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Welcome to MICHELLE HERRICK | the blog!

I am a fashion editorial and high school senior photographer located in sunny Arizona. I love everything about producing fashion shoots for magazine editorials or the fun & vibrant graduating senior or for clients' promotional/campaign material...this really is the best job ever. Oh, and I'm a mom to 3 awesome kids with an amazing husband and the coolest german short hair pointer dog!

Posts Tagged 'behind the scenes'

February 1, 2014

I sometimes feel like I am cursed with the thought or attitude of ‘oh, I can just make that’…or ‘you want me to pay how much for that…forget it, I’ll just make it’! [Case in point, those TULLE skirts…remember those?!]

Well, I don’t know how, but I stumbled upon this local photographer’s tumblr page and in a post he talked about painting his own backdrop. See post HERE. Of course…DUH! Beautiful hand-painted backdrops can cost hundreds and hundreds of dollars…but this in a pinch DIY solution I knew would only cost a few bucks.

Went to Home Depot and purchased a canvas drop cloth in their paint department. (The link is for the exact brand and size I bought, but it was an 8oz weight…not 10oz). [$20]

Then I found a gray color paint called DARK GRANITE that I thought would be the most versatile. I saved a few bucks by having it mixed over at Walmart using their basic interior, flat paint. [$10]

And finally I purchased a BIG 21 gallon storage bin (WITH LID) to mix everything in. [$6] … oh, and pick up some of those yellow cleaning gloves!! [$3]

ON TO THE MIX… and obviously DO THIS OUTSIDE! ;-) …oh, and I should mention that I started this at about 9am…

I poured 2/3rds of the paint into the bucket (I don’t know why 2/3rds, but it seemed to be all I needed) and then turned on the hose and filled the bin with water until the paint was evenly diluted – like Golilocks…not too thick, not too thin.

At this point we just wadded up the canvas drop and put it in the bin, however I would recommend starting at one end and put sections in bit by bit. When we put the whole thing in it took a while and a lot of churning to get the entire drop cloth covered. We had to keep pulling it out, shifting it, and dunking it again; probably more messier that way, too.

I put the lid on and let it sit for about 8-9 hours.

And here’s where it can get tricky…for sure helps to have someone you with to do this part. The canvas is going to be very heavy and very wet but you need to wring out as much of the diluted paint/water from the cloth. My husband and I folded it up several times and just twisted it in opposite directions over the bin and that seemed to work best. Then you gotta let it dry. We rigged something to hang it on, but we had to fold it in half to do that so it wasn’t touching the ground. If I had to do it again, I would just find a place in the yard to lay it flat or where it can be hung evenly and flat. I left it there over night to dry.

The next day in the morning it was about 75% dry so I took it down, unfolded it, and slung it over our block fence so that only a small part of it hung on our neighbors side until it was fully dried (about another couple hours). I could have just done this in the first place, but it would have left wet paint everywhere.

It was a little stiff when it was all dry, but definitely foldable and easy enough to roll up. However, if I had rinsed it some once I took it out of the bin initially then it might have been a bit more pliable.

All in all I am really quite satisfied with my little DIY canvas backdrop…not to shabby for $39. If I do this again I think I will go with a paint a couple shades darker (I didn’t think I’d loose any color by diluting it, but I think I did).

Here is pic that I made my daughter stand in for so you can get a quick glimpse of how it turned out…

diy backdrop_kid pic 2

I’m doing a full shoot using the backdrop today and will post those pics ASAP to get the full effect.

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October 30, 2013

Probably some of the images I am MOST proud of came from this shoot. Images coming soon!

Behind the Scenes :: DAY+NIGHT from Michelle Herrick on Vimeo.

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September 18, 2013

So this is a post for all my photographer followers, friends, peers. If that’s not you, consider yourself warned…it’s going to get a bit geeky for awhile! :-)

Almost 2 years ago I did a quick little blog post [HERE] reviewing the newly launched VSCO Lightroom presets. Oddly enough, that post is still one of the most popular posts on this blog. Well I recently got my hands on the newly released Lightroom presets called Replichrome from Totally Rad, as in Totally Rad Actions. On the TRA site they make no bones about who they are up against… (VSCO) and how/why their presets are far superior and the better choice. I suppose if you didn’t have either set you wouldn’t know the difference or how/where to compare. So let me do that for you…here’s a quick breakdown of what I have noticed at first glances.

Literally the first thing I noticed was a BIG thing to me because it’s probably my #1 pet peeve about the VSCO presets. With Replichrome ALL the B&W presets are organized very neatly into their own folder. That’s HUGE to me. I love it! If I want an image(s) to be B&W I know right where to go; with VSCO all film emulation presets are thrown into one folder…nothing to distinguish which is B&W and which is color…you just have to trial and error it.

