Since spring hit this year, I had been basically on the go non-stop working on a variety of projects. But when things slowed to a semi normal pace again, I jumped at the chance to have a fully creative shoot with my lovely friend Janel. As much as I love conventional approaches to portraiture, I am always looking for new ways to add interesting and dreamlike elements. Now, although Photoshop can be a fantastic tool to get creative with your photos, most photographers will tell you it's much better (and easier) when you can get these things happening "in camera", way before the editing process begins.
Although I've invested quite a few pretty pennies into my studio, I'm definitely a firm believer in being resourceful and using anything I can to add creative elements to photos. These things do not have to be pro photo gear or expensive to be effective. For example: I had used colour gels on my lights before, but for this shoot we also experimented with the use of Janel's vape smoke, a mirror from my bedroom, and a prism I found on eBay for $10. The gelled lights added a punchy colour outline to the backlit smoke clouds, and also gave some colour to the outline of her hair and some shadows. The prism was also an inexpensive way to add some cool reflections and rainbow elements to the photos, by holding it just in front my lens before taking the shot.
Another thing I've been experimenting with is cinematography, which is essentially the creation of "living" images. A gif or looped video is created where some of the elements are in motion, and other parts of the image are still. In this case I took part of a video we took, made a loop in photoshop of the wind moving the plants and her hair, and then masked a still image of her face and body (taken from the video) over top. Check out the cinemagraph I made of Janel at the bottom of this post to see the finished product!