The Single Flash of Doom


    Ben Vickers, 23, has been working at a local vape shop for more than two years, and is now the manager of the establishment. The majority of his day consists of taking inventory, restocking shelves, and vaping.

 

 Ben Vickers, 23, has been working at a local vape shop for more than two years, and is now the manager of the establishment. The majority of his day consists of taking inventory, restocking shelves, and vaping.

In some of my outtakes, you can see where the flash is and how it is positioned, but I really liked that his hand would sometimes be in the perfect spot to cover it.

 

Ben Vickers, 23, has been working at a local vape shop for more than two years, and is now the manager of the establishment. The majority of his day consists of taking inventory, restocking shelves, and vaping.

Ben Vickers, 23, has been working at a local vape shop for more than two years, and is now the manager of the establishment. The majority of his day consists of taking inventory, restocking shelves, and vaping.

The one thing I love about this photo is his shadow on the wall. I think it really adds something to the photo, as well as all the bottles in the background. It adds to the "mundane-ness" of it all


This assignment, I would have to say, was difficult for almost everyone of us. But I'm glad that we pulled through this together. It was late Monday night, and I have not even tried to photograph anything with my flash because of the stigma that I felt the flash brought when I attempt to photograph people. I've always been interested in smoke and the variety of ways you can photograph to make it look dope, so I parked my car and walked into Aladdin Hookah Lounge in downtown Columbia to do my first takes. At first everyone was just a little weirded out because I had this huge flash, and I kept making it go off every 20 seconds. At first they asked if that was gonna be on the entire time because they were playing cards and it was really bright, and I apologized and said that it would. After a while, they said that they eventually got used to it, and they barely even noticed it anymore. I think that's when I realized that flash may be annoying, but people will eventually forget about it, just how people forget about being photographed. One of my most favorite photos from my first outtakes in Aladdin is this one: 

I bounced the flash off their walls, which were a reddish color. I really like the warm tones that are in this photo, but I thought that i might have been too warm, and that glare on his bald head really, really bugged me. 


Until I talked to my trust pal Huong, I did not fully understand that we have to do two outtakes by Thursday. So during the last days of shooting, I knew that I wanted to stick with the theme of smoke, so I visited a local vape shop in town. I am not allowed to use the name of the shop, but that's really the only limitation that I had photographing there. It was really fun learning about the movement of the smoke and what you effects you can get from it by lighting it differently. I chose that particular bounced light photo for my final select because I felt like that was the cleanest execution. Although I wish it had more color to it, I really enjoy how clear and crisp every aspect of the photo is. I did, however, try to add in more color to the photo by opening up a vape pen case and sticking into the wall, so the light could bounce off of it. And it actually worked:

But I felt that it looked a little sloppy. You can't distinctly see the smoke shape unlike in the other photo, and it might have been a tiny bit too overexposed. But I really, really love this photo besides the few compositional errors. 


Although Rita has been telling us to bracket, bracket, bracket, I'm just such a spaz with my dials and shutter on my camera. I think that one thing that I really did learn during this assignment was that bracketing actually really helps! Yea! Shocker! I know! Because I would just wing it and go up three stops and then down four and then up two to try to figure out the right exposure, but this time I did try to go from one half stop to another, even though I could have definitely done it better. Bracketing is ESSENTIAL when it comes to photographing the photo with the perfect exposure.