06 July 2012

Photographer in front of camera

A couple of weeks ago i went out on an evening shooting with fellow photographers. Our main goal was practice action photography with strobes (speed lights). In the middle of the action my eye was drawn to the photographer next to me. Just because i saw a beautiful image occur right in front of me.
A photographer... waiting for the action to happen.

I promise to share the action shots in one my following blogposts with you too. For now, enjoy the calm of this image.

29 June 2012

A wonder is growing...

Being pregnant is experiencing a wonder up close and personal. I remember very well that with my first i found it such a strange idea that there was a little human being inside of me. Truth to be told, i regularly thought of the movie "Aliens".
Now years later, my two little ones are almost 5 and 9 years old, i dream of my own big belly when i see friends experiencing that same wonder. How it felt, that little person moving around, my body steadily growing, my belly button popping out (it never got to its normal self after number two)...

Happy to now experience this wonder through my lens.

22 June 2012

My own wonder keeps growing

And i love to be able to capture lovely moments like this.

15 June 2012

A beautiful belly

So blessed to capture images like this. Isn't she just plain gorgeous?

She has this glow over her that belongs to pregnant women. Only 2 months left and then a new baby wonder comes to the world.

Until then enjoy the journey! Thank you for sharing the experience with me and my camera.

08 June 2012

In the fields...

It almost looks as if we went to a wide open field, but nothing is less true. This photo is shot in the Retiro park in the city centre of Madrid, at a tiny spot where i found just about a 10m2 piece of high grass. Just enough to simulate that fresh sunny open field.

Due to the very limited space i was not able to change my point of view too much as it would reveal the fact we were in this tiny field with a fence around us...

Even though you think your surroundings aren't that interesting, try to look in a different way. Get a bit closer, move around, move some stuff around (if possible), it will all help to avoid uninteresting elements and change a simple spot in a magical place in no-time.

Just try!

01 June 2012

Just one more rose...

... just because it is pretty.

And yes it truly is a rose. Isn't it remarkable how different an object can seem when seen from really close by?

25 May 2012

Get to know my speed light (2)

There are a lot of photos that have that typical flash lit mark on them. It happened to me too and therefor i was never very happy to use my flash. I learned how to work around it, but still i was eager to know how to use the speed light correctly. Because really, it has potential!
The image above almost looks as if i went into a professional studio. In reality it was "just" a white wall, with a nice ceiling which i used to bounce my flash onto. And yes, the good looking model brought in just the right touch for a beautiful photo.
And this image is shot at a nice and bright Friday morning in sunny Madrid. Really!
I find it very interesting learning more about speed lights. Sure hope to share some more of my learning curve.

18 May 2012

Get to know my speed light (1)

Right after finishing my Professional Photography classes at EFTI i started a intensive course on how to use your speed lights (off camera flashes). As i normally tend to get the best out of the available light, using a flash has not been my favorite way of shooting. This might change though after this class...
Both of these photos have been shot at full daylight (within the time frame of 10 to 12 in the morning) and with use of one or several speed lights.
This last photo really was a result of great teamwork. There was one person holding a speed light for the kicker light seen at the left of the photo, another holding another speed light that was bounced back towards the model by a reflector - hold by another person and last but not least another person in the back holding a speed light covered with a blue filter, creating that blue-ish, night like atmosphere.

Remember, both photos have been shot at a bright and sunny morning.
I see some potential in these speed lights.
Soon i will show you some examples of the male model that was present that same morning.

For those who aren't able to attend EFTI classes, you might be interested in the Creative Live class on SpeedLights 101 with Mark Wallace.

11 May 2012


Lots of roses are showing their best these days. Big rosebuds and even more impressive flowers. We inherited several roses in our garden, but even in the public gardens i can easily find those highly romantic flowers.

I could go on for days to capture all these beauties around town. However studies and other photo ideas are waiting to be explored. See you around soon!

04 May 2012

Paris in Madrid

One day browsing through Pinterest i came across an interesting image with a girl and a bicycle. I pinned it onto my photography inspiration board. For inspiration, and then one day i saw this bridge in Madrid and remembered my good looking friend has a cute bike herself.

femme fatale...

Lucky me, she always in for a fun photo shoot. So one afternoon i loaded my car with flowers, clothing and some vintage suitcases and headed to her place. Ready to recreate a bit of Paris in the middle of Madrid.

Pretty in Paris...

She got dressed, we took the bike and all the props and headed to this old bridge that was near to her home. Although it doesn't look crowded we did have to work around quit a lot of people enjoying their afternoon walk.

Marvelous in Madrid...

Days (and shoots) like these really make my day! I am sure i will be coming back to this place. It has so much potential for lovely images. Do you know of a special place that could really rock your pictures? Go there, bring some props and have lots of fun!

