Jumping through Hoops


I’m just in the process of ordering the big (up to 30″x45″) prints for my community portrait project, called New Hope: In Character.  I’m working with the great folks at Aspen Creek Photo and West Coast Imaging to do the printing, and I’ll be writing about them soon.

Our exhibit will be up for the last two weeks in August at the New Hope Arts Center, and it’s going to culminate in a big street party outside the center where we bring the prints outside (more on that as the time approaches).

Of the fifty-plus of my neighbors that I photographed, only two pictures will run in color. One of them is of Rachelle, a young lady who went to school with my sons and is currently a professional dancer. One of her specialties is the hoop dance, with a hoop that has built in LED lighting.

It’s just too cool to see her do her thing, and to capture the movement of the lighted hoop, plus Rachelle, we did some slow synch flash, using the same basic broad light I’ve discussed before (see the jump for a picture of the studio setup).

But we turned off the overhead lights and blackened out the windows and went for a long (1/2 second) exposure in the dark, and then the strobe fired to provide the light on her.

It’s a dynamic look, and when I was cycling quickly through the shots in Photo Mechanic to pick the one frame to print, it had a kind of flipbook effect.  So I grabbed all the jpegs from the session and made the timelapse in Quicktime that you see above.

For a look at the studio setup (one 4×6 softbox at a 45 degree angle, basically), hit the jump.

Photo © Bob Krist

We just darkened down the space, used the big softbox as the flash source, and kept the shutter open for about 1/2 second. I’m so lazy, I didn’t even tripod the camera (don’t tell anybody….).

More about the exhibit as plans come together. I’ll keep you posted….

This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. All I can say is “What a Studio!”

    1. Tim: Wish I had it fulltime. I had access to that space in the Arts Center for about 3 weeks and it was a ton of fun! Bob

  2. Say Bob,
    It looks to me like you are consistently breaking all of the rules. Hasn’t anybody told you about rules, rules, and more rules? 😉
    Great idea stringing them together into a QuickTime.

  3. Did yousay hand held for 1/2 second? I am seriously impressed!

    1. Wayne: Don’t be. Think about it. The room is completely dark and the only thing registering during that time is the spinning hoop, and it’s moving already. all the rest of the light on her and the background is provided by the pop of the strobe….BK

  4. Beautiful photos!! 😀

  5. Nice picture, Bob. It’s fun working that creative side, all right. I took a look at http://www.westcoastimaging.com. I really want to try out their “Imaging Tip: Gaining Max Sharpness from Digital Camera Files.” Using their technique, combined with the Unsharp Mask Filter (Scott Kelby has great tips re Unsharp Mask in his Photoshop CS4 book) should help me make (hopefully) good prints, even if I’m using old Imacon scans. West Coast Imaging offers a lot of good info on their site, it seems, which is really helpful. Hope to read your reports on your prints. Ciao …

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