I am dangerous when my mind wanders as I run. I know this. On one of my morning run’s around Lake Pflugerville, I noticed a cool spot of land – kinda swampy, but shallow, and from there my imagination took off. I enlisted the help of several of my friends to pull off these photos, so let me get to crediting them first.
Where the action was about to take place
First up is Flower Child Design, my partners in crime for a lot of my photoshoots this summer. I go and talk to Beau and Louis, and say, “I need swampy flower turned into wearable part for a couple of models.” I come back in 2 weeks and they have made bracelets, headbands, rings, sashes, belt and belt buckles all made of flowers, including my favorite, the starfighter lily. Seriously, this is not FTD stuff that they do, it is a meld of technical skill and a creative spark. My kind of people!
Kim applies the makeup to Megan at Flower Child Design
Second is Kim Salicki of Ashton Sterling Photography, she and her husband Greg have been doing a 365 project that I follow on Flickr. Kim had a few weeks where she painted her face up pretty wildly, so perfect for this project! She graciously did the makeup, and then turned around and got in the water with us to model as well. Thanks Kim!
Megan, Chelsey, Courtney and Kim get Growly
Third, my model crew. This was not one of those scorching Texas Summer days. More like chill of the autumn in October evenings. But my gang of Megan, Chelsey and Courtney, plus Kim, stood in swampy water, slightly shivering, for over an hour with questionable footing and fishies swimming past. Thanks yall!
We lit the scene with 4 lights. 2 small 430ex’s firing in the distance to illuminate the shadow side of the fence and reeds in the background. About 1/8 power, zoomed to 105. The main light was a AlienBee 800 in an octobox powered with a Vagabond (no explosions this time), planted safely in dry land on the boat ramp. Then I had a Canon 430exII in a 24inch EzyBox up close in 2 feet of standing water for edge or fill depending. The sun, what little we had left was the backlight.
Court Lookin Fierce!
My main directions were “fierce” , “growl”, “snarl”. I wanted them to be organic creature rising from the swamp, and not being too happy about it. This of course caused lots of laughter as I would growl back.
And then, of course, I asked them to dunk their face almost all the way into the water – hat tip to Joe McNally on this one.
Again, thanks to everybody who helped make this shoot a reality!