I love photographing in downtown Salt Lake City. There are a number of locations that work great and my favorite is Exchange Place and the surrounding area. There is graffiti, golden doors, brick, parking structures, and more.
Xander needed some updated headshots for his job… everyone should have current headshots, btw. And while we were photographing those images we did a few couple shots with his partner Jake. They did not want “engagement” photos though. If they do get engaged hopefully I’ll have the chance to photograph those… but now I am blogging out loud and probably shouldn’t write this. Oops.
We started with them in amazing outfits. This look like they should be on the cover of GQ or even on Pinterest for Men’s Fashion. Once we got the professional shots they changed outfits. Sometimes you can get away with guerrilla wardrobe changes. It is a lot easier for men that is true. One day I might invest in a one-person standup tent so people can change without prying eyes.
In the one block radius there are several samples of graffiti. We walked around the block looking for great light and some fun backgrounds. I do bring my portable lighting kit to make people look awesome. In this case I had two lights going. Shooting in the evening means we will have better light and we won’t be in the way of businesses or other people. After 7pm the streets are a bit quiet.
And we were lucky to get some awesome sunlight behind the subject. It isn’t as cool as Manhattanhenge (google it) but it really made for some awesome portraits.
Urban portraits/downtown portraits benefit from a lot of texture. Brick, steel, and glass can be found all over. We try and stick to public property and are mobile enough if we need to move out of the way of security. Once in a while you get an overzealous security guard. That wasn’t a problem tonight. I’m sure in larger cities that can be a problem.
I have a magic lens that I should use more often. It makes the background really blurry and ethereal. And people really pop out from the environment. I’ll show people photos from the lens and they will constantly say “wow!” Or they will say “that’s not bad.” Which doesn’t sound as cool
A lot of times the downtown photo shoots turn into a mini-photowalk. I’m hunting for cool backgrounds but also following the light. The light will often paint cool textures. The sunset was painting golden light and shadows on a parking structure.