I'm an advertising photographer/videographer based in Los Angeles, California. My mission is to create striking advertising photography, corporate photography and editorial photography of people for major advertising agencies, fortune 500 corporations and major magazines. I shoot photography and video assignments throughout California including Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego as well as the rest of the world. As a photo educator I am happy to share my unique vision and methods. I'm currently also teaching classes at Santa Monica College in video production for professional photographers and photography students.
Posted: April 23rd, 2013 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: APA video contest, California advertising photographer, Cinevate, location photographer, Pegasus, video production | No Comments »
The prize for the Best Commercial/Promotional category in the APA 2nd Annual Short Video Contest is the Cinevate Elements Camera Slider Bundle.
The words I hear most often to describe the Pegasus dolly are versatility, creativity and fun. We all know that moving the camera gives a feeling of presence and higher production value. As a kit, it has what you need for many shooting solutions for the independent filmmaker.
The Elements Bundle is lightweight and easily handled by one person. The Pegasus is easy to set up either as a slider dolly or a tabletop dolly. The Pegasus dolly uses steel ball bearings that run smoothly along 15mm carbon rails making for a lightweight but sturdy slider. The design allows the unit to be inverted on the rails for overhead shots that can add a unique moving viewpoint to many subjects. Once you unhook the dolly from the track, it becomes a tabletop dolly that can perform both straight and curved dolly movements.
The kit includes an All Terrain foot system but can also be mounted using adapter plates using 1/4-20 and 3/8 (my favorite) threaded holes or 5/8 holes for lighting stands.
For more information please go to www.Cinevate.com
Posted: April 8th, 2013 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Redrock Micro, video, video production | Tags: APA national video contest, California advertising photographer, Redrock Micro, video production | No Comments »
The prize for the Rockin’t It People’s Choice category in the APA 2nd Annual Short Video Contest is the Redock Micro Crossover Kit. With The Crossover Kit, once again Redrock Micro has put together just what a photographer shooting video needs. As a professional photographer owning Lee White Photography, I have also shot video for over twenty years. I have found few things beat well thought-out professional equipment. Shooting video sometimes takes specialized equipment not usually in a photographer’s kit. The Crossover Kit provides just such equipment. I have used the various parts that make up this kit and found them indispensable at times. This is a great starter kit for those getting into video.
The Crossover Kit starts with a choice of base plates, either the DSLR Baseplate, microRRS or lowBase which holds the 15mm support rods. 15mm rods are industry standard so you will be building a very adaptable set. The final piece of the kit is the microMatteBox which controls the glare and gives you two full-size rotating stages for most filtration plus fits virtually any size lens or camera. For more information, I suggest you go to http://store.redrockmicro.com.
To find out how to submit to the APA 2nd Annual Short Video Contest and to read the fine print, please go here: http://tinyurl.com/APAvideo. The contest is open to APA and all creative content creators.
Redrock Micro Crossover-Kit
Posted: November 15th, 2012 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: California advertising photographer, video production | No Comments »
As a advertising and editorial photographer that shoots both in the studio using strobes and on location using the sun I am covered in UV. What I mean is that both light sources emit large amounts of UV. Since, I have been a professional photographer for over thirty years, I started my career shooting film. It was popular and useful to use a UV filter when shooting film. Film is sensitive to UV, digital sensors are not. So the possible carry over of using a UV filter is needless in this age of digital photography. So the answer is Not To UV.
This hold true for shooting digital video as well as digital still photography.
Posted: April 15th, 2012 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Lighting, Manfrotto, video | Tags: California advertising photographer, color balance, Datacolor SpyderCube, exposure, Lastolite Ezybalance Califbration Card, Lee White Photography | No Comments »
As an advertising and editorial photographer in Los Angeles, I usually shoot in RAW so while I always do a white balance before I start shooting. It is basic best practices even if it is not really baked into the image file. It is even more important when one shoots video which has a baked in color balance. Unless you are shooting one of the 4:4:4 video cameras which records all of the color information in the image file you are interpolating down much of the color information to a small percentage of the original. You cannot be far off in your exposure or color balance without downgrading your image in post corrections.
Yet, so often I have to remind photographers who are starting to shoot video that right after getting the exposure setting to white balance the camera. I would say this is important all the time rather than relying on the presets even if you are shooting daylight or professional lights. Very seldom do you really shoot in direct sunlight so there can be a bias in the diffusion material or fill reflectors. Lights get old and change color plus any diffusion can again cause a color shift.
