Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The girl with Cystic Fibrosis

I had to photograph a lady the other day(during an interview with the reporter) who is trying to raise money for the trip to Stanford foe a double lung transplant due to having Cystic Fibrosis. It was an interesting shoot because the topic of illness is normally a sad one but she was all kinds of bubbly and cheerful. It was also a hard house to shoot in. It was weakly lit, most of the time I had to shoot while facing open windows, and the walls were painted an off color, dishing out color-casts.

Because of the condition her lungs are in she has to be connect to oxygen at all times. So when I shot I really wanted accentuate the tube that was in her nose and draped over her body.

I also needed to convey with photos both the somber nature of the situation she was in and the perky attitude she had. Not easy with bland, flat light. So I used some flash to supplement the ambient light. Bright highlights and dark shadows for the more serious moments(first photo) and even, bright light for her constant giggling(last photo) and a more cheerful feel.

Because of her attachment to oxygen tanks, she rarely leaves the house, so I had to include her environment in the shots. Being stuck in a house makes her like a prisoner, so I used the supports in the divider wall to mimic a jail cell. She wants to be a fashion designer, so I tried to get the mannequin in as often as I could as well.

The end result is far from perfect, but I'm happy with the way they came out considering what I had to work with.

People trying to overcome medical adversity always make for great photo assignments.


Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Matador and the Bulge...er...Bull

It's been a long time since I've posted here. Mostly due to the graduation season being hectic and tiring. I haven't gotten a chance to go shoot anything on my own time and news has been mostly lacking in excitement. But the other night i got to shoot a bullfight. Something I had never experienced before. I had no idea what to expect. I was hoping for excitement and I was not disappointed.

When the first bull came out of the entrance hall and immediately turned and smashed a hole in the wall that was suppose to separate guys like me from one-ton of angry mammal I knew it would not be boring. And the excitement just kept coming.

The Horseman and the matadors did exactly what you'd expect them to do; dodge a bull and jab it with non-lethal spears. Pretty standard. But then cam the Forcados. Their job is the pega de cara or pega de caras, "face catch" in English. I think you see where this is going.

After a fight is over about twenty of these guys line up in a straight line and let the bull charge and ram them while they hang on and try to slow it down.


Anyway, it was pretty cool and I'd love to go to more.

For today's photos I've stuck with just one of the Matadors, Victor Blasquez. He was the top guy of the four matadors at the show.

This is during the opening ceremony.

And on to the fight.

Don't stare directly into it. I think you know what I'm talking about.

Remember those Fordacdos I mentioned? Yeah, their job sucks. *Photo in color for full green elf hat action

I hope you enjoy the photos.