Whatchoo Been Up To?

It's been too long since I posted here. Where to start?

It seems like I hardly put my camera down this summer, and that the summer was over in a flash. Since my last post I've worked with tons of theatres around Seattle, started shooting with fun new clients like The Seattle Symphony, picked up a few new bits for my kit, taken ten steps forward on the business side, shot a beautiful wedding, and (best of all) Wren and I traveled around the northwest and moved in together. So, I guess I do have something to show for summer 2015. 

Probably the easiest way to hit some highlights is to break this up into sections, so first let's try...


Photo courtesy of Wren Bentley

Let start with Jesus Christ Superstar for Seattle Musical Theatre. I did two shoots for this production: pre-production publicity shots and production photos. It's always fun to do a pre-production shoot because the photographer can bring more creativity to bear. For production photos, the challenge is to be ready to capture a show and think on your feet. For pre-production the challenge is to work with the client to come up with a concept, and then to make that show in the photos. With more control of the lighting and location, you have the opportunity to shape the image and tell a story. This July we used the bare stage of Seattle Musical Theatre's venue in Magnusen Park, and two of my lights to create a fun, rock-show look.  I also had the chance to break out some craft skills, and make my own crown of thornes for the actor to wear. 

Jesus Christ Superstar, Seattle Musical Theatre

Once the show was on its feet in September, I got to see the final vision and try to capture that as well. It was a very fun production to shoot, with really interesting lighting effects and use of haze. The haze and directional light made for really striking images as well as a challenge for me to stay on top of. I enjoyed the show, which is still playing until October 4. More information on the show HERE.

Orpheus Descending, Intiman Theatre

Bootycandy, Intiman Theatre 

Over the end of summer I also worked with Renton Civic Theatre on The Addams Family, and three times with Intiman Theatre Festival. First on Orpheus Descending for production photos, then to capture the fun of the John Baxter is a Switch Hitter Opening Night party, and most recently again shooting production photos for Bootycandy. I'd really recommend Bootycandy, which made me laugh out loud and is still playing until October 3. More info HERE.

All this time I've been continuing to shoot video (instead of photographs) with The 5th Avenue Theatre. Aside from being my day job, The 5th has been cranking out amazing work, and I was busy for more than a month shooting interviews with many of the special artists who were in town working on brand-new musicals during NextFest. Aside from that, I've been tracking the journey of the Von Trapp children through the child audition process. Those kids work hard, and the competition was a lot scarier than when I used to go out for roles in college. Both sets of footage will be fun to sort through and will present a new challenge when it comes to editing.


So, accidents happen. On my very last day shooting video for The 5th's NextFest, I was packing up my lights and someone kindly asked if they could help me take my things back upstairs. I said they could carry my bag for me, not thinking they would pick it up until I was packed. They went for the bag, which was unzipped, and my camera fell from the open side, crashing to the ground. Luckily it didn't fall far and when it hit, it fell squarely on the lens, which was my trusty little 50mm prime. My "Nifty Fifty" bit it. It shattered on impact. But due to it's sacrifice, the camera escaped unscathed. Luckily, even though I use this lens all the time, it's still the cheapest in my bag. It was a good chance to upgrade to the newest model of the f1.8 50mm, which is working like a charm. 


The happy couple, and bubbles!

I shot another wedding! I've been working with Bridget for more than three years, and for a good chunk of that time she was my boss. It was my pleasure to be her photographer for the occasion, and it was double the fun because it was spread over two shoots. In August we went to Scenic Beach State Park, where we took a variety of couple photos. It was a chance to do a dry-run for the wedding, and to get some more casual shots of the couple together. Plus: Bubbles. 

Then two weeks ago in September, the wedding day came. It was a long day of work, but Wren came out as both my date and second-shooter. Between the two of us we managed to be everywhere and were hopefully a help to all the friends and family putting the event together.


And finally, just for fun Wren and I planned a trip out the San Juan Island. Like I said, the end of summer has flown by, so this was our chance to slow down and soak a little more up. We'd never been there before, so we took the cameras with us and used it as a chance to see as much nature as we could. The highlight was taking a whale tour, where we suited up and went out for an afternoon on a Zodiak. The pilot was in contact with all the other tours in the area, so he new exactly where to find the Orca pods. He zoomed us around to see groups of Harbor Seals, J-Pod (the local family of Orcas, and even a Humpback Whale. We'd rented telephoto lenses, which really helped us get a good view. Especially since the tours don't go within 200 yards of the whales, which keeps them from being crowded or scared by tourists.

Keep a look out for a sister blog that's coming soon. Wren's a great designer and creative eye, so she'll be taking off on her own set of adventures. She'll still appear here regularly as we take images together, but she'll have lots of fun projects that go beyond photography, along with thoughts about creativity that she'll expand on in her own website. More on that to come.