Summer is officially here! If you live in Arizona like myself, summer has felt like it arrived a while ago. That means capturing the early days of summer are in full swing. I love this time of year (yes, even in Arizona) because I have the opportunity to capture my kids. They are all school aged now so it makes it a little harder. Our summers consist of days around the pool eating watermelon and popsicles. These are my favorite days to document.
Last summer I started using colorful plastic straws to add more color to my images. They made my work FEEL like a summer day. We all want to relive those film days with color light leaks. This is a cheap inexpensive way to capture your summer in color. Next time you are at the grocery store, check out the plastic straws. I got ones that resembled rainbow colors but any bright colors straws will do. The bolder the colors the better!
I taped them together, laying them out on a flat surface in a straight line. That way it made it easier to hold them together while shooting. There is no particular order.. I added freelensing to my method of shooting but if you are just learning, you can simply try it without freelensing. Freelensing adds more of a light leak effect. I take my camera, hold it up to my face, then bend the ends of the straws around the rim of the lens. Make it to where the straws peek out to where you can see them slightly in the image when you look through the viewfinder. Take a few shots and see if you can see the colors in the frame. If you can’t try moving the straws further into the frame where just the color shows and not a dark shadow.
Note: If you are trying to freelens and use the straws. Hold the straws and a light lens (50 mm or lighter) in your right hand and the camera in your left. It’s a balancing act, but it can be done!
I received a GoPro Hero 5 Black for Christmas a few years ago from my husband. I initially thought I would use it on all my hiking adventures. I never thought I would fall in love with underwater photography like I have until last year. We bought a house with a pool, because you can’t live without one in Arizona. I always wanted to try underwater photography, but was hesitant to put my DSLR in the water.
The GoPro was the answer!
It’s cheap, lightweight and already waterproof. I never thought such a small camera could take such sharp, colorful images but it does and well. I love capturing my daughter showing off all her underwater tricks and jumps! There is also a dome you can purchase off Amazon for your GoPro that will create a way to see above and below the water line in one frame. The colors are so vivid and beautiful. Sometimes the skin tones can be a little tricky. Make sure to check out my class, The Art of Underwater Photography, in the Hello Storyteller library on how to create the perfect skin tones.
Have you ever looked at an image and thought, “this FEELS like summer?” Some images just have that vibe to them. You can create that vibe through storytelling. How can you convey this into a portrait? By adding bright colors or adding things that remind us of summer. When I see a spring photo, it has a ton of flowers and pastel colors. So when I see a summer image I think of bright colors, goggles, beach towels, swimsuits, big hats, floaties, etc. I like to get new things every year for the kids to play with in the pool. Creating your own summer story through images.
Capturing your summer days are a chance to get creative.
Make a BIG splash and don’t worry because your GoPro is waterproof!