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Vintage Style Themes

February 7, 2010

Do you want to feel like a Hollywood movie star from the 1940’s for a day? Or maybe you might want to pretend to be one of Al Capone’s gangsters? Have some fun and let your client’s ham it up for an afternoon. Using the right attire, props, location, lighting and camera angles can make your images look like authentic period piece images! To capture an authentic retro look I always use Kodak film to give just a little bit of grain and the right contrast range, details in shadows and highlights and perfect color saturation.  My photo lab simply processes the film and scans it immediately to digital files so I have 2 forms of back up and have the digital files to play with. My preferred films are: B/w 400CN film, 160NC and 400NC.

Theme: A Kitchy 1950’s couple!

This couple is big collectors of everything 40’s and 50’s. They both worked in the film industry, (she a wardrobe stylist and he a set builder) so they already had the right attire. Hair and make up was easy.

Location: When I scouted the location, (the couple’s home), I fell in love with the black-n-white checkered floor and knew instantly the shots  I had in mind! I also loved the red couch so the location was ideal!

Props: All I brought the old telephone and a blue cupcake to match the blue inserts in the kitchen cabinets. We didn’t need much else!

Directing: I just told them to think of the old TV show ” Leave It To Beaver”  and they instantly grinned. I wanted to depict a stereotypical 1950’s relationship. We sure had  a lot of fun hoarsing around during the shoot and they LOVED the images!

Lighting: I used my Lowel’s Omni and Tota hot lights as my primary light source. I placed colored gels over the lights to reduce some of the yellowish cast caused by incandescent lighting and it turned out perfect!

Theme: 1930’s High School Sweethearts!

Location: I found this 1940’s art deco styled movie theater a few miles form my home and it became the inspiration for my  theme. Since they really were high school sweethearts the title worked!  I loved the old brick walls of a nearby building and just used natural light and a fill card to bounce light into the shadow areas.

Props: I brought a beautiful Brigitte Bardoux hat I had purchased years ago in Paris for her and we rented a fedora hat from a costume shop for him. She found a dress in her grandmothers closet and he borrowed a suit. That’s all we really needed since the location already offered so much!

Directing: I wanted a little mystery since couples back then were not really supposed to engage in premarital sex. I thought it might be nice to add a little tension so we did a few shots where he courts her. They both loved the chance to get romantic again for the afternoon.

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