sentinels approached us and told us that 3 people had been shot in this area lately. Their web site says this about the route 8 corridor: “This is an area where there have been at least 14 confirmed shootings involving illegal smugglers, and American citizens.” They warned us to leave the area before sunset.

CBS News reported on October 14th, “The department of homeland security has learned that the drug cartels are sending hit men to Vekol Valley to shoot bandits who are stealing drugs from the drug smugglers entering Arizona from Mexico. The Vekol Valley is a major drug smuggling corridor.

The above photos were taken 5 miles from Vekol Valley. Next time We’ll head north for rustic locations.

2017-05-19T23:56:12+00:00Photography, Photography, People|

Trotto was guest speaker at ASU’s Polytechnic Campus

I like talking to students. They are so eager to absorb everything about the craft and the business of photography. So I was pleased to be invited to speak to a class for Professor Penny Ann Dolin at the Graphic Information Technology (GIT) school at ASU. The class was learning about portraiture. I demonstrated a few of the technical issues such as white balancing and work flow but I stressed the importance of putting their client at ease to achieve a friendly, confident and relaxed portrait. To do this, I described different ways that I was able to “Connect” with my subjects and told a few stories about problems that may arise and how to work through them.

Trotto speakes to students at ASU

2017-05-19T23:56:14+00:00Photography, People|

L.A. Spas

L.A. Spas wanted to show their new branding, “Adventures in Hydrotherapy”. The spas were filled in their warehouse in LA. Backgrounds were composited in Photoshop. Even the 16 foot long swim spa, fully equipped with pumps and plumbing, was tipped on end for the overhead product shots.


Hydrotherapy


la-spas-working-web1

2017-05-19T23:56:15+00:00Photography, People|

Advertising Campaign for Cox Communications

I had the pleasure of working with the video production crew for Cox Communications to create dozens of images for their FSI print advertising campaign. The lifestyle photos show people enoying digital TV, internet and phone services. I worked closely with the lighting crew from AZGrip and director Ron Bruce to create an ad campaign to reinforce the TV spots. The makeup was done by Giselle Fox.

2017-05-19T23:56:15+00:00Photography, People|