Getting Colorful with J Word & Yev Z

Starting with the awesome J Word, i’m going to be sharing pretty much all of my shoots over the last few years (and moving forward) on my blog here. The posts, will evolve based on what you want to see and your questions naturally.

This series was put together by my friend Yev Z Photography with Jewaun Word of TNG Models in Las Vegas with styling by Lisa Munns. Yev invited me to come help on the shoot and to create myself, and at the time I had been in a creative funk so welcomed the opportunity to help, shoot, and create something vibrant.

Between Lisa and J Word, and then the goofiness of Yev and Myself, we started doing some pretty crazy experimenting with looks, colors, and expressions getting some pretty incredible images as you can see below!

My only issue when working with Jewaun though….is he’s so freaking tall! Lemme tell you it can give a guy a complex hahaha. I actually…this is no joke…had to stand on an apple box (sometimes 2) to maintain eye level with this man for our shoot! later in the set you can see we talked him into sitting down so Yev and I could get eye to eye with him ;) hahaha. J is actually so much fun to work with. He’s so easy to create with and it’s VERY hard to actually get a bad shot of him!
As you can see we created 5 or 6 looks and got a boatload of images from them.

Here’s a complete list of the gear used:

And the Technical & Editing details

Here’s a BTS showing our light setup. 1 B2 above in a Photek Softlighter with the reflector propped directly below, a 2nd B2 camera left and in front of the model feathered in another Photek Softlighter. The Last light is behind the model in a 36” Octobox Camera Right for rim.

J Word BTS

So what do you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions. Leave a comment below!

From the Shadows -- A New Fine Art Series by David J. Crewe (NSFW)

The Origin

I’m super excited to FINALLY share a series I’ve been working on now for nearly a year with a large variety of models, creatives, artists, and just expressive souls!

So….where to start? First things first, I’ve always been a fan of the cinematic and dramatic style of lighting you find in those classic noir films and shoots, and I’ve been especially a fan since creating a series back in San Diego years ago for a charity project. Being able to create something with that style of lighting and as a stand alone work of art….well…I am very excited.

This project started as an accident. I was working with a model creating some headshots and I had a lighting misfire which lead me back to my old school love of dramatic “film noir” style lighting. What happened? Well I had a multiple light setup going for some headshots and my “main” light, which would normally light up my subjects face and body, well it didn’t fire, and my rim/hair lights still did…This gave me the effect you see in the gallery above.

From there, it only took showing the image to my client (after we finished the headshots of course), to start playing with the shadows and creating some fun images. From there the shoot evolved into a fine art series of implied and nude shots after hours and hours of discussions and idea shaping and test shoots. The concept was open to everyone, male and female. There were no restrictions for this, other than confidence!

The Progression

It’s kind of funny how it was a VERY slow start to find that first model to shoot the concept. At first, I didn’t even consider the style a series. My intent was to shoot it and move on, but that changed after i did the first set and the model fell in love with the shots, I shared them with a bunch of colleagues and more people wanted to do the shoot! A few weeks after the first shoot I shot the second. From here, interest snowballed. I discussed the images with a fellow photographer while assisting him on a shoot, and his client asked to see the images. She also fell in love with them and asked to take part right on the spot! This is when I realized I was onto something. Over the next few months, I was introduced to new models, athletes, creatives, and artists who wanted to take part and I’ve tried to get them all in. Some, are still on a waitlist as we are hundreds, and for some, thousands of miles apart! OY!

They’ll make it in, just not in time for launch haha.

As I mentioned above, at first this wasn’t set to be a series so I didn’t give it much thought. As I progressed with the shoots, more of my subjects expressed so many different reasons for wanting to do the shoot. It really made me think about art and body positivity and I asked each person for their thoughts on the series and why (if they cared to share) they wanted to take part. Some felt they wanted to do it simply because it was a beautiful concept. Some did it to boost their own personal body confidence, (BIG props to you folks for that by the way! Hella proud of you). One of my subjects, a long time professional nude model, wanted to do the series simply because it was something she felt that for the first time she could print an image of hers and hang it in her home as a centerpiece for art and discussion. That right there was huge for me. Someone who is nude for a living, considered this image to be their first real “work of art.”

