Scott Choucino

Who inspires my photography

I have drawn my inspiration for my photography from a pretty small pool of photographers. It isn’t a case of being narrow-minded, I look at a lot of work on a daily basis. It is actually a slot in my daily timetable. I am just very sure of what I like. There is currently a mix of new talent and well-established names who inspire my photography (www.scottchoucino.com) . I have put together this blog post to explain who inspires me and to then  show my images that were inspired by these truly amazing photographers.

Who Inspires My Photography?

Richard Avedon

I was a bit late to the party with Avedon. I had probably been taking photographs for 2 years before I came across his work. His portraits of Americans on a seamless white were so powerful. It was something that I wanted to recreate as soon as I got my hands on a studio. The idea of stripping away everything but the subject really interests me. You can find out more about Richard Avedon at http://www.avedonfoundation.org/

Who inspires my photography?

man swearing

Jasper Carrot Portrait

Annie Leibovitz

Annie Leibovitz was the first photographer who made me want to chase a career in photography. I remember watching her 2nd documentary “Life through a lens” and being utterly amazed at how she worked and how much of herself she threw into her images. Annie Leibovitz  is a true photographic genius. From her work with the Rolling Stone magazine in her early days through to her recent pirelli calendar.

http://www.biography.com/people/annie-leibovitz-9542372

Rudimental Drummer

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Surrender the coast band photoshoot

Clay Cook

Clay Cook is a relatively new photographer compared to the two icons listed above. Nevertheless, his work and work ethic are admirable.  He lights his images in a very similar way to Annie Leibowitz, but with a bit more of a modern twist. Over the last few years, his work has become seriously good and I have developed some serious portrait envy. He is well worth a follow on Instagram, especially if you are into the stories feature.

http://www.claycookphotography.com/

Charlie in 70s surfer clothes

benn hartmann with yamaha guitar in studio

Wes Anderson

The Grand Budapest Hotel is the pinnacle of cinematography. I watched it last Christmas over a couple (maybe  a few more than a couple) of cocktails and a cigar. The colour pallet, super wide lenses, awkward composition and cuts and the amazing symmetry had my instantly hooked. Before seeing the Grand Budapest, I would have sworn blind that the shining was the best cinematography I had ever seen, but Wes Andersons’ work blew it out the water. I would strongly recommend putting an evening aside for this film.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wes_Anderson

Rutland golf course

meatcure service in Market Harb

Emily Soto

Emily Soto is another new face in photography. Her work is beautiful and ethereal. She works with a mixture of large format instant films, leicas, medium format and digital cameras. Emily has an amazing talent for building a real and very tangible feeling about the model and clothing that she is shooting. Her lighting is very soft and simple and her entire attention is focused on the subject. A few years ago, I don’t think I would have liked her work, but now I find myself going to it on a daily basis.

http://www.emilysoto.com/

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If you would like to read more about why I love portrait photography, then head over here http://scottchoucino.com/i-love-portrait-photography/ and if you would like to see my full portrait portfolio, then head over to www.scottchoucino.com

I send a news letter out once a month and I never pass your details on to anyone else. For updates on workshops, hints and tips to be a better photographer and a few personal musings sign up to my mailing list.

My 5 favourite photographs

Choosing my 5 favourite photographs.

As with most of my ideas, I was in and out of sleep one morning and having my usual rambling dreams. In one of these “episodes” I was supposed to be presenting my 5 favourite photographs to a client. Obviously, I didn’t have them with me and I was wearing a ridiculous outfit and had only realised as I opened the door.

In a bid to be prepared for this eventuality, I thought I should put together a blog post of my 5 favourite photographs, just to be sure that I don’t get caught off-guard. I should also probably throw away any bad outfits that I am holding on to, kidding myself that I will fit into those clothes I purchased 10 years ago.

These are not my 5 best photographs, but they are the ones that mean the most to me.

