Sunday, September 14, 2008 v2.1

Many people ask me why I keep changing my website. Well, the answer is simple. Like I am with a brief or contract, I will not stop until I am completely satisfied with the end result.

The previous version looked the part, however its functionality was lacking... With some input from several more tech savy friends, I've come up with re-inventing the cogs & wheels of how my gallery works.

So if you havn't seen it already, go check out the new & improved Let me know what you think. Drop me a mail.

Animal Anti-Cruelty Awareness

The AACL (Animal Anti-Cruelty League) is a NPO that works for the good of abused, abandoned & neglected animals. A little while ago, I decided that I wanted to do some work for the NPO's & Charity organisations in my area. AACL was one of the first to get back to me & was one of the first to get something done.

A series of posters that will be used at schools & distribution, this one was for awareness of AACL. Statistics need a nice boost & awareness of what an organisation does is crucial. More posters for the AACL to come in the following months...

Friday, August 15, 2008

Run for Cover!

This time last month, I found myself on the unfinished bridge in Cape Town, it was before sunrise, I had only managed to get half a cup of coffee down before having to start shooting. Before me I had 3 of the hottest cars around... Aston Martin DBS, Ferrari Scuderia & Mercedes SL63.

This was one of the TopCar cover options for Sept 08 issue. The supercars issue! We hardly had to do much to make this trio look good together. I was very happy with how the shot came out, even though the the final image never made cover, as another story came through just before cut-off date, I'm told. No matter, I loved the shot & is definitely one I'll be keeping for a while!

I then shot a short suppliment with the Aston DBS, as a small feature for one of the supercars of the lot. A couple from there:

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Dominique Test Shoot

The latest from another test shoot with Base Models, this time a girl.

Model: Dominique
MUA: Kristeen
Stylist: Justin

Lambo Superleggera & Audi R8

The second installment of "rain shooting aka The Flood™". After the first session I was alot more willing to go get myself, my assistant, everything soaking wet again.

A gorgeous couple of cars this time too, Lambo Superleggera & Audi R8. Requested that the focus be put on the Lambo alot more than the R8. Lets hope I get to have a nice session with the R8 at some point... maybe even get an exclusive scoop on shooting the new V12 R8!

Again, I'll post the tear sheets in a seperate post, I have to still scan them in, etc.

Aston Martin Vantage

I was tempted to give up on doing any further shoots in the pouring rain, but after I had gotten home & taken a look at these shots, I quickly changed my mind. A little bit of sacrifice for a large difference in atmosphere & feel in a shoot.

This was done for Wiel over a month ago, it has been a long wait to show these! Right now I am a bit too busy to still scan in the tear sheets, I'll do so asap in another post. Overall I loved how these came out, and driving home soaking wet didn't seem such a biggie in retrospect. However at the time.... hehe

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Ring Leader...

It isn't everyday that one gets to design a ring (from the humble sketches on a napkin), and then see it go all the way through to a finished product. Recently, I had the opportunity to do so.

Designed by myself, made by Wolf Bros (special thanks to them for putting up with my continual checking up on the progress). The photo below is a bit of experimentation as far as jewelry photography goes. Shot without a lightbox, but instead 1 softbox (positioned below the ring), and a series of reflective bouncers all around. I know it's not how you meant to shoot rings specifically, but as mentioned it was some experimentation & I think the final result wasn't bad at all!

Oh and, btw, I am now engaged to my beautiful fiance... :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Surfer Girl

Sometimes, I am fortunate enough to do a shoot where what I wanted exactly (and more) was met. I have been wanting to do a "Billabong" style shoot for ages now. Something that was bright, funky, vibrant & full of life! Finding a girl who fitted that style was another challenge.

Then I met Jessica. What a girl! She has gone into my books as one of the nicest models to work with to date. It hardly took much to get her into the vibe of where I wanted to go with the shoot & she just took the stage like a pro.

I'm super happy with this shoot. I tend to shy away from doing too many bikini or scantly clad girl shoots, as it's so easy to get labeled. I always try dress my girls/guys up instead of down. I sometimes tend to think that some people try get their models as nekkid as possible, so that the photos will be liked by as many as possible. Because lets face it, sex sells. Proven fact for centuries. It's why I try get away from following the masses & go for super elegant styles.

On the Rocks with Anke

An idea I've had for some time now, as well as specific location. I finally managed to get a girl who fitted the profile: great legs, killer looks, striking eyes, sophisticated, classy. Anke was great in this regard. Really nice girl to work with.

