I’s always good to review the 10 commandments before a photo shoot…this was taken at the Synagogue on the RMCAD Campus where I was taking photos of the model Astrid

The cover shoot for the book happened yesterday and I would say it was success..although I wish I would had more time with Astrid, the model. Sometimes working under a pressure time crunch is better..The uneasy feeling was I committed myself to shooting in natural light, no auxiliary lights just a reflector. So I was depending on the Sun…It was fun and challenging but reminded me of when I first started this journey 100 years ago…I was always chasing the light…

goosebumps due to the cold temperatures in the Temple..

The other factor was there wasn’t any electricity in the Temple …it was cold, about 40 degrees inside….my fingers were feeling the cold after being there for 20 minutes. It was so cold that when I was editing the photo in Lightroom I notice goosebumps on Astrids skin….which is a compliment to the Canon EOS R’ sensor…it is that sharp…I am not sure which image I am going to use for the cover but this is one of my favorites…

The setup …A.R. Leslie Photography is assisting me with a reflector

Back to the Book

Tomorrow is the shoot for the cover of my next book. Since this is an intro book I am staying away from using strobe or speed lights to create this portrait, a departure from my usual lighting setup.

I will be photography Astrid, great name, in an old synagogue from the 19th century. It is in disrepair, pealing paint, no electricity or plumbing. I have been taking my student there since I have been teaching at RMCAD from the last yearyear, hoping to inspire them.

Despite the cold temperatures the location is inspiring. Some of my students have created great images in the site. As you can see there are a lot of possibilities. 

I am going to rely on where the LIGHT takes me for this shoot rather than creating the LIGHT, as I usually do for commercial shoots…hopefully the spirits will be with me…and of course I will be shooting the the Canon EOS R that CPS has gratefully loaned me…read earlier blog for the story…until next time…happy photo shoots to you all…

the front door of my location

Inside the synagogue
The model Astrid is working with her sister Leslie in the RMCAD studio, during my portrait class…I think she will make a great cover shot….
Winter Space

I have been a CPS member for a long time and I really like the service except the limited amount of time I am allowed to borrow a piece of equipment, one week, from arrival and has to get back to them by the end fo the week. So, I have about 4 days to play….I was hoping to shoot the cover of my next photo book ” Chasing the light” (working the title) for http://www.amherstmedia.com   A that Monday, one day after I received the new Canon EOS R mirrorless camera, when the snow arrived.

I love the weather in Denver, it will snow for a couple of days then be sunny and warm up …but a snow day on the day of my cover shoot…oiy!!! After I canceled the shoot, I email CPS and pleaded with them to hold onto the camera for one more week. After all it was to shoot the cover, I would credit Canon and I thought it would be a win-win. I sent out the email expecting a firm no, since they have never ever let me extend the loan period in 20 years…Here is the response I received within the next hour…

Hi, Steven. 

“Well…since you’re a fellow Queen fan, okay. 😉    I extended the loan for you. Please have the gear back to us no later than 2/6.  Shots on the blog look great. 

Good luck with the book!  Ah-oh! “

When I got that response I started jumping up and down…and couldn’t believe they were going to give me an extension. This has solidified my long relationship with Canon..I promised to be unbiased when I do write about the Canon EOS R, it does have some deficits, that I believe Canon will fix in the next generation. That’s another post, In the meantime I am going to shoot the cover this Friday and according the Denver forecast it will be sunny and in the 40’s F.


Yesterday I had the opportunity to test out the Canon EOS R ( Mirrorless camera) on location with top Teen models, Metika, Maggie, Katie and Rowen at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. 

Metika, Maggie, Katie and Rowen help me stop action

My mission was to visually demonstrate the use of a SLOW shutter Speed and a Fast Shutter speed for my upcoming book ” Seeing the Light” (working title). Once the parents signed the model releases we were off. My number one assistant, Makhesh, was by my side to help me.

It was a brisk day with temperatures in the upper 40’s ( I love Denver weather by the way) The models were excited, chatting about broadway musicals, the latest on Netflix, binge watching and the big payoff after the shoot, ice cream.

When we arrived the museums parking lot was busy, the museum was free that day. I got the eye of the parking attendant and he gave me a big smile and dropped the rope and directed me to turn left since a space had just opened up, my lucky day.

When I first moved to Denver over a year ago, a new friend had told me you can get a great view of Denver at the museum. I stored that comment away and thought that it would make a great background for a shoot that day. I was a bit worried about the weather, gray skies and windy but I also felt this was my luck day and the shoot would be a success.

One thing I learned as a professional photographer for the last 30 plus years is that nothing is ever certain regarding a photo shoot. There are a lot of variables and if it doesn’t t fall into a place the shoot can be a total disaster. So the stars have to line up and you have have to have a bit of luck. To be more metaphysical, it is the things you don’t see that matter the most..

