Category Archives: Portraits

Mike Cagno for Lifestyle Magazine

As some of you know, I do work for ArtC on the promotion of the arts in South Jersey. We do a lot of work in conjunction with the Noyes Museum of Art in Oceanville, NJ. Their Executive Director, Mike Cagno, is overseeing the creation of an up-and-coming Arts & Culture District in Atlantic City this Summer. Part of the plan is to renovate a large parking garage which will serve as gallery space and exhibition areas for artists. Lifestyle Magazine needed a few portraits of him so we decided to use this garage as the location for the shoot.

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“Man the Sails!”

Penny Bergman has directed several soap operas, and for her work on “All My Children” she received an emmy. Soon to direct a play in Cape May, NJ, I was hired to take her portrait in NY for it’s promotion. I went up a day prior to the shoot to scan the coastal areas of downtown Manhattan. I wanted something that would say “New York comes to Cape May”. In due time, I spotted a great little boat-turned-restaurant called the Frying Pan and knew it could work.

Now, sometimes I have crazy ideas, and I gotta be honest – not everything is completely thought through. This shoot was one of those times, when I played more the role of boatsman rather than photographer. The day of the shoot, I went to the top deck of the vessel where I intended to photograph her, only – I didn’t intend on the winds being 35mph and of course, I was working solo. Any light modifiers such as diffusion material turns into a sail and wants to stear the whole boat along with it. Nevertheless, I grabbed all the rope I had (including Sunny’s leash) and began to tie my gear down from every angle I could.

In a near panic as the shoot time crept closer, my softbox was finally secured to the boat. Penny ended up having a great time up on the howling deck. I was very pleased with the final shot – even if she forgot to bring her Emmy.

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Victor Grasso

I’ve had the privilege of observing painter Victor Grasso capture the visceral evolutions of coastal life and slam them onto the national scene, bringing his allure to many fans along the way. When a local gallery wanted to feature Victor’s work portraying the well-watered world which he so masterfully constructs, I was hired to take his portrait for publication in Exit Zero. I knew we had to do something underwater, and excitedly so since we could put that fancy rig to use.

Since we don’t own strobe systems for the underwater housing, 3 halogen lights were stationed around a pool to provide the adequate amount of luminosity, along with the installed pool light itself which became our backlight. Interestingly enough, the continuous light sources added a natural blur and realism to the photos, which I admired. The smell of the dead fish was not so appreciated.

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