I don't usually bring home souvenirs from my travels... in my mind my photos are the memory jog of the times we had. (Besides, after awhile your house gets just too cluttered.) But I made a small exception with my trip to the Soviet Union back in 1988, to document a cultural exchange between Soviet and American High Schools Students. (You can see my work on that project here.)
This Russian Pepsi bottle is symbolic of that era - back then, the Soviet Union's Ruble was a closed currency; it couldn't be traded in the open market and therefore large Western companies couldn't sell their goods to this large market. The mangers at Pepsi had a work-around for that - they would barter Pepsi Cola for Russian Vodka, and then sell it abroad. Brilliant business practice. I've kept that bottle all these years, and decided to memorialize it with a proper photo for the archives.
But photographing clear objects is hard. You can't just take a picture of it with a flash and have it come out looking impressive. You need to have the glass refract some light in order for the shape of the bottle to be visible, yet otherwise perfectly clear.
To make this shot I used one wireless flash, a white wall, and a black book. It works because of a technique I described 11 years ago in my blog (have I been blogging for that long?) You can read it here.
The unassuming setup looked like this:
|One wireless flash, a white wall, and a black book.
|Further proof that you don't necessarily need line-of-sight in order for optical Wireless Flash to work.
|I also had to play around with the light placement to get the bottom of the bottle to show. That was blended in via Photoshop as well.
The seminar schedule for 2020 is looking pretty full. Here's where we'll be:
Indio, California Jan 11-12, 2020: Learn More and Sign Up!
Seattle / Tacoma, Washington – March 14-15, 2020 Learn More and Sign Up!
Portland, Oregon – March 21-22, 2020. Learn More and Sign Up!
Kansas City, MO – May 23-24, 2020 Learn More and Sign Up!
St. Louis, MO May 30-31, 2020: Learn More and Sign Up!
New Zealand November 7-8, 2020 (Email me to be put on the waiting list)
Kiawah Island, South Carolina Spring, 2021: (Email me to be put on the waiting list)
Nice, France Fall, 2021 (Email me to be put on the waiting list)
A note for those considering the Kansas City seminar - for reasons I won't go into, it is being scheduled for Memorial Day weekend. Some people use this weekend to travel. Would this allow or deter people from attending? I want to hear from YOU! Email me at Gary at Friedman Archives dot com.
Can't make any of these? For the month of December the "home study course" version of the seminar is now on sale! Use coupon code secretsrevealed to get 10% off! Makes a great gift. Learn the secrets of great photography here!
Best of the Blog 3 - FREE with 1-year subscription to Cameracraft magazine!
|(Cool cover shot, eh?)
In the Pipeline
Sony A7R IV ebook - .epub and .azw3 versions are now available, as is the printed edition.
The Spanish edition of the A7R IV book is being translated now.
Sony RX-10 IV (the world's most underloved camera) update covering new features of Firmware v2
Fujifilm X-Pro3 by Tony Phillips is being worked on now. Let me know if you'd like to be put on the waiting list.
Books on the Sony A9 II, A6600, and A6100 are all in the pipeline. Email for waiting list.
Next Time in Cameracraft
I profile David Crewe, head contributor at SLRLounge.com and official photographer for many Comic-Cons throughout the U.S.
Four years ago I took this composite image of the grandkids, and only now have I gotten (that's a word!) around to making an enlargement for the office. This kind of silhouette portraiture makes for great family heirlooms, and I explain how you can do it too in this blog post.
Until next time,
Yours Truly, Gary Friedman