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 teaching classes at College of the Canyons in video production for professional photographers and photography students. I give workshops, seminars and lectures on short form video production at colleges, organizations and conferences around the world.

Litepanel Triflip 8 in 1 Saves the Day

Posted: May 7th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Litepanels | Tags: , , | No Comments »

As a commercial photographer and photo instructor I love photography equipment that is versatile.  All sorts of one off difficult situations come up and I simply don’t have a grip truck following me around with every kind of equipment.  So, instead I look for mutli-use tools the solve many of my photography problems with one tool.  The Litepanel TriFlip 8 in 1 is one of those tools.  It’s a diffuser, soft and hard reflector in white, silver and gold plus a black subtractive surface as well.

What saved me this time was the black subtractive surface.  Usually, I use it to subtract light from a subject or as a flag to block the light from hitting a subject.  This time I used it behind the camera to eliminate reflections on a glossy surface.  I needed a copy of a billboard I did and had a tearsheet too big for the scanner.  Since it was laminated, it reflected everything behind the camera.  Simply solution was to put the black TriFlip behind the camera and setting the camera to delayed release so my hand and face were out of the way.  The Triflip, camera and Manfrotto tripod were all black so no reflections there.  A difficult situation solved quickly and effectively with the Litepanel 8 in 1 TriFlip multi-use tool.  For another multi use tools I love see my blog entry on the Photo-Movie head by Manfrotto.

Litepanel triflip reflector

Litepanel Triflip 8:1

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DV Expo Pasadena Bold, Fresh Ideas

Posted: September 21st, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: AJA, Education, Litepanels, Panasonic, SmartSound, video production, Zeiss | No Comments »

Being a advertising photographer and videographer in Los Angeles, California, the DV Expo 11 from Sept. 20-22 in Pasadena is three days of new information about digital video following their log line of “Bold, Fresh Ideas to Inspire and Excite is a natural to attend.

Tuesday was a day of conference training where I was lucky enough to sit in on some of Diana Weynand’s Final Cut Pro X training.  I enjoyed the methods Diana used in explaining the intricacies of the paradigm change in the Final Cut Pro editing software.  She had several assistants that helped attendees follow Diana when they needed help which kept the class moving ahead while not leaving anyone behind.  A following blog post will discuss my impressions of Final Cut Pro X for professional  advertising and editorial photographers getting into video.

Wednesday was another day of training and the opening of the Expo exhibit.  I sat in on the Weynand training of Premiere Pro with another trainer.  Since Premiere Pro is very much like earlier versions of Final Cut Pro following the training was easy but exposed me to Adobe’s tools placement and short cuts. It might be a natural fit for the advertising and editorial photographers already familiar with other Adobe software.  Watch for a posting on my impressions of Premiere coming soon.  At noon the exhibit opened so during lunch and the breaks I got the opportunity to see the latest in gear.  Some of my favorite exhibits were there AJA, Carl Zeiss, Litepanels, Marshall Electronics, Panasonic, and SmartSound software.

Even if you don’t go to any of the conference training it is well worth the time to see the gear in the exhibits and attend the free hour-long sessions taking place around the exhibit floor.  You get to talk with manufacturer’s reps that really know their equipment and see the latest they have to offer plus sometimes even a peek into the future.   The hour long free sessions cover a wide variety of DV related topic and you might be amazed at how much many of these speakers fit into an hour.  On Thursday there is a free session at noon by Jan Livingston on the Panasonic AG-AF100 that will give you a detailed understanding of the features of the popular new camera.

For more information on attending go to www.dv.com.  They also publish some outstanding online and printed magazines covering digital video.

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Secrets of Video for Photographers in Portland

Posted: May 27th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Apple, Beachtek, Chimera, Education, Final Cut Studio, G-Technology, Hoodman, Indislider, K-tek, Litepanels, Manfrotto, Panasonic, Red Giant Software, Redrock Micro, Sennheiser, SmartSound, video production, Zeiss | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Videos by photographers are more important than ever in today’s environment.  Discover what today’s Art Directors, Editors and Art Buyers are saying about video by photographers. Become informed about the ways you can use video to promote yourself and where you can place your videos to be seen. Hear what advertising and editorial photographers already shooting video are saying. Find out if short form or long form is right for you and your clients and you can use your present still photography in video.