City Scape of Paris at Sunset

I took this city scape of Paris the week after I left my day job, 2.5 years ago. Straight after leaving, I headed over to Paris to visit old friends, photograph some street photography of Paris Fashion week for a publication and to re fresh my mind a little before heading out into the world of professional photography. The trip was well worth the while and I came back to the UK raring to go. This is the only time I have visited the Eiffel tower, even though I have been to Paris a lot. The sky was absolutely amazing that evening and I managed to get a handful of city scapes.

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Portrait of Martine

I met Martine in Shanghai a few years back, before I had started photography. We met under far from normal circumstances but, I am really glad that we did and that we’ve stayed in touch ever since. Martine is a truly amazing lady, I took these two portraits when she came over to the UK to visit.

Headshot of Martine

Portrait of Elizabeth

I met Elizabeth years ago when she modelled for a wedding dress designer in some studio. This wasway before either of us knew what we were doing. Elizabeth recently came to my new studio for a portrait sitting. I had a load of ideas that I had wanted to try for ages, but always felt a bit intimidated by. I set half a day aside, got out the big cameras and managed to take this portrait. It turned out exactly how I wanted it to.

5 favourite photographs

Portrait of Louise

This portrait was taken in my old studio. I was testing ideas out and trying to really par back my portraits. For a long time before this, I was trying to impress photographers and myself with the complexity of some of my portraits. I think that this was the first portrait I took where my only focus was on the subject. I kept everything as simple as possible and it changed the way that I worked with people going forward.

portrait of lady with shaved head

Music Lover from Leicester

This portrait was taken as part of a series. For 4 years I photographed LOADS of gigs. To the point where I felt I had seen most things and it was getting a bit repetitive. I decided to turn my camera on the fans that attended. This was the first personal project that I completed, and I managed to get it published in a handful of magazines and papers.

Leicester Music Fan

 

You can see more of my portrait work at www.scottchoucino.com

 

I send a news letter out once a month and I never pass your details on to anyone else. For updates on workshops, hints and tips to be a better photographer and a few personal musings sign up to my mailing list.

Aerial Photograph of Leicester

My Aerial Photograph of Leicester

As I carry on with my portrait of people I know project (you can see more here http://scottchoucino.com/personal-portrait-projects/ ), I thought it was a good idea to take a portrait of the city I live in. This is something I have wanted to take an aerial photograph of Leicester. After a few beers, I got chatting to a friend who owned a helicopter and a plan was formulated.

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aerial photograph of leicester
Sun setting over Leicester in Summer

Those who know me well will know just how scared of both heights and flying I am. So as we stood in a field removing the doors from the helicopter, the nerves started to kick in. We did a small test flight so I could get used to hanging out the side of the aircraft and then we were on our way.

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Aerial photograph of leicesters canal
Photograph of canal boats taken from the sky

How to take photographs from a helicopter

There are a couple of key points to aerial photography to keep in mind. Safety is key, lens hoods are removed alongside  anything that can fall out of pockets or from the camera were also left on the ground. With the door off the aircraft, I was strapped in and handed a headset. Helicopters do not look like they move that fast when you are looking up at them from the ground. However, you are actually flying at about 100mph and the aircraft vibrates a lot. Your shutter speed (especially with the 200mm lens) needs to be pretty high. So I was at 2000th of a second, f4 and 3200 ISO

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Scott in a helicopter

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aerial photograph of leicester at mid day
aerial photograph of Leicester taken from a helicopter

If you are really into cityscapes then you should definitely check out Vincent Leveret’s cityscape book. It is amazing http://www.laforetvisuals.com/.

I send a news letter out once a month and I never pass your details on to anyone else. For updates on workshops, hints and tips to be a better photographer and a few personal musings sign up to my mailing list.

My portrait of Kseniia Komar

Portrait of Kseniia Komar

 

This is now turning into a bit of a pokemon  game where I am slowly collecting images of all of my friends and those who have had an impact on my life.  Before taking Kseniia’s portrait, I found some beautiful images by photographer  Emily Soto who I follow. Emily  was using such amazingly soft light that the skin tones were perfect. As soon as I saw her portraits I knew that this was the way I needed to do my portrait of Kseniia.

