Before we left his studio, Cliff encouraged each of us to provide the models with a few of our images for their portfolios. I thought I'd go a step further and give the models I worked with their very own blog post - a little something for their "as seen in" tear sheets. I'll begin this little project with Rachel Johnston. You'll understand why after I tell you about my cousin Jessica.
My cousin Keith's wife, Sandy, used to be a model back in the day before they started their family. When their daughter Jessica was born, I often wondered if she would someday follow in her mother's footsteps. While she certainly could have, Jessica chose a career in college athletics instead. Jess was an all-star volleyball, soccer, and basketball player - even making the local sports papers on occasion.
Jess may never have modeled, but working with Rachel gave me a little taste of what that might have been like. Jess and Rachel not only look alike (in my opinion), but they are also very similar in personality. They both have the same fun, outgoing, laid-back (but driven) demeanor. Even their voices are similar. All day long while I was working with Rachel I was reminded of my beautiful cousin, Jessica. Miss you, girl!
It was great working with you, Rachel. And, Jess, it's never to late to begin your own modeling career...
Meet the stunning, Rachel Johnston!
The close-ups you see here are not done in Cliff's style. These are my own. When I saw this dramatic light on Rachel's face I just had to sneak in one or two shots on the sly. I don't find this light often, and when I do I rarely pass up the opportunity to grab the shot. I adore this light!
You may recognize Rachel from this season's Amazing Race on CBS. She and her friend (and beach-volleyball partner), Katie, competed this season for the chance to travel the world and experience a thrilling adventure together. If you missed Rachel and Katie in action, you can view their cast interview here and even watch some of the back episodes. Unfortunately, Katie and Rachel didn't win the competition, but what a fun experience to share with their grandchildren someday!
Rachel has worked with Cliff modeling for his bootcamps in the past. She was very professional and a dream to photograph. What you see here is pretty much Rachel. There was very little retouching needed - if any at all - to any of these images. Truly...a photographer's dream come true!
Rachel was known for her dramatic hairstyles. I loved her pink flower hair accessory against the yellow foilage. Her hairdresser did an awesome job on her "ribbon" hairdo the following day. This is just one more perk to hiring professional models. Their hair and makeup are usually always flawless - cutting our work flow in half.
One of the wonderful benefits to attending these conferences is the ability to see other photographers at work. I wish I could remember which photographer it was that set up that last dramatic image above, but I saw the light as well and loved what he was doing with it. I grabbed the shot, but don't take any credit for the creative set-up. This is yet another of my favorite uses of light.
***Thanks to my new friend Tom, I now know who is responsible for setting up that last shot. William, you are the man! For someone who just started in photography, you have an amazingly creative eye! Thanks to you and Tom for getting this shot set up so I could grab one for myself. Don't forget, William, you have one month...then I'm going to check back with you for some accountability!
This next shot utilized off-camera flash to duplicate the rim-light you see in many of our outdoor shots. A special thanks to Claudia for manning the speedlite! I had fun working with you, Andi, Sheron, and William that day! You guys are awesome, and I look forward to keeping up with you! We'll have to do another workshop soon.
I love this last shot in Black and White. This was shot without flash at ISO 3200. Not bad! So grateful we had the opportunity to shoot at this location!
Thanks for being so terrific, Rachel! It was a pleasure working with you. I wish you much success in your future endeavors.