Come join Lee White, professional photographer/videographer and college instructor as he guides you through the tools and techniques needed to help you make video without pulling your hair out.  How to handle the “creative call” and put together a “treatment”.  Avoid the common mistakes that ruin most novice videography.  Learn what camera settings on your HDSLR for video mean and how best to set your camera for different situations.  Find out how to do good audio recordings. See what video gear can help you make better videos.  Find out what is involved with editing your video, adding music and getting it out.

Whether you are a beginning, advanced or professional photographer, you can advance your visual storytelling with video in exciting new ways. You can turn your pictures into moving pictures.  Don’t miss this opportunity to hit the ground running in your adventure into video.
Smartsound will be providing free royalty free music and soundtrack software for every attendee.

Friday night DOOR PRIZE: G-Technology G-Drive mini 7200rpm harddrive – perfect for editing video.

Lecture When: Friday, June 10, 2011
Time: 7:00pm – 9:00pm, doors open at 6:30pm
Where: Newspace Center for Photography
1632 S.E. 10th Avenue, Portland, OR 97214

Workshop When: Saturday, June 11, 2011
Time: 9:00am – 5:00pm
Where: Andy Batt’s Studio
2021 SE 11th Ave, Portland, OR 97214

For more info and to register go to: http://www.prophotosupply.com/p-events.htm

Hosted by Pro Photo  Supply and ASMP  Sponsored by Chimera, Manfrotto, Panasonic, Apple, Zeiss, Beachtek,  Smartsound, Sennheiser, Hoodman, Indisystems, Manhattan LCD, G-technology, AJA, Red Giant Software, Anton/Bauer, Logicboard,  K-Tek and Casio.

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Secrets of Video Production for Photographers – The Next Step

Posted: January 27th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Agencyaccess, Apple, Beachtek, Chimera, Final Cut Studio, Hoodman, Indislider, K-tek, LaCie, Lighting, Litepanels, Manfrotto, Panasonic, Rawworks, Redrock Micro, Sennheiser, SmartSound, video production, Zeiss | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

The new workshops are here! All of you that were nice enough to pester me about doing more can relax. Hopefully, there will be one near you. Once again, I’m kicking off the series in LA. This year they are on February 24 and 26 at the famous Fairbanks Studio with a flurry of events to follow.

Taking the step from stills to video can be a challenging one. You will have to learn how to deal with motion and sound, tell the visual story in a different way. There is new equipment to master. Post-production can be much more involved and time consuming. The explosion of interest in video both by clients and photographers in the last couple of years has opened new creative avenues for photographers. More photographers are being asked to create video content so are facing new challenges in estimating, production and post-production. Come and learn about the latest tools and techniques needed to create video. Learn how to better estimate the time and costs involved and how you need to approach video differently than stills while using your photographic talents to your advantage.

Note: Workshop info and date below evening event

Thursday Evening Event – Thursday Feb 24

At the famous Warner Studio now called “The Lot” in West Hollywood
7-9 pm doors open at 6:30 pm parking at
1006 North Poinsettia Place, West Hollywood, CA 90046

Hosted by Hollywood-DI

Lee White’s evening presentation including videos will go over the steps photographers need to know in creating video without tearing their hair out.

During the evening Lee will discuss:

– How photographers can get get new clients
– The latest in tools that make video production easier
– The all important planning stage and what new concepts and costs photographers need to think about
– The importance of post production
– HDSLR vs Camcorder in video production
– How photographers can apply their present skills to video

The latest equipment and software by Apple, Manfrotto, Panasonic, Zeiss, Redrock Micro, SmartSound, Sennheiser, Beachtek and Chimera among others will be at the event for photographers to see.

Registering for Thursday night February 24 event

Parking is free, please go to www.tiny.cc/LAevening for directions.

How much: APA/ASMP MEMBERS are $15 all others $25 *Please put membership number in special instructions to seller and a discount refund will be given at the workshop as the APA/ASMP member enters.

Questions call 818.399.3540 or email lee@leewhitephotography.com

Saturday Workshop Saturday February 26

9 am- 5 pm at the famous Warner Studio now called “The Lot” in West Hollywood – Limited to 20 participants

Hosted by Hollywood-DI

Photography and video are coming together. In the last couple of years, the idea of photographers producing video has exploded and photographers now must gear up and learn the language of video. As advertisers and magazines turn to video on the web, cable and mobile devices to get out their message, there are more opportunities than ever for you to do video in tandem with your photography to capture new clients and sell video services to existing clients.

