I recently joined a photography Meetup group .  It is basically set up so models, makeup artists and photographers can get together to build their portfolios and exchange information.  Since I don’t have a lot of experience in these things, I figured it was an easy way to at least start networking.  I went to my first meeting last weekend.  It was a Mermaid theme.  I think there were 8 or 9 different models, but I only got to work with about 5 of them.  They were all good sports about the whole thing, getting into the swampy water and climbing all over the rocks for us.

Originally, we were supposed to shoot at the beach but there was a problem with getting the proper permits.  So, we ended up at a small landscaped stream in front of a water treatment facility in Chino instead.  We spent about four hours shooting.  Unfortunately, it was at the absolute worst time of day in terms of the lighting, 10am-2pm, so I had to do a lot of Photoshop fuckery to get the shots to look even remotely decent.  Even then, a lot of it is bleached out.  Since I’ll post the pictures as I edited them, you’ll see that there was a learning curve in just how to deal with the bad lighting.

All of this was shot with my Nikon D7200, and mostly with my 55-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 lens.  Occasionally, I switched to my 18.0-140.0 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens, usually because there wasn’t a lot of space to work with and some of the models wanted full body shots.  I started off with ISO 200 but had to move to 400 for the shots that were in the shade since I wasn’t using a tripod.

First, we will start with the only pirate that showed up.
Pirate & Mermaid 1.jpg


Pirate & Mermaid 2.jpg


Pirate 1.jpg

This little mermaid was a trooper.  She was swimming all over that little stream.  Her mom was a bit of a dictator, but once the little girl relaxed, she seemed to be having fun.  I could hear the MUAs tsk tsking, though, when she got her hair all wet.  Oh, well.Little Mermaid 2.jpg


Little Mermaid 4.jpg


Little Mermaid 5.jpg


Mermaid Sisters.jpg

This young lady didn’t start off in a mermaid outfit, so I got some shots with her before she changed clothes.  Here eyes are just gorgeous.

Green Eyes 2.jpg


Green Eyes 7.jpg


Green Eyes 8.jpg

This next young lady must be new to the modeling thing.  She has virtually the same expression in every single picture I have of her.  Oh, well.

Brown Eyes 3.jpg



Brown Eyes 5.jpg

One last one.  This was actually the first model I shot and got me started.  I just edited this particular picture last.

Blue Mermaid 4.jpg

That’s it for here. If the pictures above aren’t enough, there are more on the Flickr page.  Just click one of the pictures to go there when you are done here.  I think the next shoot is going to be a Day of the Dead theme in an old cemetery.  After that, it will be a Circus/Freak Show theme in a studio.  We will see how it goes.  I do know I need to purchase a flash, though.

Meetup Experiment #1: Mermaid Theme

5 thoughts on “Meetup Experiment #1: Mermaid Theme

  1. Excellent Michael! My favorites were the little mermaid submerged, the green eyed exotic beauty, and that “Radar Love” blonde…she scared me a little but I enjoyed her attitude nonetheless. To my eye there are several studio capture quality images in here.

    • Thanks. Glad you liked em. I have hundred more but after a while, I just got tired of editing so I had to stop. It was defiantly a learning experience, both with the camera and with the editing. I’m still too chickenshit to tell the models what to do, tho. Maybe after a few hundred more shoots. haha.

    • Thanks. We’ll see. The way I understand it, there are a few models and photographers that rotate on and off. I’ll give it a chance and see where it goes. Not like I have a whole lot else going on during the weekends. And given where I live, there’s not a whole lot to shoot in terms of architecture or nature…unless you like lots of dirt and dead grass. Haha.

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