Artistic Print – “Final Hit”

As an artist I am always looking to improve my skill set.   One artist that I admire greatly is award winning Richard Sturdevant.  Richard’s level of detail and dedication is very impressive and inspiring.  As a Master Artists of Photography and and Photographic Craftsman he is always a source of inspiration.

This work is based on the concept comes form Richard’s class that he taught at the Texas School of Photography.  I was able to study is techniques and with much practice come up with a design based on his painting style.  This is my first behind the scenes description of what I do so I apologize up front for any details that are missing.

 

Green Screen Capture

The first thing I did was have our senior pose on our green screen setup.  I used two kicker lights in the back and one directly above to add the shadow we were looking for.  I extracted him from the background and made some quick touch ups such as flipping his name so you could read it.

Then the real work began.  I did several layers of shadowing and highlighting do bring a more illustrated look his overall look.  Next I created several layers of his gi (the uniform).  On each of those layers I painted in his gi.  Again this gives it a more illustrative look and makes is stand out giving it a more powerful look.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Behind the scenes 2

The background was based on the Omaha San-Mai Martial Arts Karate studio’s logo.  I created a 3D rendering of the logo and add some rock texturing.  I layered that onto a painted background and worked in several layers of texturing to blend the elements together.

With the background finished I finished the blending of our student and the the background.  For final touches I added some overhead lights and drew in some smoke effects and I was done.  The overall piece took about 4 days to create.

I hope this gives a little insight on how this was created.  If you would like to know more about this work or would like some personalize artwork done for you please feel free to call us or send us an email through our website.
Thank you so much!

 

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Your Senior Session: Clothing Tips for Girls – Part 2

 Article By Megan Blusys, Photo by Joe Blusys

In Part 1, we talked about tips to choosing the right outfit for your senior session – dressing in layers, choosing solid colors, accessories, etc. Part 2 offers tips for how to make sure you select clothes that are flattering and will make you look your best. Let’s get started.

Pick colors that complement your skin tone

If you have a warm skin tone, you should lean toward warmer and richer colors like reds, oranges, yellows and dark browns. If you have a cooler skin tone, you should lean toward cooler colors like purples, greens and blues. If you have a neutral skin tone, you can basically wear warm or cool colors.

Don’t know what skin tone you have? Look at the veins on the underside of your arm. Veins that appear greenish indicate yellow undertones, which means your skin tone is warm. Veins that appear to be more blueish indicate blue undertones, which means your skin tone is cool. Also, think about whether you look better in pure white or off-white. If you look better in pure white, you have a cool skin tone. If you look better in off-white, you have a warm skin tone.

Wear tops that give you a nice silhouette

Too tight outfits will show everything you may want to hide; too baggy outfits will add size and make you look heavier. That means avoiding clothes that are bulky (like fluffy sweaters) or flowy (like summer or beach wear). Instead, go for tops that are more form-fitting. Please note, form-fitting does not mean skin-tight. If you can see bulges, it’s too tight.

Don’t wear sleeves that cut off at the widest part of your arm. Also, bare arms tend to add weight, so be careful with sleeveless and spaghetti-strap tops and dresses.

Choose the right neckline for your face and body

The right neckline can make you appear taller, slimmer, and more stylish. So which one is right for you? Follow this guide:

Sweetheart, Scoop Neck, V-Neck, and Square Neck

Pros: Lower, open necklines bring attention to your face and elongate your upper body, especially if you’re petite or have a short neck. Also, if you have a smaller chest, sweetheart and scoop necklines are best at creating the illusion of curves. Round faces look best in a v-neck or square neck.

Cons: If you are bigger on top or have a long neck, lower necklines won’t be flattering.

Crew Neck and Boatneck

Pros: If you have a narrow, oval or heart-shaped face, a long neck, small chest or sloped shoulders, necklines on or near the collarbone draw the eye to your shoulders so you appear more balanced and proportioned.

Cons: They can make you look bigger than you are if you have generous curves, a round face, short neck or broad shoulders.

