Halo Championship Series- Seattle

I began to write this blog in the airport in Seattle at 10 pm while waiting for a red eye. After I typed the last word and got ready to save and publish, My computer died (rip). I promised a blog post on my travels for a long time and now will follow through. (maybe)

Last weekend was HCS Seattle (Halo Championship Series) and the team I work for (Splyce) was in the running to win the whole thing. I packed my bags and equipment and went to Seattle. We got in Wednesday after going to New York City for a few days.

We had a few days to go grab b roll and explore the city before the event started. I have never been to Seattle but have talked to a few friends that grew up there. I had an idea what I was getting myself into. Thursday we went out and shot a ton of b roll of the venue, the space needle and a bunch of different places. 

Friday was the day of the event and walking through the doors I knew this was going to be one of those 'Once in a lifetime moments'. You could just feel the excitement through the place as the Splyce Halo team won map after map. Going 9-0 in pool play is very awesome since they never dropped a map. 

Over the next few days, we never stopped shooting for anything. I have a lot of footage to go through and edit (Can not wait for it). At the event, we focused on the story of the event and what there was to do there. The MLG staff put on one of the better Halo events I have been to. There was a lot to see and do. 

Getting back to the actual filming side of things we filmed over 4 days of coverage and interviews with each of the players. The screenshots from the cameras were pretty magical. Below are some of my favorites from the event. 

Sorry to keep this one short but I did have a pretty solid blog post before my computer died. Again pretty sad about that. I will leave you with that and as always, I'm a better filmmaker not a writer so there is probably grammar mistakes (My bad).

Call Of Duty Champs 2017

I sit in the airport on the way back home. I have a few hours until my flight takes off. I wanted to give an update about this weekend. 

This weekend I attended one of the biggest tournaments for gaming: Call of Duty Championships. I went last year to Champs in LA and got to meet one of our Splyce members, Till. That event was my second event in the esports space. This year I was more prepared to go, as last year I was running around not knowing what was going on.  

I arrived on Tuesday due to my flight being delayed until the next day. As some of you may know I recently starting shooing video full time instead of photos. For me to go back to photos is more of a throw back more then anything. I have been photographing since picking up a camera in 2010. 

This event I did both photo and video, but on Sunday it was ALL photos. It was a weird feeling photographing again. I have always wanted to go back to photographing at some point. I did shoot video from Wednesday to Saturday and will release a couple of videos later via Splyce.

I sorta went in with a plan on Sunday and started snapping away. The plan was to not photograph teams but the crowd and friends. I wanted to do more of a passion project. As some of you may know when you go to these events, the crowd is VERY passionate about their favorite teams and wanted to capture it. 

I believe this project turned out better then I could have imagined. I can not wait to go to my next event! I do not know when that is at this point but will continue to update via twitter. 

-TD "Wheels"  

That one Wedding I Photographed but never posted it....

I am busy most of these days and have no time to blog anymore (sad face). I do need to blog weekly on what I have been up to. 

So back in October I photographed a wedding for a good friend of mine, Nick. He asked me to photograph his wedding back in the summer and of course I said yes! I have wanted to photograph more and more weddings and hopefully start doing ore and more of them. 

The day of the wedding was absolutely beautiful. You couldn't ask for a better day. I arrived at my friends Evon's house to meet up with Nick. I got out my camera and just started shooting. We ventured off to the venue where the wedding was going to be held. When we arrived I met up with his bride to be, Cheyenne. During the ceremony Nick decided to have his vowels on his phone, it was kinda funny. Right after the kiss we partied! 

Here are some of my favorite images from the wedding: 

Why you should never look at the back of the Camera at a Concert.

recently just got back into shooting concerts. Yes, it has been a while. The concert I decided to photograph the Slaves show in Richmond at the Broadberry. This is a new venue in Richmond and I have never shot there. So this was a new experience for me. I was kind of nervous to shoot it.  

"You will miss every shot you don't take" Wayne Gretzky. This quote not only effects hokey (GO TAMPA) but also photography. Let's say you take a photo then immediately look at the back of the camera, you just missed the guitarist jumping in the air. You just missed an awesome shot.

