Friday, July 22, 2011

Girls Who Rock Benefit Concert 2011

It's been a year since the last Girls Who Rock video we put together, but on June 10th, it was finally that time again for us to rock out with Cynthia Hellen and She's the First's, Tammy Tibbetts! It was a full line up that evening, with performances by Kimberly Nicole, Eddy, Nikki Jean, Nina Sky and JoJo! The event's music was provided by DJ Kiss and was emceed by Touré (Fuse). There was also stand up comedy performed by Heather Knight and Data the Robot. John Wanda, co-founder of Arlington Academy of Hope, also took to the stage to deliver a special message to all of the supporters that night. Check out the video of this memorable event.

The goal of the event was to fund at least $20,000 to sponsor girls’ education at the Arlington Academy of Hope, where primary school education is $360 a year, and then students continue secondary school education nearby for $1,000 a year. AAH’s vision is to transform villages in rural Uganda into vibrant, self-sustaining communities through quality education and healthcare.

As usual, we had a great time working with Girls Who Rock and She's the First and really look forward to next years concert!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Garden of Light and Shadow Fashion Shoot

This past summer, I brought together some of the most talented models and artists I've worked with for a fashion shoot in Gramercy. The theme of the shoot involved the contrast between light and shadows in a lush, beautiful garden. The models, Caaha Xaashi and Joo Young, wore beautiful garments and accessories pulled by wardrobe stylist, Carol Hong. Their hair and makeup was done by the amazing Amanda Forsyth. The location was especially picked out for it's gorgeous garden and it's bronze double doors. It will also be my future photo studio location. On that hot summer day, we put together some sizzling fashion.

Here's some behind the scenes of the shoot as it progressed.

Camera Settings: The garden photos were taken with both daylight and artificial lighting to give them a very commercial feel. I used both a canon speed light on an impact stand and an excalibur strobe with a westcott softbox. Because of the midday light, I turned down the ISO all the way to it's lowest setting and purposefully increased the amount of stops in order to control both exposure and to get every beautiful detail of the garden. The indoor photos were taken with a 1k rifa continuous light. All photos were taken with a 70-200mm Canon lens. You can see more photos on our website.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Cold Night on Canal Street

Canal Street is a quick 3 minute short film I put together with actor Sean Hudock.

We initially had the idea of just walking around Chinatown and getting some pretty shots, more like a screen test than something with a narrative and a thought out visual language. But as Sean and I talked about the idea more, we got more interested in seeing what the most we could do was with the least amount of pre-production, equipment, and crew. Part of that had to do with situation in general, we didn't really have much time to plan anything. So we fleshed out a loose "plot" that basically consisted of a setup (walking around Canal street), a shift in mood and scenery (the restaurant), the only planned shot (close-up of the text message), and then a rough idea for a resolution (the CU of Sean on the phone at the end.) Otherwise, the short is more or less and example of impromptu film making and thinking about the edit as we looked for shots on the fly.

We constructed the ideas as we went, finding interesting spots as the night went on, and we overshot, getting more footage than I thought would be needed in the edit. Basically, we had a rough idea of the story we were trying to create, but I knew I was going to lock down the plot in editing, so we shot different interpretations of our loose storyline and hypothetical routes the narrative could take. I also took a lot of shots of things that I thought could be useful later in building up a system of symbols that could add depth and structure to the story--raw material for shaping context.

Camera Settings:

This was shot starting at around 8PM on a cold January night. It was roughly about 4 hours of shooting, including a sit down dinner that we integrated into the storyline. All the lighting is ambient, meaning it was just myself, Sean, and a 5D MKII on a tripod with no additional lighting equipment. Other than one shot, the entire piece was shot on a Canon 50mm F1.2 L-series prime. The CU of the text message was on a Canon 100mm F2.8 Macro. My intention was to keep the ISO low to control the noise and minimize grain. All the outdoor shots were ISO 320, and some of the indoor shots went up to ISO 1250. I wanted to keep my options open when it came to how dark the blacks were going to be, so I had the style setting at Standard, but with sharpness and contrast all the way down. I dropped saturation down a bit as well, but not too much because I didn't want to have to spend a lot of time later fixing flesh tones and trying to figure out the "correct" color of things.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Headshots: Courtney Sturm Part II

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Headshot of designer Rekha Krishnamurthi.

Designer and entrepreneur Rekha Krishnamurthi of Divine dZigns.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The House of Light

The House of Light is a music production team made up of Masud Semple, Jeremy Hassell, and Bobby Stofer.

R&B/Hip-Hop/Electro Singer O'Neal McKnight

Some photos from our shoots with R&B/Hip-Hop/Electro singer and celebrity stylist O'Neal McKnight.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Who.A.U SoHo Store Grand Opening Party

On December 3rd, Chamber Images was hired to cover a second party for Who.A.U, the Korean based, California-styled clothing store. The grand opening party for Who.A.U's SoHo Store was a RSVP-Only event complete with a red carpet treatment, a step and repeat, Who.A.U models and the California Grizzly Bear, the Who.A.U Mascot. DJ Kalkutta was there spinning and had all the shoppers dancing the whole night through. Those who RSVP'ed were treated with step and repeat photographs with the Who.A.U models and mascot, free food and drinks, and if they shopped around long enough, a special appearance by MTV Jersey Shore reality tv stars, Ronnie and Sammi. Everyone that stuck around were able to take photos with the two and received autographs from them at the end of the event.

It was the first time we've brought on a 3rd shooter to help take care of the step and repeat, while Chris and I took care of capturing coverage of the whole event. I would have to say, it went incredibly smoothly and it was an enjoyable experience. Check it out!

Here are some photos of the event:

If you were at the event and haven't seen your photos yet, check them out on WHO.A.U's facebook fan page album!

Camera settings: The step and repeat photos were taken by our assistant Rey, with a Nikon D200, using a shoot through umbrella and an Alien Bee. They were taken around f/8 and at about 1/100 shutter speed at 800 ISO. The video and other photos were taken with Canon 5D Mark II's. Despite how well lit the store was, I had to keep the aperture wide open for video and slow down the shutter so I could take ambient photos. It was too much trouble to use a speed light while I was switching between photos and shooting video as well. I used the quick camera settings (C1) to switch between shooting and capturing footage. It turned out to be useful for that situation.

How to Run like a Stand-up Comedian

You can learn a thing or two from stand-up comedian and marathon runner Liz Miele about what it takes to be a hardcore endurance athlete. Check out this "interview" we shot with her!

Check out her website and Facebook fan page!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

How to Make a Steadicam with a Chicken

Awhile back a video came out showing that chickens have steadicams for heads:

In case you're wondering, the reason the chicken is able to do this is because of what's known as the Vestibulo-ocular reflex. Humans have this too, only it just doesn't look as funny.

YouTube user destinws2 actually went ahead and turned a chicken into a steadicam.

Living things as camera equipment? I'd love to show up to a shoot with that thing.

Anyway though, it's not nearly as creepy as these pinhole cameras made out of human skulls!

This one is a 150 year-old skull of a 13 year old girl:

And this bad boy is made out of silver, gold, mercury, gem stones and a blessed Tibetan monk skull! Talk about hardcore.

I'm thinking we should stick to metal and plastic.