Trying to be creative during a college semester can be extremely difficult, especially when all the classes you are taking are the University core requirement and you have a part time job that are not exactly designed to stimulate your need for creative production. This becomes incredibly prevalent for photographers who think to themselves on a regular basis, “I would rather be out shooting.”As opposed to whatever political science class that you’e sitting in. If this is the situation that you find yourself in the only advise that seems plausible is to make time to go shoot every once and a while. This can be fairly hard to do sometimes but if you can pull it off it can be extremely rewarding.
A few weeks ago in Albuquerque it finally felt like winter had fully kicked in with overcasting clouds and a light amount of snow which at first doesn’t seems too conducive for photography but I though to myself that if the overcast kept up it would be perfect for a mid afternoon shoot downtown. Sadly I misjudged New Mexico’s ability to stay consistent weather wise and it went back to being in the mid 60’s with bright sunny skies. However that didn’t stop me. I put out a post on facebook if anyone wanted to take part in a impromptu photo-shoot down town and like most statuses it go a handful of likes but not a huge response. However one person did happen to respond.
Tara, a friend of mine that I have done photos of several times in the past was the only one who responded to the call so we arranged to meet up down town to snap off some shots in some of the back allies, parking grarges and other interesting locations in the down town area.
One thing you’re always going to find in any downtown metro area is various degrees of street art and graffiti which can always be a great back drop for urban style portraits. Whether they are just a bunch of random tags some hooligans put behind random buildings or if they were beautiful works or art by a local artiest it’s always a great scene to add to your photos. The thought of shooting in back alley’s can seem a little bit sketchy but if you play it smart and don’t draw a whole bunch of attention to yourself you’ll be just fine. People will often leave you alone if you leave them alone. Especially when you’re shooting.
One thing that should be kept in mind at all times is lighting. Being that this was done in the middle of a bright day it was important to find shaded areas to get nice even lighting. There are of course other techniques and styles you can use to manage the light but the important thing is that you do what you feel works best for what you want to do.
The most important thing with being out on a shoot is to have fun really. If this was in anyone a more professional shoot with the photos having a more distinct purpose I would have taken in more seriously but this shoot really was for the sake of having fun. Tara is a relaxed and easy going person to be around and it made shooting with her all the more simple. You don’t have to get into insane director mode and you don’t have to be picky you just have to shoot.
I’m not only doing random portraits over the semester either I’m also doing freelance work with my universities independent student news paper so I also get to do that kind of photo work which is really exciting. Hopefully I get to do more photos in the near future.