Commercial Photography Blog by Photographer of the Year Award Recipient, Michael Soo.
Product photography, fashion, food and wedding. San Francisco Bay Area, California, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Shanghai, Singapore.
Friday, February 19, 2010
Wedding photo albums | Guest Albums that WOWs !!
Wedding album design isn't a chore for us. It's an exhilarating part of our wedding package and photography process. It gives us a lot to look forward to.
Ever tried to buy a special gift for someone close to you, carefully wrap it and place it under the christmas tree? Despite Christmas being a week away, you can't wait to see the expression of that special someone when they open that present, right? THAT's exactly how we feel when we design wedding album.
This particular album is done for Christine and Ben. We were so excited about showing them the album that we photographed the albums and email them these teasers,
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(Ben wrote me an email within minutes saying, "We're on our way over") ;-)
Now, what makes the Queensberry line of albums from New Zealand, our selected album maker is beyond their scrumptious leather, suedes, silks, buckram and bengalines. It's their hand crafted treasures, an extension of style, design and absolute exquisite photographic albums that retain memories. Their albums are the absolute best out there and we are glad that we are a selected few in the country that carry these albums. Don't take our word for it, check out the guest album and engagement album that we created for Christine and Ben for their May 15th Wedding in The Ahwahnee Hotel located within the Yosemite National Park. Wedding photography in Yosemite and the Ahwahnee will be absolutely fun and exciting. I can't wait to photograph there again!
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So we are truly blessed to be blogged by Profoto. They are possibly the highest end and one of the largest lighting company for commercial and advertising photographers around the world. Their reach is quite phenomenal. We were working in Intel Developer's Forum in Shanghai, trying to rent light for an on-stage demonstration to 10,000-20,000 attendees. We searched high and low in the metropolitan city for dependable lighting packs. The only ones that we are the Profotos.
We used to use monoblocks; however, our work on fashion, product, commercial and advertising means that the light source's color rendition needs to be highly accurate. You really don't want your blue dress to look magenta, do you? ;-)
Good Lighting is....definitely Priceless!
Very excited to announce the release of the Nesting Newbies, Winter 2010 issue!. This issue's really cooking!! The food section was shot in Christopher Peacock's Cabinetry Showroom in San Francisco. Christopher, the English kitchen designer has a client list that includes the Clintons, Mariah Carey, Toni Morrison and the likes. His kitchen won the 2008 Kitchen of the Year!
With great kitchens, should good food be prepared! Along with good food, must great food photography be designed.
Why "design"? Magazine layouts dictate the orientation and composition of each shot. So, thinking and planning with the final design in mind will ensure that the photographs are crafted for the text, design and layout. It is imperative to think 10 steps ahead when it comes to nearly all genre of photography. It's like playing a good game of chess.
Here we photographed not only most of the food showcased in the magazine (without a food stylist, might I add), but all 10-20 food items in just a few mere hours. Such method of shooting will drive insane all, but the most hardened food photographers.
Here on the left is a brandied tomato cream soup. It is absolutely delicious but REALLY? Soup like these should not be poured into cup this size. It's such a tease. Plus, I can't stick my tongue too far into the cup when I'm finished, to lick up the remains.
This is definitely a great magazine that I would read from cover to cover. Well done, team!!
Yosemite National Park & Ahwahnee Hotel Engagement Portraits | Christine & Ben
What turns a landscape/fashion/wedding photographer on? An engagement session in Yosemite National Park, California of course!!! I was like a kid in Disneyland, frolicking from one spot to another, having a field day!!!
This was for Christine & Ben's Engagement shoot. They are expert photographers themselves, in their very rights. Their home is sprinkled with amazing landscape imagery from wall to wall. Absolutely stunning work! Ben showed me his Phase One P45 digital back and a Mamiya 645AFD. For those who doesn't know what I'm blabbering about, these are Ferraris of cameras. Yes, if you were to sell the above two equipment, you can easily buy TWO Toyota Prius. Although with the current recall situation, I would avoid Toyota for now.
Being a photographer, Ben's awesome, he'd spot interesting camera angles to be photographed. I was impressed and told him that he should quit his job in Google to come be my photography assistant. For some unknown reason, he just ignored me. :(
Their wedding is set for May 2010 at The Ahwahnee Hotel, in Yosemite Valley. Being in Yosemite is fun enough but in The Ahwahnee Hotel? Oh my God! There is just no comparison when it comes to the Ahwahnee. With the distinction as a Four-Diamond hotel and designated as a National Historic Landmark, Queen Elizabeth II stayed in the Ahwahnee when she visited Yosemite. So did a host of celebrities and royalties; Mel Gibson (while filming Maverick), John F Kennedy, Herbert Hoover, Eleanor Rosevelt, just to name a few.
The temperature was 36 degrees Farenheit and Christine wore nothing more than a bareback dress. She is such a trooper. I do also have to say that she is possibly one of the most delightful person to be around. I'm not exaggerating when I claim that everything appears so much more joyous and lively when she walks into the room.
The amazing engagement shoot is featured in the below cinema. I choose Feb 14 to blog about this, not just because it's Valentine's day, but rather, they are on my mind and their Guest Album and Engagement Album JUST arrived. More on those in my next blog!
(View HD version instead)
Remember the slashdot days, where a website gets completely overwhelmed when it was linked from slashdot.org. That's where the term Slashdot Effect comes from.
This happened to our website today. Fortunately, there was no direct links to speak of. However, people still have a way of finding us via the photographs we took. Is it our style? They were, taken from the colorful shoot we did, just last week! Well, all the images from that shoot has been used in both highly publicized site, i.e. Gizmodo AND Engadget, on the same day!!!
Check out the articles itself by clicking the articles below in the Gizmodo site,
San Francisco product photographer burnt by acidic colorful batteries!
How exciting can it be to be a product photographer, shooting say, 100 pair of shoes on a light table all day. Ok, if you have an assistant, you get to say, "Next!". Otherwise, you're fumbling opening boxes, taking a new pair of shoes out, propping it, stick them in a pose, take some shots, change the angles, adjust the lights, photograph some more, wrap the shoes back, stack the boxes properly, then repeat....times one hundred. Ugh! The thought of that makes me cringe!
What about photographing batteries?!? *groan* What could be worse?!
Well, what has batteries and fashion, colors, beauty have in common? Leave it to the owner of HyperMac to seed that idea, a mere 2 weeks ago. Did I go, "that sounds silly!"? No, we flew a rocket with it!!
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Too bad we only had one day. The idea _will_ continue with the next shoot, I guarantee it!! These were done using the Profoto D4 power pack, 5-6 light heads and the Canon 1Ds Mark III camera.
About photography lighting... my next class, Lighting for Photographers is on March 21st, 2010 and will be held in Maggiano's in Santana Row. Both our classes, in the last 2 weeks, "Photography Made Simple" and "Model Photography Workshop" were filled to the brim. We expect this one will be as well. So, do sign up before it is filled up. Early bird (before Feb 15th) pays $20 less.