I always carry a 12 inch Lastolite EzyBlance Calibration Card with me. It folds down into a 7inch carry bag and flexes out to 12 inch with a neutral median grey side and neutral white reverse side. The median grey side allows for both setting exposure and white balance. This can be especially helpful to wedding shooters that have to contend with white gowns and black tuxedos under mixed light sources.
Lastolite EzBalance Calibration Card
Go to http://www.lastolite.com/ezybalance.php for more inforamtion.
Another handy device is the SyderCube. For RAW shooters you can use it alone to find your color balance. For video you can use it in tandem with the Lastolite EzyBlance Calibration Card to further refine your color balance. It has four areas for adjusting your color and exposure – white, median grey, black and black trap. Again, small enough to easy carry with you. Simple shoot the SyderCube and use the white and median grey sides with the eyedroppers and the black slider in Final Cut Pro to show a slight difference in the black and black trap. I’ll post a video using the SyderCube for corrections soon.
Go to http://spyder.datacolor.com/portfolio-view/spyder-cube/ for more information.
Posted: November 28th, 2011 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Education, Lee White Photography, Lighting | Tags: California advertising photographer, editorial photographer, location photographer, video production | No Comments »
As an editorial photographer based in Los Angeles, California my assignments have given me an opportunity to shoot all over the world. I have shot photographs and video in Europe, Africa, Asia, South America and above the arctic circle (I know it’s not a continent by it’s still very cool).
Any type of travel bring with it certain difficulties and far off lands bring the add problems of different electrical issues. There are different plugs, voltages and cycling. I have a fist full of plug adapters. I shoot my still photography with Balcar multi voltage strobes. And take special care when setting my shutter speed shooting video.
In the US, it is usually fine to shoot video under fluorescent lights with shutter speeds at 1/48 to 1/60 of a second to prevent flicker and that holds true for any 60 Hz country. In european countries and other places in the world that use 50 Hz AC power shooting video at 1/100 of a second usually solves the problem of fluorescent flicker.
Posted: November 6th, 2011 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Education, photo lighting | Tags: California advertising photographer, Lee White Photography, Los Angeles advertising photographer, Los Angeles photographer, photography educator | No Comments »
As an advertising and editorial photographer and videographer, much of my work consist of assignments where the subject is defined for me. I have the challenge of discovering the best way of illustrating the purpose of the photograph depending on the requirements of the client. It can be rewarding when that moment happens and you know you are on the right track.
It is totally different when there is no assignment or even a specific purpose for my photography. Each day I get up looking forward to the chance make an image. Note, I said “make an image” not just take a photograph. Anyone with a camera can take a photograph by just pushing the shutter, to me that is not making an image but just recording a scene.
I was recently listening to how Sam Abell talked about making his layered images and the discovery process he went through. It reminded me that it sometimes takes trial and error before setting on an image that you like. I think most photographers go through a similar process of sorting out how and what to use in making images.
This evening, just after sunset, as I strolled among a nearby beach, I found the tide was unusually low. I noticed it exposed the ocean floor that normally would be under several feet of water. There as a different texture to the sand and some interesting patterns. But, in the quickly fading light there was not quite enough drawing of the contours. Then, I saw the piece of seaweed in the first image which looked promising but again the light had faded a little to much. There was still enough side light to create interest but the values were now too close to really make a statement.
As I walked along, I noted shore birds wading near the shore with beautiful golden light reflecting off their white chest feathers. But, I was not prepared with a long enough lens to make anything worth while.
As I walked past the birds, I started to notice some chest feathers had come loose from those birds and were now sitting on some of those ocean bottom contours. I selected the ones I felt would make the most interesting images and quickly composed them in the fading light. See my final picks below.
Feather Sand #1
Feather on Sand #2
Feather on Sand #3
Feather on Sand #4
Feather on Sand #5
As you can see by the time I found the last feather, the light had almost faded to nothing.
Posted: October 31st, 2011 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Zeiss | Tags: California advertising photographer, california photographers, Carl Zeiss, commercial photographers, editorial photographer, Lee White Photography, Zeiss lens | No Comments »
As an advertising and editorial photographer / videographer in Los Angeles I’m always testing techniques. I heard that shooting in digital monchrome RAW actually gives a full color RAW that displays in monchrome in picture style. I never take anything on faith without testing first so I when into my backyard to take a few shots with the monochrome picture style to work with.
I was working with one of my favorite lenses the Zeiss Distagon 28mm f2 on an APS-C chip size digital camera giving me an effective 39mm lens. Zeiss also makes another great lens for both still and video which is the Zeiss Planar 50mm f1.4.
