My vision was to convey a light and airy mood for the shoot.

The hardest part of this shoot was finding a suitable location that would fit my vision. I wanted light pastels and bright whites. A modern look with solid colors would be perfect. After many weeks of searching, I eventually settled on the Claremont Hotel in Berkeley, CA.

The renovated room at the Claremont Hotel

The renovated room at the Claremont Hotel

The Claremont was recently renovated and the rooms fit my requirements well. The biggest unknown about the hotel was being able to shoot outside on the grounds since the location is a pretty famous spot for hosting wedding parties and the like.

With all of the planning and bookings in place, all that was left was to pick out equipment. I brought along my standard gear of two Paul C Buff Einsteins with battery packs and 6 ft parabolic umbrellas to provide lighting. These guys barely fit in the modest 225 square foot room! For camera gear, I was wavering between using film or digital. I really wanted to shoot with medium format black and white film for the boudoir, but that ran counter to my vision of light and airy.

In the end, I split the difference and made some compromises to reduce weight. For the fashion portion of the shoot, I decided to shoot with film. For the boudoir portion, the Sony A7RII was used.

Leica M6 TTL Millennium, Summilux 50mm ASPH, Kodak Portra 160 @ ISO 160, C-41 developed

Leica M6 TTL Millennium, Summilux 50mm ASPH, Kodak Portra 160 @ ISO 160, C-41 developed

There was just enough light for the fashion portion of the shoot to grab some good shots and get us warmed up. I found that this pre-shoot warm up worked really well for getting the models and I into the a good shooting groove.

Leica M6 TTL Millennium, Summilux 50mm ASPH, Kodak Portra 160 @ ISO 160, C-41 developed

Leica M6 TTL Millennium, Summilux 50mm ASPH, Kodak Portra 160 @ ISO 160, C-41 developed

Once the sun set below the skyline, we headed indoors to begin the boudoir portion of the shoot. I enlisted the aid of Lady Aurora to assist with the shoot.

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

I predominately used the Sonnetar 50mm lens due to its classical rendering.

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

To make the shoot more interesting and fun, we decided to play pose roulette. I would randomly select a pose from my references and we would try to shoot that or something evoking a similar feeling.

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

Alas, time is always short and we had to wrap up the shoot since the time I allotted was up and we were starving.

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

Sony A7RII, Sonnetar 50mm

Overall the shoot went well and as always, I wish I had more time. Until next time!