This post comes in experiments of two flavors as it were. First, I recently came across a piece of software called Exposure 4 by Alien Skin, which is basically a film stock simulator. I started to give it a play, and really liked some of the things it could do; different looks easier and faster than I could achieve with Lightroom alone. I still love to shoot film, but obviously it’s not as economical or easy as digital is. I’m sure you could call it cheating, but I’ll just call it being smart and still shoot real film when the time is right.
The second form of experimentation came when my girlfriend and I headed back to the US for a Christmas visit. It was her first time to visit, and being a hot-blooded Vietnamese girl, really the first time to see proper cold weather and snow. A few weeks before we were to head out, I had the idea to take some ao dai(traditional Vietnamese dresses) with us, and do some photos. Juxtaposition I thought, putting this warm weather dress where it doesn’t belong, in a freezing Ohio field of snow.
After about two weeks of very cold weather, but no snow, finally just after Christmas day the skies opened up, and we woke up to a nice covering of white stuff on the ground. This was our chance. We bundled up as best we could, and set out for an empty corn field not far from my house. To no-one’s surprise, a razor thin silk dress provides very little relief from the blowing cold elements. She bore with me while I set up a shot and a light, but after a few snaps, had to run back in the car to warm back up. Rinse. Repeat….
Anyway, I’ve been sitting on and playing with these images for almost a good two months now. I thought if I’m going to share them, it’s now or never, so here they are.
However, there is one more thing: a Contest! Two of these images were actually shot on film with a recent addition to my growing analog line up, a Mamiya 645 medium format camera. Here’s the game: If you can figure out which two of the images below were captured on film, send me a quick screen shot of your choices, and if you’re right, I’ll send you a free 11×17″ print of an image of your choice from anywhere on my website. Let’s see just how good your eyes are. Let the games begin, and I hope you enjoy!
In case you’d like to see more Ao Dai in winter, we also shot a music video with one my oldest hometown friends, who is an amazing musician if I do say so myself.