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Normans In Action: Another Art Shoot

Here are some behind the scenes photos from the latest art shoot.



In the foreground, there are two PVC panels, each clamped directly to a light stand. Each panel is illuminated by two Norman LH-2 heads connected through a Y cable by a Norman 200B power pack. All the flat artwork was photographed leaning against the podium.

The sculptures were photographed in a light tent assembled from PVC panel pieces (four straight lengths and four lengths with elbows at each end). A piece of black velvety material hangs from the back so as to appear as an infinite black background. This was illuminated by AC powered slave strobes, but not all three were used for every photo – sometimes fewer were used, depending on the piece. They were alo moved around to change where they were aimed.


There were two very heavy sculptures that had to be photographed in place out in the hall, so one panel was used as a reflector (the one on the left) and the other was used as the diffuse light source.


And here is a final image of the other sculpture piece out in the hall way:


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Multiple exposures…

I shot another art show for an the online version of the reality. It also serves as an archive of all the artwork that’s been shown since the beginning.

One of the pieces in the most recent show was this neon piece that’s close to 5 feet  in width and height. Here is the final image I ended up with after doing three separate masking layers. It was the most challenging piece in this show.


Continue Reading…

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DIY Kubota Panels: Versatile and Portable Walls or Windows…

During the presentation Kevin Kubota gave on CreativeLive.com several months back, he mentioned DIY scrims he had built that were sized to fitPhotoflex Litepanel covers. He even made a video detailing the construction.

So, how could I help myself? I had to make some, but with some enhancements of my own…

Not having any Photoflex panels, I was not constrained to a certain size so kept things simple. I maximized the material usage by cutting all the 3/4″ PVC pipe to 39″ in length. I also used electrical PVC conduit because it was slightly cheaper than the same size plumbing PVC pipe. Instead of using a hack saw like Kevin Kubota, I used a PVC pipe cutter. They are much simpler to use and so much less messy than sawing – I highly recommend getting one. It’s definitely worth the money.

Seven lengths of pipe are required for each panel. Instead of running bungie cord through them, I opted to leave them separate. I just glued the elbows and Tees to all the horizontal pipes. This lets me know which joints come apart without having to mark anything. It also prevents the loss of any of the fittings while in transit or during storage. Additionally, no bungie means the panel pieces can be configured into a light tent using four end pieces (elbows) and four plain lengths of pipe, similar to the one detailed in this blog post.

One panel breaks down into these pieces:


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Posted by by david


Light Saber – DIY Saberstrip

Recently, I came across a nifty light modifier for small battery flashes called the Saberstrip. It’s a tube with a mount for the flash at one end, and a mirror at the other end, and a long window covered with diffusion fabric. The long linear light source makes a diffuse shadow in one direction. They can be doubled up and oriented as an “L” to give a look closer to an umbrella or soft. One big advantage of the Saberstrip is that it’s not a big sail that’ll catch the wind out on location. At US$135 plus another 15 for shipping, though, it’s rather expensive for the hobbyist.kat-01

Continue Reading…

Posted by by david


Sunday morning light tent…

This is was a draft post for the longest time.  Finally getting around to finishing and publishing it…

Jacci made a baby shower invitation for our daughter, Tricia using some stuffed animals and other items. Jacci also tried her hand at stop motion animation while taking the still photo for the invite. Here’s one of the photos she took in the series:


The movie can be seen here: elephant and monkey stop motion-desktop

It was early on a Sunday morning when Jacci started trying to set up the shot. She was having some difficulty in getting some white foam core to stand up and stay where she wanted it. I went out into the garage and rounded up some 1/2″ PVC and fittings from an old project. I cut the PVC pipe into 8 equal lengths.  Then using 8 90-degree elbows, the structure below was assembled.  [I’d recently seen a PVC box design like this somewhere, but owing to the long time sitting as a draft, I no longer remember where so I can’t give credit for it.]


A sheet of white foam core makes the white floor.  A piece of white Tyvek hangs from the top back and slopes down to meet the foam core floor makes the continuous white background. Translucent white material hangs down on the left and right sides and over the top. Two SB-600s were placed on the left and right sides and an SB-900 was suspended over the top of the cage.

All told, creating the box and taking the series of photos took no more than about 2.5 hours total.

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