Project 52

Assignment 8 - Air

This week's assignment was a concept shot.  We were asked to photography "air."  The client represents a company that is using air as a transportation tool.  The final use will be as a brochure cover, an ad, and a DVD cover for a media kit. The image needs to be a square.

I started out with lots of ideas of someone flying - a superhero, Mary Poppins, etc.  These images take a lot of coordination and significant Photoshop skills, so I decided to let that wait for a later date when I had more time to plan and properly work on the image in Photoshop.  (If anyone has a costume and wants to dress up and fly, give me a call...)

My 'back to the drawing board' idea was to shoot a graffiti artist in action, which is something I've been wanting to do for a while.  I approached a few different groups of artists, and got a response from a one group, but we couldn't coordinate a meeting.  My next idea was to make an environmental portrait of an employee in an industrial gas store, surrounded by air tanks, but for insurance reasons, non-employees aren't allowed in the warehouse of the local industrial gas place.  As a side note, I'm starting to realize that when I have to find a person for an image, I need to start early and approach several potential models... 

My final idea was woodwind instruments.  They require "air" to make music, so I thought it was fitting.  I approached a local music store owner, who agreed to let me shoot him and some of his music teachers for my assignment.  Ray Rosario, at Ackerman's Music in Wyckoff, was a great sport.  He threw on his sunglasses and started puffing his cheeks.  The images I made of Ray are below:

One of the music teachers who works at Ackerman's, Lauren Olivola, plays and teaches a number of instruments, including the french horn, the trombone, and the trumpet.  When I met her, she was carrying a "P-Bone," which is a plastic trombone.  Apparently these are significantly cheaper than the metal alternatives.  Lauren's P-Bone was purple, which looked very cool but didn't really coordinate with what she was wearing on the night of the shoot, so I converted it into black and white.

If you are in northern NJ and are looking for music lessons on any instrument, give Ray at Ackerman's a call.  He has several teachers and has been in business for many years. 

Since I was shooting in the basement of the music store, I went with simple lighting - one light on the backdrop and a softbox on camera right pointed at the subject.  The narrow quarters gave me plenty of light to illuminate the subject. 

Next week's assignment is to shoot an advertisement for barbecue tools.  We can show a chef with the tools or a still life, so I'm off to sketch up my ideas!