Lets Go Explore!

Mckenna photographed by Rodney Alan

Who needs a studio when the world can be your studio?

Its been a couple of years since I’ve formally shot in a studio.  A few years back when I would test with an agency my first inclination would be to shoot at the studio.  It would be a day of shooting seamless paper or plain white wall.  It was my go-to, my safe place.  Its what I knew and the results were always what I would expect.

Considering that I’m fairly close to the beach I hardly shot there or any outdoor location.  When the studio closed its doors that was my push to go out and explore.  If it wasn’t for the studio closing I would not of known of all the cool little nooks and crannies around me that are fun to shoot at.  Believe it or not it can get quite repetitive shooting on seamless and white walls.  Shooting outdoors added another element to my shoots.

These days I’m always looking around for something unique, whether its gorgeous light or a beautiful location.  As a beauty and fashion photographer its hard to shut off that side of my brain that seeks these things.  When out and about, if I stumble upon a location I’ll wonder how the light falls.  Sometimes I’ll check what the sun’s position is a specific time via an iPhone app, Sun Seeker.  If the place is interesting enough I may come back just to make sure it works for my needs.


So now that you have a little behind the scenes perspective and my thought process I thought it would be neat to talk about this test I had with McKenna.

A few months back I had a test coming up.  I wasn’t quite sure where to shoot.  I refereed to my trusty notebook of neat locations, but all of them required 2-3 hours of driving time.  Then it actually dawned on me that there is this spot that had some cool things and nice light.  I actually found this while meeting up with some friends for lunch.  When I got to the restaurant the parking situation was just horrible nothing to be found so I had to park a few blocks away.  To me those few blocks seemed like a mile but, during that “mile” walk to the restaurant I actually found a few spots that had some amazing light.

Mckenna photographed by Rodney Alan

Here’s a few pics from that test.  I was shooting some 35mm film with the Canon 1v and 50L combo.  However it was primarily the Sony A7R with my newly acquired Sony Zeiss 55 f/1.8 lens.  This was literally my first time using this lens so it took a few snaps to get used to it.  Not much to say about this particular lens other than its amazing!  If I had to chose one lens to be on the A7R it would definitely be this.  Then again there isn’t much to choose from considering the limited native lens available.

In any case, I’m going to start a new blog post series called “Behind the Shot.”  I’m going to pick one picture of mine and provide a little background on it.  The posts may contain some camera gear talk, some technical geek speak, some insight or thought process to getting that particular shot maybe even a cool story that goes along with the shot.

If there is a specific shot that I’ve taken that you wanted to know a little about be sure to comment below or send me an email.  Until then be on the look out for this new series “Behind the Shot.”

-Rodney Alan




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