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Saturday, June 26, 2010

In the Valley of Fire

Model, Chrissy, poses for our cameras in the Valley of Fire outside Las Vegas
While its true that I am in Las Vegas for the IPI Convention, I could not for one minute think it possible to leave Nevada without heading into the surrounding desert to do a shoot of some kind. Glynn and I were given many suggestions for locations in and around Vegas, but the Valley of Fire had everything going for it in the end - proximity, availability and aesthetics. Its a fantastic place for photography.
Now, I can shoot my way around a landscape, but I would rather put a person in the landscape than just shoot it on its own. Enter Chrissy. Chrissy was the only model on Model Mayhem who responded to our casting call to shoot, and so she won the chance for some great photographs and we were given a person to put into this fabulous landscape. So, she, her big brother and chaperon, Mike, Tom the ex-Homicide detective and 'murder tour guide', Julie from Dan's Camera, Glynn and I all headed into the Valley of Fire for an afternoon and evening of photography.

Chrissy is a very young model with hopes. Being only 17, she has much to learn but we really appreciated her efforts and her hard work. A model needs to have some element of physical dynamic, but only maturity and experience can build the things that need to happen in the heart of a model to make her truly photogenic. Chrissy worked hard along with us to make the images happen and her brother was a fantastic help. He held flashguns and reflectors, and acted as chauffeur to his little sister. It was hot and dry and the afternoon sun was heavy on the rocks. But the key to working with that kind of light is exactly that - work with it, not against it. So we started with images that highlighted the color of the rocks and the hardness of the light. As the sun fell into the horizon, we finished off with our usual bevy of off camera flash techniques.
Thank you Tom for being our driver and 'murder tour guide' of the Nevada desert, Julie for being the brunt of our threats and 'short' jokes, Mike for being a good big brother and Chrissy for being our model. It was a great shoot and gave us the chance to photograph in the Valley of Fire.


Mary said...

Love the drama of the images and Chrissy looks like she has a good future as a professional. But what I really want to hear the back story on is the "murder tour guide"...???

Shelton Muller said...

Our driver, Tom, was a retired Vegas homicide detective. So as we drove the 70-odd miles out of town he regaled us with stories as we passed by each place where bodies had been found. It was fascinating, albeit a mite macabre !

The Life, Times and Images of photographer, Shelton Muller

Images on this blog are copyright Shelton Muller