Now timing is everything at shows. Lights are going from dark to light to everything in between. Your camera has a meter that measures light coming into the camera. The meter will tell you if you need to lower your shutter speed or raise it. Your goal is to keep the moving block between -1 and 1. If it falls below -1 and above 1, you are either underexposed or overexposed. Looking at the meter in the camera will keep you from putting down the camera and looking at the shot.    

IMG_4483-finder.jpg

Now when you should be going through the images is in between bands. You should be deleting images that are out of focus, under or over exposed. The way I look at pictures are different from most. I read the histogram. What is a histogram you say? Check out this article. Below is the back of my camera at a recent concert. As you can tell I do shoot in black and white and not color. I am shooting in raw so the image won't save in B&W. B&W images is easier to tell if your subject the correct exposure or not. (This is personal preference)

Below are some of my favorites from the Slaves show. Rest of the images are here. Next time you are at a concert try to stop yourself from looking at every image you capture. 

First Magazine Cover?!

Back in August of this year I received a job to photograph some good friends of mine Gideon for the cover of HM Magazine for the October issue. I was very excited and nervous at the same time during the whole shoot. This was my first cover and I didn't want to mess it up. In the end everything turned out great and they even included a full spread and half a page of other images we got that day. Below is the magazine cover and the rest of the images. 

 Lighting: One 48in Octobox above.

Lighting: One 48in Octobox above.

 Lighting: One 48 octobox above and one light in the back. 

Lighting: One 48 octobox above and one light in the back. 

Here is the issue if you want to check it out.

Come the Dawn

About a month ago I was contacted to photograph Came the Dawn for new press images. Below are a couple of photos from the session. 

So in the portrait above I wanted to light the building up to give the portrait depth. I normally would put a strobe behind the band. but with it being at night it always comes out the same.  I had to do something different. For the lighting I use a 22in beauty dish camera left and a light behind but farther back to light the building. 

The image above is one of my favorites from that night. We walked around the building and I same some stairs. I originally wanted them to sit on the stairs but I the stairs were not big enough for 5 guys. Again I wanted to light up the building but differently. I decided to put the light under the stairs and aim it up to see what i would get. After the first shot I loved what the light was doing. For the main light I used a beauty dish again but this time above the bands head.

All in all I loved meeting all the guys and can't wait to work with them in the future. Below is their newest music video.  

52 Week Project: Number 35

I know I was suppose to post this on Tuesday but this weekend has been eventful. I had a wedding on Saturday and Sunday I slept. No time to do a self portrait this weekend.

This self portrait I have wanted to do for a while. I've wanted to go more on the dark and horror side of portraits. I have always thought that technology has pulled people in and won't bring them back. When you sit in front of a computer, or any technology, you are some what sucked into it. Being an artiest most of my time is in front of a computer or some sort of tech gadget. Sometimes you forget that the world is all around you and you are missing the best things about life. That's just my thought on it.

Here is week number 35 and I might go a little dark and creepy from here on out. What are your thoughts on it? 

52 Week Project: Number 33

So this week I am going to keep it short. I wanted to go to the woods and see what I could get it. Orie, Jordan and I went to the woods. We set out on our journey on Saturday and drove to a local park and just walked around until I found what I was looking for.

The lighting for this is very simple. I just used a light and a small softbox. Orie boomed the light over my head and bam Week 33 is under wraps.  

52 Week Project: Number 32: Mosaic

It has been a LONG and busy weekend. Well a long sunday. On Sunday I photographed the Rockstar Mayhem Fest in Bristow, Va. 

The day started out great. I woke up got all my equipment ready. I had both my Mark ii and my Fuji on me. I arrived at the venue right before the doors open just to make sure I had everything set. And of course it wasn't. They did not have my pass. This is not the first time that this has happened. But after an hour of waiting I was allowed to start photographing.

Above is all 418 images that I edited yesterday. 4 hours of going though the images and another 2 of editing them. I knew I was going to be busy so I had to come up with a plan for my self portrait. I decided on a Mosaic. If you don't know what a mosaic is it is a photo made up of hundreds of photos to make one big photo. The photo I chose was a self portrait I did while I was in Massachusetts.

If you would like to see the images from the fest just click here. Below are some of my favorite images from the show.   