I’ve always wanted to have my images stop you in your tracks and cause a double take. The work we often do as working professionals doesn’t really get to be that way since we’re following our clients wants/needs, so as this shoot became a series, I became excited and proud at the fact that these images could line the walls of a gallery, hotel, night club, or more! (Well at least based on the feedback from my clients and our subsequent circle of colleagues and friends who’ve seen the set haha). So I hope that these images make you stop in your tracks and at the very least, open a discussion about confidence, body image, and fine art.

The Technical

So for those wondering, the setup was rather simple. A black backdrop (or dark) with some distance for our subject. 2 to 3 feet ideally. I used my Lastolite HiLite 5x7 on the dark side for mine. It was a lot easier to travel with versus a paper roll. The lighting was a simple setup of 2 lights (profoto B2), in 1x3 strip boxes and Grids behind and on the left and right of the subject with a Nikon SB-700 speedlight at low power on a boom directly above the subject for a subtle hair/fill light using a Rogue Flash Bender. The emphasis was to be backlit casting a lot of shadows to really highlight the shapes and curves of the human body in all its forms.

All of these images were shot on my Nikon D800 with Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G series glass.

For the selection and retouching process, I used several pieces of software. I basically used Capture One and/or Adobe Lightroom as a catalogue. We made initial selections on the day of the shoot, (excessively really). Those selections we converted to B&W and uploaded to an online gallery with Cloudspot for both myself and the subjects to help narrow down to just 2-4 images.

Once that was done I pulled those final few poses from each model directly into Adobe Photoshop and made my edits in there. I used a few tools like the Retouching Academy’s Panels, Infinite Color Panel, Nino Batista’s Frequency Separation Plugin (use code DAVIDCREWE5 for 5$ off), and Alien Skin Exposure to crop and ensure all the images were consistent across the board.

The Culmination

Please have a look at the collection. Like, share, comment, and message me directly for any inquiries, comments, print and gallery options.

Also, I’d like to extend my heartfelt and warmest thanks to each and every person who’s been involved with the project since it’s start. Every one of you have been amazing from day one. For each of the models…you, you folks are the biggest badassiest and awesome folks I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. Every one of you had an amazing story and a reason for what you do and why you wanted to take part in this series. I love each and every one of you and am incredibly proud of you all!

If you’re interested in ordering a hard copy of this as a coffee table book, please click the link below. Currently available in Hardcover and Digital Download.

Exclusive Deal from Picr for Freelance Photographers! ONE DAY LEFT!

Okay, this is rushed but it’s important! In celebration of Picr exiting their Beta Phase, they’re offering a LIFETIME membership / access for an insanely low price! How insane? The packages are over 80% off!!! What is Picr? Well, to put simply, it’s the first e-commerce platform for photography services.

So let’s get right to the good stuff…Here’s the link to get 80% off LIFETIME access:

Now onto the what’s so great about this service!? As my friend Frederick Van Johnson said, “Meet the “Shopify” for Photographers.” Now i’m only just in the beginning stages of setting my account up with Picr, but with just the minor features i’ve setup it’s improved my workflow and client leads immensely! They are quite effectively reinventing the way photographers do business by placing all the tools you’d need in one place online!

My favorite feature is the connectivity with your clients through the Picr Messenger. When you set this up on your website, potential and existing clients can connect directly to me, (or my team), through the desktop AND/OR Mobile app!

Depending on how you set it up, your new clients can contact you and ask questions via email and a direct message through the mobile app for Picr. I’ve got them setup for me to show up like text messages so I’m notified immediately and can then choose to respond accordingly via email or creating a “chat” through the app and picr messenger.