Anyway it was a successful shoot, the models were great and had good energy…to learn about stop and blur action buy my book when it comes out later this year…in the meantime stay tuned for tips and more adventures in the world of creation….oh at the end we did a fun shot for Maggie, a parody of the Queen Album cover. Maggie is big fan of Queen ( so am I) and has seen Bohemian Rhapsody around 4 times ….

Stop Action in Action

Boy, did I mess up!!!

Well it wasn’t too bad but you would think that all the years I have been taking photos, I would have figured this one out.s

If you have been following me you will know that Canon Professional sent me their new Canon EOS R ( mirrorless camera) to test. One of the features I was excited to try out was their silent mode…no mirror..no sound..( is that a Bob Marley song?)

The Quiet One

Anyway, I love the fact that there is NO SOUND when you push the button..I mean the possibilities, concerts, weddings, news conferences, street photography, spy photography…you get the idea.

I took the camera outside to test how it would work in different modes…I start with the A+ mode, fully automatic and pretty much fool proof. Click, Click Click..then I try the Manual mode, the mode I prefer for creative control…no click; no click ; no click….” Great! the camera doesn’t work, completing forgetting that I put it on silent. What I didn’t realize is that the silent mode does not work on the A+ mode..so it is not entirely my old man mind.

I rushed back home to call Canon Professional Service and ask them why the camera wasn’t working….As I am speaking to the very patient tech person, the bulb goes off in my head…ahhhh it’s on silent mode…and there is no silent mode in the A+ mode….I do a 180 and begin liking the camera again…Tomorrow the camera sees real action when I shoot some images for the book and on Monday when I shoot the possible cover..

Commandment #1 Know thy camera functions! that’s the part of the tablet that broke off when Moses broke the tablet…

Next topic will be : Did you know you can transfer via wifi from the camera to your iPhone or Computer using the Canon EOSR? How to:

I really like the sharpness of the sensor in the camera…

So I got a complaint from my dog Chaol yesterday that I was spending to much time photographing Capella. In fact she stayed in bed all morning moping. I promised I would do a photo session with her after I made breakfast for kids, and their lunches and dropped them off at school, she agreed and we did a paw promise.

Taken with the Canon EOS R at 100 ISO using the 24-to 105 f4 lens. The aperture was 4 hand held at 1/4 of second. The Painting in the background is by the famous artist and friend John Moore. Chaol was not happy with the shot and told me that Capella’s photos was more regal. So we are planning another shot soon.

Considering I was hand holding at 1/4 and her face is still sharp is pretty good. The lens has an image stabilizer to prevent shaking but for some reason the new Canon EOSR does not have a body stablelizer like it’s competitors Nikon, Sony, Lumix etc..I imagine Canon will be coming out with another update of their Mirrorless camera by the end of the year, probably a professional version that will have the stablizer in the body. Even still pretty good for hand holding the camera.

The other thing I noticed the EOSR does not have is a duel slot for two SD Cards, like its competitors, which I imagine it will down the road. Thus far I really like the functionality of the is camera. I like the LCD Screen the pulls out and you can rotate it 360. This is all new to me and I am exciting about all the different perspective I will be able to shoot my subjects without contorting my body. What really impresses me is how I can focus on the screen and push down on the screen to take the photos.

I am shooting in the all the modes for control, because I am a controlling kind of person when it comes to photography, I am not sure about the rest of like. I did notice their A+ mode which is amazing with focus, ISO, color balance etc…and combine that with silent shooting and you can go completely stealth…Street photographers would love this function…

Ok got get ready to teach my class at the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design (RMCAD) Please sign up for this blog…and share and tell your friends… Steven

Canon EOS R Arrived

Capella our 19 year old cat is my first subject with the Canon EOS R

It was a snowstorm, Fed-X was 3 hours late with the delivery of the Canon EOS R and RF 24-105 F4 L IS USM but what fun I had when it arrived…

I was off to the races and opened up the box. I am a Canon Professional Service member and asked to borrow the new Canon EOS R Mirrorless camera to try out. When I took the camera and lens out of the box I knew this was the future of the DSLR…I glanced at the instructions and just started shooting intuitively.

It was a disaster at first and I had to compose myself and go back to the basics, where are the controls. The first thing I fell in love with was touch screen focusing. All I had to do was touch the screen where I wanted to focus and BAM!!!! it’s in focus. Then I tried manual and stumbled to find the aperture and shutter controls and BAM!!! that was easy…I have only had it about an hour and now I have to run and pick up the kids,,,so I will get back to my comments about a full frame mirrorless camera later so stay tuned…

I will be using the camera this weekend to shoot some images for the book on lighting and hopefully I will be shooting the cover this Monday …I have the perfect model and a great location..but in the world of photography until it happens it doesn’t exist…

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me!

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton


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