South Asian Bride Wedding Show | Atlanta, Georgia

When my buddy Jay (Illumination Films) asked me if I would like to tag along to Atlanta to film a commercial for the South Asian Bride Magazine Wedding show I only asked one question - when do I need to be read to go? While most of my friends spent their long Thanksgiving weekend sleeping off their turkey coma's and watching football, we hustled all over the Lowe's Hotel in downtown Atlanta filming one of the coolest bridal show spots I have ever seen.

The video features Ms. India New York, Rupal Patel, who I got to photograph while the crew moved lights and equipment around. 

So many talented people came together to make this spot.
I have to thank Inny Ross-Laterveer for being such a gracious host. Everyone at the Loews Hotel made us feel welcomed and right at home.
I also want to mention the team over at South Asian Bride Magazine who were wonderful to work with - before, during and after the shoot.
Coordination and Jewelry - Belsi's Collection by Riddhi Fazal
Wardrobe and Accessories - Premal Badiani
Amazing Henna work done - Nargis Karimi 
Hair and makeup - Samantha Gunn
Jay Neumark who concepted, directed, videoed and edited the film. 
Finally, I would be remiss if I didn't give a super shout out to the pint sized dynamo that is Cait Tompkins.

The show will be held at the Loews Hotel in Atlnta, GA on January 25th and if you are close by please come by and say hi! :)

Teach it Tuesday | Behind the scenes on a creative family portrait session

When my son's pre-k (what they call pre-kindergarten here in the states) teacher asked for a recent family photo I knew we had to do one up the one from last year.

The 2013 Futrell family photo.

I sat down with my sketch book and created 4 or 5 really awesome concepts that I thought would be fun to photograph and process... after all, if this becomes a chore it defeats the purpose right? In the end we decided to make a photograph around my sons favorite toy, a colonial era brick fort... we just switched out the Red Coats and Yankee soldiers for fairies, goblins and lost boys. 

The gear:
Nikon D800
Nikon 50mm f/1.4G
my busted up tripod (thanks to my buddy Scott who helped me get it fixed up)
2 x led light boxes on light stands (you can buy them here)

The Process:
I photographed the fort first, and placed markers where I though each of us would be located in the final image. This helped me determine the right perspective, light and shadow placement. Once we had a good plan together, I had each family member stand in and do several poses, screams and attach motions. For the boys I positioned the camera above our heads to give the illusion that you were looking down on us and for the girls I laid on the floor and had them stand on a crate so it looked like you were looking up at them. Once we had all of the photos that we needed I loaded them all into Photoshop and extracted each character from their background, matched color, brightness and sharpness. You can watch that whole process here:

It took me about an hour and half to photograph the fort and each character in costume and another 5 or 6 hours in post processing. The final image is hanging in my sons class room right now :)