52 Week Project: Number 31

Bam it hits you. You were suppose to do something cool and nothing went the way it was suppose to. This weekend I wanted to do something out of the ordinary but I couldn't think of anything. This week I was trying to think of ideas to come up with awesome ideas for the weekend and couldn't think of one. After having 30 self portraits in front of this one the ideas should be flowing. I need to get the creative juices flowing. 

This weeks self portrait is a simple one. If you have seen one of my press stuff for bands then you should know about this lighting pattern. I usually put a light behind the band to give it a more edgy feel. 

After driving around town for what seemed like forever. Jordan gave me an idea to drive to one of his friends house that likes on a farm. I wanted a tree in the portrait to put the light behind the tree to accent it. I found the perfect tree and got to work. After about 30 poses I wasn't liking what we were getting. Jordan gave me an idea to set over just a little bit just to have a tree in it only. He took about 5 portraits and BAM week 31 is a wrap. 

So in the end I learned that if you have an idea and its not going the way you want just step a little to the right. 

52 Week Project: Number 30

A quick little story behind this self portrait. I was on my computer researching for an ideas for this weeks self portrait. I found a couple of different horror photographers and wanted to take a stab at it. I thought of this idea but in a different location then a back yard. I wanted to use a warehouse that I have used before in a couple of other portraits. There is a couch in the warehouse that I wanted to use but when we got to the couch, someone was sleeping on it and sorta turned it into there home. Not cool. So we got back in the car and drove back to Jordan's and just kept it simple. 

I wanted to remove my lower half in post and just have my arms in the portrait. So to make it easy I used a tripod and photographed the chair. Then I sat down and photographed me and the paper trying to get the paper just right. The third layer of the portrait was the pare flying around. All I had to do was to get a couple of friends to throw the paper in the air then cut it out in post. Using a tripod made this portrait a lot easier to edit. 

I would discuss lighting but the sky was pretty overcast for the day. It created a nice soft box so I didn't have to use any lights. 

All in all this portrait turned out exactly what I had in mind.

TD

52 Week Project: Number 29

Alright for this weeks self portrait. I wanted to keep it simple. I've been really busy this weekend. I got this idea from an artiest named G-Eazy. He is all about class and style. He had a portrait done like this and I want to replicate it.

I decided to use my Fuji for this one. I wanted the flash to be as powerful as it could be to have the background as white as possible. The lighting for this portrait was only the one light in the back and thats it. It was so bright it was reflected onto my face in the front. 

Sorry to keep this blog short but if you have any questions please feel free to contact me.

Conditions: The Final Show 07-12-14

So last Saturday I had the greatest opportunity to photograph one of Richmond's greatest bands, Conditions. I was given an all access pass to document the whole thing. It was my first time to go anywhere I wanted. I was running around like crazy and just photographing everything I saw.

Before I went to the show I posted on my Facebook/Instagram a challenge that I wanted to do. I asked which of my cameras I should use to photograph the show. I gave the choices of the easy road and use my 5d mark ii with my 17-40 and my 70-200 or my Fuji x100s. I got a lot of feedback and everyone wanted me to use the Fuji. I brought my Canon just in case I wanted to give up on the challenge. I stuck though it the entire show and used my Fuji.

At the start of the first song I want to figure out what the best setting were going to be. After I figured it out and got to work. I started off in the pit to get the safe shots. After about 3 or 4 songs I decided to go back stage and photograph the drummer and get some back stage shots. Since the Fuji is a fixed 35mm lens I had to get close. After I went all over to try and get some above shots and go back in the pit to get what I missed the first time. All in all I loved what the outcome was.

Below is some of my favorite images. If you would like to see the rest click here.

52 Week Project: Number 28

Time to go to the beach for a week. Why can't I stay here forever! I traveled down with my family for a week get-away to Topsail Island, NC. It's a great beach to go to, not a lot of people and very secluded. I think I counted 5 families on the beach today. It's a great place to get family portraits.

Anyway since I don't get a week off from doing my self portrait, I decided to take it at the beach. My brother and I went out at sunset to the dunes and man was it windy. Luckily I had my sand bags with me. Using a big soft box in the wind was not the best choice. I couldn't even get it on the strobe! I always carry my small soft box with me which worked out perfect! So I put the small soft box on the strobe and got to work.

I had my brother model and of course he got into his I'm a model pose. He really is a hoot but when it came to him taking my portrait he did a great job. The lighting for the portrait is just one strobe and a soft box camera left.

