What a fun week

I had an amazing array of clients over the past week.  I have numerous students take private photography lessons.   I really enjoying helping other photographers develop their photography skills.

An old friend from high school need senior portraits for her daughter.  We did a mix of location and studio shots.  It was fun to catch up while her daughter was changing outfits.

Outdoor senior portrait

Also this week a shot a great deal time enjoying time as a pin-up photographer.   Pin-up is always a lot of fun for everyone involved.  Lots of laughing going on as we try to capture those flirty looks of classic pin-up.

Sexy cook checking recipe in here cookbook in this retro pin-up art © Orcatek Photography - Phoenix

I take the base photo from the shoot and convert it to an pin-up illustration using way too many steps in Photoshop.  I like the end result, so I will keep doing it.

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.   I know I ate too much.

E-mail me at special-offers@orcatek.com to get coupons just in time for the holidays!

The Magic of Retouching

An example of portrait and headhshot retouching by phoenix photographer, Orcatek.Most high end photography today is retouched.  The amount of retouching I do really depends on the type of photograph.  For example an actor’s headshot will get a retouch which just does a basic clean-up.  An actor needs to look like their headshot when they come to the casting.

Now for family and senior portraits the retouching can be a little bit heavier.  Some extra polish on the skin, removal of scars and softening of lines.

Of course the most retouching can be done for boudoir photos.   These photos are about fantasy and glamour.  So super smooth skin and even sometimes some digital plastic surgery all in line with creating that final look.

Great retouching makes the difference between a snapshot and a photograph.   Today retouching is done in Photoshop.   In the past it was done in the dark room.  Hollywood had teams of retouchers that would hand alter negatives of the stars to create the famous glamour photos.


Dean Farrell, Photographer, Orcatek Photography, Phoenix, Arizona

Creating a self-portrait is a learning experience for a photographer.  There are two key things I was reminded about making this portrait.

First, it is very important that I make sure that I make my clients feel comfortable.  Having no one to interact with made it hard for me to relax for the camera.  Once you relax, your photographs can begin to show the real you.   Music is a great way to set the mood for boudoir and modeling clients, so I tell them to bring their own if they would like.  And of course a steady stream of conversation.  It doesn’t really matter what you talk about, just something to keep the focus away from posing for the camera.

The second thing I learned was how hard it is to choose a photograph.   I went through and selected my ideas and then had my family make their selections.  It was interesting to see that they picked different photographs from me.  In fact they didn’t really care for my favorite.  It showed me how difficult it is for my clients to make decisions, and why they sometimes don’t choose the photos that I believe are some of the best.

Now I have developed some techniques in the studio for choosing the photos.   I have had several clients tell me how much easier it makes the choices.  Hopefully I will be able to find a way to put this process on-line for my clients.

Every photographer should create a self-portrait every once in a while.  It helps to put things back in focus.  (yes, cheesy photography pun.)

A day with Flashes of Hope

It was an emotional week this week. I stepped outside my typical boudoir photography, headshots and maternity and worked with Flashes of Hope. The session took place at Phoenix Children’s Hospital Make-up was done by one of my favorite MUA, Heather Wilson. These inspiring children and their families were such an honor to photograph.

Click on the link at the end of the video to learn more about Flashes of Hope and how you can help.

Summer is here, keeping busy

Busy week this week. Had fun maternity photography session, some headshots and couple of amazing boudoir photography sessions.

One of my favorite shoots this week was one with a young model named Jillian. She wanted some photographs to start her portfolio. She was very interested in creating a fashion look. Working with young models is always fun as you never know how they will be in front of the camera.

Some are shy and others are just bouncing off the wall with energy. Either way, my job as a photographer is to bring their personality out in the photographs and also push them in new directions to create a diverse modeling portfolio.
Model Portfolio Photography Phoenix Headshot photographer arizona beauty pageant photography tempe scottsdale

We shot both in studio and on location. We had to get an early start as summer is here and we don’t want to be outside much. Jillian was a trooper and we got some great outdoor shots. We then moved to the cool studio for the remainder of her shoot. Music and AC make for a fun shoot.

Later this week I am doing a shoot for Flashes of Hope, a great organization. Check back as you will want to read about this shoot.

Rock On

Had a great week this week. A fun group of clients. Some amazing women came in for their boudoir photography sessions. Some future stars updated their actor headshots. A glowing mom to be got her maternity photographs done. And several models came in for updates to their portfolio.

One of those models was a young lady named Jonell who wanted a variety of looks for her portfolio. One of my favorite themes from her shoot was the rocker chick photo.
Model Portfolio Photography Phoenix Arizona Musician Band Photography
Creating a faux environment in the studio is always fun. Of course we had the stereo cranked up to create the proper mood.

Next week looks to be fun too. It’s great when your job let’s you have so much fun.

Irena – Pageant Winner

I had the chance to week to photograph a very fun young lady. We had a lot of fun creating different looks during her time in the studio. She is very interested in fashion, so we did some shots that you might find in a models portfolio.
Model Portfolio Photography Phoenix Headshot photographer arizona beauty pageant photography scottsdale
As a photographer, I always love it when my clients aren’t afraid to be a bit silly as it often yields some amazing photography. Irena was one of the those girls who just had fun with it. Come back next week for some surprises.

Kaidynce – Future Star

I found Kaidynce at a pageant a few weeks ago, and she was just full of personality. So I brought her into the studio to get some shots of her to see if it carried through on camera. As you can see from these few samples, it did.

Kaidynce was a real pleasure to work with. I asked her to show me some different expressions, are these are a few of what I got.

Family Portrait Star

Busy, busy, busy, busy!  It is the holiday season and everyone wants to get some new photographs.  One evening this week I had a really fun family come down to the studio for their family portrait.  Everyone was in town for the holiday season, so it was the perfect time to get them all together for a portrait.

Whenever I photograph a family, there always seems to be someone who just stands out from the rest.  Never takes a bad picture at all.  Always becomes the main focal point of the portrait.  They have the “star” quality.

As you can see here, she stole the show!  I am sure that the family totally agrees.

Orcatek Photography, Phoenix, Arizona

Sassy Sarongs Product Photography

This week the most fun I had was as the photographer of product shots for Sassy Sarongs.  A great company which produces an amazing variety of sarongs.  Lisa is always great fun to work with on her projects.  Each time she gets a new batch of sarongs in, she calls her favorite photographer – me.

We started the day with some photography of Lisa for her marketing materials.  Her sarongs made for some very colorful and interesting shots.  She was a great sport about trying various things to get a large variety of photographs to work.  As usual, my photographers eye saw some great opportunites to create some amazing photographs.

After the headshots were done, we moved on to the product photographs.  The shots were targeted for her website catalog along with some printed materials.  Once again there was a large variety of sarongs to shoot.  The colors and quality of these sarongs is amazing.

We ended the day by shooting the full body promotional materials.  These photographs will featured a beautiful model posing in a gentle breeze.  Getting the sarongs to behave in the breeze to was a challenge, but as a photographer I’ve learned a few tricks to get it to work.  The final photographs will be used in magazine, posters and other marketing materials.

I look forward to working with Lisa and Sassy Sarongs again on their next project.

Orcatek Photography Phoenix