Headshots, Headshots, and more Headshots!!!

August was a crazy month for me and it was all about headshots! As I'm sure you can tell by the title of this post, between my time at the Art Institute of Charlotte and my internship at Sporting News, headshots seemed to be all I was doing. Now don't get me wrong I am no expert on headshots but, I understand that much like the portrait, I need to make sure my client's personality shines through. That statement may not always fit depending on what the headshot is for but, I would definitely say it is a general rule.

On the technical side of things, I used a 2 and half light set up for all of these shots. The half being my reflector to add some fill under the chin.

The Setup...

Main Light: 50" Mega JS Apollo square softbox (bit.ly/1lwYl2H) on a PROMASTER®  PL400 Advanced LCD Control Studio Monolight - 400ws #9469.  (bit.ly/1uuliU7)

Hair light: I used a brolly softbox umbrella that I bought from Biggs Camera here in Charlotte, with a Britek PS-200B Battery Powered Strobe Light from Amazon. (http://amzn.to/1x6WCXf)

Reflector under everyone's chin to fill in some of the shadows.

Backgound: Pop up white/black backdrop for quick set up on a background stand with clamps. (http://amzn.to/1w3jvqc)

So that's that! Check out some of the shots below and don't be afraid to comment or offer suggestions to help me grow!

- Peace.

 

Nothing new under the Sun

You know how you set out to do something and completely forget to do it? I don't think I've mentioned it but I've been attending the Art Institute of Charlotte since January. My bad. I decided to go back to school after I got laid off from my corporate "American Dream" job. Now don't get me wrong I made good money and i miss that good money but, I decided I would make use of my Post 9/11 G.I. Bill and have the Marines pay for my pursuit of happiness. I mean it's the least they could do right? (Rah.)

So in my principles of photography class, my teacher gave us some exciting homework that we presented for critique today. We were to pick an influential photographer and produce twenty images that emulate their signature style. I chose Cindy Sherman. Famous for many things but, what i think comes easiest  to mind are her Untitled Film Stills. 

This series of images were created between 1977 - 1980 in New York City. These pictures resembled American film noir of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s and were produced mostly in her apartment. Cindy would transform into these characters that represented various stereotypes of women in contemporary America. She would later move on to shooting in other interiors, beaches, and streets and finished her work on this series in 1980 when she ran out of clichés.

Below you can see my attempt to honor her iconic work. My goal was to take an image and give you the opportunity to figure out the story. These images represent some of the clichés about African-American males in society and in Hollywood. It may not be purely Sherman but it is my take.

Enjoy :)

 

RAW Natural Born Artists

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA!!! Are you ready for an awakening? 

image.jpg

I am proud to announce that I have been selected to participate at the first RAW artist showcase in Charlotte. 

Who or what is RAW you ask? Well I'll let them explain...

"RAW: natural born artists is an independent arts organization, for artists, by artists. We're an international community made up of creative individuals across the globe. Our mission is to provide independent artists within the first 10 years of their career with the tools, resources and exposure needed to inspire and cultivate creativity. We welcome all genres of art including independent film, fashion, music, visual art, performing art, hairstylists, makeup artists and more. We encourage the creative success of the many visionaries and storytellers of our generation. RAW currently operates in nearly 60 cities across the United States, Australia, Canada and, now London!"

 Needless to say I am super excited. Can't you tell? CAN'T YOU TELL?!?!?! Lol

(for those that know me best, they would say that physically i don't show excitement very well but internally I'm doing summersaults thru flaming hula hoops)  

I've got some really neat conceptual ideas to bring to the table along with some old favorites to include my Marine travels. Thing is you won't be able to see my new work...

 ...UNLESS YOUR THERE! 

In order to make sure your face is in the place, you have to purchase a ticket and you can do so by going to my site. www.rawartists.org/dmeimagery

As a part of my participation I have to sell 20 tickets and it goes without saying that all of your support is appreciated.  

Thank you again friends for your continued support; please come celebrate my growth February 20th at the Tremont Music Hall.

 

 

I wasn't ready... (Part 1)

Yesterday I had the pleasure of assisting a friend on an assignment at a local nightclub in the Charlotte area and it was a very unique experience for me. It was my first time working with models in an attempt to produce those sexy almost boudoir styled photographs that would be used to promote the club. After it was all said and done, I was so excited to blog about it and talk to you guys about the importance of preparation. I went through the few shots I took and after a little post work I just called it a night.

December 12, 2013 8:25 am est...

I'm in the kitchen trying to feed my new puppy Rebel, making a cheese ball to hide her medicine, and trying to get my life together for my 9-5. Mom calls and everything seems fine.

"Have you heard the news"? 

In that one instance, I envisioned a world full of light, gone cold after losing its flame. That light created by the fire was my beautiful Aunt Rosa Ann Myrick.

In my heart I knew that inevitably this day would come. I tried so hard to prepare; she had been sick for so long. She suffered from an aggressive stomach cancer that spread throughout her body and caused her such pain. I can remember listening to her voice just last week and she sounded like she was just so tired. So tired...

“Ebony" Rosa Ann Myrick    January 22, 1954 - December 11, 2013    One of the most amazing women I will ever know. You were a second mother to me. Your sons I call brothers and you had them teach me strength and toughness. When you became Ebony we here the best of friends and the Parrot Bay seemed to have an endless flow. Selfishly, I wanted you to continue to fight, with hopes of seeing you again but your wishes deserved respect. The wonderful memories of your life may bring tears to my eyes but, God's love, compassion, and comfort of the Holy Spirit will make will ease my aching soul.

“Ebony" Rosa Ann Myrick

January 22, 1954 - December 11, 2013

One of the most amazing women I will ever know. You were a second mother to me. Your sons I call brothers and you had them teach me strength and toughness. When you became Ebony we here the best of friends and the Parrot Bay seemed to have an endless flow. Selfishly, I wanted you to continue to fight, with hopes of seeing you again but your wishes deserved respect. The wonderful memories of your life may bring tears to my eyes but, God's love, compassion, and comfort of the Holy Spirit will make will ease my aching soul.

It wasn't until earlier this evening when the gravity of it all bore down on my heart and drowned me in a fistful of tears after seeing this picture of her on Facebook.

Even more so after I saw her last post.

Heavy man...

I'm a believer that God works in mysterious ways. I was literally hours from traveling to Houston to go see her and due to adverse weather and my mom being her normal nervous self, when it comes to me driving long distance (love you mom), we decided not to go. I must say, I was blessed to see her back in my hood a few months ago. It wasn't in the best of conditions and I thought I might lose her there too but, we were able to enjoy each other and I was able to see her off. Hindsight is always 20/20 right? So now I'm thinking, maybe God didn't want me to see her in such poor health during her final hour. I think it would have broken my heart even more. 

There are three things I take comfort in and they all come in the form of a photograph.

I take comfort in knowing you were able to see you sons thrive in life and watch them create their own beautiful families; which you were a part of.

I take comfort in remembering your strength. Despite everything you were going through you could still smile and have fun.

I take comfort knowing that you were are at peace.  You don't have to hurt any more and the only tears you'll know are those of joy. I love you so much and you will be deeply missed.

Help Portrait - Charlotte

Today in Charlotte, NC photographers, makeup artists, and other volunteers gathered together at the Salvation Army Center of Hope to give back to the community doing what we do best...TAKING PICTURES!!! 

All made possible through the organization of Help-Portrait.

HP_Logo_Tall_RGB.png

Founded by Celebrity Photographer Jeremy Cowart, Help-Portrait is a community of photographers coming together across the world to use their photography skills to give back to their local community.

In December, photographers around the world will be grabbing their cameras, finding people in need and taking their picture. When the prints are ready, the photographs get delivered.

Help-Portrait is all about giving free portraits, not taking them. Blessing those who are not necessarily able to have professional portraits done for themselves or their families. 

This was my first year participating in Help-Portrait. I found out about it through the Charlotte Photography Group at www.meetup.com (which is an excellent resource for finding events based on your interests). It really made my heart glad to see people so excited about having their pictures taken. 

I assisted a photographer by the name of Matt Pock, a photographer for the local Charlotte magazine "Shutter 16". Between his excellent ability to work the lens and my professional portrait posing (say that three times fast), we were really able to produce some portrait magic. 

Finally...an event that combines my passion for art and my love of people. See you next year Help-Portrait!

Toys for Tots

Toys4Tots2013.jpg

About a week ago, a fellow member from the Charlotte Photography Group reached out and asked if any one could assist in photographing an annual motorcycle ride on Dec 1st. The event was held by the Concerned Biker's Association and the Marine Corps Reserve in support of Toys for Tots. So of course the Marine in me had to represent after all the years of being volun-told to participate. Don't get me wrong though, I love mandatory fun time just as much as the next guy but, it only seemed right that I help out this time on my own terms.

Young Lance Corporal Evans picking up donations at a bank.

Young Lance Corporal Evans picking up donations at a bank.

"The objectives of Toys for Tots are to help less fortunate children throughout the United States experience the joy of Christmas; to play an active role in the development of one of our nation’s most valuable resources – our children; to unite all members of local communities in a common cause for three months each year during the annual toy collection and distribution campaign; and to contribute to better communities in the future."

 

There was a huge amount of support from bikers all  across the state it seemed. Each biker brought one unopened toy in order to participate in the ride. At the end of the day it took a 7-ton troop transport vehicle and a u-hual to carry all of the toys away!

Thank you Charlotte for the awesome turnout!!!!

I decided to go with a slightly desaturated HDR style in post production to capture my vision of the strength and grunge style in the biker community.

Enjoy :-)

 

Plan B

(I wrote this posts months ago...slack I know)

Have you ever reached a point in your life and wondered if you were truly happy?

190646_541657432465_46401956_31143201_2429023_n.jpg

I've been thinking about what it is that I want to say in this post of over a month now and I'm still in no better of a position now than I as then. So jumping out the cup above and I'm just going to go for it. As of now I'm 26 and I can't say I'm necessarily in the place where I thought I would be at this age. Don't get me wrong I have an awesome life, with awesome friends, and to this point I've had some pretty awesome experiences. Thing is I'm not sure if I'm really happy. I can remember I was in high school and my guidance counselor, Mary Fowler, would always tell me that in life I should always do the things that make me happy. Do the work that will bring you joy and ultimately something that you would do for free. Well, after my last deployment and the job I most recently had a lot of things have become clear.

Those who know me best know that I am a man that is no stranger to hard work. Just two months ago I was literally working five jobs. Majority of the time I was a consultant by day selling cable door to door and other days I was an administrative writer for a private government contractor. Outside of that I was still serving in the Marine Corps and some nights I would work security at a nightclub. Of course lets not forget the occasional photo shoot. Kept busy right? Yeah well my bills won't pay themselves. One of the best things that could have come from all that was the connection I made with I made with my mentor Shaun.

Shaun was my employer at Uptown Consulting where I became a corporate trainer. Ultimately, it was a sales job but its focus was on training managers. The word managers in a sense of leaders and people who developed others, not those who just maintain a quota and meet standards. Shaun really helped me get out of my comfort zone and become a thinker. Up until that point, I went along with the flow of life and I was very indecisive. I'm still kinda indecisive but no where near as much as I used to be. :) I learned about big picture goal setting and how to break down the steps to reach them. Doing those things helped me understand what my values were, which motivate me and help guide my decisions. There's so much more that came from my experiences at Uptown that I would love to share but ill stop with that.

So at this point with all of my realizations, I've decided to follow my passion and pursue photography. It really is what makes me happy and I'm striving for my flashpoint of success. What that means is, success is guaranteed to me thru consistent discipline in a specific action. I now know exactly what I want in life and I hold the power to do what I need to do.

Something of Substance

Time and time again it has been said that your first impression should be your best one. I’m sure that when you’re trying to amass a following to view and share your thoughts, insights of the world, and feelings of the heart, the effort put forth should be great. Right? Ok, well here goes…(deep healing breath)…I am Darius Monte Evans and I am the influence and the example,the potential great leaders possess, the hope for my family, those who follow me, and the life of my community, a Marine, the median that passes on knowledge, and the proof that miracles do happen. And now I am your neighbor on the world wide web so won't you be my friend? (Takes off penny loafers) Every year or so I have struggled to maintain a site or portfolio where I could reference my work and practice my writing. A.K.A. “jot down my internal monologue in somewhat of a grammatically correct conversational tone, coupled with illustrations “. This time I am determined to stick to it.

Here’s a quote:

“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.” – Henri Cartier-Bresson

As a budding photographer, that kinda makes you feel like crap right? Especially, if you thought you were really good! Even though it feels like history pissed in my cheerios with that quote, I’m gonna take it for what its worth. I mean come on, the guy was dubbed “The Father of Modern Photojournalism” so you figure he had to know what he was talking about. So I will be blowing up this page with pic after pic after pic all for your honest review and critique.

The “substance” that I used in the title was simply a buzz word I used in order to draw you in. Therefore, the substance you were looking for in this blog may have or may or may not have been a lie. I'm sorry about that by the way. My doctor says its a problem I've had since birth and I'm still working on how to live with such a terrible disease. But seriously tho, I see substance as something subjective, kinda like art. You either like it or you don’t. You’ll either get something out of this blog or you wont. It's that simple. However, with that said I really hope you can leave this “sanctuary” with something to take away. Whether it’s a new piece of knowledge, a quote to keep in your brain housing group for later, a new found interest for reading a book I’m probably gonna talk about, or just a feeling that you got from one of my photos that makes you think, “Damn…you know that is really something, I wish I had that on my wall.”  That’s how I feel about the photo at the top. I shot it in film and its one of my absolute faves. Really gives me a sense of peace.

Well, as far as my first blog post is concerned, I think it went fairly well. I promise I will try to keep this interesting and perhaps not so long. I look forward to posting words of insight and value. There will be some humor here too. Just know…I’m liable to say anything so...you’ve been warned. But thanks for stopping by neighbor, I appreciate the jello mold you brought and I look forward to calling you friend.