There's something about arriving in New York and in minutes having landed 2 new gigs, connected with mentors in my field, met the owner of my favorite Upper East Side art gallery, and consumed a billion calories. Practically all at once. But don't talk with your mouth full, ok? Working with New York dog photography clients is the perfect excuse to visit one of my favorite cities. It's a mild, quiet winter in New York. That means the light is perfect and still for New York dog photography sessions. Today's session features Martini, the 2yr old Yorkshire Terrier. He sits high atop a West Village apartment, looking down on those below from his perch of pillows. Today our New York dog photography session will focus on creating a powerful portrait of this little Yorkie on the bed, and outside by the piers near the West Village. I always try to pre-visualize every image I create, leaving room of course for the improvisation in between moments. Using medium format black and white film and a heavy, manual Hasselblad 500c, there is really never any allowance for mistakes. So I'll spend my train ride this morning going over the important portraits in my head, what my exposures may be for them, and how I'll compose each one: Yorkie in the middle of the bed, atop the pillows (watch for window light flare, open up my aperture to create depth, center myself with the subject); Yorkie out on the piers (close down to draw in cloud detail, push everything into focus with tight aperture, create distance by placing Yorkie in middle of pier, farther out).
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I recently was commissioned to photograph two very talented personalities of the Hollywood stage: Karissa Shannon (former Playboy bunny, favorite of Hugh Hefner, and star of 'Girls Next Door'- the reality show about the Playboy Mansion), and her boyfriend Sam Jones III (star of 'Smallville' and 'Blue Mountain State'). It was a very very hot day in the Hollywood hills, but we managed to keep the energy fun, relaxed, and intimate. My assistant and I took advantage of Sam's wonderful back yard, and we even loaded some *gasp* color film into the Hassie!! Karissa and Sam live with their 3 dogs: Jones (baby Yorkie), Johnny (gorgeous Belgian Malinois), and Ambrosious (scruffy/silly Shitzu-mix). They had just picked up Jones the morning of our session, but he was already adjusting well to his new life in Hollywood. It was a very fun challenge to go between Jones' exhausted puppy energy, to Ambrosious' ridiculous antics and lounging, to Johnny's intensity and strength. Keeping the energy calm, the people cool, and the dogs relaxed kept us all on our toes, but I couldn't be happier with the images from our session. Below are some of my favorites: