Chasing Light and Butterflies With The Gingerbread Man

I am not a hand model, but since I am alone in the studio today I had to use my little pudgies to hold some product. Desperate times require desperate actions. The last shot of the day was an etched tea infuser for Padinox. Frankly, it is the type of thing that I could actually use in my place, as it seems less finicky than all of the teaballs and spoons I have. I decided to go a little spice route for the shoot and used a silk scarf bought by V. in Cambodia, some porcelain dragons I purchased in Kyoto and a patchwork from sari that I bought in India.

The blues all work together to set off the fruit tea I picked on my travels at Hediard in Paris last summer. It was shot with the Hasselblad 120mm Makro CFI lens, so that it would be clear but fill the whole frame. I have the hands of a camel driver, so maybe that works for this image. The first shot of the day, which follows below, was of two pepper grinders that I did the hand shots for last week. I learned, after coming back inside, that it is insane to try to shoot anything at noon in the summertime; the light is just too strong. I suppose that I could have used a polarizer or neutral density filter to take the light down, but I do not have one yet for the Hassleblad lenses.

I had the hardest time getting a decent exposure with the white and blacks due to the heavy sun. Since I only shoot in RAW, I was able to end up with a solid tweaked image, but it took some time to get it to that point. I was not the most popular guy on the patio deck to say the least; scruffy guy with camera taking pictures of some antipasto was a little out of place for sure.

I do not think I have ever tried to shoot a pour before, and it was a bit of a challenge by myself. It is a nice image, but I do appear in the reflection of the pot, so it will not be the one we send to print. By this time I was shooting with the Hasselblad 80mm CFE lens, and it gave me some more real estate to work with than the 120mm, but did not show the entire table as the 50mm did. For today’s shoots I really changed my colour palettes to rich, saturated colours; maybe I just needed some light, myself, but I think it might just be that the summer sun changes how colours translate to digital.

The best part of the day was eating my food presentations, although I found the day rather lonely as I am used to having V. and others here to share in the delectables. Regardless, the tomatoes were fresh, the St. Andre cheese was buttery, the salami peppery and it felt like summer. The teas brought a nice end to the day, too. As I finished the shoot, and was drinking some tea from an earthenware cup, the most beautiful yellow butterfly flew into the deck area. It was a moment for solace and a smile at the beauty of the delicate in our lives.



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