Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Impossible Project - A Few Before and After

The Family is back from Dallas where we enjoyed an early Christmas with Mark's family.  Bodie met all his cousins and we loved the time off to enjoy our family.  I'm still unpacking and didn't have much time to take out the Polaroid SX-70 for some family photos due to Bodie's illness - but that's a whole long story.  Suffice to say, he was able to join the family for Christmas dinner and gifts and we all made it back in one piece!  

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

the impossible project engagement photo question

Back for more? Awesome!

I pulled out my favorite Polaroid SX-70 for R&D's engagement shoot at Descanso Gardens and took a moment while we were in a dense forest like area to capture the sun gently highlighting Rebecca's face.  The Impossible Project film is very light and temperature sensitive and the film I was using, The Impossible Project's SX-70 Colorshade can be tricky. It was a cool day approximately 70 degrees F with bright sun. I have started a habit of taking the photo and immediately placing it under my arm to keep it warm for 30-45 seconds before putting it in my back pocket to continue developing. I have more testing to do but I do believe I could have just flipped it over onto my leg, held it there for 40 seconds and then put it into my pocket thus keeping it at a lower temperature which would have kept it from the high contrast (dark darks, light lights).


To see the difference in using instant film vs. digital, here is a photo taken one minute earlier with my Canon 5D


I've also included the version I ran thru Photoshop adding contrast and sharpening slightly which looks good on the web but would lack the vintage feel of the real thing if I printed for show.

polaroid sx 70 ps 04

More SX-70 love coming soon because I am loving it and want to share more!

My question to you is which one do you like best?

Friday, December 9, 2011

polaroid, the impossible project

polaroid06 by atlasandi
polaroid06, a photo by atlasandi on Flickr.
I've been experimenting with Impossible Project black and white film with my Polaroid 600 instant camera.  Lots more fun coming up as I scan in my new photos. Bodie was just running around - I'm needing a bit more contrast - perhaps throwing the film under my arm will bring out more contrast - more experimentation needed. Stay tuned!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Descanso Gardens Engagement - Fall Photos

The Where:
Descanso Gardens in La Cañada Flintridge, California is a beautiful wedding locale and a great for engagement photos too! Thanks to the perfect SoCal friend Rebecca's Southern charm and of course her handsome fiancé, Devon we had a great time and got some really fab photos!

The How: Photographic Experimentation 
I'm breaking the posts up into a couple of days/weeks because I experimented with different camera formats.  In this post all the photos are taken using my Canon 5D and processing it through Adobe Lightroom.  Future posts will have photos taken with my polaroid camera and a toy camera with real film!  I'm hoping by breaking it up you will see that there is a difference (no judgements!) between the different technologies.

The Who: Rebecca

Rebecca and I have been working together just under a year. We are the calm in the eye of the storm but I must say - she is calmer than I could ever be!  She has this quiet demeanor that hides a will of steel. She's polished, smart - I mean really smart - has an amazingly photographic smile and an outstanding sense of humor. Rebecca is a throw-back to a time that was more civilized but she's perfectly grounded in today.


Devon is from the area and grew up going to the Descanso Gardens so they were a natural choice of location.  As a child his parents had problems keeping him in their sites during their visits and as he tells it, once the family made their way past the entrance he would take off running to explore and his parents would spend the day searching for him.  Hours later he would come running through the trees and pop up in front of them!  Parents - not amused. Devon - enchanted!


The Challenge: Working with Film
I took a few photos with the Diana Mini, Kodak Instamatic x-15 and my newly purchased fab find - my Polaroid SX-70! I'm really excited to introduce vintage film cameras into my photographer "tool kit" as a compliment to the digital photography work I do.  Working with Rebecca and Devon was a great opportunity to experiment with just a few of the different cameras I own but I think the Polaroids were the biggest hit of the day!

The Digital Darkroom: Adobe Lightroom 3
All photos for this post were edited with Totally Rad Actions Lightroom Presets.   TRA has made processing my digi photos easy and quick and with so many different presets available I find that their bundles include everything I need.


descanso gardens engagement

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

5 Tips to Great Kids Photos for the Holidays

Great kids photos are not easy! Taking great holiday photos of our kids while cooking, wrapping gifts and entertaining friends and family may seem overwhelming but with these 5 tips you won't give in to the chaos and not take out your camera. Everyone else can use their camera phones but I beg you not to rely on the camera phone when taking photos of your family and sharing them (either via internet or prints) has never been easier and more fun.
Let's start with the camera you have and some easy tips on how to improve your photos now.

  • Tip 1 - capture a moment, no posing!
The holidays are a great time to take photos in your own home. You can do this in front of your Christmas tree, at the dinner table or for that matter on the couch! These are places where your family are interacting with each other, building memories and laying the foundation for fabulous photos - so sneak in - tell them to ignore you (for now) and start shooting. Look about what's behind them, do you want it in your photo? No? then zoom in and get close and focus on the eyes. If you would like to include the background then take a step back, look at the picture you are going to take - wait for that special'll feel it...and take your photo.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

How to Take Great Photos of your Kids

Photos of your children are priceless. Halloween photos of your kids dressed up in their costume are forever remembered and enjoyed! How to take great photos of your kids as they grow up is as easy as keeping your camera readily available. Be it an iPhone or polaroid camera (yes - they do still exist and the Impossible Project has film!) or digital camera it's about getting the picture. bee close up Part of what makes a great a photo of your child is getting in close and really seeing their expression - as seen above. That close up shot is only one shot of a set that tells the story of Bodie's Halloween. We also put him in front of the fireplace and made sure to get a full photo of his bee costume, I used my Canon 5D and my 430 flash. The light is a bit hard and it's not the best photo of the bunch but we wanted to get out and get trick or treating so I had only a couple of minutes! Halloween Kids photography In the end, my favorite photo was taken by an iPhone and was not posed at all. Bodie was running through the house and we caught him in our den. I added the photo to adobe lightroom and added some filters and tada - a cute photo of a Bee! I will end up cropping it (to get rid of the misc. clutter in the backround) and using it on my Holiday 2012 Calendar for our family.
Halloween iPhoto Taking great photos of your kids doesn't need to be difficult - it's all about capturing the memory.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


Meet Boden Russell Griggs, born October 2010. The months have flown by and life has moved forward at an amazing rate. Daily I am amazed at how fortunate I am, how life is so incredible and how much I am in love.