Sunday May 6th, 2012
Sunday May 6th, 2012
Friday February 17th, 2012
The copyright photo thief strikes again!
Food On My Dog tumblr features photographs of…well…you get the idea.
A brother and a sister get married…and it’s beautiful.
Grab a tissue! Purina is about to make you cry…
Thieves steal over $150,000 in Nikon van heist
50 greatest cameras of all time.
MI6 is hiring.
What photographers actually do.
- Maria Luci
Sunday September 25th, 2011
Thursday July 14th, 2011
Few can say that their work has inspired an exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Our photographer Vincent Ricardel is one of these select few. Vincent’s photographs — displayed beautifully in the new coffee table book Archtop Guitars: The Journey from Cremona to New York — recently caught the eye of Met curators. The book celebrates the work of master guitar craftsmen, John D’Angelico, Jimmy D’Aquisto and John Monteleone through a stunning collection of photos. These dazzling photos and the interesting story lead to the Met’s recent exhibit Guitar Heroes, which further examined the work of these legendary Italian American guitar makers. Several of Vincent’s photographs were also featured throughout the exhibit.
According to Vincent this was a, “once in a lifetime journey,” that took him throughout America and Europe. Five years and thousands of frames later, Vincent was able to edit his images into a unique 432 page book. Every shot was carefully compiled to highlight something special about each instrument. A lot of thought went into these photos. According to Vincent, “When I began this project, I decided to use a black background for most of the instruments and portraits. It isolates the subjects and forces the viewers to concentrate on the images.” He also wanted a unique perspective to keep the book from coming across as a catalog. To do this, Vincent began compositing the layouts which added depth and a unique perspective to the final photos. Each guitar was photographed from numerous angles, then the images were layered together in post processing. “Each one was a puzzle, if you look through the book you’ll discover many solved puzzles.”
As for lighting the instruments, this was a bit of a challenge, mostly due to their glossy surfaces. Vincent filled me in on some of his techniques,
The images of the these blue guitars were made with a large light source. The shiny lacquer on the instruments was a constant nuisance. By keeping the light off axis with the camera and instrument, I was able to avoid those catch lights that distracted from the wood grain and vibrant color in the guitar.
I also asked Vincent how he became involved with this project in the first place,
In 2005 I was approached by Rudy Pensa of Rudy’s Music in New York. He presented this wonderful idea about doing a book about the guitars of John D’Angelico, James D’Aquisto and John Monteleone — all renowned for making magnificent archtop guitars. The archtop guitar is unique because the top of the instrument is carved like a violin and has a slight arch just under the strings of the instrument. Rudy shared with me his passion for these instruments and being a guitar player myself, I was hooked. We began to search for these instruments in private collections and also identified musicians who play and appreciate these guitars. It took us almost three years to find one particular guitar, which we learned was in Germany.
Through the creation of this project, Vincent was able to meet and photograph some very interesting subjects,
The musicians whom I photographed were extremely pleased to participate and they all share a love for these exquisite archtop guitars. In particular, the portrait sessions with George Benson, Steve Miller, Paul Simon, Mark Knopfler, Pat Martino, Bucky Pizzarelli, Emmylou Harris, Kevin Bacon and the late Les Paul were especially memorable.
I was particularly struck by Vincent’s Kevin Bacon image so I asked him to tell me a little about that shoot,
The Kevin shoot was seamless and brief. He is a great guy and a pro in every sense of the word. I enjoy working with actors and musicians. They just know how to “turn it on” during a shoot. Since time was limited, my goal was to capture a candid moment and something more structured. My lighting was designed to mimic something similar to what one would see on a stage. I was very careful to emphasize my back lighting which separates him from the black background. It’s very important to have a plan in place when a photo shoot is scheduled with limited time. Always be ready for the unexpected and think fast…you just may be surprised at the outcome.
For Vincent this project, “has been an immensely rewarding experience throughout which I could blend my passion for music and guitars with my photography.”