Turtlenecks and Cowl-Necks

Pros: To offset a long neck or face, choose a turtleneck. A cowl-neck (a looser version of a turtleneck that drapes at the chest) creates a vertical line that elongates the body; they can make petite women appear more curvaceous and pear-shaped women more in balance.

Cons: People with round faces, short necks or apple-shaped bodies should avoid turtlenecks as they will make those features more prominent. If your face is narrow or heart-shaped, avoid wearing cowl-necks which can elongate your face; also, cowl-necks can make fuller-bodied women appear larger.

Remember, these are just tips. The most important part of choosing your outfit for your senior session — for any session, really — is to dress according to your personal style. You’ll be more comfortable and your personality will be reflected in your photos. Enjoy your senior session!

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Your Senior Session: Clothing Tips for Girls Part 1

 Article By Megan Blusys, Photo by Joe Blusys

When it comes to senior portraits (or any type of portraits), the clothing you wear can have a huge impact on how the pictures turn out. So it’s important you think about the outfits you’re going to wear in your senior photos (no pressure, right?).

Don’t worry. Here are a few tips to follow to choose the perfect outfit every time.

Bring a Variety of Different Clothes

Senior pictures are a chance to play dress-up, so bring a wide range of clothes. Have a fancy dress you want to show off? Bring it along! Casual and laid back more your style? Wear your favorite t-shirt. Whatever outfits best capture your personality (as well as those with Mom’s stamp of approval) are welcome.

Think About Color

Even if your favorite color is blue, don’t bring 5 different outfits all in blue (even if they are different shades of blue!). Bring a mixture of colors.

Try to avoid colors that will wash you out (this can vary depending on your skin tone, but generally include gray, flesh-tone, white, off-white, or beige). Darker colors tend to be more slimming, while whites can make you look bigger.

Stick to Solids or Subtle Prints

Avoid shirts with wild patterns, logos, words, or pictures because they will become the focal point of the picture – and that’s not what you want people to focus on when looking at your portrait.

Dress in Layers

What this means is you should wear a cute jacket or sweater over a shirt with short sleeves or spaghetti straps. This works for a few reasons:

  • You get a variety of looks from just one outfit; more looks means more poses to choose from.
  • You avoid showing a lot of skin in a picture, which can draw attention away from your face; you also keep Mom and Dad happy by not revealing too much.
  • This is where you can bring in some bright, fun colors and patterns, while still not drawing attention away from your face.
  • Longer sleeves tend to be more flattering on all body types.

Have a Mix of Trendy and Classic Clothes

For wallets or graduation announcements, it’s nice to have pictures with some trendy clothes. But for a portrait that’s going to hang on your parents’ wall for the next 15 or 20 years, you don’t want to be wearing an outfit that looks dated within a year or two. So, mix in some traditional styles (like basic sweaters or button-down shirts) that will still look fresh year after year.

Bring Accessories for All Outfits

From shoes to jewelry to hair accents, make sure you bring everything you need to complete the look. That also means making sure your nails (both fingers and toes) look nice … hey, now you have an excuse to go get a mani and pedi!

Be sure to read Part 2 – which covers choosing the right outfits for your body type.

 

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Tips for Taking Great Holiday Photos

By Megan Blusys, Photo by Joe Blusys, Model – Our little Hero
 

It’s the holidays … which means family, food, and photos! Here are a few tips to make sure you capture your holiday celebrations in all their glory.

Be Prepared

Keep your camera batteries charged (or spare ones on hand) and your camera nearby so you can quickly snap those spontaneous moments.

Use Natural Light When Possible

No one wants to be blinded over and over again by a flash. So, try to use as much natural light as possible. Position people near windows or in well-lit rooms. If it is dark outside, try to flood the room with as much light as you can by turning on lamps.

Take Plenty of Candids

Capture people while they are chatting in the kitchen, opening a gift, snoozing on the couch, or munching on goodies. These tell the story of the holiday.