I met Kseniia about two years ago when I was travelling back from London to Leicester after photographing a Rudimental rehearsal in some random industrial estate. At the time I was sat with my headphones in doing my usual train ride home check of images. At some point out of the corner of my eye I noticed a rather pretty lady had sat down next to me. I have always been a fan of making train friends.  We got chatting  and ended up going for a drink that evening. We have stayed in touch since and meet up from time to time. Kseniia is a lovely person and very creative, I’ve always enjoy our conversation.

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portrait of Kseniia Komar Profile portrait of Kseniia Komar Kseniia looking into the light in my leicester portrait studio Kseniia laughing in my photographic studio

 

I send a news letter out once a month and I never pass your details on to anyone else. For updates on workshops, hints and tips to be a better photographer and a few personal musings sign up to my mailing list.

Portrait of Charlotte

This is my Portrait of Charlotte Parker

My portrait project is now well underway. Charlotte is a friend that I don’t see all that often. We both have very similar lives in that we travel a lot and work as freelancers, so it was a real pleasure to have her in the studio. I am not going to use too many words for this particular blog post as I feel that the images give a great portrait to who Charlotte is. So here is the collection of images that I feel create a portrait of Charlotte.

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Charlotte Parker surfer girl style

Portrait of Charlotte Parker

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You can see My portrait of Elizabeth here and my portrait of Ian Davies here

 

I send a news letter out once a month and I never pass your details on to anyone else. For updates on workshops, hints and tips to be a better photographer and a few personal musings sign up to my mailing list.

A Week As A Photographer PT11

A WEEK AS A PHOTOGRAPHER PT11

It was another busy week at the studio. It is looking like I will be opening a second studio in March that will be three times the size of my current space. This has been taking up a lot of my free time in the evenings.  I have also met two new clients who want to commission me to take portraits of staff at two large UK companies in a style I see fit. This is pretty much my dream booking. So, this has been a pretty good week.

 

Monday

Monday started at about 7:30am at the studio. Virgin Media were in to add some new lines to the building.  I caught up on admin in the morning and then I had a short editorial photoshoot in the afternoon. I spent the evening at a friends house discussing options for my new studio space.

 

Some nice crisp light for Tuesdays first headshot sitting.

 

Tuesday

 

I went to Hair@1RD on Rutland street to get a trim in the morning. I have been going to Robin for a few years and it’s always a highlight of any week. After this I cracked on with some editing before heading off to Leicester Lo Fi to develop and scan some images of Weikie from last weeks photoshoot. A small group of us then went on to the Western to discuss some further build plans for the new studio.

 

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Wednesday

 

I had a shoot at the Lansdowne in the morning with Mel and Jules from Orange Tree Weddings. After the shoot I filmed the third video in my Free Online Photography Course (You can sign up by clicking on the link). The last sitting of the day was with Gemma from Mocha Marketing.

 

Orange Tree Weddings Mocha Marketing

 

Thursday

 

I had a portrait sitting with Carriages Events in the morning for their website. We did the photoshoot at The Cosy Club. After this I headed over to The Kitchen at The Cookie to try their new menu. It was pretty epic. I spent the rest of the afternoon doing headshot sittings in the studio before prepping the area for Fridays shoot.

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Friday

 

I had portrait sittings with 20 ESL gamers for a tournament that they were playing on Saturday. These are then used as on screen graphics during the broadcast.

ESL games

Saturday

 

Saturday was the main event with ESL. The client looked after me really well and everything ran really smoothly. It was the first event in their new studio so everyone was really hyped up. We had a small social media desk that we did rushes from for twitter and Facebook, the rest of the images were delivered over night via ftp to the client.

ESL Leicester ESL bar

 

Sunday

Sunday will have to remain a bit of a secret for now…

 

 

 

 

A week as a photographer pt9

A week as a photographer.

