UPDATE: I recently heard from the Clare County DHS and the printing of this calendar is being postponed until further notice
Behind the scenes image of the Dover School Shoot
July was a great month at Ryan Watkins Photography! I got to photograph an amazing wedding, had a great trip to Mackinac Island, I continued my #iPhoneography series, and got to help create some new images for a charity calendar which will be available locally in the next few months.
Two years ago before I moved to Massachusetts I was approached by the Clare County United Way about shooting images for a calendar that would raise money to help their Project Kids Christmas charity. We shot the images but sadly the funding for the project didn’t come thru. Two years later I was contacted by the Clare County DHS to see if they could use my images for the same calendar to benefit Project Kids Christmas. I was more than willing but wanted to reshoot some of the old images. I spent the last two weeks of July photographing a variety of local landmarks and still lives which where relevant to Clare County.
The final Dover School image
The first location I knew I wanted to reshoot was Dover School. The Dover School is a one room school house that was renovated to its original condition. I shot several images of the Dover School while the sun set gradually set. I ended up compositing two images for the final shot. One had the shadows from the trees in the foreground the way I liked them and the other had the exterior of the school lit with flash.
The final Farwell Cannon image
Next I photographed the cannon in Farwell, Mi. This is a real life size cannon not a replica or paperweight. I photographed this at night and lit it will flash to eliminate the distracting park surrounding the cannon.
The Farwell Cannon before being lit
Morel Mushroom Still Life
In the spring many people in Clare County enjoy morel hunting, where they look for wild morel mushrooms. I wanted to reshoot an image of morel mushrooms for the calendar but it was almost four months to late to find local wild morels. So I went on Amazon.com and bought an incredibly overpriced bag of morels for the shoot. For this image I placed the morels on a tree stump near my house and lit them with flash at a very low angle to bring out the textures of the mushrooms.
Black Eyed Susans shot using a Lensbaby for the blurred effect
Black Eyed Susans are another common site in Clare County. I wanted to do something different from the traditional flower shot so I tried out my new Lensbaby. A Lensbaby is a flexible lens which lets you change focus my pulling the lens in different directions. I lit these with flash and turned the Lensbaby to create this blurring effect.
My new Lensbaby used to photograph the Black Eyed Susans
The rest of the calendar will have images of nature, landscapes, and wildlife from Clare County.
The final calendar will be available later in the year at several locations within Clare County. I’ll post on my blog and on social media when I find out where and when the calendars are available.
Art Walk Central annually attracts artists from across the state and country to showcase their art pieces in local business in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. My work will be hosted by the lovely 3 Wishes Floral and Design Studio. Not only was 3 Wishes gracious enough to host my work but they also gave me some free flowers to photograph for a charity calendar I’ve been working on! Below is an image I shot of their roses using my new Lensbaby!
The image at the top of this post is my piece that will be on display at 3 Wishes. This was photographed of my friends and fellow Hallmark Institute of Photography alumni Sean and Jess of River Valley Photo back in March 2014 when I made a trip down to Cincinnati, Ohio to visit them.
If you are in the Mount Pleasant area defiantly check out the amazing artists work on display throughout downtown!
I’m very excited about the 515 Gallery’s upcoming show! All of the featured artists are graduates of the prestigious Hallmark Institute of Photography in Turners Falls, Massachusetts and are close friends of mine. The styles of photography and photographers represented are incredibly diverse! We’ll be featuring a combination of photojournalistic, commercial, conceptual, nature, editorial, fashion, and portrait photography. Featured will be artists from Seattle, Los Angles, New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, India, and Japan. Also three Michigan based photographers, including myself, will be represented and present at the opening.
The show will be held on May 31st from 6-8pm. The 515 Gallery is open from 11am-4pm on Saturdays. This show will be up until July 12th. The 515 Galley is located in downtown Clare next to Cops and Doughnuts.
Big thanks to midmichigan.secondwavemedia.comfor writing this nice article about my business starting up and to the Hallmark Institute of Photography for featuring me for their “Where Are They Now? Wednesday” this week!
Huge thanks to the 515 Gallery and everyone who came to the 515’s “Junk It” show today! We sold 8 of the 14 metal prints on display. These images will be on display along with Ian Humphres “Junk It Frog” sculpture until late October 2013. The 515 Gallery is open from 11am-4pm on Saturdays and is located in downtown Clare next to Cops and Doughnuts.
Join me from 6-8pm on August 17th at the 515 Gallery’s “Junk It” opening in Clare, Mi to see my latest still life and portrait work along with artist Ian Humphres latest sculpture! I’ve had a great time working on this new series this last month! Here’s a sample of some of the work on display.
This has been busy week with a lot of new updates!
To start, huge thanks to Ciara for modeling for some new images last week! We had a bunch of fun shooting at one of my favorite locations Dow Gardens and in downtown Clare for some edgy night scenes.
Secondly, Clare’s 515 Gallery will be featuring some of my work in there upcoming show titled “Junk It” on August 17th from 6pm-8pm. I’ve spend a few days this week photographing new work for this series.