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How I layered Elements to Create a Magic Light

I had recently picked up these nifty blue shades for 3 dollars (because I have a nose for clearance sales). I brought those and a blue sweater I have and decided to base my image around them. Normally while creating a wizard image one might not think to include sunglasses, but I was imagining him summoning some crazy bright blue magic light and he would need these spacial glasses to be able to see by the light without his eyeballs melting out of his face ... or something. My brain is weird. So anyway, here is how I created said magical blue eye melting orb...

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How Different Artists Shot Self Portraits Using Only Home Lighting

About a zillion years ago (ok, it was February ... so same thing basically), I created a self portrait image ( ... ok, so it was several images) using ONLY lights from around my house. I wanted an exercise in something outside my current comfort zone and to challenge myself to get back to my photography roots. I did a whole post about it. I encourage you to go and enjoy that blog post before reading this one, but it's not required... or is it!? No, it's not, but do it anyway. I then challenged any takers who might have felt like taking to also create a self portrait image without any traditional photography lights

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Shooting Composites with Your Background in Mind

As an artist who shoots mostly composites, more often than not I'm going to be cutting out my subject and placing them in a different scene. A lot of the time I only have a rough idea of what kind of a background I'll be using, so I just shoot my subject as best as I can and figure out the backdrop later. Sometimes I have no idea what I'm going to do with my model, but a wise and incredibly good-looking man once said, "You don't always need a plan." ... HOWEVER, if I do a shoot knowing full well what my background looks like before I even pick up my camera, it makes everything a million times easier. 

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Easy Tip for Compositing Hair

As an artist who primarily creates composite images, I find that one of my biggest challenges is hair - masking hair, to be exact. It can be nearly impossible to get all of those little individual hairs cut off their background so I can place my subject somewhere magical. NEARLY impossible ... Ok so it's actually not THAT hard, but there is one major tip that will make your life about a 1000 times easier. Shoot on the right background. 

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Home Lighting Challenge

These days I primarily shoot in a HUGE studio with more amazing flash equipment than I could ever hope to afford myself ... ok, so I could HOPE to afford them, but at this point in my career let's just say I'm a very lucky boy to have all these fun photography toys at my disposal.I was thinking about how I've come so far from those long lost days of household lighting experiments. Every once in a while I like to shake things up and challenge myself, so why not go back to my roots and try to do a self portrait image using nothing but lights from my house!?!?

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