How I Got the Shot: Stuck at Home Edition


Everyone is dealing with this new normal in different ways. A lot of people have been finding all sorts of creative ways to keep themselves busy. Not wanting to be outdone, photographers all over have been sharing amazing and humorous photos often shot within their homes. 

Trapped at home and away from his studio equipment, photographer Mike Calabro looked for a way to beat the boredom while also fulfilling his need to be creative. An outdoor lifestyle photographer based out of Chicago, Calabro has worked with all kinds of great clients, like Nike, Red Bull, Victory Motorcycles, Outside, and Surfer Magazine, just to name a few. 

Being immunocompromised, having recently been diagnosed with cancer, Calabro started self-isolating earlier than most. His girlfriend, a nurse working at Loyola University, has severe asthma and has been working from home as a phone nurse. So, the need to find a cure for their cabin fever was becoming real. 

Unfortunately, most of his gear was at the studio set up for a project now put on hold, so he had to get creative with his lighting. “Luckily, I had 2 flashes still at home. For the backdrop, I used my 55″ TV and found an image that was taken during the blue hour,” Calabro explained. One flash was gelled blue and used to light the foreground, while the other lit the background so you could still see the shelving and know it was shot indoors. There was only one stand and an old umbrella, so the background light was placed on a skateboard. For a campfire effect, he used an LED flame effect bulb that was kept behind his aquarium. His girlfriend was the model and was lit with the laptop monitor. 

As an outdoor lifestyle photographer myself, I know a lot of the outdoor community is missing the call of nature and wishing they could be self-isolating in the wild. But, it is important for us all to stay the course and finding ways to use our creativity to find a cure for boredom is a great way to not lose our sanity. 

Do you have a creative story of how you have been keeping busy while stuck at home? Share it in the comments. 



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