Thursday, June 9, 2016

MIAMI HEAT - Kako smo fotografirali Dašo Podržaj za naslovnico Playboya

Postaviti lepotico pred odbijač starega kabrioleta res ni težko. A v njej zbuditi zapeljivko, jo pripraviti na flirtanje s kamero in vse skupaj na sočen način ujeti v čudoviti, pridušeni večerni svetlobi z osmimi lučmi je umetnost, ki jo mora obvladati sleherni Playboyev fotograf. V moji reportaži si lahko preberete, zakaj je to včasih mnogo težje, kot se zdi in kaj za vraga stoji za vso to silno filozofijo dobre fotografije.



Kot vsako leto je bil Miami tudi to pomlad kraj zločina za skupino Playboyevih fotografov, ki so so nadeli ime Shoot The Centerfold, čeprav ne predavajo le o fotografiranju dupleric. Skupaj imajo fantje že več kot 100 let delovnih izkušenj in letos je Jarmo (idejni vodja projekta) poleg običajne ekipe k sodelovanju povabil tudi Josha Ryana, zaslužnega za kar precej modno obarvanih piktorialov v ameriškem Playboyu zadnjih let, vse do prenehanja njegove pogodbe ob koncu golote marca letos. Dodali so celo tretji dan predavanj, namenjen poslovni strategiji sodobnih fotografov za novodobne čase.



Seveda v Miamiju nikakor ni šlo brez Slovencev - delovni ekipi petnajstih deklet sta se tokrat pridružili lepotički Ines Juranovič in Daša Podržaj, slednja naravnost iz rubrike Sanjsko Dekle v slovenskem in hrvaškem Playboyu. Dašin fatalni izgled, markantna višina in obline na pravem mestu so že doma polnile modne strani in koledarje, na Floridi pa je postala ena najbolj zaželenih modelov med šestdesetglavo množico udeležencev polne aprilske delavnice.



Fotografi so čudna sorta ljudi - na tisoče evrov porabijo za aparate, luči, objektive in druge prepotrebne dodatke, potem pa dobijo občutek, da so si s tovrstno investicijo zagotovili vstopnico za svojo bogato prihodnost. Vendar temu še zdaleč ni tako. Nujna je predvsem investicija v osebni fotografski razvoj. Tukaj fotografi prepogosto zaprejo svoj mošnjiček in se prepustijo toku. Zdi se jim, da bo lepo dekle pred objektivom naredilo dovolj za dobro fotografijo. A obstaja ogromna razlika med čudovito fotografijo in fotografijo čudovitega dekleta na njej. Šele ko znaš kombinacijo svojega subjekta in svetlobe ujeti v vizualno smiselno celoto na estetsko zanimiv način, si na pravi poti h dobri fotografiji. Za to pa je potrebno znanje.  



A obstaja tudi druga plat zgodbe - zgolj oprema nas res ne bo pripeljala do vrhunskih rezultatov, vendar tudi stara in prevečkrat ponovljena mantra, da oprema ni pomembna, ne drži vedno. Dobra oprema je za profesionalnega fotografa najpomembnejše orodje, ki ga pripelje do želenih rezultatov. Profesionalna oprema pri sami izvedbi fotografiranja pripomore največ in eliminira morebitne nepotrebne komplikacije med samim fotografskim procesom. Prav zaradi dejstva, da je potrebno svoji opremi neomajno zaupati ne glede na situacijo, je Shoot The Centerfold izbral fotoaparate Phase One, studijsko opremo Hensel in modifikatorje Chimera



Teoretik Baudrillard je nekoč dejal, da je nemogoče izostriti nekoga, ki je kot človek neoster. Fotke bodo dobre le, če bo tudi portretiranec pred objektivom dal vse od sebe. Enostavno ne moreš narediti dobrih posnetkov, če tisti na drugi strani objektiva ne sodeluje. Zato je delavnico tudi letos oplemenitil Gary T. Cole, ki je dolga leta služil kot urednik fotografije ameriškega Playboya. Kot vsak etablirani urednik tudi Gary zagovarja teorijo, da mora biti odnos med fotografom in urednikom fotografije konstanten, brez neprijetnih presenečenj in brez turbulenc. Fotograf mora znati plavati med morskimi psi in se uspešno prebiti do kopnega. Urednik namreč ne more objaviti njegovih izgovorov namesto fotografij!



