Portraits of Charles, a Houston Songwriter

Charles not only writes songs, but is a former New York model and fitness instructor. As a man who wears many hats, he had plenty of ideas for images running the gammut from writing lyrics on his bathroom mirror to burning a song as he wrote it on a piece of paper. We also got some great 3/4 and headshots.

You can follow Charles on his Instagram account @saintroninmusic, and on his YouTube channel.

Portraits of Dominika

Dominika is an extraordinary violin player and teacher. She also plays as part of the Axiom Quartet and the Dancewict-Doucet Duo.

For this portrait session we took some close up shots of Dominika with her 19th century violin. This was a hybrid session using a digital camera and a large format camera (the Intrepid 4x5) using black and white film.

Portraits of Kristen

Kristen’s portrait shoot was a great example of having a solid plan-b. The original idea was for an outdoor shoot in front of the historic buildings in Texas city (about an hour south east of Houston), but the rain moved in and the plan had to be scrapped.

So we got permission from Sarah, the owner of the Campeche coffee etc, to set up a few lights and a backdrop in the corner of her premises. This was perfect for simple head-shots, and with a little post-processing we got some superb full body motion shots.

We changed location for the end of the session - a laundry-mat just up the road from Campeche Coffee. It was another one-light setup to capture the movement of Kristen’s hair.

This was a hybrid digital and film session using a Hasselblad 500cm and a Canon 6D mark 2.

See more of Kristen through instagram @kristen.wollenberg.

Portraits of Sergio

I love meeting people with curly hair like mine so I can bombard them with questions on how they deal with it in the mornings and where they get it cut.

Sergio’s portrait session resulted in some great social media head shots and some full body shots that wouldn’t look out of place if he was interviewed for a magazine.

This was a hybrid film and digital session using a Hasselblad 500cm and a Canon 6D mark 2.

Using a stereo film camera for the Villain Collaboration

Omar, who has a line of Villain printed apparel, set up a photographer/model collaboration in Houston to promote his brand. I thought it would be a good opportunity to break out my stereo camera to get some gritty black and white 3D images. The camera takes two pictures at the same time, with the lenses as far apart as human eyes are. When the images are combined in the brain, the give the illusion of depth.

stereo realist model portraits

How to view the images

The simplest way to view the stereo pairs is to go cross-eyed until the two images appear to overlap and a third image seems to exist between them. If you are viewing this on a desktop/laptop, you want the images to be small or viewed with your screen further away from you. If you are on your phone, it should be only a few inches from your eyes for the effect to work. Many people cannot (or will not try to) use this technique. In this case, you can use an set of inexpensive 3d viewers which are easily found on eBay (I recommend these low cost viewers). If you get it to work, let me know about how you did it in the comments below!

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The people

We had a great group of people from around Houston who I’d previously only known through Instagram. Photographers: @filnenna @ashtxc @mptheephotographer. Models: @the_villain_lifestyle @kristen_wollenberg @miss_gemini_polefit @jono56_bjj @heyyyyyy_ms_hayes.

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The camera

The Stereo Realist is as basic a camera as it gets. It is slow to operate because the shutter needs to be cocked independently of the winder, and the focusing has to be done through a rangefinder which is separate of the framing window. You can read an in-depth description of this camera in this overview Stereo Realist blog post. I left the digital camera at home for this session - I figured that because there were other photographers on this shoot, I could take the risk of shooting only film.

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