Harbor Style Magazine has allowed me to be on the cover again for the July 2012 issue. If you live in the Charlotte/Sarasota County area, you will see it at advertisers offices. The magazine is also distributed from Tampa to Naples and is at Publix, Sweet Bay and Barnes and Noble newsstands. Due to the age of these subjects, I won’t be posting any of the photos here. However, if you happen to be at one of the stores mentioned above, check out the magazine. You can also click here to go directly to their website.

The cover story is about the STEMsmart program. I visited North Port High School and LA Ainger Middle School to see what these students with the program were up to. First, I visited the high school and got to meet a couple of very talented students that were building robots from scratch. They put the robots through their paces and it was neat to see how a pile of parts, turned into a mechanical working device. Some other students were showing how they were working with software to compliment the robotics project.

The second part of the story was at the middle school. In this project, these kids are collecting empty prescription bottles and turning them into environmentally friendly benches. These benches have color in the plastic so they will never need painting or sealing. They are weather proof and need zero maintenance.

Photographing in these types of environments can be challenging, however I have come to love this type of photography. All of these photographs were completed with off camera flash, portable umbrellas and light stands. The beauty of this system is that it’s light and easy to work with.

Here is a diagram on how I created this cover photo for the magazine. I was out in the middle of a school yard with nothing special to work with and I had to make something out of nothing.

lighting diagram harbor style july 2012 stem smart program

As you can see from the lighting diagram, this is a two light set up. This particular set up works great with guys, athletic folks or anyone who benefits from some edgy lighting. The flash that’s in front of the subject is modified by a shoot thru umbrella. This creates soft and wrap around light. The flash that’s behind the subject is used as a rim or separation light. This is bare bulb so the light is harsh and edgy.

harbor style magazine july 2012 stem smart program

The total time setting up this shot was about five minutes. This is typical for this type of photography. I had to get this done and in the can so the student could make it on time to his next class. This is where you need to know your gear and how it works. Fumbling with buttons and menu items in a situation like this will kill the photographer.

If you are new to flash photography, welcome to the party. Don’t be worried about how things turn out at first. Just get comfortable working with your flash off camera and practice. Your photography will improve.

Until next time…

Keep Your Glass Clean



UPDATE: My wife and I went shopping this weekend at Publix. (This is a popular grocery store in the southeast) I checked the magazine rack and sure enough, it was out front. Armed with my iPhone, I took a quick photo. Here it is…

spencer pullen harbor style cover in publix

  1. I look forward to taking your class on flash photography! Great shot.

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