Sunday, March 9, 2014

Fun in the Kitchen

Adorably-in-love couples may have celebrated Valentine's Day a month ago (while many single ladies ate Ben & Jerry's and binge-watched romantic movies), but romantic photos can be timeless. Last month, just before V-Day, Jaimie and I had some fun in the kitchen creating our own photo studio in her apartment kitchen. With the theme of prepping for the big date - both in the kitchen and in the mirror - we wanted to create a fun, sexy, and romantic atmosphere (something pretty difficult to achieve in a small apartment kitchen!)

Of course, I had to start with a photo of the shoes. 

We may not have had the most high tech equipment for a fashion shoot, but the lack of professional equipment pushed me to get creative with my light sources and her props. Where mood lighting is concerned, there is really nothing better than white icicle lights, and luckily she had a string running right through her kitchen illuminating the background with a pleasant warm glow. A floor lamp for front light expertly filling any harsh shadows also came to my aid.

For the first outfit especially, I wanted to photograph her being goofy to capture a few genuine laughs. Telling a model to put flour on her noise is a sure-fire way to get a few self-conscious giggles, making for perfect pre-date photos. 

As always, I did a few full-body shots to show off her slim frame. When shooting in a busy scene, it's important to keep the focus on the model, and Jaimie's short dress proved the perfect distraction. Jaimie pointed her toes, showing off her long legs, creating a nice line to draw the viewer's eye through the photo.

For a Valentine's Day shoot, you can't miss the sexy shots. There is, of course, a difference between sexy and scandalous, and Jaimie's classy attire easily walked that line, allowing me to capture some beautiful shots. For the sexy look I wanted to get shots of her lazing around showing off her outfit, but in a college apartment there are few scenic spots. However, her nice wooden dining room table with the kitchen in the background made a convincing set-up. If you read these photos as a story, perhaps she had finished cleaning, changed into a sleeker outfit, and was lounging around waiting for her date.

One thing I've learned from shooting fashion photos is shooting different angles. As someone who most often shoots straight-on, I began experimenting with tilted frames, and love the result. Diagonals are often more pleasing than straight lines.

Although the holiday may come only once a year, creating romantic portraits is easy if you use a couple of the keys - soft, warm light; smiles; and sleek lines.