Creating the Photograph: Jaroslav’s, “Milky Pinups”

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Creating the Photograph is an original series where we interview photographers about a photo that they shot and how it was achieved. The results are some knowledge passed on to you. Want to be featured? Email chrisgampat[at]thephoblographer[dot]com

Jaroslav is a Polish photographer that hails from London. He has a Fine Arts background with a degree is Architecture–which taught him how to solve lots of complex problems. That problem solving helped with the founding of this studio: AurumLight (WARNING NSFW LINK). The studio specializes in limited calendars, advertising, and conceptual photography; and they’ve had many campaigns in Europe and the US.

So when we found Jaroslav’s Milk PinUps, we were very intrigued as to how they were done. We talked to Jaroslav for this latest edition of Creating the Photograph.

And here’s his story.

The Concept

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Milky Pinups Series is an upcoming 2014 calendar and continuation of well received AurumLight’s Milk Calendar for 2013.

For the 2014 Milk Calendar – I choose to illustrate The Pinups look and work around the classic references. Mainly based on the iconic work of Gil Elvgren. If you are enthusiast of the genre you will easily identify the classic pieces.

The Gear

Cameras:

Phase One IQ180
+Lens Schneider 80mm f/2.8 LS AF Lens
Nikon D800
+Lens: Nikkor 50mm f/1.4, 70-200mm F2.8

Tripod:
Gitzo GT5660SCT Giant with a Manfrotto 405 Geared head

Lighting:
Paul C Buff, Einstein E640
+ 86″ PLM, Giant softbox, giant stripbox

Paul Buff Cyber Commander

… and many liters of Milk…

 

The Shoot

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Liquid Illustrations are made with milk or water. Using special lighting and camera the movement and the splash of liquid is frozen in time and morphed into hi-fashion.

Yes, real milk is thrown onto a real model. Every single element, splash and prop is photographed on the day and in the same time. We really throw liquid on the body of the model – it is as simple as that.

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But at the same time it is a very precise, and “technically” orientated work that requires a lot of dedication and patience from the whole team.

It reminds me a lot of golf. at the first glance it is quite simple really. There is a guy with a funny looking stick. He whacks the ball and walks… whack the ball and walks, whack the ball and hits the hole. But when you start looking into it is not as straightforward as you first thought, his position and posture, the kind of club matters, it is important how much force on prescission you apply to the attempt.

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It is almost exactly the same scenario just a different environment – the effect you are after sometimes require a specific tool, force or precision to make a shaped splash, the kind of milk is important too.

The shoot itself is reasonably quick, however setting out all of the elements testing and cleaning after, takes a great deal of time. All together to shoot a single illustration you might need a couple of hours to a whole day. It all depends on your concept.

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Post Production

Some illustrations need around 200 frames to make sure that we have everything, others even more than that.

The bottom line is that every single element you see in the final illustration comes from a RAW photograph–it is not painted in Photoshop. The number of frames with separate splashes of milk are layered in Photoshop and carefully seamlessly mixed to complete the dress.

Post production can take anything from a few hours to a few days, it all depends on how elaborate the illustration is.
I am just used to projects with a long creative process which pay offs in the long run and I just like to take my time. I love to shoot and work with people, there is nothing better than that but I like the post production process too. You need to be happy with sitting for hours working with photoshop . It is 21st century darkroom, you can love it or hate it, but that is a reality.

Working towards the specific look is a particularly challenging. Our first series was based on the sketches and if we moved away from the original idea gaining more interesting compositions it was no big deal. But if you are trying to recreate an image known by so many it is pretty tricky. When you succeed it feels great, it says a lot about your work and approach. It is the simplest information for your clients that you can work with a specific brief and accomplished desired look.

We had a great deal of fun working on the PinUp series. We photographed it during the last twelve months in California, Frankfurt, London, Lucerne and Venice during my seminars and workshops. Every single image was done in front of the audience and there were no spaces for mistakes.

A Sneak Peek at More From the Series

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The Calendar – Milky Pinups – will be available for ordering and shipping starts in November!

More info here on the Blog

©2013 http://AurumLight.com , Jaroslav Wieczorkiewicz, All rights reserved

 

MILKY PINUPS Calendar 2014

©2013 AurumLight.com , Jaroslav Wieczorkiewicz, All rights reserved

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