influences & inspiration

The Hudson Valley Click is a group of photographers in New York who arrange photo shoots for photographers who are interested in learning more or who would like to build their portfolios. I’ve mentioned them a few times in the past - photo shoot / haunted fashion / pin-up photography. With these photo sessions, they arrange for models and hair stylists and make-up artists, and for a small entry fee, you get to play. They are also pretty cool bunch of people to hang out with.

At the most recent shoot-out, the one organizer, Nuby DeLeon, showed me an image that he had set up, and my jaw dropped. With great pre-visualization of the intended shot, Nuby had set this dramatic scene up. Even the color image on the back of his camera looked perfect! Nuby was gracious enough to allow me to share this with everyone, including the lighting diagram …

Film Noir Fight Scene
by Nuby DeLeon
portrait, wedding & commercial photographer – New York

Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to explore dramatic lighting when Hudson Valley Click did their monthly themed shoot at Mountain View Manor in Glen Spey, NY. The theme for the month was Film Noir so having a beautiful Victorian mansion to shoot in was a treat. There were a number of models, all dressed in period costume.

My inspiration for the shot is Frank Miller. I wanted to match the dramatic lighting with some dramatic, almost over the top action.

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influences & inspiration

September 6, 2010

influences and inspiration

Triggered by the most recent post on the pin-up photo session, I thought that an on-going theme about influences and inspiration in photography would make a good topic.

The photo above was taken during an engagement photo session. In posing Melissa and Dennis for the one sequence, I wanted to use an idea that I saw on the cover of the disc of a movie I had watched just a few days before – An Education. (Amazon)

The young actress, Carey Mulligan was nominated for an Oscar for her role in this touching coming-of-age story. Beautifully told and acted and filmed. It was based on a book written by Nick Hornby. He was also the author of ‘High Fidelity’, a book dear to my heart.

The cover image of the DVD / Blu-Ray disc caught my attention – the two actors, elegantly posed. When I saw it, I immediately knew I would reference this image some time during upcoming photo session.

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The first time I became aware of the pin-up artwork of Alberto Vargas was with the release of the album, Candy-O, by the Cars in ’79. It was often mentioned how Vargas was brought out of semi-retirement to create this image.

With that, my interest in pin-up artwork by the legends, Vargas and by Gil Elvgren, was fired up.


This will also explain why I’ve been a fan of the photography of Robert Alvarado ever since I first saw his work. He clearly pays homage to those two artists.

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