In The Woods

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joshua huston, josh houston, portrait, on location, on assignment, portfolio, editorial photography, magazine, hunter, woods, freelance, seattleWho: Can you spot him? Click on the image and you’ll see that there’s a hunter in the bottom right corner. His name is Bobby and he’s an old friend of mine from high school. Recently we met up when I went back home to Kokomo, Indiana and I got this great portrait of him.

Why: Why not!?! Bobby and I met up recently when I was back home for the holidays and he showed me a section of woods that he owns and helps maintain for hunting. While walking around the woods talking and describing what we’ve been up to since we graduated from high school, Bobby started talking about his love for hunting. I’m not against hunting, but I know nothing about it. However, I was interested to hear about the section we were walking around in and how he goes about maintaining it for his hunting. As we were walking deeper into the woods, Bobby mentioned to me that during the previous summer a tornado had come through a part of the woods. His description of what the tornado had done to a large tree sounded very interesting to me. As we approached the tree, I immediately envisioned a possible portrait of Bobby next to it. I mentioned my idea to take a photograph of him and said that I wished there were more leaves on the trees so we could camouflage him. He told me that during this time of year he’d be hunting wild turkey and described how that might look. So we set a time and determined that even if the portrait didn’t come out well, at the very least it would provide a great opportunity to hangout more.

How: There was so much room between Bobby and I that I couldn’t shape the light much. Thankfully cloud coverage created a very soft and even light made my life a lot easier. I basically had Bobby setup where he normally would and then I used a wide-angle lens to show the surroundings. Which also include the tree that I mentioned earlier that was hit by a previous tornado. It’s amazing that the power of the tornado could bend such a large part of the tree like it did. And personally I think the angle of the tree really adds to the image. Anyways, I ended up using only one Alien Bee strobe for this. No light modifier on the head either. I just put the light as hi as I could and turned it all the way up so that I could fill in all of the shadows and create a bit of fake sunlight on what was an overcast and dull looking day.

Overall I’m really happy with this image. It was really cool to catch up with an old friend too. Especially because we were able to literally show each other what we’ve been up to! Oh, and I forgot to blog about this, but (10 days late) Happy New Year!

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