 

It has been a bit of a mixed week. I shot a video a few days before so I had a lot of filing, syncing etc to do in order to be in a good place to sit down with some slightly fresher eyes to create the final edit.  I am also bracing myself for a 15 day shooting stint, which is a tad longer than my average working block. There are some really cool advertising campaigns in there too which will result in some new portraits in my portfolio www.scottchoucino.com . So, this is what I get up to on a slow week in preparation for a big shooting block.  If you are enjoying these blog posts then  do let others know about them.

 

 

Monday. 

I spent the entire day playing with video footage whilst waiting in for a big delivery of camera equipment.  When I started out as a photographer, each time something new came it was exciting, it meant a new piece of kit that would allow me to do something else. Sadly, this was not the case this time. I received a load of  kit to replace what I had broken over the previous two months.

 

It looked like Christmas morning in my living room
It looked like Christmas morning in my living room

 

Tuesday. 

 

I had two shoots on Tuesday. The first was a press pack for singer songwriter George Simpson and the second was an editorial piece for a magazine. Having not been in the studio since dropping everything off after the weekends shoot, I was greeted with a load of unpacked boxes. I headed out into town with George to take some candid portraits and then we shot some images in the studio.

 

My studio was a bit of a bomb site on Tuesday morning
My studio was a bit of a bomb site on Tuesday morning

 

Wednesday.

 

I met with two new clients in the morning, which meant I drank far too much coffee! After lunch I met with one of my wedding clients. I don’t shoot many weddings anymore, so I get really excited when I have them. Later on I found that one of my images from a Premier Drums shoot with Uncle Frank had been released. I have so many images sat on hard drives atm awaiting publication. I can’t wait until they are all ready to be shared!

Frank with his new Premier kit
Frank with his new Premier kit

 

Thursday.

 

In the morning Stew came round to help me with a new system to streamline my budgeting for photoshoots. I then met another wedding client after lunch time (I am only shooting about 6 weddings this year, just by chance that I had 2 in one week come round for meetings). I managed to get about 5 hours editing done after this before nipping out to the Curve for the Leicester Merc Business awards, I then snuck out early  to finish a video for a friend before we headed out to Five guys.

 

Cheeky burger at Five Guys with Holly
Cheeky burger at Five Guys with Holly

 

 

Friday.

 

Friday morning was pretty  cool, I went to see the dinosaurs at the New Walk Museum with this little man, we also collaborated on apretty impressive drawing . The rest of the day was spend building two mood boards for new clients to advise on the creative style that I feel they should be following.

Playing at the new walk
Playing at the new walk

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Saturday.

 

Every once in a while I have to make the rather grim trip over to the meridian post office. Today was the day, the parcel was going to be returned to sender on Monday so I popped over on my bike. It was a lovely day when I left the house. However, a mile later it was like a scene from a Bear Grylls show with biblical wind and some rather epic rain. I spent the rest of the day writing a couple of articles, catching up on my accounts and preparing for my next photoshoot. I then treated myself to a kebab in the evening on Narborough Road, Leicester.

Sultants Kebab shop on Narb Road
Sultants Kebab shop on Narb Road

 

 

Sunday.

 

I had a photoshoot in the morning with a friends family. For the rest of the day I am turning this into Monday mornings set whilst dividing gear into the correct bags for the next 5 photoshoots.

Ready to set the studio up
Ready to set the studio up

Benn Hartmann “Who is Pulling The Strings Around Your Heart?”

A month or so back I shot this video with Rob Gurney (Digital Mechanic) for my good friend Benn Hartmann. We made a quick behind the scenes video for the day too, which is just below.

 

This is the first single, taken from Leicester based songwriter Benn Hartmann’s forthcoming third album ‘Wishing Well’ to be released summer 2015.


The album is being recorded at Deadline studios by producer Adam Ellis and features along with The this duet with soul singer Amy Morson-Liggins, a duet with Sugabeat singer Sarah Bird and another featuring another well known Leicester singer songwriter Calder Mclaughlin.

