Making Not Taking Photographs

Backstage views on making photographs professionally

Archive for the ‘Public Relations Photography’ Category

No retouching…. trying to be on a budget?

Posted by Mike on November 3, 2012


Posted in Advertising Photography, Annual Report Photography, Photojournalism, Public Relations Photography | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

How good is photography?

Posted by Mike on March 25, 2010

How good is photography at conveying the intended message?

Good enough!

A wild coyote goose chaser… but he’s pretty tame…. fools Sam.

Posted in Advertising Photography, Concept Photography, Public Relations Photography | Leave a Comment »

Portrait retouching…

Posted by Mike on September 16, 2009

I got lazy the other day!… lazy eye…

I made this picture (picture 1 RAW)… then worked it over in “lightroom” and delivered it since it looked pretty good (picture 2)… then the art director calls and says “… ya know… I know you can do better.. this looks like crap… fix it!”

Lightroom does not have the capabilities to fix this photo. So into Photoshop… 4 layers to start, defocus one, darken it, do shape shifting of the face on another layer, haircut on another layer, skin smoothing on another, sharpen eyes on another…. Then paint them layer masks until something happens…. Oh yeah I forgot the big one “lighting effects” on a layer saved the day from too flat a light… and the wrong color… the light was bouncing off a red wall totally queering the whole picture… take a look. (pictures 3, 4, 5, and 6 for the final).

You will notice on the bottom of the final picture I have included a gray scale. This is because most people have PC’s and have no clue as to how to calibrate the color, adjust themonitor or whether they have a 6 bit or 8 bit monitor. So I ask them how the grayscale looks if there is some kind of argument. I usually get a silent response…. and probe some more to find out the gray has turned green (out of whack 6 bit monitor) and it’s too dark to see separation in the lower shades… So I say it looks perfect on my end that;s as good as we can do… adjust your computer… see here too:   browsers and photography

Posted in Portrait Photography, Public Relations Photography | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

International Trademark Association, Elle MacPherson trademark violation

Posted by Mike on July 19, 2009

The fun part of this convention was meeting Elle MacPherson and photographing her for an afternoon….

Here are links to the main part of the job in case you need to hire an event photography company:

We made more than 6000 photographs in the 5 day convention at 4 venues, including the Washington State Convention Center, Museum of Flight, and the Seattle Sheraton… plus numerous party locations.

Poorly engineered marketing plan #1:

Mike tries to become famous signing autographs of the published MacPherson Photos…

The only strategy left (to becoming famous) is to get sued by MacPherson for diluting her trademark, or causing confusion between our “brands” so that when the public thinks of her they automatically and intrinsically think of me too. What do you think? Can this happen?




inta elle

Posted in Event Photography, Public Relations Photography | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Making a photo from pretty much nothing….

Posted by Mike on July 10, 2009

We needed a front page photo for the INTA daily newspaper at their 131st convention. Mind numbing images one person at a microphone after another came into view all day… And even this seminar on how to make a presentation went bad with the sound system failing and people scattered all over the stage…. Not to mention the really poor background, fire extinguisher, and doors (that I took out).

Then it occurred to me that if we could just get all the participants to play along for 5 minutes after their presentation we could condense the whole thing into one shot and sucessfully tell their story.

More Photos:

I think it worked:


inta presentation

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Cover shot

Posted by Mike on July 9, 2009

You need a cover shot… it’s a bad day right… no sun… Well the camera didn’t see it that way…. after a little work-over in LR and PS. Note: I added nothing to the photo… no fake sky or any such thing… This is all raw multilayer processing with masks to change the color temperature, exposures, gradients, retouching,  and clarity between 3 different layers.

We have a new rule by the way…. NO LIME GREEN CLOTHING!

capitol gang

Posted in Portrait Photography, Public Relations Photography | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

When did you stop beating your embryos?

Posted by Mike on April 19, 2009

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Faces of Dialysis

Posted by Mike on April 9, 2009

At the new Kent clinic people get life saving treatment.

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At the open house in June, 2009, the organization provided this big poster:

nwkc_kent 6-24-09_006

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Make or Take that photo your client wants…

Posted by Mike on April 6, 2009

In this case you have to make a photo. The real look of this warehouse type office building is not that great. The pavement is poor, and power lines are everywhere…

So you make a better photo from 10 exposures over 90 minutes of when the sun was going down. Post included layering and masking and color manipulating into one pretty good one.

nw kidney center kent, wa

In response to a request/comment here are the layers used to make the above picture:






In exposure one you can’t really tell but the bushes are lit up with car headlights.

There is aproximately 45 minutes between 1st and last exposures.

Posted in Architectural Photography, Public Relations Photography | Tagged: , , | 4 Comments »

Best Holiday Party 2008

Posted by Mike on December 14, 2008

Every once in a while you run across a class act sort of guy who really knows how to do things that just get people laughing, motivated, and forgetting all the problems of the world.

Here is that guy!

Posted in Event Photography, Public Relations Photography | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »