So we just wrapped up our 2016 Free Halloween Facebook Photo Event in the studio. This was our second year and we plan on continuing it each year. To make things simple, we have decided that it will routinely be the last Saturday of October every year from noon to 7 pm. And in cases like this year where Halloween lands on a day other than Saturday, we’ll reopen the studio again for a few hours on Halloween night as well. We really enjoy being able to do this each year. For one, doing free professional halloween pictures for people, but also for being able to help support the Friends of White County Animals by encouraging people to bring things for them such as food, litter, or even cash. And since they are the only local animal organization that takes care of cats, we also put the focus on donating items specifically for cats. Everyone else does dogs, and not cats, but we’re cat lovers and so really love being able to participate with this.
This really has been a lot of fun for us to do. We had decided a few months back that this year’s theme was going to be a creepy forest. I wasn’t sure how we were going to pull it off, but we did. Amanda and I gathered some half burned logs and branches from a burn pile from our hay guy. Then Amanda cut pieces of plywood and mounted them to the bottom of the bigger tree portions to make them stand. Then we layout out the smaller branches up against the bigger ones. Then one day while I was out photographing some houses, Amanda found a pile of wood chips down on the gravel part of Coal Bank Rd and filled the truck bed twice with them.
For me the biggest concern I had was how to light it so that I wouldn’t accidentally wash out the entire set with my main light, while still letting me get the effects of my gelled lights in the back. For the back lights I used two speed lights with blue gels on them and mounted them up high over each of the two back corners. Then for the main light I used a 12×12 inch soft box on my Quantum flash unit and pointed it straight across the set instead of into the set, and used a reflector for fill. Then like magic we had our lighting.
I’m extremely grateful to everyone that came and supported the FWCA with their donations. We didn’t add it up this year, but I’m sure it was slightly more than last year. I’m hoping that each year will continue to out-do the last. Now we have to figure out what we’re doing next year. We have a few ideas, but whatever it is it has to be something that allows for the variety of costumes that come in, plus is inexpensive.
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