Fayyaz Test Shoot

The first of 2 test shoots with a modeling agency I've started with. Emphasis on highly varied styles of shooting, lighting, styling, mood. It made it rather challenging & interesting at the same time.

Freelancentral Highlight of the Day

I have finally joined a website called Freelancentral. Focused on the guys much like myself, who work for themselves, work for everyone & nobody. Seeing as I have just joined them, I get a spotlight as "Freelancer of the Day". Yay me.

Hopefully I'll be able to get some interesting contracts from being associated with Freelancentral. Perhaps even some things I haven't tried before! I certainly hope so, as I'm constantly trying to find things to shoot that are new for me.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Tear: TopCar Aug 08 (Camaro)

I'm going to break my general '3 images per blog post' here, as I want to just add that bit extra. I'm very happy to finally have the issue of TopCar come out that had my Camaro shoot in it.

I won't go on too much about the car itself or the shoot (as you hear about it in so many other posts), but I rather just want to make a special note of the layout of this article: I love it! I absolutely love how this one was lay out. It was big almost double page spread flowing moving images, minimal text... ah, I just was very happy when I saw it. (There are a few more pages to the article, but I'm not going to post them all. You can go check out the mag yourself!)

This is the first of lots of stuff happening for TopCar magazine. I'm glad to find myself back once again, walking the corridors & offices again of Media24, with the great guys that bring us all these fantastic mags every single month.

I think one of the reasons why I love shooting mag work so much, is the people I get to work with. It's not people that hate their job, come to work with long faces, or you have to poke with a needle to get a response out of them. This applies for all the publishing houses I work with, not just TopCar. I am honored to get the privilege to work with these guys & girls.

Tear: Wiel Aug 08 (SEAT vs Mazda 5)

This shoot was a bit of a "soccer mom's" car shoot-out. Or at least the Mazda 5 looked the part. I'm no motoring journalist on any scale, so that's just my opinion. The Mazda 5 did have these very cool remote slide doors! I was rather fascinated with those. To get a proper run down on these cars, I would suggest picking up the new issue of Wiel rather.

Just a note on the opening DPS, it was another style driven by the "Advertisement" type of image. I rather liked how it came out. Now to just get both SEAT & Mazda to let me do their commercial work. :)

Tear: Wiel Aug 08 (Merc)

Mercedes SL63... Not much to say, except this was an amazing car to shoot! I put a lot of personal extra effort into location, which I think paid off very well! Special thanks to the house owners for putting up with us for a few hours.

And then one more which I personally liked, but wasn't used in the mag feature:

Oh the Prizes...!

I have several things to post for my published work for July/August mags. I want to first mention a rather nice surprise I got a few days ago. A while back I had submitted a photo to PiX Magazine, and then as all things go, forgot about it.

I got a surprise email telling me I had won the Readers Pic of the months July/August. With that bit of news came a brand new Tamrac Camera Bag. I recieved it this morning via courier and have only had a few minutes to check it out. Looks very neat! When I have a bit more time (before I shoot again on Friday morning at sparrows fart) I'll transfer all my gear & get it all nice.

For those of you who follow my work, you will notice it's a pic you have seen before. One of my favourite from the Eleanor shoot.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

A Matter of Composite

One of the things I try and always improve on, is my composite imaging. Or the creation of.
When I look at how some guys manage to put together images into this absolutely breathe taking image, I am often left scratching my head.

So on my continual journey of improving on my skills in Photoshop, here is a image that I tried out for fun. This final image is made up of 4 separate images:

- Face
- Body
- Book
- Book pages

I think I'm far from getting to what I want to achieve as far as composting is concerned, but I think I'm making small progress.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Aston Martin DB6

Last week I got the chance to shoot this amazing classic! An Aston Martin DB6. Pristine condition, really looked after, as all classics should.

At the time, I did the shoot, not with any particular idea in mind. I did a couple shots that I was very happy with. Then this morning, I wanted to see what an advert looked like, back in the 1950's (roughly) of this car. Wading through several sites of non-relevance, I came across this tiny image. It was beautiful. I take my hat off to photographers back in the 50's when it was film. And not all the bells & whistles we have today on our camera's.

I then decided to have a bit of fun & make one of my shots, look similar to the advert I found. Luckily I had a shot that was almost the same (not exactly of course). So here is my retro recreation! Even as an old lady, this car purrs & roars with the best of them. My shot cannot compare to the absolute classic style of photography, but I'm not disappointed with my attempt either. :)

A Touch of Jewelry

There are times that I like to try something different to what I normally do. It breaks the routine, bends the mould a bit, you know what I mean.