Producing video creates fundamental changes to your workflow. It requires new tools and techniques to take the step from photography to video. You need to learn what the new technologies mean to you from a photographer’s point of view. This is why Lee White, a professional photographer and educator, has created an intensive all day workshop to help guide you into video. This hands on workshop will go in depth about each step of video production so you can start producing your own video and avoid some of the most dangerous pitfalls.

In the morning, Lee White will go over the fundamentals of video production and direct a plan for a shoot for the afternoon. In the afternoon, we will shoot, and work with a professional editor from Hollywood-DI to edit and color grade the video.

The Saturday subjects will include:

- The importance of workflow including recording formats and how to use them to your advantage
– Estimating and planning combined photography and video shoots with forms for estimating video production
– Understanding the lighting, filming and sound techniques needed for video
– Hands on experience with camera, lighting and sound equipment
– Editing and color grading demonstrations
– Common issues in directing talent and a chance to direct yourself
– The importance of post production

The latest equipment and software by Apple, Manfrotto, Panasonic, Zeiss, Redrock Micro, Sennheiser, SmartSound, Beachtek and Chimera will be demonstrated.

Registering for Saturday February 26 Workshop

You must register by Friday, February 25 because this is taking place on a movie lot and security needs your name to let you in!

Parking is free in the lot but we must have you registered so security can let you in. You will get directions upon registration.

How much: $149.95 APA/ASMP members will receive a 10% discount refund* on confirmation of valid membership.

Questions call 818.399.3540 or email lee@leewhitephoto.com

*Please put name and membership number in special instructions to seller and the discount refund will be given at the workshop as the APA/ASMP member enters.

©Lee White

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Don’t Shoot Like a Drunken Pirate

Posted: September 22nd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Education, Hoodman, Litepanels, Manfrotto, video production | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Anyone who has attended one of my Secrets of Video Production for Photographers knows I am a big advocate of sticks (tripod) like Manfrotto’s 536 MPRO with a fluid head such as the new Manfrotto HDV 504 for stability while shooting video. In the Pirate Faire, spreading sticks would have been an undue hazard to passersby in the crowded aisles but hand holding an HDSLR was not a good solution either. HDSLRs are simply not well designed for smooth handheld video. The usual jerky movements of handheld video draws attention to the camera and away from the story which unless it is a very highly dramatic reportage scene is counter-productive.

A shoulder rig from Redrock Micro was certainly a possibility and had I needed to move while shooting, it would have been the obvious solution. At an NAB presentation earlier this year, producers at National Geographic said camerapersons have requested being able to go back to shoulder mount cameras for some projects for the added stability. I came up with another solution because I was not going to need to chase the action but could plant myself in one spot and shoot.

The Manfrotto 3216 monopod worked perfectly. It was compact and easy to carry, quick to extend to any height I needed yet reduced the danger of tripping unaware passersby. I used a 3262QR ball head with quick release but had I needed to tilt up or down, I might have chosen a 501 fluid head. The Hoodman Cine Kit Pro made it easy to see the LCD when shooting in the bright sun.

Next time you’re tempted to handhold an HDSLR, try a monopod and see if your video looks less like it was shot by a drunken pirate.

Click to watch clip

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Talk Like a Pirate Day

Posted: September 19th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Hoodman, Litepanels, video production | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Talk Like a Pirate Day was the perfect day to go to the annual Pirate Faire and get in a little filming.  It was a bright sunny afternoon so seeing the LCD in liveview mode on the 7D was going to be a challenge.  I knew the action was going to be fast and unscripted so I had to be able to quickly get the framing and start shooting.

I decided this would be the perfect time to give the Hoodman Cine Kit Pro a workout.  In the past, I had simply held the Hoodman Loupe against the back of the camera with my hand but over time that becomes uncomfortable and awkward.  This time I wanted to be ready quickly and be able to shoot over a period of time which made the Cine Kit Pro a possible solution.

Initially the Cine Kit Pro might look like a little overkill, but once you understand the built-in features, it makes sense.  The loupe is held into place with the crane arm that slides and locks into the camera’s hot shoe.  It has a cold shoe on top for small lights like the Litepanels MicroPro.   This meant  I could walk around with the camera with the loupe in place ready to block out the sun for a clear view of the LCD .  The cool thing about the crane arm is it can swing up and to either side moving the loupe completely out the way of the viewfinder which is certainly easier than unhooking and resetting the loupe each time you need the viewfinder.

