Snapping Dreams

Joe McNally’s Hot Shoes Diaries 2

with 4 comments

As I wrote in one of my previous post “Joe McNally’s Hot Shoes Diaries”, Joe McNally was in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in early February doing a series of workshops and a one day seminar. I attended the one day workshop and I must say, I’m really glad I went.

I’m very new to flash photography. So new that people would think why the hell am I jumping into Joe’s workshop right away. To give you a swimming pool analogy, it’d be like throwing myself into a pool when I don’t even know how to float.  But the thing is, I believe that if I threw myself into a pool, it’d make me learn how to swim faster than any other methods out there.

In Joe’s workshop, I learned of course about lighting (e.g. flashes, ezyboxes, trigrips, snoots…) but there was more to it than just that.

It was simply inspiring to see Joe work and to see the kind of work he creates right on the spot with different settings of lights. Joe makes it all seem so simple (and fun!). A flash here, a trigrip there and voila, the image created would be so strong it makes you want to create an image like that too.

It was also a different experience to work with other photographers in groups. We were divided into fours and assigned a model an hour for 2 hours. My group was very lucky to have Tarachin and Ong Tou. Both were very friendly and so easy to work with. Here’s what I got out of a short 15 min session each.

This was shot indoor using a black background. One of the photographers thought it was good to use a black background and create a ‘blend in’ effect’ since Tarachin was wearing black.

Tarachin was very expressive with her hands and had a great eye makeup done to highlight her beautiful eyes which was why all four of us focused very much on her left profile. In hindsight, I should have used lights to bring out more lines in the picture.

This shot of Ong Tou was taken at a spot where Joe showed us a technique to use the grills for strong shadows in the picture. All four of us liked the spot so much, we  decided to stay there throughout the hour. Ong Tou was cheerful and nice throughout the session and kept on saying it’s ok (to work under such condition) even though he was sweating buckets.

I like the red and blue mixture in this but somehow I feel it lacks something. Perhaps more red light on his face would have been better. What do you think?

P.S. Here’s more pics of Tarachin and Ong Tou by Milan Teh who was in the same group as me.

P.P.S Oh! And I heard Joe’s planning another workshop in Malaysia again next year. For those who missed it this year, make sure you don’t miss next year’s!


Written by SE

March 2, 2010 at 9:54 pm

Posted in Workshops

4 Responses

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  1. Glad to meet you in the workshop and being in the same group as you ;) Love your rationale on the 2nd paragraph, agree with you. Keep up the good work & take care :D

    Milan Teh

    March 3, 2010 at 5:30 pm

  2. I believe that it is never too early to learn so good on you to have gone to the workshop :)

    And I like the 2nd pic too! But I think a bit more light on his face would be good :)

    Nicholas Leong

    March 3, 2010 at 6:16 pm

  3. great to see you have been having fun :)
    Yeah, I would prefer a little more light on Ong Tou face, as I think he got quite a nice expression there to go with the shoot. I might even give the picture a tighter crop!


    March 4, 2010 at 8:13 am

  4. […] I was at Joe McNally’s workshop in February, I had the opportunity to work with 2 different models. When Joe took a look at my […]

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