VSCO FILM // BEFORE AND AFTERS, WORKFLOW, ETC.
fast forward a few years and through a number of events we had stumbled our way into wedding photography and headed down what would eventually become our greatest adventure. upon starting the image is found in 2002, we made the decision to shoot all of our professional work digitally. our processing has changed over the years, but the look of the films we learned on were always the gold standard in our eyes. let's be honest though, nothing we processed digitally could even come close to the look and feel of the film images we got back from the lab. so we did the best we could with what we had and satisfied our appetite for film by shooting lots of our personal work on it.
fast forward to mid 2011and an opportunity came up that would change all of this. a band of amazing folks were putting together a startup called VISUAL SUPPLY CO with BIG ideas to create a revolutionary set of new tools for photographers. it was an incredible honor when they asked me to come on board and an exciting challenge to be a part of developing a new way of processing for photographers. countless hours of testing, developing, and testing some more VSCO FILM was born and i can honestly say that i have never been more excited about post processing our images. the colors, tones, contrast, grain, and everything else i love about shooting film has been perfectly emulated, developed, and matched so that i can process my digital images exactly the way we've always wanted. as if that wasn't enough, the time savings we're experiencing while delivering a superior product for our clients is a major bonus.
BEFORE VSCO FILM our workflow looked like this:
process RAW image for basic adjustments: white balance/exposure/brightness/etc...this process would normally take me an average of 8 hours per wedding. because of this massive time suck, we would regularly outsource this process, to the tune of a few hundred dollars per wedding. once the basic RAW processing was complete, that level of processing was what our clients would see in their online gallery, facebook, proofs, digital negatives, etc. then if our clients had ordered an album, prints, etc. those images would be brought into photoshop individually and retouched and have our blend of actions run on them to give them our "look."
WITH VSCO FILM our workflow looks like this:
we import all RAW images into lightroom 4 and in the "apply during import" dialogue i'll apply one of my go-to films that consistently deliver the look we love, in our case this is usually kodak portra 400++ or fuji 160C++. this speeds up our workflow in a number of ways: first, assuming our images are exposed well and the white balance is close (we shoot most wedding images in auto white balance) then that initial film setting usually gets the images 90% to where they need to be, and to be honest a majority of the images we deliver don't need much more than that initial setting. for the images that do need some more tweaking we'll make a quick run through in the quick develop panel making slight adjustments as needed. for any blocks of images that need the look of a different film (most commonly for blocks we'll switch to monochrome) we'll just apply that film setting to that group and continue on. once the processing on the set of images is finished, they are presented to the clients in this stage, with no further work needed on them to give them our "look" and the only additional work that would be done to any images for albums, prints, etc. would be minor retouching in photoshop or any dodge/burn finessing of the image. with this method of processing, we are ripping through 800-1000 image weddings in 2-3 hours tops, and delivering a much more finished, and polished look for our clients than we ever were before. HAPPY DANCE!
SOME THINGS WE LOVE ABOUT VSCO FILM:
- faster processing. as i mentioned above, my post time on an average wedding dropped from 8-10 hours to 2-3. yay for more time living not in front of the computer :)
- a consistent look to all our work. since we're using the same 3-5 films for all of our images, there is a visual continuity to our body of work.
- when processing, i'm thinking like a film shooter. having shot film since i started, i enjoy the lack of options when you're out shooting in terms of what look your images will have. "well, i have a roll of portra 400, a roll of tri-x, and a roll of tmax-3200 with me, which one works for this situation?" the lack of choice is wonderful! with VSCO FILM i force myself into that same lack of choice which, in my mind, makes processing more enjoyable and way more efficient. just like with film, with VSCO FILM you quickly learn your favorite films and learn which ones apply best in certain situations. i know that my stock of films i'll choose from in VSCO FILM is only 4 or 5 so any decisions i have to make while processing can be done on the fly and i know what results i'll be getting with each one.
- my goal in lightroom is to get in and out as quickly as possible while still delivering an amazing image for our clients, so while our processing is usually a "one and done" situation, for some truly special images, or the truly stubborn ones, there are a plethora of options in the supplied toolkit to fine tune and customize our results.
- subtle results that let our images do the talking, not the processing. after 10+ years as a professional photographer, i've come to realize that over the years, the images that have stuck with me and made an impact have never done so because of the processing on the image, it was the image. i love that with VSCO FILM the processing of the image, while it looks incredible, is subtle and does not distract from the heart of the image.