The crane is sturdy so with the normal amount of care, I easily spent the afternoon walking around ready to shoot.  When I came across a group of belly dancers that presented an interesting opportunity, all I had to do was frame and shoot.  With the Cine Kit Pro, the bright sun was no problem and I could focus and zoom instead of holding the loupe.

I was able to shoot a variety of clips of the dancers that will make up content for future blog entries on color balance and color matching in Final Cut Pro.

Hoodman Cine Kit Pro in action

Hoodman Cine Kit Pro Close Up

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Secrets at Brooks Institute of Photography

Posted: August 15th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Education, Final Cut Studio, Hoodman, Indislider, Litepanels, Manfrotto, Redrock Micro, SmartSound, video, video production, Zeiss | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Thursday August 12, Brooks Institute of Photography hosted my Secrets of Video Production on what turned out to be one of the first truly sunny summer days this season. Both students and a large number of faculty attended my presentation held in one of the school’s spacious studios.  The theme was tabletop so I was able to spotlight the Indisliderpro with the Manfrotto 501 fluid head supported on Manfrotto 536 MPRO legs. Everyone was impressed with how sturdy and versatile the IndisliderPro was both when mounted on the Manfrotto legs and when placed right on the tabletop.  Everyone appreciated the value of the False Color and Peaking filters of the Marshall’s monitor and enjoyed being able to see what was going on as some of the students tried out the techniques I presented.  RedRockMicro’s support system and microFollowFocus was instrumental in demonstrating techniques like rack focus.  The cucaloris effect of the Chimera Window Patterns added life to both the background of some setups and dappled light directly on one setup illustrating a push-in technique with the Indisliderpro.  The LEDs from Litepanels were used as both main sources and kickers along with both the Lastolite Triflip and Skylite light modifiers.

Indislider Pro

Everything was shot to a RAW 16GB CF card and down loaded through the high speed RAW Firewire card reader on to LaCie harddrives supporting editing in Final Cut Pro on MacBook Pro.  Along with demonstrating a number of tabletop shooting situations, I had enough time to show a very basic NLE workflow.  Student received a Sonicfire Pro disk and suggestions on the use of royalty-free music in their future video and still to video productions.

The students asked lots of questions and quite a few got a chance to try the equipment for themselves in actual shooting situations.

Below is the tabletop wine video we did in the workshop.

Below is the tabletop push-in we did in the workshop.

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Chimera Window Patterns Adds Life to Backgrounds

Posted: July 6th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Lighting, Litepanels | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

I like to sometimes use a light pattern (cucalorus or cookie) to add a little life to a solid background or imitate a natural light pattern.  The great thing about cookies are you have a controllable constant pattern that can be anywhere from a sharp to a very soft pattern.   I tend to like a softer pattern when projecting onto a solid background and a sharper pattern on a subject or busy background.  You can see the soft pattern I used behind Katie-Britt Greenway, Miss South Miami Beach, in the image below and the video clip.

Katie-Britt Breenway with Chimera Window Pattern projected on background

Chimera has a new window pattern system that makes having a small, versatile and portable set of cookie patterns available to you on location or in the studio.  Like the entire Chimera, line the window pattern system is sturdy and well thought out. This was evident from the moment I opened the box and found the kit comes in a heavy-duty long zippered bag.

One of the problems of the traditional cookie is that it is usually a full size 48 X 48 or larger pattern made out of wood. This makes it hard to take it with you.  Another problem is that even if you do have that kind of space, you are still limited to one pattern unless you have a grip truck with room for multiple 48 x 48 boards.

Chimera Window Pattern projected on background. Photo by mitchell@mitchellkearney.com

Chimera has gotten around that by starting with a collapsible metal frame with a very smart pin system that works with standard grip head to hold it securely and prevent the frame from twisting.  Then there is a black matte to control light spill that fits to the frame with elastic at each corner and is flexible so it rolls up.  The patterns then attach by Velcro to fill the center open square.  The patterns are black and white designs on what looks like a litho film.  One of the beauties of this is that you have a choice of number patterns with the same frame and matte.  If you don’t like one pattern, in seconds you can have a different one installed.  Since there are Velcro tabs on both sizes of the matte, you can combine two patterns.  Note in the image showing the pattern a second pattern is hanging from the Velcro ready to be put in place instantly.

Terry of Chimera told me of a way he uses the system where he attaches the frame to a c-stand and then an arm to the c-stand to hold a light in an open-faced Chimera softbox. This allows for easy movement of the complete light/pattern system together and even more control of light spill.