28 April 2012

Pretty in pink

Natural light in combination with my 50mm 1.4 prime lens and a model like this makes my heart melt over and over again.

Trust me, you don't need a fancy studio for a shot like this. Have a look around your home and find a window with interesting, indirect light. Position your subject near the window and look for those catchlights in your subject's eyes. Just have a second look at what your own surroundings offer you. I am sure you too can find interesting light around you.

No editing, really!

Enjoy the search!

21 April 2012

A diva...

Natural light combined with a beautiful little girl surrounded by a bunch of feathers. It makes my heart skip a beat.

15 April 2012

Interesting locations

One of the challenges we face as a photographer is finding interesting surroundings for a shoot. We would probably all love to have the most beautiful garden with blooming flowers and lovely trees within reach. However for lots of us that is not a possibility. What we we can do is, try and find locations that do work. 

Think about something simple as a brick wall, it might look uninteresting when you walk by, but the repetition of elements and lines created by the wall might just be what you are looking for. Or... you can have a look at a nearby industrial site. Large doors, interesting structures, aged and stained walls... You might just find it all there.

You will need to ask permission to enter the premises. And you are most likely not to enter in all sites, just don't give up until you have found your spot. It is going to be worth it.
In this case i was lucky to be on the right spot, with the right elements... a beautiful woman, a lovely car and an interesting industrial site.

What would your favorite location look like?

12 April 2012

Color or black and white photography?

Some people have a clear preference for black and white or color photography. For me it all depends on what story you want to tell.

In this case i really prefer the black and white version of the photo. But if this would be an advertisement for leather bags the customer would probably opt for the color version.

The color version of the photo shows a bit more detail in the leather bag and not unimportant it shows its color. Duh! you might say, but sometimes just for the love of the proper image we might go for the black and white version. And by doing so simple forget that the publishing company might want to show some color too.

So, whenever presenting your images to your customer think about what story they want to tell and/or see. Even better if not the most important thing before starting your shoot, reassure yourself you understand what message needs to be told. Color, but also viewpoints, the expression on your models face, the environment where you will take the shot, etc... It is all part of the picture.

08 April 2012

Guide me on my way

Sometimes the road ahead is not always as clear as we would like it to be. How great is it to be able to count on friends and family to be your safety net. The same feeling that big old teddy bear gives us. And sometimes the only thing we need is nothing more than some time alone with that exact same teddy bear.

How about you?

21 March 2012

Spring has appeared on the calender

Spring is a lovely time to take out your camera and capture the sheer joy of nature blossoming.
That's what i did last year. And i'm sure i will be capturing a lot more spring images this year.

The look of all the blossoms in the trees...
The smell...
The colors...

It's all so fresh and new!

Hope you will all enjoy these feelings and take moment to capture some of these refreshing images.
Let's meet here any time soon for some more spring images.

17 March 2012

Colorful you

As told in an earlier blogpost i had a beautiful woman in front of my camera last week. She changed her outfit several times. And with every outfit i found myself with the same beautiful person, but a bit different at the same time.
The scarf gave her this extra sassy look. Just looking through my camera i saw her beauty grow. Right there and then.
Stunning i tell you! And that is a mom of two beautiful kids...
But most of all she is a beautiful and colorful person. Just like you and me, captured with lots of love.

Thanks for sharing some studio time together!

14 March 2012

A real woman...

... and so beautiful. When i went into the studio with this lovely woman i was almost surprised she has never been asked to be a model before.
It was great to work with her and capture her beauty. Maybe even capture her in a way she has never seen herself before. We all have that familiar mirror image in our head, including myself. And at times i do not really recognize the woman on the camera screen when somebody takes my picture.
Same thing happened to my model, but i can only say... "i love how she looks, beautiful... just the way she is".

She changed outfits several times and i will show some of these shots later on. Hope you all enjoyed the shoot thus far.

29 February 2012

Reproduce a photo

A lot of us feel uncomfortable reproducing images. I believe it's a great opportunity to learn. It's how i was able to shoot the above photo. I found an image in a magazine that appealed to me. After carefully examining the photo; what background was used, positioning of the strobes, posing of the model, clothing, make-up, props, etc. it was time to enter the studio.

After recreating the actual example, i decided to change the pose and i ended up with an image i really like.

22 February 2012

Outdoor shooting

It almost looks as if the image below has a lot of post processing done to it. In this case i can reassure you it comes straight out of my camera, just like this. I only reduced sized for web use. I not even cropped it.
A professional model shot outdoors...
I had the pleasure of working with the talented Juan Portones, who helped us set up this interesting setting  somewhere in the city center of Madrid. It was amazing and exciting to see the images on my camera screen. Inspiring to experience how versatile photography can be.