 


‘Who Is Pulling The Strings Around Your Heart?’ is available to buy on iTunes, band camp  and stream on spotify now

 

 

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Photography Workshop in Leicester

We will be running a completely NEW photography workshop in Leicester again this year. It has been a while since the last one, so we have completely re designed the workshop and added a load of additional content. I have been working loads over the last 6 months on various photos shoots and I have used so many new techniques to create images, so I am going to be adding a lot of these to the new workshop.  Still focusing on portraits, this time we will head out on location around Leicester as well as shooting in my studio on London Road, Leicester.

To make sure everyone gets the most out of this workshop, it will be limited to only 6 people on Saturday the 9th of May.

This time the main themes will be;

 

  • Concept
  • Setting up the photo shoot
  • Composition
  • Lighting (in studio and on location)
  • Post Production

 

For more information head to our contact form or email angie@artisticindustries.co.uk

The workshop will be based predominantly in my studio in Leicester

 

 

We will be looking at using light and composition for different purposes and end results.
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There will be a large proportion of the photography workshop based around concept and perspective
We will also look at creating studios on location with minimal equipment to create dynamic and interesting portraits.
Subject interaction will also be looked at in detail.
Using studio lighting on location to create images that the human eye can not see like this portrait at Leicester race course
Creating moods in portraits will also be looked at within the workshop. Subtle choices in clothing and accessories etc.
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Using one light to create a flattering portrait
We will also look at the theory behind creating complicated lighting set ups in a studio and set building
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Using negative space to create drama
Creating interesting effects to add more depth to images with lighting
Product placement and lighting for commercial shoots will also be discussed

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Music photography

You may have noticed that my music portraits portfolio is no longer on my website. I still have my live music work in a portfolio, but I have merged all portraits into one folder (have a look  http://scottchoucino.com/galleries/portraits-2/ ) now, I feel it gives a better representation of my style of work. Once you start categorising styles of portraits it is hard to know when to stop!

 

So I have put a few of my favourite music and band photographs from the last 5 years into this blog post. I am still doing photo and video shoots with musicians from local bands starting out to bigger acts who perform around the world. And I still love doing it just as much 🙂

 

 

Bob Geldof performing with the Boom Town Rats
Wolf Alice at Wychwood festival
Photoshoot with Rudimentals drummer before Glastonbury in their practice rooms in london.
Cat fish and the bottle men at Leicester O2 Academy
Premier Drums promotional shoot with Vicky Neon.
The Courteeners live in 2015
The Dardream Clubs cover photograph for The Monograph
Radio Riddler promotional shoot.
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We Three And The Death Rattle back stage at Hand Made Festival in Leicester 2013
Uncle Frank (Fun Loving Criminals Drummer)
Photoshoot with Clubs for the cover image of The Monograph outside the Midlands bus depot in Leicester
Surrender The Coast photoshoot for a magazine article.
Ellie Rowsell from Wold Alice
Pete Doherty performing with Babyshambles
Tom Meighan back stage after a gig
Felix and the radicals recording at Toe Rag Studios in London
Steve White (Paul Wellers drummer)
Saint Raymond
Wolf Alice

 

Portrait of Leicester singer song writer James Byron
Jay Sharrock playing drums for Miles Kane in 2014
The Darkness playing in Leicester
Kasabian at their press release for their last Leicester gig at Victoria Park
And You Will Know Us By The Train Of Dead’s bass player crowd surfing in The Cookie on Leicester high street
Local Hardcore band playing at The Cookie in 2012
The Darkness
Tom Meighan from Kasabian.

 

Interior photography The Lansdowne Leicester

 

This is a small selection of images  showing off the well thought out interior design of this city centre bar that I shot for the Lansdowne  Leicester (part of the Orange Tree group which has bars in Leicester, Nottingham and Loughborough).  This building is inside an old bank on London Road and has the original ceiling still on show, which looks pretty cool.

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