Glamur fotografija, katere del je tudi naš Playboy in o kateri interdisciplinarno uči Shoot The Centerfold, je prav tako subjektivna reč kot fotografija mode - jasno začrtana definicija o tem, kaj je prav in kaj ni pri obeh ne obstaja. Slika mora preprosto delovati, ko jo pogledaš, da lahko rečeš "vau". Povprečni konzumant take slike ne bo porabil več kot par sekund ob gledanju, predno bo polistal dalje, zato mora podoba privabiti pozornost ob prvem ošvrku. 



Ogromno zaslug za dobro fotografijo ima kakopak svetloba. Učenje obvladovanja svetlobe je proces, ki traja vse življenje. Zelo malo ljudi lahko z gotovostjo trdi, da jo res zna ukrotiti in obvladovati. Ključ dobre osvetlitve ni v dodajanju luči tja, kjer jo je premalo, pač pa ustvarjanje vzdušja, ki kar najbolj pripomore k zgodbi fotografije. Na delavnici so se slušatelji naučili, da je dobra osvetlitev podobna dobri plastični operaciji - diskretna, nevsiljiva in komaj opazna. 



Stara šola Playboyevih fotografov je s svojim Rembrandtovskim pristopom k osvetlitvi pustila neizbrisljiv pečat za generacije fotografov, ki so jo pogosto - a dostikrat neuspešno - poskusili reproducirati. V Miamiju so se udeleženci delavnice lahko na lastne oči preizkusili tudi v tem izzivu, pod mojim mentorstvom mnogi tudi nadvse uspešno.



Dandanes so fotografi v dirki za dobro fotografijo postavljeni pred najtežji izziv v stoletju in pol njenega obstoja - industrija podob od njih zahteva, da imajo neskončen spekter interdisciplinarnega znanja ter da znajo odlično kombinirati tehnične spretnosti z ustvarjalnostjo. Vrednost estetsko zadovoljive podobe je večja, kot je kadarkoli bila prav zaradi virtualne poplave povprečnih slik, ki potrošnika oblegajo na vsakem koraku in polnijo njegovo življenje tako na družbenih omrežjih, kot tudi v oglaševalskem prostoru in časopisih. Toda ne pozabite - za dobre fotografije (dobre, ne zgolj manj povprečne!) bo vedno prostor, ne glede na prezasičenost trga. Zato ne pozabite v vaše podobe vedno vtkati koščka svoje duše.

Monday, May 30, 2016

A Playboy Special Edition dedicated just to me... and how I shot the cover for it


As part of the festivities for Playboy Slovenia's 15 years of existence the magazine decided to publish a unique, one-of-a-kind Special Edition. 

Every month since 2004 Playboy brought the readers Slovenia's most beautiful celebrities, models, actresses, athletes, singers and girls next door on Playboy's "page three", a section titled "Sanjsko dekle" (Dream girl) which gained a cult following over the past 12 years of being featured in the magazine and having almost exclusively been photographed by yours truly. As a big tribute to many of the beautiful ladies who were brave enough to come in front of my camera and share the magic, the 130-page Special Edition featuring hundreds of my photographs hit the newsstands as an independent issue this spring. 

I am extremely proud of being featured in this Playboy Special Issue, an entire magazine dedicated to my work on the Dream Girl section over the past dozen years. Not many photographers get a chance of having their very own Playboy Special Edition published. I can recall just a handful of veterans, legendary glamour photographers like Richard Fegley and Pompeo Posar. Of course it is also impossible to properly do justice to all the girls that have been depicted on Playboy Slovenia's "page three". It is just a glimpse at their grace that has been captured over all these years. 
Upon deciding on the cover model for this Special Edition of Playboy the selection was narrowed down to just a handful of girls. The editors finally went with Nataša Naneva who graced the February 2016 issue of Playboy with her energetic cover shot during the STC Seminar in Santorini. Nataša is an actress, hair and hand model, certified zumba instructor and an ambassador for several national advertising brands, such as Žito and Subrina.

Setting up a cover shoot is never an easy job. Cover images must speak, they must convey emotions and leave the viewer with the desire to buy the magazine. If the image is not powerful enough, it is just a pretty picture. No editor will entrust you the cover commission and hope for just a pretty photograph. Your images should celebrate the female beauty, but they should also add a touch of personal style, a signature look, something that no one else could have taken. This will make you stand out from the crowd.

