Fall Update

Hello! Hi. I’m still alive and well aware that it has definitely been a minute since my last post.

In that time span, I have (thankfully) transferred all my files and photos to an external hard drive, lost any functionality on my HP laptop, bought a MacBook Pro 2015 and then returned it, and just bought a MacBook Pro 2018 that has yet to have any media imported on it. PHEW.

I’m still getting using to Apple as a whole, particularly the keyboard as I’m currently typing this – I find their keyboards to be slightly too far to the right and I keep hitting the wrong keys. I’m also still aggravated that I can’t see the time in the bottom right corner and the close/minimize buttons are on the left side – like at this point it just feels spiteful to have them there. 

I also bought and downloaded Affinity Photo and will be testing out that software hopefully this weekend, when my dongles arrive and I can import media. 

Additionally, I allowed myself to splurge a little since I had a credit on my Prime card from the 2015 return, and finally bought a ring light, photo studio setup, and an extra backdrop. I have a selfie shoot planned for this weekend that will tie into all that and help me try out Affinity, so hopefully some new content coming your way here.

Speaking of selfies, I would check out my website every time I went into the Apple store huffing and puffing over whether I should indulge in the 2018, and I noticed that this year has been, first of all, sparse on posts, but secondly, full of photos of myself. Maybe I should analyze that deeper, but I’d like to try to get different models and extend my portrait portfolio beyond photos of myself. 

Eventually I’d like to pick up that 52 week photo challenge I started in the beginning of the year and dropped a couple months in. I can’t really call it procrastination anymore when it’s been roughly 8 months since the last time I even attempted it, right?

I’m currently about a week behind in Inktober sketches, so there’s there too, but I’m solidly planning on finishing that project.

That said, I should have new content coming soon!

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Jungle Fever

I realized when I posted these photos on my Instagram accounts that my photography Instagram (@vivianapodinaphotography) still says I’m participating (PROCRASTINATING) in the r/WeeklyPhotos 52 week challenge. However, I haven’t looked at that challenge since March. The year isn’t over yet and I’d really like to catch up and finish the challenge with everyone else, so in an effort to have no more “zero-days”, I’m going to challenge myself to finish this challenge.

That said, I didn’t go into these photos with the intent of them coming out how they did at all. I was simply happy with another great makeup look and wanted to capture it in photos.

I added freckles to my face with an eyebrow pencil, a makeup trend and trick that I feel adds more dimension to an overall look, but especially so in photography. One of my favorite photo aesthetics is that of Claire Luxton, who uses her Photoshop skills to hyper-intensify gorgeous details like freckles and gem-colored eyes to bring out her subjects. I used her photography as reference and inspiration while editing, and brought out my faux freckles in this series.

I watched a few of her videos on Youtube to see how she edits and I combined a couple new tricks from her style of editing with my own. I’m very pleased with how these photos turned out and I think I might have to do some Twitch streams again in the future of my photo-editing because this was honestly so much fun.

I use myself as my subject matter for portraits about 95% of the time, but I’d really like to expand that and test myself and my skills in bringing out other people’s personalities and stories through my photography.

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Ginger Hair, Ginger Life

I had a brief dance with blonde for two weeks this month but alas, decided it wasn’t for me.

So I’m back to ginger in full force and my makeup game was STRONG yesterday so OBVIOUSLY that means I whipped out the camera and took some new shots.

Luci stopped by and “guarded” me while I was shooting, so I got a couple shots in with him too.

I particularly enjoy the last picture in this set, but it just reminds me that I really need to invest in a backdrop. The garage door is a great white canvas most of the time. But sometimes I really just want a plain, untextured background. It’s on my to do list.

Enjoy :)

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Poppy Fields and Memories

IT. HAS. BEEN. A. WHILE.

Have I been keeping up with the r/WeeklyPhotos 52 week challenge?

No. Because I suck. And I barely have time to do extracurricular activities outside of my work/gym, in truth. However, I am determined to catch up, so stayed tuned.

In order to balance out my schedule, I took the day off from the gym today and I had some time to shoot flowers around the house. Our gigantic rose bush is in bloom right now, but tonight I’m going to share my favorite photo of the poppies in our front garden.

My earliest memories of poppies hark back to summers in the country side of Romania. Our next door neighbors’ backyard was FILLED with poppies and toward the end of summer, their youngest daughter Maria and I would pick the dried pods and eat poppy seeds like they were candy.

I recall everyone telling me not to eat too much because it would make me fall asleep. But while Maria did pass the fuck out, I would be totally energized. They have the same effect to this day. These poppies, however, are nothing like the tennis ball sized beasts that grew as tall as my 5 year old self.

They’re gorgeous nonetheless, so please enjoy and come back for more photos soon! It’s flower season!

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Week 8: Zoom Burst x Technical

Definitely still playing catch up, but listen.

This zoom burst challenge really got me challenged. And I’m giving up on it. I know I’ve achieve it before – and you know what, I’ll include one of my favorite shots from that time at the end – but this time around? I cannot get it down. So I’m calling this one a wrap and moving on.

It’s not really an effect I try to achieve, like, ever, anyway.

And then, here’s an old selfie from 6 years ago! in Philadelphia, when Maria and experimented with our cameras one night. I think we got the zoom burst down that night.

Week 7: Fill the Frame x Composition

There’s several elements about this week’s challenge I want to talk about.

Firstly, when I first read the theme, I was instantly excited. I LOVE close-up, frame-filling photography. In fact, often times I have to remind myself to pull back and capture more in the frame. So this week’s challenge was a bit like home.

Secondly, I’ve been wanting to recreate a photoshoot I did several years ago with ice cubes. So I did. It basically involves melting an ice cube in your mouth and letting the water be pulled by gravity to the ground. It’s messy, but it’s worth it.

Thirdly, I ordered a new wig and it came in as I was prepping for this shoot, so OBVIOUSLY I had to throw it in there.

Lastly, afterwards, as I was trying to figure out zoom bursts, I discovered aperture priority actually makes for amazing selfies.

Therefore, for this week’s challenge, I’m submitting THREE! photos and they all fill the frame. With my face. You’re welcome.

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f1.8 – 1/50 – 500 ISO

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f1.8 – 1/160 – 400 ISO

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f/1.8 – 1/160 – 400 ISO

Week 6: Alternating Rhythm x Vision

I really liked this prompt because rhythms and repetitions are so enchanting and relatively easy to find, whether they’re naturally occurring or man-made.

I chose to photograph a garnet mala bead necklace that I used to wear with a lot more frequency a few years ago. Now it just hangs with a bunch of other necklaces I don’t wear.

Anyway, I’m in love with the way this photo came out. It was accidental. I was standing by the window to catch good light and my drapes got in the way. Or rather, enhanced the photo. It looks like my hand is coming out of milk and it makes me want to recite “out of the ashes I rise with my red hair and eat men like air.” (Sylvia Plath, you’re welcome.)

F-stop: f/1.8
Exp: 1/200
ISO: 500
35mm NIKKOR lens

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