I'm moving more & more into doing catalog work, and in so doing, am working on having more of that style work on my portfolio. Here was one such trial with jewelry:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Brand new Gallery Website!

So however you managed to find the blog, be it from the main website, a link, signature, forum post, etc. I want to now direct some attention to my main gallery website:

I have been spending countless nights & early hours putting it together. Its simple. Simplistic. Sophisticated. There are a few technical issues with the new gallery which the more tech savvy guys will pick up on. I'm well aware of them... I've had some great mates help me with some pointers. Those changes will be coming in v2.0. Hopefully as soon as I can get some more time.

So if you haven't gone to take a look, go check it out. Alot of new work, but only the best. Rather a small strong portfolio, than a huge average one.

Wiel July 08

This was one of those shoots that was just made extra nice, by doing it in one of the nicest possible locations. None other than the Stellenbosch mountain roads. Perfect lighting, late afternoon, the breaze gently blowing the already autum leaves... really picturesque!

This was finally published in the July issue of Wiel Magazine. So I can finally show it off. Yay. It was one of my more favourite shoots, as I felt alot more relaxed doing it. Maybe it was the surrounds. Maybe I was having a good day. Either way, I really enjoyed just shooting on this evening. And I think the results speak for themselves.

The first 2 images are scanned in tear sheets, and the third was one that I really liked personally, yet wasn't used as a nice large double spread. There were so many great shots that weren't able to be used due to space constraints. Unfortunately.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Stonecollar Band

A little while ago (2 weeks) I put out word that I was looking for local rock bands who where interested in getting some new marketing material for their albums. The response was phenominal! Even though the specs said I was looking for rock bands, I got response from rap, R&B, vocalists, etc.

I can guarantee that I will be doing alot more for the local music scene in the very near future.
For now, here is the first one. A band called Stonecollar. Their website here.

And here are some of the images from the shoot! If you're a band looking at also shooting, give me a shout here!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

My light is Flickr-ing

I've finally gotten myself a Flickr account. I've long avoided it as I've just found it clumsy & took me a while to work out how to navigate it.

However now, I see what a powerful tool it is, especially for broadcasting your work across hundreds of groups & get it seen by thousands of people!

So for those of you who have Flickr, you can add me here: StG Studios Flickr

TopCar Magazine

It is always so much more rewarding to work for something, chase after it, and then finally manage to attain it. For the past couple months, I've been working towards shooting for TopCar Magazine. IMO its one of the top, best quality, nicest (english) automotive magazines we have in SA.

Today I have just concluded my first shoot with TopCar. Its a bit of a personal milestone which I wanted to share with you (those who read my blog & follow my work). I am proud to say that I shoot for this magazine & definitely look forward to all the shoots to follow.

I want to say a personal thank you to the editor, Pierre, for saying I needed to try harder all those months ago. I definitely did put my heart & soul into working harder. Its finally starting to pay off.

I am in no way at the pinnacle of where I want to be regarding my automotive photography. There is no limit. This is one of those days when I am reminded that I am so fortunate to be doing exactly what I want & to be living out my passion. Thanks to everyone for the constant support & kind words which keep me going through thick & thin.

A bit of Le Roux...

Its been a while since I've done a shoot with a male model. The last time was with Mr Zylden, which was my first time shooting a male. At the time, it was very different for me, I felt clumsy, stupid & didn't know what to do.

Second time round however, I felt a lot more confident. I must admit, working with Le Roux was actually a huge amount of fun. I think we both enjoyed the late afternoon session.

Just on a personal note, I've been reading things about "The best tips you've ever recieved" when it comes to photography. There are alot of different points & things that come out by various people. One of them which stood out the most was one which said, "Use only a fixed prime lens & it will teach you better composition". So, thats what I did. The entire shoot with Le Roux was done with the ever trusty 50mm f1.8 mk2. I enjoyed myself so much more having to move around to get my composition than rather standing in one spot with a zoom.

And then one other thing with the shoot with Le Roux. The way I shot it. If you saying, "Um, there is a SUN behind your model!"..... I kind of noticed that too. In fact, I went looking for the sun. I know its not everyone's taste, shooting into your lightsource, but I really like that style.
It floats my boat, rows my canoe, lights my fire, paddles my... you get the point. :) I love it. If you don't think so, well, opinion is your choice.