15 February 2012

Don Flamenco

When wandering around Madrid's city center - Calle Leon to be exact - i saw this store full of Spanish sentiment and culture. Don Flamenco, a tiny shoe shop dedicated to nothing more but Flamenco shoes. Once inside i met with this crafts man, that would just be perfect for some business/crafts related portraiture shooting. We talked and agreed upon meeting again with my camera at hand.
Don Flamenco - Madrid
And that is how i ended up with these lovely shots full of Spanish culture. In this shop the final touches are given to the dancing shoes. The production takes place in another location half an hour outside of Madrid. Maybe one day i will have the change to go there and shoot some more shoe loveliness.

For those who want to visit the store in person, i'll leave you with their details:
Don Flamenco
fabricacion artesanal
C/ Leon, 17
28014  Madrid

12 February 2012

Beautiful... just the way you are

That is the feeling that came in my mind when selecting my favorite images of this photo shoot. A beautiful woman with sparkling eyes invited me over to her home and let me capture her personality.
Of course we had to get this little white fluffiness in the picture. She was around all the time. So cute...
A quiet moment, with a book in bed.
My friend has been really busy renovating her home. It turned out lovely, white and bright. A job well done! Now it is time to enjoy it.

Doesn't she look like a professional model?
We are all beautiful... just the way we are.

10 February 2012

Cute corners...

When stumbling upon cute corners i always feel this urge to capture the image. It is like bringing the cosy-ness home with me. Just like the other day when i walked out after having enjoyed a delicious breakfast at La Mojigata. They have an inviting chair sitting outside, a perfect match with the neutral colors of the walls and the greenery at the right.
La Mojigata - Madrid
Sharing the happiness with you all here. 
Hoping it will brighten up your day just like it did mine.

06 February 2012

Flowers are a girl's best friend...

The Netherlands are well known for their beautiful flowers. It is the heart of the international floriculture sector. The Netherlands is the place where supply and demand come together. From Europe and beyond. So, it should not come as a surprise that flowers are easy accessible for the Dutch public. How different can be it for the ones living abroad...
Living in Spain i learned that it is not at all as obvious to find a flower shop around the corner. And if you find one, they are most likely to sell plants instead of colorful flowers. So, you can understand that it makes me happy to encounter beauties like these. Luckily i had my camera with me, so i could bring some of the happiness home with me. They were not for sale...

04 February 2012

Colorful studio

The great thing about going to a professional photography school is that you have almost infinite possibilities to try whatever you feel like. Without the cost of having to buy everything one by one, try it and find out wether you like it or not. One day we were experimenting with some colored transparencies in front of one of the flashes. In this case a deep pink one.

It gave the black background a purple haze. It is one of those things i would normally not try (read buy at first sight) but with this model it came out as a perfect match. The background color really highlights the beautiful lips of the model. Besides it is just that tiny bit of color adding an extra spark to the natural colors of the subject.

What would you like to try if you got the chance?

02 February 2012

What story do you want to tell?

The other day whilst looking for a good portrait i realized something that for most photographers is crystal clear: a snapshot is not the same as a picture taken with a purpose. Although it might be obvious what i am sharing here, i do think it is an interesting story. Take a look at both pictures...
Same guy, more or less taken at the same age 
(not even a year difference between both photos).
What are these photos telling you?

To me it looks as if there is a huge age difference between the left photo and the right. At the left, the model looks innocent and young. At the right he looks adult and convincing. Mind you, there's less than a year difference between the photos taken.

A lot of this has to do with the viewpoint i used for shooting the model. The picture at the left is taken from above. The picture at the right a bit from below. But besides viewpoint, the environment and clothing are also very important for capturing the right image.

Both portraits belong to my (and the model's) favorites. However they do not completely meet the demands for what he and i were looking for. That's why i decided to do a shoot dedicated to what the portrait is needed for. Taking into account the story that needs to be told and the image we want to communicate.

I will be sharing the new photos soon.

29 January 2012

Intimate details

Taking these shots was mostly practice. I was not even thinking about posting them here. You can probably imagine the reason for that. Because, yes... there is a lot of skin involved. But then again, they are subtile images...

It was just me, myself and i at these shots. A challenge to get it all right when being on your own. It is a complete new sort of photos for me, but i do like the way they turned out. Looking forward to where this practice leads me.

25 January 2012

A portrait at the Palacio de Cristal

A portrait at the Palacio de Cristal, Madrid - Spain
The winter sun was really bright this particular day. Almost a bit too harsh... but luckily with the help of flash light i was able to capture this image. I especially like the way the tree supports the rough look of the subject and subtile alignment of the branches around his face.
A compilation of some of my favorites shots of that same day...
In the background you can see a glimpse of the Palacio de Cristal, a beautiful crystal building in the center of the Retiro park in Madrid, Spain.