ONE THING WE HATE ABOUT VSCO FILM:
- the uncontrollable urge to go back and re-process everything i've shot digitally over the past 12 years.
to see some before and afters of images we've processed with VSCO FILM in adobe lightroom 4, ROLL YOUR MOUSE OVER THE IMAGES BELOW
to pick up a set for yourself or learn more, GO HERE < - - -
kodak portra 400++
fuji 160C++ / darker skies ++
kodak tri-x +
kodak portra 400++
kodak portra 800HC / orange skin fix
kodak tri-x 400+
kodak portra 400++
fuji 160C++ / tone: fuji
kodak portra 400++ / tone: kodak
kodak portra 400++ / vignette +
kodak portra 400++
kodak portra 400++
kodak portra 400++
JUNEBUG WEDDINGS // BEST OF THE BEST 2011
SHOOTSHOP / DECEMBER 7TH, 2011 / OCEANSIDE . CA
come join us for an intimate, intense one-day shootshop focussing on kicking ass and standing out in your market through unique personal branding and amazing imagery. we will be discussing the steps we've taken in our business to carve out a profitable and artistically fulfilling niche in the most competitive wedding market in the world. we will spend the first part of the day focussing on branding, finding photographic inspiration, finding clients that "get" you and have to have you, and managing those client's expectations. after lunch we will be heading out on the town for a shoot showing how we make our unique, creative portraits in any environment. we will demonstrate shooting in a wide variety of everyday situations and give practical, specific techniques about how to walk away with stellar images every time. we will use a real couple in real world locations to teach our distinct style of casual posing, un-posing, thinking creatively, and utilizing natural (harsh and soft) and artificial light of all shapes and sizes. after the shoot we'll lay ourselves bare and show all the images from the shoot then reveal all of our post-processing techniques in photoshop and discuss our digital workflow. so bring your thinking caps and notepads cuz it's going to be a brain busting busy day!
the shootshop will take place on DECEMBER 7TH, 2011 from 9-6-ish followed by a deeeelish no holds barred ask whatever the hell you want for as long as you want wrap up dinner. we love to chat with photographers and answer as many specific questions as possible so we've scheduled plenty of time to eat and mingle with our intimate group :)
at our brand spanking NEW STUDIO in OCEANSIDE, CA.
we believe strongly in the importance of providing personal attention to all our workshop attendees so we will only be allowing a MAXIMUM OF TWENTY people to attend.
the shootshop fee is $750 USD or $1125 USD for two people from the same studio. we will be providing breakfast, lunch, and the wrap up dinner...so all the yummies in your tummies are covered!
HOW TO REGISTER?
your non-refundable payment of the full shootshop fee will serve as your registration. the link below will take you to paypal where you can securely pay your $750 USD or $1125 USD for studio teams registration via credit card or paypal balance. after your payment and registration is complete we will send you more information with all the pertinent details for travel arrangements, location, directions, etc. so if you're ready to rock click below to register...
WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING?
"nate+jac, for lack of better words, you guys rocked my world! The shootshop was so beyond my expectations, and it was a source of such great inspiration not just for my business, but also has refreshed my perspective as an artist. thanks for many priceless faces, laughs, moments, lessons, etc. I feel so blessed to have shared in it all! the thing I walked away with the most was the freedom to just be myself and operate the business according to who i am, not who others want me to be - it already feels like a huge weight is lifted off of my shoulders." - ashey parsons
"i can't express enough how much this workshop has and will improve my game. i have a long way to go, but at least now I know which road to take..." - chris vaugn
"BITCHIN'. that's all i got. cause other than that - there just aren't words big enough to describe all that i took out of 15 hours with you two fine folk." - ben harms
"nate and jac...you guys totally inspired me and answered my bazillion questions...thanks so much for your openness and approachability! You guys have an awesome relationship and I am in *awe* of your talent. I thought you guys were uber talented before I came to the shootshop and now...well....you are up on a pedestal that I hope to one day climb up!" - sarah goodman
"The shootshop was better than what I thought it would be. To be honest, making such a large investment for a one-day seminar is scary because I'm never sure if it'll be worth it. Trying to sum up my experience with adjectives and metaphors won't do it justice. Beyond all else, Nate and Jaclyn were 100% real. They didn't hide behind smoke and mirrors, answered every question with extra detail, and kept things fun. They're an amazing team, but they remain humble via honesty, humor, and self-deprecation all the things that makes my heart feel all warm-n-fuzzy.
If you have an opportunity to attend this workshop, DO IT! Even if it means having a yard sale, selling an organ, or naming your first child Natelyn to fund the experience, DO IT! You'll be inspired and rejuvenated a thousand times over.
