It’s been a while since my last portfolio update, so I wanted to show off the latest series that is showing up in my iStockphoto collection, and give a cute behind the scenes story.

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One of my male models wanted to propose to his girlfriend and he asked me if we could work his proposal into a photo session, to surprise her.  Not wanting to do the “on white” thing for this series, to make it more special, I contacted a great new romantic restaurant up the street from my studio called Stone Soup Cottage.  Unique to the St. Louis area, this place is only open 3 nights a week for dinner, and also a Sunday brunch.  It serves up a Prix Fixe menu in an 1850’s farmhouse, where your chef and his wife cook for and serve about 24 people a meal.  I love Victoria and Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian, so this dining experience is right up my alley.  In fact, my wife and I dined a few nights before the shoot so I could get an idea of how the atmosphere and everything worked at a real meal.

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Anyhoo, I lined up a diverse group of 7 models, as well as props like custom menus and receipt folders, since I am trying to put these in the Vetta collection at iStockphoto.  We went through the shots I had planned out, all the way to the end, where I had the model give his girlfriend a wrapped gift for “Valentine’s Day”, and then we did a fake proposal with my engagement ring that I bought a while back at Target.  Then, very matter of factly, I said “Ok, now we’re going to do this with this other ring to give it a different look”, and I handed him the ring he had slipped me earlier.   He then stayed on his knee and proposed.  I’m pretty sure she said “yes”, but I didn’t hear it, as I was too busy trying to figure out why one of my lights wasn’t firing.  Turns out he was blocking the light from the main getting to the optical on the fill – I’ve since purchased another Pocket Wizard 🙂 .  Then the owner brought out some champagne, and we all toasted.

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I hope you enjoy this series.  Some of the moments are “rude diner on phone”, “romantic conversation”, “ordering from the menu”, “sommelier with wine” and of course “marriage proposal”. I think they turned out very well.  BTW, I’m keeping the real proposal images private….

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Also new, is part of my “3d Guy” series or royalty free stock images.  In preparation for the Winter Olympics in February, I’m having my guy participate in a bunch of winter sports.  So far, I’ve got speed skating, bobsled, hockey, slalom, ski jump and snowboarding.

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6 Responses to Portfolio Update

  1. Dave says:

    Given the amount of effort and expense for the restaurant shoot I’m surprised more of them weren’t put into Vetta. Were you disappointed? I hope the series does well for you.

  2. sjlocke says:

    You betcha. I’m looking forward to the Exclusive+ collection so I don’t have to deal with this.

  3. Duane says:

    That’s a really cool story and a neat way to propose! Did she realize it was real or did it take a few for her to get what was actually happening?

    Either way cool images and great story!

    • sjlocke says:

      She totally bought that I was just switching rings for a different style, until he was down on his knee still, saying the kind of things that guys normally say in that situation. And it still took a couple of “What? You’re kidding?”‘s.

  4. nikoniano says:

    Your portfolio is great!! I think I should follow you to improve my works. Bye.

  5. […] Back in December, a new local restaurant, Stone Soup Cottage, let me shoot some stock photos in their interior in return for future photo work as needed.  The thing I like about a trade, is that you both get […]

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