Zeiss Distagon 28 mm F2 ZE Lens
So, I’m shooting and I see a Monarch butterfly land on a branch about four feet above me. I have no way of getting closer and I always figure I would rather take the shot and delete it later then miss it. What a surprise when I took the image into the computer and looked at it. At first, I could barely see the butterfly but then I started to blow the image up. I was shocked when I settled on the final cropping and saw the sharpness of the Zeiss lens. The first shot is the full frame shot and then there is the same shot blown up and cropped.
Zeiss Distagon 28mm F2 Lens Full Frame Shot
Zeiss Distagon 28mm F2 Lens with Image Blown Up and Cropped
For more information on the complete line of Carl Zeiss DSLR lenses go to https://photo-shop.zeiss.com.
Posted: September 19th, 2011 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Seminars & Workshops, Workflow, video production | Tags: California advertising photographer, editorial photographer, Los Angeles advertising photographer, photography educator, video production | No Comments »
Make it big. As an advertising photographer in Los Angeles, I learn long ago clients love to see their product large in the photograph. Although creatively, in the past, this might not have served the purpose well, now it could be the best advice for much of how photography and video is seen. As more and more photography and video is seen on smaller and smaller screens the only way to really see it is to make the subject big.
My Secrets of Video for Photographers seminars and workshops take me across the nation. As I flew to Unique Photo in New Jersey to do my events, I had a chance to watch the latest Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Just a month before this I was in Kauai where they filmed much of the movie. While watching the movie on the tiny screen in the aircraft I could barely recognize the locations I was just at. If I had seen the movie on a 40 foot theater screen the impact of the locations might have been greater. As it was, I had to wait for the medium close-ups to close-ups to visually follow the story. I attribute my less than enthusiastic reaction to the movie to this size issue.
The reverse of this is true when I am watch the Wild China series by the BBC on my iphone. Most of the action is set in the close-ups with wide vistas used for presenting the overall environment. Admittedly, Wild China was produced to be seen on TV where Pirates was for the “big” screen which brings me back to thinking about where your images, be them photographs or video, are going to end up. When you are deciding how to shoot each shot consider how your shots are going to be seen, on a forty foot screen or a four inch screen.
Posted: August 29th, 2011 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Education, Manfrotto | Tags: advertising photographer, California advertising photographer, Lee White Photography, Showcase photo & video | No Comments »
As an advertising photographer videographer based in Los Angeles who goes on location, Showcase Photo Video in Atlanta is the kind of store I dream of finding. It is easy to find just off the I-85 in central Atlanta. As soon as you walk it shows they know photography and video. It is a bright and organized store that seemingly has everything right where it should be and I mean everything. The selection of gear is tremendous.
The staff working at Showcase are friendly and knowledgeable. They take the time to talk with you so they can make sure what you get fits your needs. They know about photography and video so can offer a selection of solutions for your needs. While setting up for my Secrets of Video for Photography events they hosted, we had a nice chat about the latest equipment I am showing including the amazing Manfrotto 050 photo/video fluid head that solves many of the problems with shooting photos and video on a tripod. They also were at my events last year at the APA Atlanta chapter on video for photographers to make sure they were up on the latest.
Showcase Photo Video also has the Showcase School which is dedicated to photo and video education. The school has a wide variety of classes from very basic to professional level. www.theshowcaseschool.com
Showcase Photo Video is a great resource for those working anywhere in the south eastern United States. They are at 2323 Cheshire Bridge Road, N.E., Atlanta, Georgia 30324. 800.886.1976 www.showcaseinc.com.
Posted: July 13th, 2011 | Author: Lee White | Filed under: Manfrotto, video production | Tags: California advertising photographer, Los Angeles advertising photographer, Manfrotto O55 Photo-Movie head w/Q5 quick release, people photographer, video production | No Comments »
With the Manfrotto 055 Photo-Movie head w/Q5 Quick Release, once again, Manfrotto is in the forefront of supplying innovative products that make working with shooting stills and video with a HDSLR easier.
Manfrotto 055 Photo-Movie head w/Q5 quick release
As a people photographer, I’m often faced with assignments that require both a vertical portrait of a subject for the cover or advertisement and traditional horizontal video clip. Up until the Manfrotto 055, no tripod head has allowed me to do both easily. The Manfrotto 055 quickly goes from vertical to horizontal with the added benefit of being able to shoot smooth vertical video moves for web use in the skyscraper format. In photo mode it acts like a ball head and in video mode like a fluid head. Just like the all in one still/video solution that HDSLRs provide us, the Manfrotto 055 is the all in one tripod head for still and video.