Old Album Covers Inspire New Portraits

joshua huston, josh houston, portrait, on location, on assignment, portfolio, editorial photography, magazine, musician, haji basim, alley, black-and-white, freelance, seattle

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I just shot this image of my friend, Haji Basim. Haji, is a local Seattle musician originally from Atlanta, Georgia. A few weeks ago Haji pulled out an acoustic guitar, sat on the trunk of his car, and started playing one of his songs for me. It was an amazing experience, one that I will never forget. As soon as I heard Haji start playing I knew that I wanted to photograph him and how.

As a kid, my first inspiration to photography was my grandfathers old album covers. For this photo I wanted to do something reminiscent of those those old albums. I’m really happy with the results. I located the background for the photo in the U-District neighborhood of Seattle.  Haji is originally from Atlanta and even though this alley is located in the city of Seattle it looks very rural to me. I also wanted to pose him as if he were in movement, heading to somewhere and I think that reads in the photo too, at least I hope it does. Again, I’m really happy with the photo and Haji is too. He is planning on using it for self-promotion for his upcoming shows. I’m excited to add this to my website  I hope to make more portraits like this in the near future. More photos coming soon!

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“The Big White Square”

joshua huston, josh houston, the-big-white-square, personal work, headshot, on-location, portrait, editorial, strobe lighting, flash, green lake, seattle

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I’m excited to announce that I’ve started a new project called “The Big White Square”.

This project is all about me doing the things I love to do most in photography. Those things include creating beautiful light, creating intimate portraits, and meeting new people. The only rule I’ve given myself for this project is “The Big White Square” has to be in the background of every photo.

What is “The Big White Square”? “The Big White Square” is a reference to a four foot by four foot white diffuser (comprised of silk) which will be used as the background in all of the photos I will be shooting.  Plus, as a friend of mine pointed out, the name of the project also works as funny pun to describe myself (thanks Amy!).

I recently initiated the project at Green Lake Park in Seattle, where my Dad and I set up “The Big White Square” near the walking path and baseball fields on the southeast side of the park.  Things started slowly as, although everyone looked at us for the first 30 minutes and seemed interested in what we were doing, no one stopped to talk to us.  So, I finally started asking people if I could photograph them and I ended up with 6 “yeses”.  I found it interesting that every person who agreed to be photographed initially said, “Oh no, I’m not photogenic”, before subsequently asking for more information about the project.  Once I further explained the project, everyone eventually offered me 10 to 20 minutes of their time. I am really pleased with the initial results from the Green Lake effort which you can check out at joshuahuston.com.

I plan to set up “The Big White Square” throughout Seattle’s neighborhoods and parks and hopefully at events like the Fremont Solstice parade.  So, if you have any suggestions as to where I should try setting up “The Big White Square”, please send me an email to joshua@joshuahuston.com.   Also, please follow me and “The Big White Square” project on Instagram at jhustonphoto and on Twitter at @JHustonPhoto.

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