Chimera Window Pattern in Foreground with Lee White Shooting Video. Photo by mitchell@mitchellkearney.com

Depending on your needs, the frame/matte combinations come in three sizes 22X22, 42X42 and 48X48.  For more info go to www.chimeralighting.com

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Charlotte Gets Secrets of Video Production for Photographers

Posted: June 9th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Agencyaccess, Apple, Beachtek, Education, Hoodman, K-tek, Litepanels, Manfrotto, Panasonic, Rawworks, Redrock Micro, Sennheiser, SmartSound, video, Zeiss | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Secrets of Video Production for Photographers is coming to Charlotte on June 18 and 19. I’m looking forward to my first visit to what promises to be a charming city.

Friday night is going to be the APA evening presentation from 6:00pm to 9:00pm at Paradox Film & digital where I give a basic outline of the process of video production. I do this keeping in mind video is an additional component to a still production. I will discuss the techniques and tools needed to do video production. See http://charlotte.apanational.com for more details.

Saturday’s workshop is always fun and informative as I have more time to really get into video production. In the morning, we look at the basics from a different point of view and then build on those basics including when to call in a post house like Rawworks to help. In the early afternoon we do some lighting and camera techniques followed by a short commercial shoot with the latest equipment from Manfrotto, Panasonic, Ziess, Marshall Electronics, Redrock Micro, Beachtek, Sennhieser, K-Tek, Hoodman, and LaCie. I then take that video into Final Cut Studio, edit it and output it for various distribution methods. The day gives anyone interested in video production a good outline to follow in video productions. See www.tiny.cc/june18 for more details.

Video production is changing by the day and can be confusing to photographers just getting into motion. Having a working understanding of the overall picture, helps give the photographer getting into video production an understanding of how to judge what equipment and software to use.

Christopher Lozano www.tlsHollywood.com did this time lapse click (MOVIE) of the LA evening presentation.

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Chicago Welcomes Secrets of Video Production

Posted: April 20th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Apple, Education, Litepanels, Panasonic, Rawworks, Redrock Micro, Sennheiser, SmartSound, video, video production, Zeiss | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Chicago was surprising.  As with the other cities, I had no doubt that the photography professionals attending would be welcoming but I had not expected the warmth they extended to me.  I did both my Secrets of Video Production for photographers evening presentation and Saturday workshop at Callie Lipkin’s very spacious studio.  Callie and her husband/studio manager Robert were great hosts and they have a great space that is also a rental, so if you are in need of a studio in Chicago, give them a call 773.853.2339.  APA’s Midwest director Megan was indispensible in getting things set up for my events.

Everyone was intent on learning about video production as this is a no nonsense group of professionals that see video production is the next stage of the now ever-changing landscape of professional image making.  They understand the days of being a pure professional photographer are fast disappearing and they are willing to take the next step, which is into video production.  I had at least two photographers  who drove from Columbus Ohio to attend.  Two more came from Milwaukee and plan on sharing what they learned with the rest of the crew at QuadPhoto.  Dave Busch of QuadPhoto was nice enough to send me an email that included the following quote, “The combination of facts, experiences and practical ideas you presented will undoubtedly save a lot of money and pain for any photographer that is just beginning to investigate video production.  Plus the tools, toys, and software you shared were a real eye opener for those of us who have already started shooting HD video with DSLR.  Thanks again for making the event well worth our time and the 180 miles we drove to attend!”

It was exciting to share with them some of the new development I saw at NAB a few days earlier in Vegas, including the exciting developments of Litepanels new hybrid LED that flash sync’s.  Zeiss’s new cine compact prime series was well as introducing them to Zeiss’s HDSLR series lenses for Canon and Nikon cameras.  Sonicfire’s new Voxal vocal albums and, of course, Redrock Micro’s upcoming wireless follow focus were just a few of the items I told them about.

I have no doubt that the Chicago professionals I met will have little problem making some great short form video content.  I look forward to them sharing some of their video experiences with me.

Workshop image including Lastolite light modifiers, Manfrotto 536 MPRO tripod (sticks) ©Megan Erskine

Lee White preparing to shoot commercial with model Maya using Marshall Electronics V-LCD70P-HDMI, Redrock Micro eyeSpy, Beachtech audio adapter DXA-5D ©callielipkin

Lee white talking about framing which is illustrated in the Marshall Electronics V-LCD70P-HDMI ©Megan Erskine

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