Category Archives: Studio Photography

Studio photography services by Jim Crotty Picture Ohio in Dayton

Moving-In | Hilton Head Photography Studio and Gallery

Over the last couple of days I’ve been gathering and relocating all of my photo biz materials (prints, bins, office furniture, computer gear, lights and light stands, soft boxes, etc.) to my new photography studio and gallery, located @ The Village Exchange on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. The official address is 32 Palmetto Bay Road, #3A.

As you can see by the images included with this post the renovations are nearly complete. The final walk-through inspection was approved and now I’m just waiting on the fixtures for the track lighting, vinyl lettering on my door window and sign. Once the Town of Hilton Head receives notification of my occupancy permit I will have my local vendor’s license and then I can schedule a grand opening. What’s really special is that my daughters Emma and Chloe will be here with me for that grand opening. It will be cool to have them help me plan and present the opening event.

For the last 10 years the space served as a location for a hair salon, so naturally some renovations and updates were needed. I wasn’t originally planning on a new wood floor but now that it’s in place I couldn’t possibly see how carpet would have worked with what I have in mind for this location.

Mike Halley of MH Construction, Inc., here on Hilton Head, has done an excellent job. I’m very pleased and thankful – thankful to have this opportunity to present my photography in such a great location. I’m blessed.

Next Steps | New Studio and Gallery

I’m very happy to announce that the remodel work is officially underway on my new studio and gallery space, located at The Village Exchange shopping area on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Posted here are some pre-remodel and initial progress images. My target for a grand opening and reception will be during the first week of June.

Within this space I will be showing and offering for sale select fine art prints from my growing collection of nature and landscape photography and presenting small group workshops and lessons on nature photography and digital imaging. I will also be providing studio and location portrait photography services for individuals, families and high school seniors. It was from my work with portrait photography whereby I earned my Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) designation through the Professional Photographers of America, while managing my photography business in Dayton, Ohio.

Additionally I’m considering including the work of other local artists, representing complimentary mediums of nature and local themed art. My goal is to enhance the overall presentation within the gallery beyond my prints of nature and landscape images.

I intend to provide a browsing and shopping experience that is welcoming, peaceful and pleasing for the senses – facilitating the fusion of artist, creative vision and art admirer based on a shared passion for the calming beauty of nature and subject, both in detail and on the landscape.

My goal for a grand opening reception is sometime within the first week of June. Please check back often, either on this blog or by way of Photography by Jim Crotty on Facebook, as I will be posting additional images as progress continues on the studio and gallery here on Hilton Head.

More than just being happy with this next step in my career as a photographer and artist, I am indeed blessed beyond measure. Not only due to the opportunity to pursue my passion but perhaps more so for the opportunity to share my visual discoveries and photographs with others, in presenting my images and through teaching and encouraging the art of photography.

Head Shot Portraits for Twitter and Business Blogs

Professionally taken portrait head shot photographs can go a long way in projecting an entrepreneur’s personality, particularly when used as profile images on Twitter and business blog pages. I provide this service here in my home studio. The following image is from a recent session with Sara who was looking for head shot images to use with her Twitter page for her business.

One of the reasons I like doing these photography sessions here at my home location is the opportunity to use an ample amount of daylight coming through my southward facing windows. I show how this works in the Photographic Moment video tutorial that was shot this past January. It’s worth the extra effort and time it takes for me to move furniture to the side and set-up my lights and backdrops. I’ll be setting-up this arrangement again this Friday for another high school senior portrait session.

The following image was taken using just natural window light –

High School Senior Portrait Photography by Jim Crotty

I’m pleased to announce the addition of senior portrait photography to my offering of professional imaging services. Graduating high school seniors can choose between in-studio portrait sessions at my Centerville, Ohio location or portrait sessions shot outdoors. Senior portrait packages start at $300 and include up to two hour session, proof prints, select custom 5″x7″ and 8″x10″ prints and select images from the session delivered as high resolution JPEG files on DVD. Other options include a private, online proof preview gallery, custom slide presentations, enlargements on canvas up to 30″x40,” and post-production digital editing such as custom black and white conversions, montage composites and spot color.

