Always In Fashion; Simply Priceless Sites

 

I met Jennifer Graylock while photographing Fall 2003 Fashion Week and was impressed by her dynamic personality and photographic skills. So I wasn't surprised to see that her website reflected her vivacious persona and behind-the-camera talent.
© 2003, Jennifer Graylock, All Rights Reserved

"Fashion is something that goes in one year...and out the other."--Overheard at Fall 2003 Fashion Week

So what's a henway? The Dumb & Dumber answer is "about 2 and 1/2 lbs," although poultry experts tell me a more accurate figure is 8 lbs. What's a good website worth? As the commercial says, it's priceless.

The Essence Of Fashion Photography
I first met Jennifer Graylock when photographing runway models during Fall 2003 Fashion Week in New York City and was impressed by her dynamic personality and photographic skills. So I wasn't surprised to see that her website (www.graylock.com) reflected her vivacious persona and behind-the-camera talent. The homepage showcases an exceptional runway shot I wish I had made, and clicking on it takes you to the three main sections of her site: Beauty, Runway, and Celebrity. Some music accompanies this section; I play it low while browsing the images.

Choosing any of the three sections takes you to another window that loads a scrolling row of thumbnails at the bottom of the screen and clicking on any one of them opens a larger image above it. I was blown away by the essence of fashion that Graylock captures with her runway images and it just keeps getting better as you click on the next one, and the next one, and the next. This is runway photography that's as good as it gets and so much better than the "stock" images that run in newspapers.

Just close that window to go back to the original and check out the other two sections, Beauty and Celebrity. Most of these beauty shots are captured on runways, too, and if you don't think that doing creative headshots of fast-moving models combines the best skills of sports and portrait photography, give it a try sometime. Celebrity images include all the usual suspects, including Madonna, Jennifer Lopez, Kate Hudson, and amazing images of Nicole Kidman and Sex and the City's Sarah Jessica Parker. Wow!

 

Lucas Cichon recently updated his website with a series of black and white photographs made in Colorado and New Mexico, but don't miss his gallery of photographers, including a portrait of our own Monte Zucker.
© 2003, Lucas Cichon, All Rights Reserved

Photographer Of Photographers
Lucas Cichon divides his time between Wisconsin and Colorado and specializes in corporate, advertising, and editorial photography. His low-key site (www.lucascichon.com) is divided into three main categories, including Studio, The West, and Photographers. Since a portrait of a pixyish Arnold Newman highlights this latter gallery I went there first and found a collection of dramatic, insightful monochrome portraits of many photographers, including Douglas Kirkland, Robert Farber, and Shutterbug's own Monte Zucker.

All of these portraits show a flare for design and light control that places the emphasis on the subject, demonstrating consummate skill not only with the technical aspects of portraiture, but the emotional ones as well. The section labeled "The West" contains gee-whiz landscape images as well as historic sites such as Anasazi ruins. Some of these images are black and white, while others are warm toned, but all show a sense of "take nothing but photographs" appreciation for the land.

The Studio section, the largest collection, includes a few commercial images in color, but it's the monochrome images that steal the show. There are a few images in this area--just a few--that feature tasteful male and female nudity; if that bothers you, stay out. Like the rest of the images on the site there are no captions, although tiny pop-up windows appear over thumbnails when dragging your mouse. These are only useful in the Photographers collection. If you want to see powerful portraits combined with a sense of photographic tradition that places the emphasis on the subject matter all wrapped up in powerful technical ability, this is a must-visit site. But before you leave, make sure to take a look at his wife Kathie's handcolored photographs.

 

Yes, his homepage text may be in French, but Pierre D'Amours' website speaks the universal language--photography.
© 2003, Pierre D'Amours, All Rights Reserved

There's No Place Like Home
Yes, the homepage is in French, but Pierre D'Amours' website (www.lumiborealis.com) speaks the universal language--photography. At the bottom of the French text, you'll find four galleries (in English and French) and clicking on any of them takes you to a grid of negative thumbnails that turn positive when your mouse passes over them. Clicking on one of them opens a separate window with a medium-sized photograph. All of the images have been made near the photographer's Quebec home near the Matapedia Valley in a village called Causapscal. Most of them are color, but there are some interesting photographs in each of the galleries in monochrome as well.

What the talented Monsieur D'Amours has done exemplifies my idea that there are great photo ops "in your own backyard." His timeless portrait of Causapscal includes plant textures, landscape images, as well as the kind of selective architecture--he focuses on just the interesting details--that's the stuff great photography is made of. Finally, he takes you "in the garden" for a series of extraordinary images of ordinary flowers. You don't need to speak or read French, so just go and enjoy.

 

Kevin Monroe shoots film. But then his images are scanned as high-res 65MB files and lightly, sometimes not so lightly, manipulated in Photoshop before they populate the three galleries on his site.
© 2003, Kevin Monroe, All Rights Reserved

Black And White And Red All Over
Kevin Monroe shoots film. But then it's scanned as high-res 65MB files then lightly, sometimes not so lightly, manipulated in Photoshop before inhabiting the three galleries in this site, www.kevinmonroephotography.com. Despite the old-fashioned design, the images are spectacular, including the elegant "Isolated Tree" (yes, there are captions that appear along with geographic info) in the B&W/Infrared Gallery. Images don't appear in a separate window so you have to click the Back arrow to return to the gallery. While we wait for Monroe to update his site, right-click your Windows' mouse to "Open Link in New Window." There are tons of images in this gallery, and a little--just a little--editing might help. Nevertheless I reveled in the mixtures of styles from fashion to editorial to you-name-it.

Over in the Color Gallery all of the little color thumbnails are getting along famously, but this work does not have the drama--OK, I loved the Escher-like "Purple People Bridge"--found in the other collections. All right, "Relaxing with Graffiti" is great, too. The Digitally Colored Gallery has digitally colored photographs; the gallery is the same as the other two. Some of these are simply digitally toned, while others are full of the spontaneity lacking in the color collection. The Hollister Street image is cool and crazy, while the "Two Girls Singing, Duotone" combines fashion with fun. Hey, get this, he even provides information on how he made these images in the captions--way to go! I loved this site. Monroe, keep making those images that make me smile.

 

TakeYourCameraToWorkDay.com has had a major facelift thanks to an incredibly talented California designer named Michael John Parker. Visit Parker's website to see some examples of his work and be sure to visit www.takeyourcameratoworkday.com to see the fabulous design transformation he's performed.
© 2003, Michael John Parker, All Rights Reserved

It's That Time Of Year Again
Just around the corner (May 21, 2004) is Take Your Camera to Work Day. An incredibly talented designer named Michael John Parker (www.michaeljohnparker.com) has updated the website's original funky (to put it charitably) design to match the new millennium. Visit Parker's site to see examples of his work and be sure to visit www.takeyourcameratoworkday.com to see the fabulous transformation he's performed. And don't forget: If you want to recommend your own or a friend's website for an appearance in this department,
e-mail me at editorial@shutterbug.net.

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