13. February 2016 · Comments Off on Re-Imagining the Background of a Studio Portrait · Categories: Photography, Portrait · Tags: ,

Studio portraits are great because I can control the lighting and other factors in the environment to create a high-quality image.  But they can be a bit boring with the same old backdrop. I enjoy using Photoshop to create an alternate background.  First there’s the technical challenge of making a clean mask. How this goes depends on the clarity of the edges.  Elements such as flying hair are time consuming.  Then, once I have an idea for the background, I have to figure out how it’s going to work in terms of light, color, perspective, and blending.   All photos Copyright 2016 Alice Gebura All Rights Reserved.

Cara Seymour

Cara Seymour, 2015 Lois Greenfield Workshop

Cara Seymour

Replaced the wall and floor with a soft background and figure shadow

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Anton LaMon and Kelly Vittetoe, Photo shoot at the Tek Box, Cowles Center for Dance


Sunset and water. Bi-colored filter on the dancers to blend the tonality.

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Anton LaMon and Kelly Vittetoe, Photo shoot at the Tek Box, Cowles Center for Dance


Hue, saturation, and exposure applied to background fabric from another photo. Created a mirror floor.


10. August 2015 · Comments Off on Sunset Series: Morgen · Categories: Photography, Portrait · Tags:

In the evening before the sun disappears below the horizon, there are approx. 20 minutes of beautiful light.  The light changes constantly in color, texture, and intensity.  I’m embarking on a series of sunset portraits and my daughter, Morgen, was my first model.  These photos are presented in the order they were taken so you can see how the light changes in the landscape and how it affects the model. The changing light required me to be vigilant with camera settings as well as the settings on the flash – a ProPhoto B1 set up on an Avenger C-stand.

All photos Copyright 2015 Alice Gebura All Rights Reserved.

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The sunset is to your left and isn’t included in the first few shots.

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Now I’ve moved the model so the sunset is on the right. At this point the sun is low in the sky but not yet touching the horizon.



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The lower the sun, the more color from light bouncing off the moisture in the clouds. It casts color on the model as well.



27. May 2014 · Comments Off on A Portrait of Roman · Categories: Photography, Portrait

Roman is the great-grandson of Dr. Samuel Pozzi, the subject of John Singer Sargent’s painting “Dr. Pozzi at Home.” Dr. Pozzi’s daughter, Catherine Pozzi, is Roman’s grandmother.

Photograph Copyright 2013 Alice Gebura All Rights Reserved.
roman and dr pozzi

More on this fascinating family

Born in Bergerac, France in 1846, Dr. Samuel-Jean Pozzi is:

“often described as the ‘father’ of French gynecology, he was one of those responsible in the latter part of the nineteenth century for making surgery safe and effective. As a young intern he participated in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870. His experiences with treating war wounds led him to visit Joseph Lister in Scotland in 1876 to study the principles of antisepsis and anesthesia. Pozzi wrote one of the first comprehensive textbooks of surgery on women, in the newly christened field of gynecology. The French published the textbook in 1890 and American publishers printed the first English-language version in 1892.

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16. August 2013 · Comments Off on Musical Portraits · Categories: Photography, Portrait · Tags:

For me the biggest challenge in portrait photography is getting the skin color correct. The camera picks up all the wavelengths the human eye either doesn’t see or that the brain “corrects” based on previous experience. Without any color correction the following portraits were highly influenced by:

  • the red-orange cast of the tungsten studio lights
  • the color bouncing off the clothes
  • the rich reds and browns bouncing off the instruments, when present

Passport Colorchecker by x-rite


In the past I’ve used a white balance card to adjust color in post-processing. For the photo shoot with these musicians I used a Passport Colorchecker which comes with software for creating a color profile (DNG file). It definitely made a difference.

Bruce Hangen

Bruce Hangen, Orchestra Conductor

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16. October 2012 · Comments Off on Business Portraits · Categories: Photography, Portrait · Tags:

I had an amazing photo shoot this morning with Randy Sabien.
Randy wanted a set of photos to reflect his off-stage personality. Since he loves to fish, we decided do some fishing photos. For a location I chose Lake Hiawatha in Minneapolis for its scenic shoreline. I used my iPhone app The Photographer’s Ephemeris to get the data I needed on sunrise time and direction.  We left for the lake at 7am to get set up in time for a 7:24am sunrise.  The light was beautiful and I got this shot right off the bat.

Randy Sabien




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Copyright 2012, Alice Gebura, All Rights Reserved.

14. September 2012 · Comments Off on Portrait Photo for Randy Sabien · Categories: Photography, Portrait

Randy SabienYesterday I did a photo shoot with jazz violinist Randy Sabien who needs updated photos for his web site and promotional materials.  We did the shoot at the St. Paul University Club which has a lot of nice locations.  We shot this one in the library.  I bounced on-camera flash to the left.  To bounce the flash I used the Spinlight 360, which I found out about from reading Neil van Nieikirk’s  excellent blog on flash photography.  The Spinlight 360 is a relatively inexpensive gadget and it’s very effective.   To go with the ambience, Randy wore his favorite smoking jacket!

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Posted by Smart Alice Web Design & Photography, smart web design for people who want a unique and effective presence on the internet.

Copyright 2012, Alice Gebura, All Rights Reserved.