Part 2 A Fun Photo Shoot:
So we have our photographer on hand with the proper lenses and knowledge of editing so let’s get started. I as a photographer have a rule and as silly as it sounds I really try to stick to this all so important rule of “it has to be fun” and if it is not fun we just pack up and head leave. For today’s shoot I find myself at Sandy Hook Lighthouse to shoot three grown ladies who are all close friends. They have actually laid out the plan for the shoot and have chosen the location themselves. All I have to do is direct & shoot. All three ladies are Thai and they have chosen three different looks and their first look is very amazing. They have decided to have nice photos in authentic Thai dresses. Although they live and work in the USA they still hold true to their Thai culture. The dresses are amazing, the colors and style is fancy but not overly ornate and this allows the dresses to be functional. I have photographed many Thai events and parties and have seen this style dress before; they wear well and really are stunning to see up close. There is also the craftsmanship that goes into such a garment as one can imagine.
So the shoot starts off with one big problem, wind. We are surrounded by water and like most lighthouses I have ever been to there is wind. But today we are getting hammered by the wind. The ladies all have long hair and this is where my challenge will be when it comes to editing. However the girls are eager to shoot anyway; after all it is all about fun. Two of the girls have their mothers with them and one has even brought her two children and I have my wife acting as my assistant. I say “acting” because she is rarely my assistant, but today she agreed to help.
So let’s get to the “fun” part. Well, really the wind was not fun for me. But everyone else is having fun. I truly have always believed we are all kids if we let ourselves be kids. And it is that “let ourselves” part that a lot of people have a problem with. The problem for most people is when they have kids they somehow stop feeling like a kid. I know and understand all that “you have to be a responsible parent” stuff, but life doesn’t have to end. I have seen people break that barrier and still be responsible parents. Sometimes it might mean getting rid of the kids for a day or just a few hours. Other people stop being a kid because… as you get older “you’re not supposed to act silly and foolish.” “Who cares?” is what I say. So today I see before me three Thai ladies who are all friends and the fun they are having is like watching three teenage girls. They are getting to dress up and get in front of the camera, having fun posing for the photographer and at times acting a little silly. They are doing group shots and individual shots. After the more formal Thai dress photos they moved to the waterfront. They made a wardrobe change and put on some fashion attire. Again for some people this is what fun is. Of course we all have different ideas of fun, I have photographed guys on motorcycles or skateboards ect… that is their idea of fun. But for these three ladies today it is all about being at a special location that has meaning to them. One of the ladies actually lived at Sandy Hook for a period of time and it had a strong meaning to her and having a fun photo shoot at this location with two of her closest friends and her mother there, really made for a memorable experience.
I’m not going to get into the normal topic about how cameras capture moments in time. But I would rather talk about how an overall photo shoot such as this is more about the fun of the whole event. The joy of getting together with friends, acting silly,, dressing up and dressing down and during all that, yes there was the capturing of it all. Capturing the images and also having great images with good edits. And that is where it takes something more than just an iPhone to get nice captures. With some creative composing such as shallow depth of field for nice bokeh and correct white balance along with correct color. So in my opinion “yes” there is still a need for the “good photographer” with his/her DSLR along with editing skills.
As the shoot came to an end my wife and I were invited to join the Thai ladies in dining out for Japanese cuisine, something I could hardly complain about. I love all Asian cuisine. This also gave us a little time to review the photos before departing. In the end fun was had by all and if was a “Fun Photo Shoot.”