The challenge for this cover (my sixtieth cover in a row for Playboy) was creating a moody atmosphere using just constant lighting - LED, neon and tungsten sources. I decided to use complementary colors on the model and the background and thus create an eye-pleasing visual harmony. Such schemes should always be used with caution so they do not become jarring. They should create maximum contrast and maximum stability at the same time.

The equipment used was a custom built 3ft neon sticklight with 54W bulb, a dimmable 312 LED Panel with adjustable color temperature (3200K setting), one 1x4’ Striplight with just modeling lamp on (250W) at 2/3 proportional power and Lupolux DayLED 650 Fresnel daylight at 55% power (for background). The final cover image was shot on Canon EOS 5DsR, 24-70/2.8L lens at 54mm, 1/50s, f/3.2 and ISO1600 at 2500 K. 


Such setup floods the model with prominent greenish light cast, but does so carefully and with controlled amount of precision. The image color hue is further enhanced by putting together an 80B filter (used to convert tungsten to daylight) and a sepia filter in front of the lens. The additional cast this combination produces  delivers the final punch to the picture’s color balance, which I tweaked in Lightroom to my liking (Tint +6 Magenta, Shadows +25) for the desired effect.


The final cover is here:

Saturday, April 23, 2016

The special 15 Years of Playboy collaboration (Retrospective Issue) Cover - The Wife Diaries

Of all the burning questions I get asked in my career as a Playboy photographer, among all the "whats", "whos" and "whys", the most commonly asked question must be this: “How does your wife handle all that nude model shooting business of yours?”

To answer once and for all, here she is on the cover of Playboy Magazine. An unyielding woman. A mother. A wife.
100% natural. 100% proud.

Špela Kink Bravničar on the cover of Playboy Magazine is sporting the executive contour hairdo by Loui Ferry and wearing La Perla Swarovski Emerald Cobra bra styled by Barbara Žgalin/CDB. Make-up by Romina Regvat. Shot at ZoomZoom Photo Studio, Ljubljana, Slovenija.


Špela Kink Bravničar Spela Bravnicar Aleš Ales wife Playboy cover nude žena gola naked

Monday, February 29, 2016

FOTOGRAFSKA DELAVNICA NA PELJEŠCU April 2016

FOTOGRAFSKA DELAVNICA 
Z ALEŠEM BRAVNIČARJEM

Fotografija Nane Wolke, posneta na lanski delavnici v 500 let stari vinski kleti

Ste se od nekdaj želeli preizkusiti v modni in glamur fotografiji in pred objektiv postaviti čudovito manekenko ali morda celo Playboyevo sanjsko dekle? 

Sedaj je prava priložnost!



WORKSHOP z ALEŠEM BRAVNIČARJEM
28. april – 1.maj 2016
4 dni/3 noči trajajoča delavnica modne in glamur fotografije
Pelješac, Hrvaška



Lokacija nastanitve na polotoku Pelješac, Hrvaška


Le kdo si ne želi pokukati v svet Playboyevega fotografa in spoznati skrivnosti njegovega poklica? Aleš Bravničar, ki že 15 let soustvarja vsebino najbolj zaželene revije za moške, pa tudi  številne editoriale za modne časopise in fotografske zgodbe za oglaševalske agencije, bo na delavnici v družbi profesionalnega modela razkril nekaj svojih pristopov za izvrstne fotografije, ki navdušujejo urednike po vsem svetu.

Ena od lokacij v idilični zapuščeni vasici Pelješca
 
4 dni/3 noči, polni penzion, 
629€ z DDV

Kotizacija vključuje predavanja in praktični del fotografiranj na lokaciji, delo z modelom/modeli, uporabo studijskih bliskovnih luči in modifikatorjev, POLNI PENZION (3 zajtrke, 3 kosila in 3 večerje s pijačo) ter nastanitev (3 nočitve) v sodobnih in udobnih apartmajih Luna (4****) v ribiški vasici Lovište na skrajnem zahodu dalmatinskega polotoka Pelješca. V ceno so vključeni tudi vsi transferji na lokacije in nazaj. Prihod do Pelješca je v lastni režiji (opcija avto, avtobus iz Zagreba, letalo do Dubrovnika + transfer).

