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.


f1.8 – 1/50 – 500 ISO


f1.8 – 1/160 – 400 ISO


f/1.8 – 1/160 – 400 ISO

Happy Thanksgiving!

This year has absolutely flown by! Today is Thanksgiving and I have so many things to be thankful for this year.

Firstly, I’m thankful for all the people in my life who helped lift me up, believed in me and in turned helped me believe in myself, and pushed me to be the best version of myself.

I’m especially thankful for all the new people who’ve entered my life and shaped it in ways I didn’t know were possible. I’ve had incredible experiences with and because of you all and I am truly blessed to have the privilege of having you in my life.

I’m particularly thankful for my new work position. The sheer love, support, fun, and creativity I’ve been allowed to experience here is more than I could’ve hoped for. Knock on wood, but I’m happy to get up for work every morning and happy to bring my cheery ass in and spread positivity. It’s amazing what a supportive environment can do for your mental health.

That said, myself and Bullseye are wishing each and every one of you a wonderful Thanksgiving day!


Danielle x Pinup Portraits

Today was pretty exciting creatively. I asked my coworker Danielle a while ago if she’d be interested in being my muse for a photography shoot and after seeing my recent pinup style pics, she said yes.

We both did her makeup, although she let me do the contouring and such. I enhanced contouring in Photoshop to give her face more of that pop! But to be honest, she didn’t really need it anyway. She has the right kind of planes and angles to be a proper model, IMO. Anyway, here’s a few shots from today.

I used my 50mm portrait lens, ISO 400, f 1.8, exposure range 50-80.



Coral Mermaid

Taking a break from my regularly schedule posting program to be a narcissist and show off my new hair.

I wasn’t happy about the way it looked after having it dyed dark ginger last month. I wanted something fresh and different from what I’ve done in the past, so I went with Pravana colors and had my stylist follow the color structure we had on my fire hair.

He dyed the top Pravana red, and the rest of the hair was bleached, to which he added Pravana red to the middle and it came out hot pink, and the bottom has Pravana Pastels coral. I’m relatively certain the coral will fade quickly. It didn’t take easily to my hair. BUT! during washing, I think the red will bleed into it well.




I did a fashion photo shoot this morning for one of my friends, Kristine, and I wanted to share a few pics with you guys.

Her and her husband live in this really neat house down in Highland Park with badass vintage wallpaper, amazing interior architecture, and the cutest little sun room, where we staged the shoot. The purpose of the shoot was to capture the ensemble she made, but as you all know, I’m always more attracted in capturing people’s faces when I have the opportunity. So after the clothing part was done, I put my portrait lens back on and took a few shots of the model’s face.

The first couple shots are taken with my 18-105mm lens, and the last one is my 50mm portrait lens.

I’m always grateful for opportunities like this to get me out of my comfort zone and play with light and different people. I think these photos came out well, although I’m still learning.

P.S. Don’t forget, you can now follow me (professionally!) on Instagram, @vivianapodinaphotography



Behind the Scenes: DIY Backdrops & Self Portraits

Last week, my bff Maria and I were discussing various photography aids like lighting kits and backdrops and she was all “but ‘x’ is so cheap!” and I was like “yeah, but still $$$”. Mind you, this was a day after I had gotten my hair done so it was fresh which clearly begs for new FB profile pics to be taken and as you all probably know by now, I prefer working with natural light.


Anyway, I didn’t feel like dropping $100+ on a backdrop/lighting kit, so I decided to run across the street to Target and got myself a home rolling rack. I also stopped by Lowe’s and picked up metal clamps to hold stuff I drape over the rolling rack sturdily in place.


My mom became a test subject + used the Foldio’s lighting to help with low lighting post-sunset.


I’d gone to Haberman Fabrics the previous week, so I had some nice cream fabric with a shiny finish sitting around in my room and I went and grabbed my clear Christmas lights from storage and created a simple and fun backdrop by draping the xmas lights around the rolling rack and then covering it with the fabric.


Follow me on Instagram for more pics like this! @lovelikeangels

I opened my blinds and drapes to allow the maximum available light I could get through my North-facing bedroom window to come in as the sun was beginning to set and ultimately had to tweak my manual settings to high ISO and low f-stops. I was surprised at how little grain came through given that the settings were so stretched, but that full on window light really helped, even if it was dimming quickly.

Anyway, I got some pretty awesome end products, so check it out.

P.S. I made those earrings you can kinda see poking out. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you’re interested in your own pair!



How am I single?