This feature alone has helped my grow my client base a bunch!

The stuff that i’m now just getting into and i’m super pumped for, is how you can create service packages so your clients can buy directly on your site…but that’s not all. You can also enable your calendar to be live so that clients can see conflicting dates in real time and book you when they need. The Picr system can even handle taking payments & deposits AND automate your contracts & countersigning!

Seriously, there’s more (as if that’s not enough), that Picr has to offer and i’m already overwhelmed in a good way. I’ve already pretty much sworn away the rest of my week dedicated to setting up everything I can!

We have ONE MORE DAY from the time I got this post live.

The Deal Ends Midnight Wednesday, Oct 31st, 2018!

Magazine Publications and where to buy them!

In 2018 I set a goal for myself to get at least one magazine publication. I had no real clue where to start other than to create new images and see where it lead. Well, as of the publication of this blog post, i’ve managed to get over 17 magazine publications with at least 3 covers, not to mention an article in Maxim!

The year isn’t over, and there are more publications on the horizon, so stay tuned and check back often. For now, have a look through the gallery and click the links to pick up some copies for yourself!

Check out some of the images here and check the links below to buy a copy for yourself!

Kansha Magazine featuring Zuzana Varkondova and Oly in Wonderland

S-Nation: Fashion Model Showcase - Zuzana Varkondova

Surreal Mag Issue #534 with Alexandria Eissinger

Maxim Italia - Featuring Zuzana Varkondova

Art of Nude - Issue #1 with Oly in Wonderland

Elléments Magazine Body Issue #3 with Oly in Wonderland

Imiragemagazine #245 with Chelsea Coury & LenaG Beauty

Elléments Magazine Summer Issue 2018 with Chelsea Coury & LenaG Beauty

Imiragemagazine #224 with Jewaun Word and Vanessa Greene

Art of Portrait - Issue 15 with Shyllon Melatti Chelsea Coury Blair Edwards Rachel Koch Alexandria Eissinger Cinnamon Alexandra and LenaG Beauty

AVANT GARDE Magazine - Las Vegas May/June Issue 2018 with Miguel Cortes Katherine Taylor and more!

Boudoir Inspiration - July 2018 Issue with Chelsea Coury and LenaG Beauty

Imiragemagazine #143 with Angelica Acevedo and LenaG Beauty

Imiragemagazine #142 with Angelica Acevedo and LenaG Beauty

Imiragemagazine #186 - Sacramento Fashion Week with Susan Varkondova and Alysia Tavidagian

ELEGANT Magazine - Fashion #17 (March 2018) with Alexandria Eissinger

Provocator Mag No. 2 Vol. 5 with Jewaun Word

Sigma Events in September

Sigma Expands Its Lens Workshop Initiative with Eight Photography Events in September
Photographers are invited to attend the nationwide workshops to learn about and practice their skills in travel, astro, urban, landscape, portrait, editorial, macro and birding photography  

Ronkonkoma, NY – August 28, 2018 Sigma Corporation of America, a leading still photo and cinema lens, camera, flash and accessory manufacturer, today announced its Lens Workshops lineup for September. These educational and practical events hosted by Sigma dealers and lead by Sigma technical representatives will cover various photography genres and help attendees refine their skills with plenty of knowledge, hands-on practice at photo walks and shoots, and a vast Sigma lens collection to try out.

Sigma Lens Workshops September Lineup:

Virginia City Photo Walk with Action Camera Reno
Sigma’s Lew Held will lead a photo walk in Virginia City, NV. This mining town was once one of the most important historic places between Denver and San Francisco, and has a lot of interesting photo opportunities to offer.


