I recently saw several images a friend of mine took of some models that I thought were excellent. His name is Barney Streit. I know Barney as a very accomplished landscape and nature photographer. However the shots I was reviewing were portraits. Oddly enough I have been interested in increasing my proficiency in portraiture so we started exchanging information on how he got more involved in this aspect of photography. I have attempted a few portraits and head shots and really like the results.
Both of the above images were taken at Joe McNally’s Dobbs Ferry Workshop. If you are interested in improving your flash skills there is no one better to learn from than Joe. He is funny and one of the most knowledgeable photographers I have ever met. Joe’s assistant Drew Gurian is an awesome photographer as well. Joe has a host of books, DVD’s and workshops. If you are interested check out his website and blog.
Oh yeah, back to Barney! When I asked him how he improved so much in this new area of photography he gave me two websites he used. Both of which had to do with networking. One of the sites I had heard of, the other I knew nothing about. The one I didn’t know was Meetup. This is a website where people with similar interests organize and post public gatherings for the purpose of meeting, collaborating and networking. I have already joined several Meetup groups and think this will help accelerate my portrait photography as well as be a lot of fun. If you already clicked on Barney’s link above I’m sure you have figured out that the other site was Model Mayhem. I also plan on joining Model Mayhem with the goal of doing some TFP work.
One of the best things about photography is that most involved are very helpful and knowledgeable. They are usually very willing to share what they have learned. Thanks to my friend Barney, I have some great new tools with which to try something new!