Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Innocents of Horror

Finally got some free time to work on my own photos. I have been trapped at the studio for the last 10-15 days, I've lost track. As much as I enjoy working there it sucks being limited on how creative I can get. Most of the people that come into the studio are looking for traditional photos and nothing else. While others want a mix of traditional and creative photos. So today I figured I would try to get a small photo shoot in before I get called back to work. So here's the product of one of my days off.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Horror Photos Without Gore?

Whoever said you cant get a horror type of photo without using a ton of fake blood or latex skin? Thanks to Hollywood Cinema and their need to over do everything people now think its not horror unless it has fake blood. Due to the success of select horror blockbuster hits such as Friday the 13th, Halloween and Nightmare On Elm Street. There were hundreds of knock off movies each with more gore to the next.Where sets are full of 100 gallon drums of fake blood and boxes of fake skin mix. Which in the end killed the horror and slasher genre for a few years.

Now when I tell people that my personal photos are more of the horror side they automatically say so with a lot of fake blood. With my personal work I try to give more of a creepy feel without using a lot of fake blood or special effects make up. Rather let the photo draw up any emotions you might have whether it be scared or sad. I go about doing this by using special light settings, color covers for the lights and messing with the settings on the camera. There are the ideas I have that will require sets to be built and special effects make up. Not against it just don't think its a must have to be a horror type of photo.

While watching and type of horror movie I'm always making mental notes about their lighting, where the cameras are positioned, etc. Usually shortly after finishing the movie I go out and try to figure out how to re- create what I like in the movie. Always seeing something new in every movie as well as everyday life. Another little thing I enjoy doing is looking at things and thinking of ways to turn it into a "creepy" photo. Almost the same thing I did while learning how to take photos. By just looking at everything and thinking of how it would look at a photo.

Thanks to photoshop programs can now use normal objects to help give a normal photos an creepy or dark feel. One item I found that always seems to give a photo that desired feel is newspaper articles. But there's another example of a way to give a photo a creepy feel and put into that horror type of photo without over doing it with fake blood. There are hundreds of other ways of going about turning normal photos into horror type of photos with out over doing things.

So who's to say every horror photo has to have the Hollywood touch of over production on it? Unless that's your thing and you are a gore hound, well more power to you. Having costumes and custom wardrobes isn't so bad until it takes over the photo and the photo becomes more about the clothing. I always thought that photography was about trying to capture the emotions of the subject. But again that is just me.

Sunday, July 19, 2009


Blitzkid is a Horror/Psychobilly band out of West Virginia. They have toured consistently all over the US and overseas. The band is headed up by TB Monstrosity and Argyle Goolsby. In the time they have been a band, they have garnered critical underground acclaim for their tireless work ethic, consistent, ever evolving album output and dedication to giving their audience the respect they deserve through providing great songs and energetic live shows. The band has a dedicated following in the states as well as in Europe.

I found Blitzkid during my senior year of high school and have a big fan ever since. First time I got to see them live was in Eastman, Ga. Took around three hours to get there but was worth it. These are some of the coolest guys you'll ever meet. Always talking to fan until they that to go on stage. Unlike most bands that avoid their fans or charge them money to come backstage and spend 5 minutes with them.

The second time I got to see Blitzkid I was just really getting into photography and thought I would try my luck at taking concert photos. I did get a few good photos but due to not knowing what setting work concerts most of the photos i got were blurry or under exposed. Also the camera I was using wasn't the best camera for any type of photography. I know a photographer shouldn't place blame on the camera but there are some cameras that just, well suck. After that night I did a little research on what settings work best and decided to use my Canon D20 for the next show I would try to photograph.

Only a few months after seeing Blitzkid for the second time they came back. And this time went better than last. Still didn't have the settings down to take photos without a flash. Hated using a flash knowing that it was a small distraction for the band but they did the show without a problem. They always seem to be better with every show which is more than I can say for most bands. But the photos came out great some still a little dark but the venue was also very dark. While going through the photos found one that has become my favorite from the show.

The photos is of Goolsby playing bass, but you can see an eye between the tuning pegs on the bass. The eye is of the singer from 52 ways a local Atlanta, Ga band who jumped on stage to sing along without me knowing. Every photographer loves when they find the photos they thought was just alright turns out to be very unique. And when taking photos just feet from the mosh pit and being knocked around can have a good selection of hidden photos. This photo being an example of one of them. After talking to Goolsby and TB I was told to send the photos to their website and they might use them. Still waiting to see if they use them. Also waiting to get the chance to photograph one of the best Horror bands to ever make it to the stage. If you are a fan of Horror or Psychobilly or just a fan of bands with great songs Blitzkid is a band you need to check out.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Fine Art or Just Another Photo

What makes a photograph fine art? Is it the the theme of the photo or is it the meaning the photographer had for making the photo? Or could it even be the way the photographer went about making his or her photo? These are all questions I've had while working on my personal photos.

I work in a portrait studio where I am limited on how creative I can get with photos. Due to the subjects capabilities and being limited on messing with lighting and camera settings. Outside of the studio is where I let my creativity flow. I get my inspiration from the music I listen to, the movies i watch and the people of the subcultures I like to be a part of.

Most of my personal work seems to be related to the horror & psychobilly themes. Whether it be a dark look to the photos or just a straight up pin-up photo. The main problem with taking these types of photos is finding a place to get them seen. Will these photos be considered fine art and be put into a gallery is and always be my main concern when taking them?

I guess no one really knows what makes a photograph fine art. I guess any photographer that wants to get big at doing their own ideas just has to take that chance and let the world be the judge. There will always be an audience for every photo whether it be good or bad. Every photographer hopes their audience is for the great photos. The photos that make people stop and think.