Summer Street Shooting for Umoro

After all these years, street shoots are still alive and well. When you need to switch it up and need a real challenge, the streets will always provide you with ample stress. When summer hit’s here in Toronto, I do my best to take advantage of the good weather. The summers aren’t too long and the weather is perfect to explore all the nooks of the city. It was Canada Day, so the city is mostly dead. This would be the best time to explore the University of Toronto without getting in trouble. I am old now and I don’t think I can pass as a student anymore.

gfx50s, Umoro, toronto, UofT, street, style

Street shooting is all about wondering and letting locations and scenes open themselves up to you. On the drive in, an alleyway caught my eye. After shooting near where we parked, we ventured into that alleyway. There we found many textures and interesting light to work with. Slow shutter work is always risky, but not every image needs to be sharp. This particular jacket has a unique tear away zipper. I was trying to convey the action of opening the jacket.

gfx50s, Umoro, toronto, UofT, street, style

When it comes to street shooting, I pack very little. The only item really is the camera. I don't bring lights or reflectors. I intend to move quickly and get as much variation. I also know we aren’t always welcome everywhere we choose to shoot so the smaller the footprint, the most likely no one will bother you. Instead of lugging a flash (although I would love to) I hunt for good or interesting light. I am no longer afraid of hard light when I find it, with the Fujifilm GFX50S, there is forgiveness in the highs and lows.

gfx50s, Umoro, toronto, UofT, street, style

Speaking of light, the best time to shoot would be the evening or early morning. Everything from the colors to the long shadows from the low angle of the sun really changes how everything looks. At this time, I’m usually in a rush to get as much as I can be fore the sun dips or gets too high. Speaking of street photography, I have to plan a solo shoot and really try some new techniques before the summer is over.

Model: Mark Gallardo

Shot for: UMORO

The Grand Canyon & Death Valley

In a joint venture with a great cinematographer, we have decided to step our game up when it comes to couple shoots. If we are going to photograph peoples union, it will have to be epic. We both our our heart and soul into other areas of our careers, so why not here. We decided to head to Las Vegas and make the most of the surrounding areas. I hope to provide a commercial feel to this genre.

3-Image stitch from the Fujifilm GFX50S.

3-Image stitch from the Fujifilm GFX50S.

Horseshoe Bend was absolutely stunning when we walked up to it. Mind you, it is a 20-30minute hike in through rock and sand with gear. I am absolutely grateful for LED panels for this reason. As much as I would have loved to use the Profoto B1 here, it would have cause more issues than solve them. With the soft light produced during a cloudy sunset, throwing hard light can be difficult. Check the behind the scenes shot below. I am always grateful to any helping hand when it comes to nailing the shot. Over the years, I’ve learnt that a group effort make a better end product.

It’s a group effort.

It’s a group effort.

Death Valley was next on the list. In hind sight, staying in Las Vegas is not the best idea if you plan on driving hours outside of the city for the natural wonders. Once you arrive, every minutes spent in the car is absolutely worth it. The mountains are one thing, but the scale of it all is what’s amazing to see and work with. During our time here, we tackled the Sand Dunes and Salt Flats within the park.

Blowing sand was a serious issue. I would recommend not to making lens changes.

Blowing sand was a serious issue. I would recommend not to making lens changes.

Stepping way back gives you a grand perspective.

Stepping way back gives you a grand perspective.

3-Image stitch from the Fujifilm GFX50S.

3-Image stitch from the Fujifilm GFX50S.

Missing the sunset is a real concern for us. On the way to this location, I’m sure we set a new land speed record in the Kia we rented. The Salt Flats here in Death Valley is vast and finding the right spot is tough. Luckily, we spotted an off-road path that brought us even closer. 

Dusk and dawn offer beautiful light and colours in the sky. Initially, we shot in the opposite direction, until we turned around and saw the amazing colours produced in the clouds behind us. We instantly changed direction. 

Look Organic: Cosmetic Campaign

The most rewarding projects are definitely the ones where you are part of the planning and execution. Mind you, this project might of been on the rougher side, but never the less, there was art direction and a plan to build a powerful site for the launch. Check out Look Organics.

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The premise of the brand is hydration and using the least amount of ingredients possible. We ran with the hydration part of the brand here. It’s amazing what a borrowed fish tank, carbonated water and some lightings can do.

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Last but not least, the product shots. All products are shot one by one in studio. A series of light shaping tools and bounce cards help control unwanted reflection and reflect light to fill shadows as needed. My biggest tip fo shooting products is to have patience and take the time when creating the photo to fix lighting problems. You will be glad once you get into photoshop.

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Remember, Tell a Story

After some coaching from a close friend, he reminded me that I need to continue to push my creativity. Being able to tell as story through our photos will always be more powerful. I was finding it tough finding a way to shoot cars in an interesting way. Car photography is a whole other animal. Composition is always important, but with such large subjects and even a larger environment.

With ample research, you can tell strong automotive photography has a story to tell. The environment plays a big roll. The more simple, the better, as that it doesn't detract from the car itself. These shots were taken in a mall parking structure one hour after it closed. Security wasn't an issue, even though they did question us being there. He just said make it quick and he never came back. 

Lighting for the shots involved bouncing light off the ceiling and floor to get highlights and help kill reflections. Since cars are huge, these shots are comprised of up to 8 shots. The results are well worth the effort. Let me know if you can figure out the proposed based on these iconic automobiles. 

IG:  @don_wolf
IG: @terryeas

IG: @terryeas

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Copy of Quick Profile: Scott

Sometimes you meet someone who takes your interest completely. Over the years, I have learned to listen and put my views on reserve while taking in another prospective. Scott is one of these people. He explained his work, and how me makes a statement everyday as he meets numerous people. It was sunset, so I asked if he could give me some time to photograph him. 

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Street Photography with the Fujifilm GFX 50s

It has been a long time since scheduling off an afternoon to wonder the street. Street photography was the tool I used to get familiar with new gear and techniques. This time, it was gear, the Fujifilm GFX 50s. The camera is particularly slow and out of its element for quick focus acquisition, but once you figure out that it's you who must slow down, each shot composed is almost a masterpiece. Taking the time to stop and figure out why this scene caught your eye is what street photography is about. This time, with the GFX 50s, there is no fear of blown out highlights or lost shadows. Going medium format is freedom. 

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First day with the Fujifilm GFX 50s

Have you ever bought something, and not have buyers remorse? I have found the one thing, the Fujifilm GFX 50s. From the moment you take your first photo, you will be smiling inside and out. It only gets better once you get these photos into post-production. The detail and flexibility just open the doors. You will never see a highlight and shadow recovery slider work so well. I had no shoot planned for today, but I grabbed @vinnierehab and shot a few by the back of the lab. I for one welcome the decreased speed of shoots. Quality over quantity always. 

Equipment used: Fujifilm GFX 50s + Fujifilm GF 63mm

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IG: @joe_umoro

IG: @joe_umoro

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