INSPIRED WITH HASSELBLAD

It's more important now than ever to keep up our creative spirit. For many of us, our living rooms have become our studios and our typical style of photography is just not possible to do at the moment. Using everyday objects or the people living with them, get inspired by and learn from Hasselblad photographers who are still finding ways to harness their creativity from home. Further explore Hasselblad's community of creatives on Instagram using the hashtag #InspiredWithHasselblad.

AMANDA CARLSON

Under a shelter-in-place order in Chicago, Illinois, visual artist Amanda Carlson uses her loft apartment as a home studio to create stunning self-portraits with the H6D-100c, an umbrella, and light.

One big tip I have for others who are looking to do any self portrait shoots at home is to place a mirror in front of you so you can see exactly where the light hits. I love to use light as my 'paint.'

WHAT IS THE INSPIRATION FOR YOUR IMAGERY?

My inspiration comes from a lot of places but two that always remain are light and color. I’m mindful of how the light hits the subject (in this case, myself) and the contrast of color. I love to have natural light and tinted colored lights in one photo; it adds a nice range of color and texture in the image.

How did you create this series of images?

I think the best trick to know about photography is that you can use whatever it is to get the shot because in the end, the viewer will never see what makes up the shot. For example, I got these plastic work lights from Home Depot for maybe $10 and put an ordinary light bulb inside. Since these were close up photos, the amount of light created was perfect and super affordable and easy to find! This applies to anything, whether it’s a prop (I found the umbrella used in this photo at a thrift store for $10), a light source, or something to catch light in a certain way. One of my favorite finds was a clear lucite candle holder I found at Goodwill for $0.50, and I use it in my photo work as a prism.

Behind-the-scenes of Amanda's setup

ARE THERE ANY CHANGES TO YOUR WORKFLOW DURING THIS TIME?

My own workflow has changed mainly since my shoots have all been postponed, but I’ve found ways to still make it work. I created a space for a home studio where I can experiment and prepare ideas for when things start to pick up again. Exploration in art is extremely important, and working that muscle is key, even during these slow times.

What challenge do you give to those also stuck in their homes to keep the creative juices flowing?

One big tip I have for others who are looking to do any self portrait shoots at home (which I highly recommend, even if you don’t show them to anyone) is to place a mirror in front of you so you can see exactly where the light hits. I love to use light as my “paint,” but if you can’t see where it’s going it makes it more difficult. Also, always look for patterns and how it hits the subject. For example, if you have an image with a light line going diagonally across the image, try to line it up parallel with your eyebrow or nose so it creates intentional lines across the face. I challenge all photographers to try a self portrait! Worst case scenario is that you’ll have high-res photos of yourself you can look back on. You never know what you’ll get until you try it out.


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