Detroit Michigan Lifestyle Photographers Mary DuPrie
One of the highlights this year was taking the new headshots for our local television station WWJ-TV CBS Detroit. They requested formals and a look of hipper horizontal web images. I dutched quite a bit and shot at f.4 to really throw the background out. For executive type headshots these are quite a new format (not so much for me, but for them) They were extremely happy with them and so was I.
From that shoot they wanted to know if they could come to my studio and do a video story on me. Ummm…..well, let me think….yeah! They are part of the CW 50 station and run the 30 second commercials when they have unsold time slots; (i hear i’m popular at 5:30 am, I wouldn’t know!) called Made In Michigan. So the Videographer and reporter come out and we start the interview process…as in how did you get your start in photography blah blah
So I start my spiel………I call myself an accidental photographer as I just fell into it. I was a decorative painter/muralist and would travel to Europe to take pictures of all the great patinas for reference. The interviewer stopped me to explain “patina” ouch!
Apparently he didn’t think the word would go over well to the audience, ok, noted.
It does seem however that photographers love love love patinas (3 loves is a lot of lovin). There is however a difference between great patina and straight up junk. My studio is in an area that trash day represents tons of patina as they hold on till the bitter end. diving treasures. High end neighborhoods just don’t seem to have the right patinas as they throw things out with the first sign of wear. I realize it can be hard for others to see the beautiful patinas of my dumpster diving treasures.
So what do the pictures have to do with patina, well i’m glad you asked. My studio is in a large General Motors plant built in 1922. There are about 50 various tenants. Down the hall there is a very upscale upholsterer whom I borrow furniture from. I borrow the furniture before he strips it for the customer for fear of ruining it. He is always amazed when I say I love it just the way it is. He’s always trying to spruce it up before I borrow it….i keep insisting it’s perfectly great the way it is. His job is to make it look all new and pretty for the client so he doesn’t covet it the way I do.
I saw him bringing the pink sofa off the elevator and freaked out, i must shoot that!!! He looked at me quite shocked, this ugly thing!? He was probably going to strip it on monday, he said….rats. So my thoughts are no matter who comes to the studio i’m shooting them on that pink couch. Well it just so happens I got to keep the couch for a couple of weeks. I shot paying clients on it after their “real” shoot, tested with it, shot it fun, serious and semi-nude. (In person it really was tacky and threadbare, which means no plastic covers for them, they really used it!)
Shot with my 16-35 lens, shot wide open, natural window light with the addition of Westcott Spiderlites.
The fun tu tu was from Salvation army for about $7, i’m not sure what it’s for, perhaps square dancin?. The lingerie top is hers. The model did her own hair and makeup. The shoot was on the fly.
I have often borrowed furniture from him and he taught me to make the upholstered squares you see in some of my images. He’s been a great resource and friend.
I have shot his children several times when they stop in to visit dad for the day. His son Alexander has been one of my all time favorite models to this day...just sayin