For some time now, I have wanted a new logo for Alex Cena Photography. I finally got my bottom off the ground and actually moved forward to creating something. There are a lot of talented graphic artists available but I turned to LogoTournament.com to have my logo created. It’s a great site! All you have to do is determine your budget and fill out a logo questionnaire, then wait for submissions to arrive from all over the world. The graphic designer who created the logo you selected gets paid after you have downloaded the source files and approved them.
I told all the graphic artists i wanted a “Wordmark” that says Confident, Approachable and Bold yet Simple and Elegant. Dozens of graphic artists from all over the world, including Indonesia, India, Ukraine and These United States submitted more than 150 different designs. It was a difficult decision because so many great designs came from so many talented people. In the end, I chose the image above because I wanted to create a mood first and foremost as well as something bright and eye catching.
I’ve been doing a lot of professional headshots lately in my new studio, which consists of three Kino Flo lights as my main lights, a HurleyPro Board for my backdrop and a Dynalite Uni400 as my backlight. If I had more room, I would use two Dynalite Uni400s hidden behind V-Flats to light up my background. I would also use four Kino-Flos. There’s nothing wrong with three but an additional light would give me a bit more flexibility.
Also, to save on space and have less stuff on the floor, I attached a couple of my Kinos to the ceiling. Not only does it save floor space, but I do not have to worry about weighing down my stands with a variety of sandbags to prevent them from falling.
The set up is arranged in such a way so there is just enough room for me to see my subject’s head and be able to shoot through the triangle created by my main lights. Works great and the lighting is very even throughout my subject’s head. Also, the bright lights helps minimize my subject’s deer in the headlight and psychotic look since they are almost forced to squint.
I first saw this funny video posted on Ohnostudio’s blog and I had to share it here as well. It pokes fun of people who enjoy the art of photography. It however brings up an important point. Many photographers tend to be gear heads and before you say isn’t that the pot calling the kettle black, I will admit to suffering from the ailment on occasion myself. Sometimes the allure of that new fancy snazzy wizz bang gizmo is just too much for anyone but the strong. But in my opinion a photography course or workshop with some of your favorite artists may be more helpful than another jump in megapixels or dynamic range. Alternatively, a coffee table book with paintings from the Renaissance or images created by successful photographers goes a lot further to improving your work than another piece of equipment. Whenever I am commissioned to do a portrait for example, I usually skim through a book full of images by Yousef Karsh, Richard Avedon or Annie Leibovitz for inspiration.
I’m at the PA National Horse Show waiting for the next photo shoot for English Riding Supply. The shots were taken throughout the farm show complex but we are doing the close ups in one place.
My set up today consists of a HurleyPro Board gaffer taped to the wall, two Dynalite Uni400s with Jackrabbits packs for my backlight and two with umbrellas for the main light. The photos were captured using a Mamiya AFD-III with. Leaf DM33 back and a Mamiya 80/2.8 lens.
I should’ve paid better attention. The ceiling is matte silver so I could’ve just bounced the main light off the ceiling instead of using the umbrellas.
The back lights are set to 1/8 power while the main is at half power. The camera was set to ISO 100 f/8. For shots taken throughout the complex, I used a Leica M9 with a 28mm Summicron.
I will post sample images of the shots in the next week or so.
I have to photograph a rider and a horse tomorrow at the PA National Horse Show in Harrisburg for a catalog. Since they want a clean background, I decided to also use seamless paper. I normally ship the paper direct to the location but not sure where to send it and I want to be sure to have it.
Best case I am going to tape the paper to a wall a la Richard Avedon. Worse case, I also packed light stands and a cross bar. I also packed four Dynalite Uni400s with Jackrabbit power packs. It would’ve been nice to pack a ringflash but I doubt electric power will be available. If it is, I’m sure the outlets are several king extension cords away.