Friday, September 7th 10:00am-6:00pm – Historic Photo Walk – Attendees will meet at St. Mary’s in the Mountains Catholic Church (111 E Street) to explore the historic buildings, antique shops, museums, mines and other prominent sites in Virginia City. Sigma lenses will be available on loan.
Saturday, September 8th & Sunday, September 9th – Attendees are invited to return to Action Camera Reno for its One-Year Anniversary Sale and print some of their pictures on its instant kiosks, as well as take advantage of a special promotion on Sigma glass.
Action Camera Reno – 5890 S. Virginia Street Bldg. 3, Reno, NV 89502

Photo Walk Meetup – 111 East St. Virginia City, NV 89440
FREE; Register Here

Travel Photography Workshop at Pro Photo Supply
Sigma’s Aaron Norberg, an urban and natural landscape photographer, will lead a two-part travel photography workshop at Pro Photo Supply on September 8, 2018 in Portland, Oregon. The workshop will focus on bringing your artistic vision to life and turning documenting into storytelling.


Saturday, September 8th 9:00-10:00am – Travel Photography Class – Aaron will dive into image composition and balancing out depth of field and shutter speed to tell engaging stories through your images.
Saturday, September 8th 11:00am-2:00pm – Photo Walk at Sauvie Island – Participants will meet at Oak Island Trailhead for a guided photo walk. Sigma lenses will be available on loan to test-drive during the photo walk.

Pro Photo Supply – 1801 NW Northrup Street, Portland, Oregon 97209
$25; Register Here

Macro Photography Workshop and Scavenger Hunt at Ace Photo
Sigma’s Marc Farb will teach a macro photography class and lead a scavenger hunt photo walk during this fun two-day event.


Saturday, September 8th 10:00am-1:00pm – Sigma Lens Demo – Marc will present the Sigma lens lineup and answer any questions attendees might have about Sigma glass.
Saturday, September 8th 1:00pm-2:00pm – Macro Photography Class – In this class, attendees will learn the basics of macro photography and what gear is best for this genre.
Sunday, September 9th 10:00am-1:00pm – Scavenger Hunt Photo Walk – Participants will meet at the Lucketts Market for a fun photo walk with Sigma lenses.

Ace Photo – 44710 Cape Ct. Suite 122, Ashburn, VA 20147
FREE; Register Here

Astrophotography Workshop with Shutterbug Camera Shop
Aaron Norberg will lead a hands-on astrophotography workshop at Shutterbug Camera on September 10, 2018 in Santa Rosa, CA for a unique opportunity to photograph the night sky using some of the fastest glass from Sigma.


Monday, September 10th 4:30-6:00pm – Astrophotography Class – Participants will meet at Safari West for a class covering topics such as long exposure, lens options, focusing at night, color correct temperature, ISO options and using a histogram.
Monday, September 10th 6:00pm – BBQ Dinner – A delicious dinner will be provided before heading out to the night shoot.
Monday, September 10th 8:00-11:00pm – Night Shoot – Attendees will board a special tram to get to an ideal shooting location where they will enjoy a clean shot at the sky with no city lights to affect the view. Aaron will provide Sigma lenses to shoot with and dive into the technique of shooting the starry sky. In the end of the session, participants will get a 12x18 print of their favorite shot.

Safari West – 3115 Porter Creek Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95404
$149; Register Here

Street Photography Workshop at San Jose Camera and Video
Sigma’s Mike Hill will lead a hands-on workshop covering street photography on September 15, 2018 in Campbell, CA. Mike shoots lifestyle, editorial and travel photography. He is an experienced photo editor and art director who also teaches classes on narrative photography and Lightroom workflow.


Saturday, September 15th 1:00-2:30pm – Intro to Street Photography – Mike will teach a visual course through the fundamentals of photographing the urban landscape. Attendees will learn how to make visual sense of the streets around them and how to choose the best lenses and camera settings to capture it.
Saturday, September 15th 3:00-5:00pm – Photo Walk Around Downtown Campbell – Attendees are invited to join Mike for a photo walk to apply what they’ve learned in his class. They will also have the opportunity to try out a wide array of Sigma lenses available on loan.

