Monday, October 25, 2010

08/52 Mo Krohm

This week marks what should be the end of the crazy 20 hour days split between jobs. Things at the studio are winding down for the fall, and hopefully this will give me more time to plan and execute these shoots. This week, something and someone a bit different. Mo is the first person I've shot other than my roommate Jeff and myself that I've photographed in their home, and also the first person I've shot that I didn't really know that well.

Hi, nice to meet you. Awesome apartment. Love what you've done with the place. Please stand over here, do what I say, try to look nonchalant, and stare at this uncomfortably bright light.

Doing things. Sounds easy. Sure, we all do things. Wake up, go to work, watch things, stare blankly at the internet, shop, buy and eat food. But how many of us actually create things on a daily basis? Whatever happened to the lost arts, where one could transmute raw materials into something practical, useful, or beautiful in the comfort of their own domestic sphere? Skills relying more on the use of one's hands and one's own experience rather than machines and mass market instruction. So often the word "homemaker" is used as a pejorative, implying one who doesn't "do" anything but stay at home. On the contrary, skills of the domestic sphere are as nuanced and intricate as they are practical and empowering. We live in a time where despite these skills having having skipped the majority of a generation, a set crafty and motivated individuals eschew a life of convenience in lieu of a life of ability.

Mo is one of these talented few. She has a crazy cool, self-decorated apartment, a DIY thrift sense of style, and serious chops in the kitchen. Not only is she thoroughly empowered in the domestic sphere, she has what to me what sounds like a dream job: She makes ice cream. Whatever kind she wants. The more creative, the better.  I may attempt to draft her, should Jeff and I's high-concept avant-garde ice cream parlor idea ever materialize. Perhaps I've already said too much....

We caught up with Mo while she was baking a cobbler from scratch. After eyeing around her apartment at all her cool stuff, we settled in the kitchen and I began to set up to photograph her while she worked. The light setup is relatively simple, a main and and edge. The main is my first use of my new white and silver bounce umbrella, to avoid spill problems I was having in the background. The main was located at high camera right and the edge was an sb800 shoved in an open cabinet door with barn doors to control spill. I also used a white reflector low camera left for some fill. Guess who forgot to do a setup shot again? Ladies and gentlemen, presented for your enjoyment: an MSpaint "artist's" reconstruction:

I think it's worthy of note that Mo made the apron that she is wearing from scratch. Here are some outtakes:

The last image was very close to making the final cut. In all honesty i think I would be happy with either it or the one I selected being the official take. I liked the photos of her working on the cobbler well, but I chose to go with one that I feel expresses Mo's personality a little bit more than just showing what she literally does. Maybe I made the wrong decision? Lord only knows it wouldn't be the first time.

Strobist Info:
SB-800 with silver & white bounce umbrella high camera right with 1/2 CTO
SB-800 at back camera left with barn doors
White tri-grip panel  low camera left

Camera Settings:
1/200 f/2.5 at ISO 100
Nikon 35mm f/1.8

1 comment:

  1. Really enjoyed this one, Jay. Obviously, I'm pro handcrafted domestic goods. Mo is a cutie and obviously talented to boot. Now I'm drooling for some cobbler and homemade ice cream!