The Sacramento World Music and Dance Festival is a celebration of world cultures, ethnic dance and musical performances. The Saturday performances were at the Memorial Auditorium on Saturday, September 20. The above group, Fishtank Ensemble, presented an incredible array of Romanian folk and gypsy music. Each of the performances brought out a rich experience of ethnic and cultural brilliance. Performers showcased the native dances of Africa, China, Egypt, India, Ireland, Japan, Mexico, Peru, the Philippines, Scotland, Spain and Ukraine.
To see more photos from this event, go to my gallery here.
– + –
I was invited to join a photoshoot arranged by fellow shooter, Scott Fischbein, a photographer out of Davis, CA. Scott had arranged to take some dance shots of local breakdancer, Vince Horiuchi.
We met up with Vince and his girlfriend, Linh, in Old Sacramento. Vince was great to work with, he kept us on our toes with his fast moves. The photo above was taken near the historic railroad yard in Old Sac.
This photo was taken in an area off one of the alleys in Old Sac. Vince has an amazing energy level and gave us a full 90 minutes of mind-blowing photo opportunities. This photo was lit with two speedlites, cross-lighting Vince from the right and left sides. We used the speedlites to freeze Vince’s movement and add some drama to the scene.
The last photo of Lihn was taken in the same area. The lighting was changed to provide better dimension to her face.
You can check out a news report on Vince’s school, Flexible Flave, on Youtube.
– + –
I recently shot some images for a promotional campaign for the Sacramento Chapter of the Susan G. Komen Foundation – the campaign is called Passionately Pink. I photographed a few prominent legislators at the State Capitol; they are showing their support for the Komen campaign by wearing pink ties, boas, whatever.
These are some of the final images chosen for the campaign. On all photos, I used a single speedlight with a white shoot-through umbrella. I needed to move quickly so as not to interfere with their busy schedules. In some cases, I had less than 5 minutes to move into the office, pick out a setting, establish rapport with the subject, set up the light, test exposure, move them into position and get the right expression, take some shots, then grab everything and get the heck outta there. (Click on the images to see a larger version.)
Senator Darrell Steinberg’s office had this great old brown leather couch, so I asked him to sit on his couch. I positioned the main light to the left of the camera and attached a white reflector to the door that is just out of view on his left shoulder. Senator Steinberg was very relaxed and quickly jumped into the picture.
Assemblyman Dave Jones was a lot of fun. He was busy that afternoon, he was literally putting on the pink tie while he was walking around his office discussing things with his staff. There was not a lot of floorspace in his office, so I set up the light stand on the center of his conference table and let the reflective wood paneling on the wall take care of filling in light on the dark side of the image. (I used three business cards as coasters on the table to insulate the light stand feet from the surface of the table.) When I was ready, he stepped into the photo and was immediately relaxed and present as I shot away.
Assembly Speaker Karen Bass (top photo) was very receptive, in spite of her busy schedule. I set up the main light on camera right and let the window light provide fill and nice ambient light for the scene. This photoshoot was the fastest, yet we had time to include Assemblywoman Patty Berg (right) in some of the shots. Both women were very down to earth and the images show their genuine support for the Komen mission.
This assignment was a lot of fun. It’s always a pleasure to shoot for the Komen group, they are very committed to eliminating breast cancer. These images will be shown on video screens in restaurants, in movie theaters between movie screenings, and on websites. The final video presentation required that all images be taken in a horizontal format; usually portraits are taken in the vertical format. It’s always important to understand the final usage of the images before taking them.
Laying in a hammock can be very relaxing and soothing. You feel almost weightless while suspended between two large trees. This image makes a hammock look more like a thrill ride.
I slowed down the shutter speed to 1/2 second and panned the camera in synch with the swinging motion. It took several attempts to get the image of Laura sharp enough to tell it was a person inside all that motion.
– + –
Downtown Sacramento has a pedestrian mall that connects Old Sacramento with the Community Center. Some of the blocks in between are a little under-developed, but at the end of the mall near the Community Center, several restaurants and outdoor venues provide a nice open area for quiet time. These fountains have a nice calming effect among the city traffic. I also have a daytime shot of these fountains, for a different perspective.
This photo was a 15 second time exposure, which allowed the flowing water to take on a very silky look. It also converted passing cars into white and red light streaks. Time exposures require a very sturdy tripod and lots of patience.
– + –