Anyway I'm going to go back to the beach. See you next week. 

TD

52 Week Project: Number 27: Celebrate

Moving day. Yes I did move this weekend. It was exhausting you don't know how much stuff you have until you move out. After throwing away half my food and old dishes I found two sparklers. So since Forth of July is coming up I wanted a sorta firework theme. 

I wanted to do one final self portrait in my apartment. So I grabbed my friend Dillon and got to work. I had Dillon model first so I could get the lighting down. Dillion lit one up so I could expose for the sparkler. I turned my strobe to match the sparkler. When it came to my turn I asked Dillon to practice photographing me before I lit the last sparkler. When I lit it the sparkler I think he took 30 photos of me. I'm happy at least one of the portraits turned out how I wanted it.

The lighting for this was pretty simple. I only used one light and it was in a hall way directly from me with a small soft box on it. I wanted to keep this week simple. I should of thrown another light in the back to have separation. 

I think I'll grab more fireworks to use for my next self portrait. Stay tuned.

TD

  

Monochromatic Monday: Number 5

This last weekend has been crazy with going to a concert on Saturday and then moving on Sunday. This weeks monochromatic monday comes from this past weekend at the Texas in July concert. I decided to use my Fuji for most of the live stuff. It honestly does extremely well in low light. Now all I need is the wide angle attachment and I'm set.

I would like to thank Syke for allowing me to cover the concert this weekend. The rest of the photos will be up through them. 

TD

52 Week Project: Number 26: Explore.

Explore your surroundings. I've always have wanted to explore different locations and see what i can photograph there. The warehouse that I photographed my last self portrait in is crazy big. I easily can do so many sessions in there and come out with different outcomes. So if you go to a location multiple times try and see if you can photograph it differently. Always get the safe photo first, then try something brand new that you haven't tried yet. Like if you have seen a photo in a magazine try to replicate it. You should be able to see the lighting in the photo. 

Now this self portrait has been a interesting one. I asked my friend Ryan if he could help me out. I wanted to photograph in the same warehouse that I used last time. As you can tell it is different from the last one. I wanted the portrait to look like I was exploring the warehouse. 

The lighting for this portrait was pretty easy. I use my alien bee camera left with a red gel and then to add more red I put a slave flash in the lantern. The slave flash only cost about 30 bucks and its perfect to put behind someone to cause separation. I wanted to keep the lighting pretty simple. 

Well thats it for this week. Next week should be pretty interesting. I'm going back to do a composite with a plan drawn out. 

Monochromatic Monday: Number 4

image.jpg

That was an interesting weekend. I decided to go to a local show in Richmond to see some of my friends bands. I did bring along my camera and yes I did use them. It was a pretty interesting time. I've been photographing shows since the very beginning of my career. It's sort of the reason I'm still doing photography. I love beating the uncontrollable with not having too many lights and for it being super dark in the venue. It's my fun time in photography. 

Here is my good friend Ryan from My Enimies and I. I photographed it with my Fuji and not with my Mark ii. I was surprised how well it did in low light. It is a f2.0 so that probably helped. I'll probably start using it for shows a lot more in the near future.  

TD

52 Week Project: Number 25: Breathing Fire

Planing, planing and more planning. Planning is key into making a portrait into okay to awesome. When you come up with a concept or a portrait try to make a work sheet or a sketch of what you want your outcome to be. I use a worksheet on most of my portraits. It explains what equipment I need, a sketch of what the outcome will be be, location of the shoot and contact info. It really helps me not to stress on the day of the shoot. 

So this week I wanted to do something a little more on the edge. I recently saw an image by Von Wong, a portrait photographer from Canada. He recently did a portrait session in Singapore with a fire performers. So I wanted to replicate one of his photos.

During the planning stages of this portrait I had to do some test with the fire, since I have never breathed fire before. I did some research and found out that cornstarch would be the safest. I did some test on saturday to see if I could make the biggest flame. I found out that cornstarch taste terrible so I just put it in my hand and just played with it.

The lighting for the portrait was pretty simple. I used two lights with orange gels to make it look light the fire was giving off the light. A soft box on camera right and a accent light on the left.

I did a behind the scene video on this shoot. It explains the different planning stages for the image.