Predavanje in terensko delo na lanski delavnici

Na delavnici, ki bo primerna za napredne amaterje in profesionalne fotografe z željo po nadgradnji svojega znanja, bo poudarek na Aleševi najbolj priljubljeni tehniki - glamur fotografiji na lokaciji. Spoznali boste nekatere tehnike studijske fotografije, ki so primerne za lokacijo, izpilili znanje o uporabi odbojnikov in se preizkusili v postopkih izdelave piktoriala, kot ga Aleš fotografira za izdaje Playboya po vsem svetu.

Izbor Aleševih naslovnic za domačo in mednarodne izdaje Playboya

Za delavnico potrebujete fotoaparat, ki bo imel možnost proženja studijski bliskavic (X-kontakt). Priporočamo zoom objektive 24-70mm ter 70-200mm. 

Lanskoletni fotografski "arzenal" slušateljev delavnice

Alešev model bo manekenka Nana Wolke, sveži obraz slovenske modne scene, ki je trenutno med zelo iskanimi modeli mlade generacije pri nas. 


Model na letošnji delavnici Nana Wolke na prvih straneh Playboya

Število udeležencev je strogo omejeno na 8, zato pohitite in si zagotovite svoje mesto še danes!

Fotografija, posneta lani na Pelješcu za piktorial v Playboyu


Naš drugi model na delavnici: Svetlana Cigoj (slika spodaj):


PROGRAM DELAVNICE PELJEŠAC 2016

DAN 1 (Čet)
15.00 - 18.00 Prihod do Apartmajev Luna v Lovištu (Pelješac, Hrvaška)
18.00 - 19.00 Pozdrav, namestitev, registracija
19.00 Večerja in druženje

DAN 2 (Pet)
09.00 - 10.00 Zajtrk
10.00. - 12.00 Prezentacija in teoretčni del s projekcijo
12.00 - 14.00 Kosilo
14.00 - 18.00 Fotografiranje na lokaciji, praktično delo z modelom (Lokacija 1)
19.00 Večerja in pregled najboljših fotografij dneva

DAN 3 (Sob)
09.00 - 10.00 Zajtrk
10.00. Transfer v srce otoka – Na lokacijo vinarije Bartulović
11.00 - 13.00 Fotografiranje, praktično delo z modelom (Lokacija 2)
13.00 - 15.00 Kosilo na lokaciji
15.00 - 18.00 Fotografiranje, praktično delo z modelom (Lokacija 3)
19.00 Večerja in pregled najboljših fotografij dneva, druženje
Transfer do apartmaja

DAN 4 (Ned)
09.00 - 10.00 Zajtrk
10.00 - 12.00 Rezime, zaključno predavanje o poslovnih priložnostih fotografa, podelitev certifikatov
12.00 - 14.00 Kosilo




“Veselim se vaše prijave in udeležbe. Skupaj bomo zopet ustvarili serijo odličnih slik na mojih najljubših lokacijah Pelješca, kamor se vračam vsako leto, in se, kar je najpomembnejše, v pristnem dalmatinskem okolju imeli uživaško dobro!”
Aleš Bravničar


Hugh M. Hefner s fotografijo Aleša Bravničarja v svojem dvorcu


Prijave in informacije: 
Marina Antonija Premec (antonija@venevent.com)
+385 1 48 22 221
Organizator: VenEvent d. o. o., Gundulićeva 3/III, 10000 Zagreb, Hrvaška

Možnost plačila na obroke po dogovoru z organizatorjem.
Možnost plačila v EUR in HRK.
DDV je vštet v ceno.





KAJ O DELAVNICI PRAVIJO NADIYA, NATAŠA, ULA IN ANDREJA?



Kliknite in si oglejte še uradni poster:

Monday, January 11, 2016

NATAŠA NANEVA SEXY COVER SHOOT IN DETAIL

 
The February 2016 issue of Playboy Slovenia hit the newsstands this week. It is a content packed issue featuring great models and great articles. My Nataša Naneva pictorial, shot in Republic of Macedonia and Greece, is featured in this very issue and will ring a bell with all the STC attendees who had the opportunity of attending the Santorini workshop in October 2015. Several pages from this pictorial were shot during the two weeks of the seminar when I was in beautiful Oia, the very place that hosted the Shoot The Centerfold seminar workshop, giving lectures with Jarmo Pohjaniemi on the art of becoming a successful photographer and mastering different forms of lighting.
 
