Back Alley Photography

Perhaps if I ever get a studio of my own, this is what I’ll name it. Moving on.

I think I mentioned in a previous post that I was interested in taking photos in the dirt road that serves as a back alley to the studio I rented Monday. As it turned out, by the time we got around to taking pics back there, I was pretty burned out and lacking in energy and ideas, so I ended up snapping a bunch of sloppy pics of Candace and her little boy while we all discussed what we were going to do with the rest of the day. I did remember to set my white balance with the ExpoDisc, but other than that I didn’t do too hot with the back alley shots. I forgot to change my settings and speed up the shutter when trying to take jump shots, the light was harsh overhead, and my framing was generally awful. What can I say, after putting makeup on two models and then shooting them for two and a half hours straight (we got started with the whole day at 9 AM and didn’t finish up until 2 PM)  i was tired.

Still, there was one shot I really loved and wanted to process; it always happens after a shoot that no matter how many I take, there will be a very select few at the top of the list of favorites for me, and I always process those first. This was one of those that I felt I absolutely HAD to edit, so when I woke up this morning I decided to work on it right away (then I got busy and didn’t get back to working with photos until about 10:30 PM, which is why I’m throwing up this sloppy post at two in the morning).


Candace had on a dress she wore in the indoor shoot, then threw the infamous faux fur vest on over it simply to get it ‘carried’ to my car, but it really worked here to give the impression that she’s a super-glam mom, and the fact that she’s in the vest with her sunglasses standing in a dirt road is even better. I figured while I was editing this one photo, why not edit everything else from this section of the shoot that I might want to work with so I can present it as a little collection here. These photos are weird though; they have such a snapshot feel to them that the only way I felt comfortable with them was to mess with them a lot, which means of a lot of obvious processing and Pixlr-ing, which I’m sure will make some of you happy. Take this next shot for example:



I wasn’t much into jumping during this shoot, but Candace totally was, so she wanted to do some leaping about before we left for the day. Unfortunately, this is one of the shots where my tired screw-ups came into play, as I forgot to change my camera settings to stop motion which resulted in all of her leaps being blurred. In spite of that, I liked how she was posed in this shot, as if she was levitating by accident instead of jumping. It was blurry, so I edited it with very heavy shadows and contrast to blend her in better with the tree branches; then I superimposed two photos over it in Pixlr (bonus points if you can see the face, which is one of the two photos I embedded into the original shot). I think with the creepy color and the added texture, this one works, but it’s pretty unusual  for me. Candace will probably love it.

This next one definitely had better clarity…



and I liked the movement and the sentiment it captured, but it wasn’t an overly thrilling shot by any means. I don’t usually add borders to photos, but I dunno, here I was just trying to add interest. I added a border to the next one to conceal Candace’s legs a little, since I didn’t think she’d be comfortable with me showing them from the particular angle I took the shot. What can I say – I was trying to capture her son grinning while holding onto her leg, but the angle on her was a little inappropriate. Hence the splotchy border that kind of covers her up but still conveys the message of the original shot.



It’s now after two AM and I am tired, so forgive me if this post isn’t riveting. I was also determined to get some alley shots put together for this post, so my eyes and arms are tired from working at the computer for so many hours. I don’t know how many of these particular pictures are keepers, but I love the first one for sure, and that second one is growing on me. Anyway, they’re done, so I’ll  move on to some aspect of the indoor photos next.

11 thoughts on “Back Alley Photography

  1. That first one is really great, and of course, the vest is featured so that gives it something extra. There is an indefinable magazine-like quality to the processing here (if there was much). So, you got two environments out of one day’s work. Pretty productive, I would say.

  2. I love that first photo so much. It’s got such attitude. I just realized I never got the floral doggie photo from you. Did I give you my email?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s