San Jose Camera & Video – 1600 S Winchester Avenue, Campbell, CA 95008
$49.00; Register Here

Urban Photography Workshop at Glazer’s Camera
Aaron Norberg will lead a workshop covering the fundamentals of photographing urban environments at Glazer’s Camera, followed by a photo walk through Lower Queen Anne on September 22, 2018 in Seattle, WA. Attendees will walk away understanding what gear and which settings are best for capturing the urban beauty surrounding them.


Saturday, September 22nd 1:00-2:00pm – Urban Landscape Lecture – This workshop will kick off with a classroom lecture where Aaron will focus on lens selection and camera settings for urban photography.
Saturday, September 22nd 2:30-4:30pm – Queen Anne Neighborhood Photo Walk – Following the lecture, attendees will explore the neighborhood of Lower Queen Anne with Aaron and apply the techniques covered in the classroom. Sigma lenses will be available on loan.

Glazer’s Camera – 811 Republican Street, Seattle, WA 98109
$25; Register Here

Birding Photography Workshop with Milford Photo
Marc Farb will lead a photo walk on how to photograph ducks and other waterfowl at the pond in downtown Milford. Sigma lenses will be available on loan to practice birding photography.


Saturday, September 22nd 9:00am-11:00am – Birding Photo Walk – Attendees will meet at Milford Photo for a quick review of useful settings and arrange for the loaners, eventually heading downtown to capture wildlife around the Milford pond. 

Milford Photo – 22 River Street, Milford, CT 06460
FREE for the Milford Photography Group members; Register Here

Workshop at Pictureline
Mike Hill will lead a portrait and editorial workshop at Pictureline on September 29, 2018 in Salt Lake City, UT. Participants will learn how to capture great portraits through an engaging narrative.


Saturday, September 29th 10am-2pm – Portraiture and Editorial Photography Workshop – This workshop will start with a morning lecture focusing on how to purposely illustrate subjects and their personality. Mike will cover techniques including using different lenses, incorporating backgrounds, and mastering posing. Then attendees will enjoy lunch provided by Pictureline, followed by a hands-on shoot using Sigma lenses.
Pictureline – 305 West 700 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
$49.00; Register Here

About Sigma Dealer Workshops
Designed in collaboration with Sigma dealers around the country, the program engages photographers eager to learn new techniques and refine their photography skills through a series of classroom lectures and hands-on workshops. Led by Sigma technical representatives and photography experts, each workshop session hones in on a specific genre of photography such as portraiture, landscape, astrophotography and more. Normally a two-day workshop event, day one will focus on theory and educational best practices such as lighting, gear setup, camera settings, lens focal length and more. On day two, attendees put their newly acquired knowledge to the test with immersive hands-on, real world photo shoots and photo walks. Photographers of all skill levels, from novice to professional, are welcome to join in. The upcoming workshops schedule and details, including registration, cost, special promotions and agenda, can be found on the Sigma Events webpage.

About Sigma Corporation
Craftsmanship. Precision. Dedication. Since 1961, Sigma has been devoted to the pursuit of advancing photographic technology. Unique to the industry, the family-owned business produces its high-quality, award-winning cine and camera lenses, DSLR and mirrorless cameras, flashes, filters and accessories from its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility located in Aizu, Japan.

In 2012, the company introduced the Sigma Global Vision with three distinct lens lines: Art, Contemporary and Sport. Designed for industry camera mount systems including Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Pentax, Sony and Sigma, each lens is handcrafted and tested in Japan to ensure a high-performance, premium product that is purpose-built to last.

Sigma continues its tradition of imaging excellence with the mirrorless sd Quattro, sd Quattro H and the compact dp Quattro camera line. Leveraging the ultra-high resolution Foveon sensor, the Sigma Quat-tro cameras are designed to produce the highest quality image with every shot.