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Creative Inspirations: Douglas Kirkland, Photographer
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Digital Darkroom


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Creative Inspirations: Douglas Kirkland, Photographer

with Douglas Kirkland

Video: Digital Darkroom

(Music playing.) Douglas Kirkland: Okay, here we are. The next stage we move to the pictures into the computer. We are in Bridge right here. I'm going to just make this big and we have all these controls. Fortunately, we don't need a great deal on this one. So I'm just going to open it up as it is and this is all done within digital. It was done minutes ago, literally. Now, here is one and I haven't looked a great deal any of these, but this is one which I particularly like.

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Creative Inspirations: Douglas Kirkland, Photographer
1h 15m Appropriate for all May 23, 2008

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Douglas Kirkland is one of the most accomplished and celebrated photographers of the last fifty years. This installment of the Creative Inspirations series offers insight into Douglas Kirkland's photography, from his early career at Look magazine during the golden age of photojournalism in the 60s and 70s to his transition from analog to digital photography in the 90s. His iconic images of Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, Jack Nicholson, and Nicole Kidman, among others, are known all over the world. This series of videos includes a peek into Douglas's work, his studio, and some of his on-location photo shoots. Also view a presentation showcasing his body of work, a discussion with a group of high school photography students, an interview with Douglas and Lynda, and more.

Subjects:
Photography Creative Inspirations Documentaries
Author:
Douglas Kirkland

Digital Darkroom

(Music playing.) Douglas Kirkland: Okay, here we are. The next stage we move to the pictures into the computer. We are in Bridge right here. I'm going to just make this big and we have all these controls. Fortunately, we don't need a great deal on this one. So I'm just going to open it up as it is and this is all done within digital. It was done minutes ago, literally. Now, here is one and I haven't looked a great deal any of these, but this is one which I particularly like.

What I would do probably eventually is crop a little of this off. But why I like it is, again, a lot of unorthodox things here. Such as, I have a mist filter on the camera and that's intentional, just to give a glow. It's not done to soften her; she doesn't need it, but it makes a lot more-- you just see, it gives a glamor to it that wouldn't have otherwise. Isn't she great? Look at the movement. That's exciting when I see this.

This is when photography turns me on so much and she was great and she was cooperative, she understood it. Let me just show you what I could do here. It's just as an illustration, I will. I'm going to lighten that side here, because I want to see the shape of her body. That tends to go in there with the hair. With all these possibilities, it's like the best of art is all here for photographers and photographers like me. That's what's so exciting and I'll just do a quick save on that and I'll save that for now just on the desktop.

So there is one. Now here is another one. This is interesting. As she was warming up, I saw her doing these moves. And this is quite cool. I like this very much. It's hard once if you sit down here not to do things, because the possibilities are so incredibly spectacular today with Photoshop as it is. I'm going to darken the edges a little to give it almost more of the spotlight effect.

Now, I am sure anybody who knows Photoshop knows exactly what I'm doing. I am just trying a Burn tool around the edges and all pretty simple stuff. Now, I'll do a quick save on that, and then let's save back there. Now, here we go. I want you to see this. There is the original and there is what I did with it in a few minutes. Some things work really well, and others are not as good. But then you know you have got a home run sometimes and this way, I feel about this one here.

I love the way this flows. She is so very good and this was just done against the wall and we had music playing and for her to move as a dancer with the music, that's what inspires and that's what makes it happen. Without the music, it wouldn't be the same. This is a very simple picture. This could be the girl next door. Okay now, here is a different type of lighting. I would like you to see that. That's so much different and this is a more classical type of lighting. This is from another era almost.

This is, you got a shadow on the wall intentionally, we got this here up above her and I'm going to open this one, because I think it will be interesting. Take a look at it. Now, here we are. I think everything in contrast and everything is quite satisfactory. By the way, we are working with raw here, which is simple, and the camera I used to shoot these particular pictures was the 40D Canon, but a lot of cameras would do it just as well. So here is basically what I would do to this picture and probably I might darken a little of fraction, but basically, that is it.

This is like pictures from another time. This is not contemporary lighting as such, or it's maybe, this is more contemporary. But I like it all and there are times for all types of lighting. I have a gel on this spotlight from the back, this hair light, and here I have basically I've got one softbox up above and here we have one softbox plus a fill light on her. So these are some of the pictures we took in that short while we worked. Very exciting stuff, isn't it? I've always loved what I could do with a computer and now with the digital cameras that are so good, it's just a whole new profession.

I have crossed a lot of periods of time; started very primitive film and here we are with this most exciting profession today and work and we have so many possibilities. It's almost unlimited.

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