The attendees had the opportunity of witnessing the creation of a magazine cover from the very basic idea to the final edit with the help of Capture Integration's own Dave Gallagher, who brought three Phase One cameras to the seminar. I was eager to test one of them for my cover shot. Despite being a Canon Ambassador in Slovenia, I also own several other camera brands (Hasselblad and ARRI to name a few) and am always up for a challenge with new gear that comes my way. Using two Canon bodies (the 50 megapixel 5DsR and my faithful compact G1X) for the rest of the pictorial, the mighty Phase One was a logical choice for seamlessly combining the strong mid-day Santorini sun with powerful Hensel strobes on this photo session.
 
I started setting set up the scene around noon, facing West towards the sea. We were tethering to a 17" MacBook Pro with the latest version of Capture One and to an iPad for instant focus confirmation. Dave Gallagher took the DIT helm for the shoot. The camera I fired up was a Phase One IQ3 60 (with 60 megapixel CCD) and I mounted the Schneider LS 240mm/4.5 lens for the lovely bokeh and compressed perspective. Such set-up needed a sturdy tripod, so I put the camera on a Gitzo Series 3 with the Really Right Stuff ball head and L-bracket.
 
The strobes were all from Hensel: One Expert D 1000 with a 3x4' Hensel softbox at 7.8/10 power, one Expert D 1000 with 1x3' Hensel strip for fill below at 3.8/10 power, one Expert D 1000 with a 10-degree grid on a standard reflector and 1/8 CTO at 4/10 power for the hair and silhouette and finally a Ringflash around the camera lens, connected to the versatile Porty pack for a tender fill. I put a California Sunbounce PRO white/silver three-quarters to the left side and a black Sunbounce PRO three-quarters above to shadow the harsh mid-day sunlight. The light meter showed 1/500s at f/10 and ISO 100 and this was the setting for all the shots.
 
I shot the cover in less than an hour and in the evening, when the hot Greek air cooled down a bit, everybody at the seminar was participating in a live Capture One edit of the shoot hosted by Dave Gallagher. Jarmo and I were talking about what makes a photograph good or bad, what makes or breaks the pose and what kinds of pictures please the editors or make them angry.
 

One of the shortlisted photographs from the session was published on this month's cover of Playboy Slovenia. It was a great pleasure having all the attendees involved in its process, hearing their opinions and together finding the best possible images for the cover shortlist. I can safely say now that we chose wisely.
 

Check out more hot images on www.playboy.si



BONUS: check the BTS video of the pictorial shoot below:



Sunday, January 3, 2016

THE DARING CREATIVE COVERS OF THE OLD LUI MAGAZINE

 
After 63 years, Playboy USA is about to justify the "read it for the articles" tagline by going non-nude. According to them, the charms of exposing nude celebrities and girls next door has been lost with all the selfies girls publish on Instagram and the broad availability of free internet porn.

For Playboy USA, the next step in pitching to the young urban men between 18 and 30 will be mirroring the very magazine that used to be its spin-off in the sixties and seventies - the french Lui, currently edited by the creative mind of writer Frédéric Beigbeder and back on the newsstands since 2013 with 350,000 copies and 23 editions of top models, amazing pictorials and really great literary articles.


Lui has no ambitions (and never had) of going non-nude and has been continuously publishing A-list celebrities and top models completely bare with great success. For those of you who might not know - the current edition is Lui's fourth reincarnation after 40+ years of turbulent history that also spawned German, Italian, Spanish and American international editions.
The first (and most famous) Lui edition was published with ups and downs by Filipacchi Group from 1963 to 1994, the second series (as "Le nouveau Lui") by Michael Birnbaum from 1995 to 1997, the third (as the pornographic magazine) from 2001 to 2010 and finally, in its present form after the purchase of the title by Jean-Yves Le Fur, Lui was relaunched in September 2013 as a high-end magazine for the modern man.
The creative extravaganza that was the original Lui (and its US counterpart Oui, published in America by none other than Playboy Enterprises), manifested itself in a collection of some of the most amazing and daring covers that ever adorned the French press. Here is a personal collection of my fifty all-time favorites. Enjoy.

http://www.luimagazine.fr/
(All images (C) LUI)