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PO Box 95231
Las Vegas NV 89193
702-682-9514

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Copyright © 2005 Jerome Hamilton
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

 Models and Lighting Workshop

Having models and lighting setups at PSA conferences is an event that is enjoyed by many.  Most photographers love walking into a workshop and seeing a beautiful model in a glamorous evening gown on one side of the room, and then the Crazy Chef or Wacky Conductor on the other side.  I can see it in their eyes...they just canít wait to burn some film through their cameras.  Now, talking the right person into giving this presentation is another story.

This program is not an annual practice, not for lack of a presenter, but because of the many costs that are involved.  Some of the costs that may not come to mind are the models' fees and the price of lighting and background equipment.  These big money factors have kept the activities in this workshop down to a minimum every year, or even completely out of the conference. 

Houston was the last conference that I attended where I had also brought models and lighting setups.  Mary Hall was a key person in making that presentation possible, along with help from Dick and Judy Frieders.  Novatron of Dallas and the F. J. Westcott Company were the two big sponsors that we also could not have done without.  Last, but not least, are all of the models, including Dr. Martin Bruce and Howard Sheffield, who devoted their time at no charge.  On this note, many thanks also go out to the PSA photographers who sent 8x10's to the models to help build their portfolios. 

Since I took a little break and skipped last year's conference in Minnesota, I have been asked to put a program together for Utah.  By the time you read this article, you should see my name on the workshop schedule.  This year will include sponsors who have promised to make things even more exciting than before.  Once again, the F. J. Westcott Company will be the major sponsor for the lighting modifiers and background equipment.  Novatron of Dallas is the key sponsor for all of the lighting equipment.  New to this year will be Bogen Photo Corp., Kodak, and Studio Time Photography & Rental.  You will have to attend the workshop to see what surprises they will bring.  I am still in search of models that will be providing character modeling as well as fashion, glamour, and lifestyle.  Whomever I decide to bring, I promise you fun and exciting people.

I recommend 100 ISO film for both the indoor and outdoor sessions (color or B & W) and 100 ISO setting on digital cameras.  I know a lot of film guys have some amazing high-speed films that are producing incredible results, but you don't want to calculate more shutter speed than your camera's sync and f-stop can handle.  In other words, if the light reading is f.11 at 100 ISO and your camera's maximum aperture is f.22, then the highest film speed that you can have is 400 ISO.  This light reading would be f.22at 400 ISO.  You need to have the shutter speed set at your camera's sync, or slower for flash.  If you have 800, 1000, or 1600 ISO film, you will be overexposing your film.  To allow for a variety of images ranging from head and shoulders to full length, lenses ranging from 50-110mm focal length for 35mm cameras and 80-180mm focal length for medium format cameras are recommended. 

We will be using electronic flash for the indoor session and have three simultaneous setups.  Please bring your own flash cord, either Household to PC or Household to Hot Shoe depending on your camera.  Flash cords similar to Paramount 2-6C (Household to PC) and HS-6C (Household to Hot Shoe) will be suitable for most cameras.  There are a few camera bodies that only have a dedicated hot shoe (you should know if this applies to your camera).  The cords do not need to be longer than 5 feet.  You will need to manually adjust your camera's shutter speed and lens opening.  Check on your camera's shutter sync for flash photography.  Don't get this confused with high-speed sync for a dedicated flash unit.  Photography with a strobe system is different with today's technology.  We will provide flash exposure meter readings at each lighting setup.  If you do not understand some of these directions and are eager to participate, please bring your camera manual and we'll try to help you.  With such an array of cameras available, both film and digital, you may get some advice beforehand from your local camera store on your particular model of camera.

To spice up the workshop a little more this year, I've decided to add a print competition again.  Studio Time Photography and Rental will sponsor this competition and open it to all registered PSA Conference individuals.  Any picture of a registered model is eligible to enter.  Cash and/or prizes will be given to the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place images.  Judges will be selected from PSA members in the Las Vegas, Nevada area and will judge according to PSA standards.  (However, this is NOT a PSA competition, and placement is not counted as acceptance towards PSA medals or star ratings.)  Competition rules and guidelines can be found at http://studiotime.us, and this web site is also where the winning images will be displayed.  Who knows, we may also see some of them published in the PSA Journal!

Come join us at the Cancun Workshop!