Use Decorations for Interesting Effects

Christmas lights and other sparkly decorations cast glows and reflections that give interesting splashes of color in a photo. Or, you can include out of focus Christmas lights to give your photo a unique background.

Go Wide to Capture the Full Story

In the midst of the unwrapping frenzy on Christmas morning, take wide shots to capture all the action. Shoot from the floor level, where you can see the demolished wrapping paper, empty boxes and new toys crowded around the kids. Then, take an aerial shot to show the wreckage in all its glory. Be sure to also get pictures with the Christmas tree, stockings and any other holiday decorations.

Get in Close

While you’re taking wide photos, make sure to also zoom in and capture the glee on the kids’ faces. Get close-ups of people throughout the day, too. This crisp, tight framing allows your subject to be the star of the photo.

Get Everyone Together for a Large Group Shot

Posing a large group can be difficult, but don’t worry. Just make it fun. Do some traditional, everyone-is-smiling shots, then some goofy ones. This gets everyone comfortable in front of the camera. Plus, the holiday’s are supposed to be fun! You may be surprised – the fun poses often work out better than the traditional ones.

Also, the best looking photos come from everyone’s eyes being on different levels. Therefore, position people at different heights to get everyone in the photo without looking crowded. (Be sure to avoid the totem pole look, though.) You can use stairs, or have some people sitting while others stand or kneel. This creates more interesting compositions, too. It’s sometimes easiest to pose adults first, then add the kids.

Take Smaller Group Photos, Too

While you’ll want a few pictures with everyone as one big group, be sure to also get some smaller group shots (it’s easier, too). Take some pictures of individual families, or just the spouses or the siblings. Be sure to have everyone’s eyes at different levels in these smaller group shots, as well.

Be Careful with the Backgrounds

When you’re posing people, be sure to look at what’s in the background before snapping the picture. During the holidays, it’s easy to end up shooting pictures in front of backgrounds so cluttered that they’re a distraction.

Shoot Quickly and Often

When it comes to photographs, you can never have too many, but you can have too few. That’s why it is important to take a lot of photos, especially if you are taking group shots or pictures of kids. The more shots you take, the greater your chances of snapping that one image that everyone looks great in. Just don’t drag the process on; otherwise people will get restless. Instead, shoot quickly and shoot often.

Don’t Just Eat the Food, Take Its Picture!

Food is an important part of our family holiday traditions. So it deserves a picture all its own. Take a picture of the dining room table, complete with fancy place settings, the main course, and all the trimmings.

First, take a picture from above so you can include the whole spread. Lock the focus on the near end of the table and the rest of the table will likely stay in focus. (If you focus on the far end of the table, the fuzzy foreground is likely to dominate the picture and you won’t get the result you want.)

Second, get in low and close. Focus on just a few dishes, and the rest will blur a little to give the impression the food goes on forever in front of and behind the scene.

Share the Pictures

It’s no use to take holiday photos if no one ever sees them. Post the pictures you take on Facebook or email them to friends. You can also put together digital albums or get printed copies. Just don’t wait too long to download the photos and make albums, otherwise you run the risk of not doing it at all.

Hope everyone has a Merry Christmas. We can’t wait to see your holiday photos!

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Commercial Artistic Print
The Football Player

Part of this blog is to feature both commercial and fine art prints that I produce.  These are artistic prints where I use photos for my base and elevate them to a new level.  This can be done using various methods both in and outside of the computer.  Many of the featured pieces involve many hours and sometime days of work depending on what my final goal is.

The Commercial art prints you see are artistic works I do for a specific client.  If you like what you see we can set up a time to create one just for you.

The Fine art prints you see are artistic works that I sell to the public in limited numbers.

I hope you enjoy what you see.  Feel free to ask any questions that you may have

The Football Player

This is our first artistic print for the blog.  For this piece I my goal was to create a poster feel that conveys a certain toughness about the player.  This piece uses 3 separate photographs, several graphic created items and several brush styles to create the various colors that you see.  I hope you enjoy.  Let me know if you have any questions.

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