Also included is a pre-session consultation with the graduating senior and his or her parents. From the consultation meeting I help families in deciding what type of portrait session will best serve the type of senior portraits they have in mind, or perhaps explore some new creative approaches in visually capturing the essence of this very important milestone in a young person’s life. The pre-shoot meeting also helps in building rapport between client and photographer.

One thing that’s important in capturing the client’s true personality is to have fun with the portrait session. I encourage seniors to photograph in a several outfits and bring along items that best symbolize their high school experience, such as medals, letter jackets, art projects, sports items, etc. A favorite playlist on an iPod through studio speakers is encouraged as well.

There’s also an option for a post-session get together to review the images from the photo shoot and select the photographs for both prints and disk. Client consult meetings are held in the comfort and convenience of my home studio where client images are viewed on calibrated, LED Mac cinema display screens.

As with my commercial portrait photography services, I utilize professional-grade Canon EOS DSLR camera bodies and lenses, a variety of studio strobe lights and light boxes and muslin cloth backdrops. All client images are captured in digital raw file format for highest quality standards. All original, raw digital files are carefully archived and retained by Picture Ohio, LLC, which can be accessed in the event the client loses his or her DVD with JPEG image files.

To schedule a free, no-obligation consult meeting, call 937-432-6711 or email jim@calmphotos.com. I serve high school senior clients throughout the Dayton area. Professionally insured, recommended and certified.

Beauty Inside and Out

Over six inches of snow fell over the Dayton area yesterday. All the white stuff on the ground creates the perfect light box just outside my studio window. Here I’ve photographed an orchid using just window light and a black background. The image was captured using the Canon 100mm f2.8 macro lens. I also employed a technique now available in Photoshop CS4 that effectively combines multiple exposures of the same scene, each with a different and distinct focal point, for maximum depth of field and detail.

The second image was taken later yesterday evening, just after sundown in the prairie at nearby Sugarcreek MetroPark.

The Best Light for Portrait Photography

Last January when I sat for the written exam portion of my professional certification there were many, many questions pertaining to lighting ratios for portrait photography, all of which referenced strobe light systems. These lights are an important tool used in the craft of capturing portraits within the studio. I use a variety of light boxes, directional grids and umbrellas within my studio set-up, combined with three Alien Bees strobes. The system is trusted and true, delivering quality results.

But the portrait lighting technique that sometimes produces the best results is the simplest – natural, subdued light through windows. I’m fortunate enough to work in a home studio where I have access to a bank of large windows – all facing southward – within a room with a very high ceiling. Not only that but there’s also a skylight directly above that allows for even more use of natural light for indoor portrait photography.

The week following Christmas I had a session scheduled to photograph Stephen Emerick and his daughter, Shawna. Both were in need of portraits and studio shots to use for a book project they are working on to promote the retreats and workshops they present in Hocking Hills, Ohio, titled “The Nature of Life: Inner Voice Inner Light.” This portrait session provided me with the perfect opportunity to finally take advantage of the pleasing light within the central living area of my Centerville home. In the past I have completed portraits and head shots in a downstairs area near my office. What was catching my creative imagination this time was the indirect, soft light of mid-winter. The furniture was moved out of the way and my backgrounds brought upstairs. I also included a strobe or two, but only as a secondary light source. In the video tutorial below I discuss how to implement various tools for “fill light” on the sides of the subject that are facing away from the window light.

The photo shoot was a great success. The only problem is that the window light tends to fade fairly quickly during this time of year, especially if it is a longer photo shoot scheduled in the afternoon. Nonetheless it wasn’t long following that session that I had another portrait client scheduled for head shots, so for now – and probably for the next two months of winter – my backdrops, posing chairs and reflectors will remain upstairs.