Announcing…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on August 14, 2009 by splinterblade02

My new website! I will reel this one down and it’s gonna

be replaced by this one:

Dannielle Levan Photography

Models: How to Prepare for a Shoot

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 9, 2009 by splinterblade02

I’ve been meaning to post this earlier but i kept adding stuff to it. These are tips for any model going to get a photo shoot, or just anyone looking to get their photo taken.
Body
– Please wear something that fits you well, and make sure you are wearing the right kind of underwear. Buy nude seamless panties and a bra if you have to, you will get many uses out of it as you can wear them under anything.
– Especially if you’re going to a nude/swimsuit/lingerie shoot: Do not wear tight clothing the day of your shoot. It leaves ugly red lines that are a pain to retouch.
– Don’t eat anything that you know will make you bloat, or give you gas. Things like pasta, certain veggies like broccoli, can have this effect.

- Ask the photographer about wardrobe (if there isn’t a wardrobe stylist) and bring as many options as you can.  You never know what could work!

Hair
– Make sure it’s clean and un-styled. If my MUA/stylist has to do a whole ‘take down’ job and spend and extra 30mins on your hair, i will just send you home.
– Make sure you keep profiles as up to date as possible on your hairstyle and colour. Again, if you show up not as advertised, i will send you home.

Face
– Come with a clean face, i don’t have time for you to take off all your make-up because you couldn’t stand to turn up barefaced.
– If you have a breakout, or injury (this applied to body as well) please let me know and we can work around it, or reschedule.
– Likewise, if you’re sick, don’t come near us, call me up BEFORE the shoot and tell me. We can reschedule. I will not risk mine, my husband’s or my MUA’s health.
– Tell the MUA if you’re allergic to something.

More on make-up and model tips from my awesome MUA friend, Melanie Ho Ken

Posing for newbies
– If you have a double chin -straighten your neck, relax your shoulders and push your chin out and down slightly. You might feel like a tool but it looks amazing in pictures.
– Smiling – Think of something funny or happy as you smile, it’ll be much more relaxed. Or, place the tip of your tongue behind your front teeth. It relaxes the muscles in your face.
– Arms – Hold them out/back from your body to prevent them flattening and looking bigger.
– Breathe out as the shutter goes off for a fuller pout and relaxed shoulders.

General tips
– Tell your photographer if you need to bring an escort. Escorts are only permitted if they do not interfere. I understand some people need drivers (or parents in the case of younger ones). But please tell them they have no say in the shoot, most photographers will just send you home if they feel it’s not going well.
– Know that you will probably have to sign a release. Please don’t lie about your age as I randomly ask for ID. Make sure you read what you sign with ANYONE. If you have problems with the contract, tell me and we can talk about it.
– Be early. No-one likes waiting and it makes you look unprofessional when you’re late.
– Reply to communication promptly. 24hrs is more than enough time to at least send a quick message or txt.
– On the note of communication, if you know your spelling/speech is bad, work on it. Talking in txt speak or slang isn’t professional and generally makes you look like you don’t take your work seriously.
– Be polite! I’ve worked with many people that i wouldn’t work with again because they were just plain rude.

Above all else, try to be as prepared as you can!  Don’t be afraid to ask questions either, everybody was a newbie at some point. :)

Special Update.

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on May 6, 2009 by splinterblade02

My friend Chris Walts has decided to cycle a ridiculous long way to help people in need, with Global Agents for Change. They give people in poor countries micro loans.

Check out his website here for details: Chris Walts Fundraiser

Advice from an (in)famous nude photographer, Michael Helms, aka ‘Pelicanh’

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 19, 2009 by splinterblade02

Now, i’ve been given advice from many friends and family, and some strangers (and strange people) too.

But none so amusing, yet useful as this:  Flirt.

There’s a very well known photographer on DeviantArt by the name of Pelicanh. (NSFW)  This guy does lovely work, and has obviously caused some controversy with his work (being nude and all).  Despite this, he has many, many fans.