Nate and Jaclyn, thank you. These two words seem so small to express how I feel, but I hope they'll suffice until I can think of something better. You are some of the most amazing people in the industry and I'm honored to have spent so much time with you. Thank you for giving of yourselves unconditionally and sincerely." - jasmine star
"Nate and Jaclyn, thank you both so much for allowing me to be part of the shootshop. My head is still spinning (all the way around) with so much information being shared. Seeing the images from the day brings everything full circle. The word that keeps coming to my mind is passion. Your passion for your craft, your family, your ever-increasing circle of friends/fans and for life is the very definition of success. More inspiring yet is your ability to instill that passion in others." - mark
"Nate and Jaclyn...You guys were so open and honest about everything. Your shootshop was enlightening and demystifying at the same time. As a photographer, I am definitely walking away with a whole new perspective and I am so grateful for that." - jason tran
"nate, jaclyn, you are two of the most genuine-ish and humble-ish people, thanks for much for the inspiration and all the wonderful tips. I'd do this again in a heartbeat!" - chris waters
you can also check out some pics created at previous shootshops HERE.
please stop by and take a peek around the big white box site - - - > THEIMAGEISFOUND.COM/BIGWHITEBOX
p.s. we hate to break it to you, but the holidays are right around the corner and if you or any of your friends are looking for radical pictures of your kids before the holidays, now's the time to book your session! please EMAIL US for more info or to schedule your session.
WE BUILT A STUDIO...THEN WE PARTIED
* street visibility
* our own bathroom
* our own parking
* larger than 800 sf to accommodate a meeting area, work space for three people, and a shooting space
* a landlord that would allow us to do whatever we wanted to the space
* close to our home in oceanside
well after looking for weeks at many bleak options, we finally stumbled upon a newly vacated space right down the street from our house. like, exactly one mile from our house! it sits smack dab on pacific coast highway right near the juncture of oceanside and carlsbad just a few blocks from the cool breeze of the pacific ocean. this space met everything on our list&street visibility? yup, over 2500 cars per day pass by! our own bathroom? yup. private parking? yup, four spots! bigger than 800sf? yup, 900sf. chill landlord? yup. close to our house? yup. we were giddy.
after some lease negotiations, lots of "oh my crap should we do this" conversations between us, we pulled the trigger, signed the lease and got the keys to our new space in the middle of february. party on.
what happened over the next three months preparing the studio for it's grand opening was nothing short of insanity. we we started to conceptualize and design out the space we said a simple little sentence that would make our lives a living oh my crapfest, "let's build everything from scratch." in hindsight, that little sentence was a pivotal moment in the project, it was the source of endless frustrations, but also the source of our greatest inspiration and innovation moving forward. our previous studio basically looked like an IKEA catalog, i think literally everything in there was from the big blue box, minus our office chairs. our personal challenge started with "let's not buy anything at IKEA this time" and slowly morphed into building essentially everything for the new space besides our chairs and the couch. home depot became our second home with well over one hundred trips there over the course of our build. the only things we didn't do ourselves for the build was a wall demo, painting, and putting epoxy on the floors&everything else was done my myself, jaclyn, my father (who's skill, patience, and sacrifice was an absolute life saver), and a few wonderful friends who came by to help out.
throughout the entire build we kept a tumblr with updates of all the projects and behind the scenes photos of the buildout, you can check that out here - - - > www.THESTUDIOISFOUND.TUMBLR.com
below are a few random photos from the buildout....
our dear friends from SHADE TREE FILMS put together this documentary of our grand opening, and i know we're totally biassed since finishing this place was like giving birth, but we think it's the best video ever made. a million thank you's friends :) :) :)
our SMILEBOOTH was also in full robot party mode all night...clicky click the video below to see all of the pictures very very fast.
below are some images of the studio completely finished just minutes before the first guests arrived for the grand opening. a HUGE HUGE HUGE thanks to our dear friend nellie from STEMS DESIGN STUDIO for providing the florals and decor bits for the party. another GIGANTIC thanks to our dear friend ashley parsons who along with her husband and fellow mammoth man jeremy flew all the way out from kansas city to attend and take these fantastic photos of our space.
MY SUPER DUPER DAD
STEMS DESIGN STUDIO
SHADE TREE FILMS
EVENTS OF LOVE AND SPLENDOR
THE FLASHDANCE - provided a custom playlist made specifically for our grand opening party, which we still listed to almost daily we love it so much. if you'd like to make your ears happy, you can download the playlist here ---> part one ---> part two ---> part three (right click/save as to download)
now that the studio is finished and we've been settling in for a few months we can't wait to share what we've actually be using it for...but that will have to wait for another post another day :)
TOP TEN WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS 2011
the article is now online over at AMERICAN PHOTO.
we would like to throw out a special thank you to both of our parents who's support of us, our marriage, business and especially all the help with watching our loinfruits while we shoot have made it possible for us to devote time to this craft we love. also, to all of our photography friends, thank you for constantly supporting, lifting, and challenging us to move higher bigger better faster stronger in this crazy wild world of wedding photography. we love you all.
the article features images from RACHEL AND ANDREW'S DESERT SESSION and LEE AND CAM'S AUSTRALIAN WEDDING :) the magazine should be on shelves now if you want to grab a copy, or if you're into digital formats you can get one here.
WHAT A WONDERFUL WAY TO START 2011 :)
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