L’Oasis Floral Design at The American Museum of Natural History

L’Oasis Floral Design at The American Museum of Natural History

Documenting A Floral Masterpiece

It’s not every day that I get to visit New York City on the day the Pope Francis and United Nations are both in town. Lew Monty and I packed up and headed in by train. We gave ourselves PLENTY of time to get into Manhattan in order to get around any potential traffic tie-ups. Worst case scenario I wore running shoes if we had to walk 50 blocks.

Alas the subway trains were running smooth as butter and we arrived early. Our job was to document the setup and final look of the venue. It was a pleasure working in an environment with so many things going on at once. That’s the magic of the creative process. The chaos before the ultimate reward of looking at the finished product.

To see more of my photography work, please visit http://www.thatwerksphotography.com

Designer: L’Oasis Floral Design http://www.loasisfloraldesign.com
Assistant: Lew Monty
Venue: The American Museum of Natural History http://www.amnh.org

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

L'Oasis Floral Design at Museum of Natural History

 

 

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga in Princeton, New Jersey

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga in Princeton, New Jersey

In July 2012 I assisted Rita Rojas-Sullivan in shooting a wedding in Princeton, New Jersey. I started out at the hotel photographing the groomsmen. Fun bunch. Lots of joking and that made things easy. They were good sports about going out in the heat too!

The ceremony itself was at the Princeton Chapel. Gorgeous church. I made sure to get plenty of wide shots to showcase how enormous the building is. Since I was the second photographer, it gave me a chance to experiment with lenses I normally don’t use for more than a few shots. Namely my Rokinon 8mm.

The reception was held at the Prospect House. Fantastic live music all night long and a lovely wedding was enjoyed by all.

For additional photos of this wedding, please visit Rita’s blog.

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

The Wedding of Michelle and Chris Falanga (Christopher John Sztybel)

GIZMODO Shooting Challenge: Steal

GIZMODO Shooting Challenge: Steal

Bruce Springsteen "Born in the U.S.A." redux

"Born in the U.S.A." redux by Christopher John Sztybel

GIZMODO  ran a pretty cool “Shooting Challenge” called “Steal”. Recreate a well-known photograph. I love this sorta stuff! When the “Steal” contest was announced, I thought of a few pop culture photographs that have both a commercial value as well as artistic merit.

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Since this entry, results are in for the Shooting Challenge. Very happy with the results. Such cool submissions!)

The original composition I stole from was the “Born in the U.S.A.” album cover (photographed by Annie Leibovitz) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Born_in_the_U.S.A.

"Born in the U.S.A." original

"Born in the U.S.A." original by Annie Leibovitz

The artwork for “Born in the U.S.A.” has always stuck out in my mind. I am a huge fan of Annie Leibovitz. Especially her more simple compositions. The message behind the album title (and title track) should be noted as a remembrance of the men and women who have served the United States in both popular and unpopular wars. My dad served in the Vietnam War and I thought this would be a great iconic photograph to emulate.

Set design

  • One white t-shirt
  • One pair of blue jeans
  • One red baseball cap (Thanks for letting me borrow the hat, Vin!)
  • One large American flag
  • One male model

The American flag was clamped to a fence (You can get an idea of the setup by taking a look at the photo to the right.) Since my remote for the camera was dead, I had to get creative with focusing the lens. The The setup for my "Born in the U.S.A." photographtrash can in the backyard was placed approximately 2 feet in front of the fence. Then I focused on the trash can. Then I removed the trash can from the scene and replaced it with Ralph’s chew toy. A little rubber doughnut to be specific. The doughnut was my standing marker. After pressing the shutter, a 10 second timer would give me just enough time to get into position.

The project would have been a lot easier with another person helping me. Oh well!

Lighting setup

I did my best to replicate the lighting from Annie’s original photograph. I couldn’t find much detail on her original shoot, so I did my best to emulate her setup.

  • Sunrise
  • Canon 7D onboard flash
  • Canon 430EX
  • Canon 580EX II

Shooting information

  • Model: Canon EOS 7D
  • Exposure: 1/250 @ f5.0
  • Focal Length: 50mm
  • ISO Speed Rating: ISO 200
  • Lens: EF 50mm f/1.8 II

Post-processing

I made it a goal to strictly limit the post-processing techniques to those of a photographer back in the mid-1980s. Photoshop did not exist. Although I shot digitally, I used an extensive amount of dodge/burn techniques to emulate the methods of that era.

As always, please check out the rest of my photography