I admire him a bit so i ventured to ask him some advice, not really expecting that i’d get a reply, because this man gets inundated with stuff.

But, the same day, i got a reply!  I was excited.  and the advice he gave me was somewhat obvious but it helps hearing it from someone you admire, anyway.

“Pelicanh said the following:

Compliment them CONSTANTLY. Make sure they have EVERYTHING they need…food, drink, and warmth. Make sure they know you are interested in THEIR well being. DON’T come on to them or try to get in their pants….that’s unprofessional and will kill a shoot in an instant.
ALWAYS have them sign a model release form and take a photo of them with their drivers license WITH their face in it.
Show them photos ahead of time that are “similar” to what you want to shoot. And ask them what THEY are comfortable with and where THEIR boundaries are.
If they understand that you are thinking of THEM, they will be comfortable.
And last but not least….flirt a little. ;)
M

That last line has been so invaluable to me!  Obviously, he doesn’t mean overly sexual flirting.  But i’ve found complimenting people goes a LONG way to getting them looking their best.

Thanks Michael!

Colour of Light

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on January 29, 2009 by splinterblade02

I realise i should have put this in with the post about the worklights, but i forgot ^_^ .

Those work lights normally come with a standard yellow halogen bulb.  You’ll definitely want to change this.

Your best choice would be some ‘daylight‘ tinted bulbs.  These ones are tinted blue to give you the same colour range as normal daylight.

But, if you’re in a bind and cannot find these, the next best thing are the bulbs labeled something similar to ‘brilliant white’ or ‘white light’.  This is what i used, as Rona didn’t have an daylight bulbs in stock.  Try the standard bulbs, take a picture against a neutral backdrop.  Then swap it out for the white ones.

The difference is huge.  It’ll save you so much time editing getting the right colour bulb.

Normal yellow bulbs will give you a yellow/orange tint over your picture which in most cases you don’t want, whereas daylight or white light looks pretty close to sunlight.

My Lil Ghetto Studio

Posted in Uncategorized on January 26, 2009 by splinterblade02

As promised, I will start documenting how I setup my studio.  I was originally inspired by this post: diylighting

I’ll start with, of course, where I got the gear i have so far.

The stuff i’m using is pretty affordable, i’m on one relatively comfortable income (my husband’s) while i’m setting this all up and it’s all easy to find stuff too.

Firstly, my uber-leet worklight!   I slogged down to the local Rona (Big hardware store) and got this one for about $60 CAD.

It’s got two adjustable 500watt halogen lamps and you can easily remove them too.  both can be turned on and off individually but you’re definitely need a diffuser as they are VERY intense.

I took the grills off, just be careful as the glass gets extremely hot.  And don’t paw the glass or bulb/dish with your bare hands as oil + heat = FIRE!

My awesome background is actually a kingsize neutral white sheet from Walmart I got for literally $5, pinned over a $2 curtain rail, which fits into two brackets and an hook in the ceiling.  I plan to make a wooden framework later to stretch it out but it still works well as a curtain too.

Last night I bought a studio umbrella off eBay for about $26.  eBay is awesome for cheap gear, if you’re willing to do just a bit of digging…

red hair self portrait

That’s all i have so far but the results i’m getting so far are great.  This is a self portrait i took as a test shot.  I used the halogen off to my right side pointed up at the ceiling and no flash.

Bouncing it off the ceiling softens it up considerably if you don’t have a diffuser yet.

That’s all for now.  I’m waiting on my umbrella, eBay!

Why hello there world!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on January 26, 2009 by splinterblade02

Kia ora! I’m Danni, an freelance photographer based in New Westminster, BC Canada.
I’m currently setting up my home studio and one of my friends had the brilliant idea of documenting it.
Other than that, i’m another one of those crazies trying to build up my business in low times in preparation for the good times!

My hope is that this will encourage other budding photographers to jump in there and start their own business, and that setting up a studio CAN be affordable.

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