And the next thing I noticed were how AMAZING the black and white presets are. Like as in shut-the-front-door-I-think-I-have-finally-found-what-I’ve-been-looking-for-in-a-B&W-conversion-preset-and-it’s-about-freaking-time!!! I have not been shy about the fact that I do not have a B&W preset or even a Photoshop adjustment that I really like. But I am soooo excited about these. I think all their B&W presets are pretty great ‘out of the box’ so to speak; very little adjustment needs.

TRA replichrome film compare BW 1

TRA Replichrome | Kodak Plus-X 125++ [above & below]

TRA replichrome film compare BW 2

If you have no experience with any film effect presets (Lightroom or Camera Raw) then these will probably frustrate you and/or make you think you wasted your money. That was how I felt at first with my VSCO set. It’s just the nature of the “film” look. Skin tones tend to go deep in either an orange/pink or a green/blue. I’m not a purest by any measure so I can’t say one way or the other how true to life these emulations are, but I will say that they do take some getting used to and tweaking to your own liking.

I like my images to have a pretty “clean” look…colors and tones to be as close to how they were actually captured, no big deviations from the original. I found that the Kodak Color set from Replichrome to be the better “film set” and I thought those presets had more to choose from that helped me maintain the coloring, toning and overall feel of my images as close to how they were captured.

Favorite from Kodak Color: Kodak 400 Noritsu [below]

TRA replichrome film compare Kodak400Noritsu w tweaks

On the contrary, I found the Fuji Color set not at all to my liking. It may just be that there’s some getting used to because I really love my Fuji set from VSCO, so I’m going to keep playing with them to see if I can keep tweaking to my liking. Putting it simply, everything ‘out of the box’ with the Fuji set was just TOO much. Too dark, too deep, too orange or too green…it feels like everything needs to be dialed back a bit.

From Fuji Color: Fuji Pro 800z Noritsu [with NO adjustments - below]

TRA replichrome film compare Fuji Pro

From Fuji Color: Fuji Pro 800z Noritsu [WITH adjustments - below]

TRA replichrome film compare Fuji Pro with tweaks

And then just for kicks and grins here’s another Replichrome preset from the Kodak set…

Kodak Ektar 100 Noritsu [below]

TRA replichrome film compare KodakEktar100 Noritsu w tweaks

Other insights and overall impressions:
The other thing that I noticed with Replichrome is that when I ran a preset it was obvious where the adjustments were being made in the Develop side panel; you could see which sliders were changed. I like seeing what is being adjusted and tweaked so that I can fine tune that slider to my own taste. With VSCO presets the tweaking isn’t always easy to find or pin point in order to make your own adjustments. I also love that when you run a preset the shadows and blacks are almost spot on where they should be; with the VSCO set those are consistently the sliders I have to adjust the most. The one thing I would like to see on the TRA site, however, are the names of the presets used on their “sample” images. It’s great to show the photos processed, but to me it’s more helpful to know which preset was used to achieve that “look”. All in all I am actually quite impressed…if nothing else the B&W have completely won me over.

I’m thinking of doing a side-by-side compare of the Replichrome vs VSCO in one of the next upcoming blog posts…the presets won’t exactly be apples to apples, but may be close enough to see the difference.

I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback about what you have found with the Replichrome and/or the VSCO sets. Contact me using the link below, or leave a comment.


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September 2, 2013

I admit that BTS (behind the scene) videos are my favorite to see from anyone’s shoot and I kick myself at almost every shoot for not capturing just a few minutes of video. Here’s a quick BTS video from my recently published shoot in Zephyr Magazine.

The Arcturian – Behind the Scenes

The Arcturian // Zephyr Magazine // September 2013

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May 15, 2013

Wow…pinch me…

I am beyond excited to finally show you what I have been working on and keeping wraps for the last couple of months.


model // Eden V [The Agency AZ]
hair&makeup // Rosie Reed
behind the scenes video footage // Bridgette Balmes
directing, editing, & video production // Michelle Herrick

I had the amazing experience to be able to work with the talented crew of TwoPennyBlue to shoot their Spring/Summer collection as well as creating a video component to the shoot. The day was long, but the reward is unmeasurable.

So excited to see the full collection launched later this week…but if you head over to the TwoPennyBlue site now you can see a great sneak peak of some shots from the shoot.

And of course…what great and grand shoot isn’t complete without a little BEHIND THE SCENES video…

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April 8, 2013

I am INCREDIBLY honored to be the FIRST interviewed in a long list of amazing people behind the scenes of Emma Magazine, for their blog. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again I am soooo blessed to do what I do. The gals at Emma Mag are so talented and such hard workers…I love just being around them to soak up all that energy and creativity.

You can check out the fun Q & A here: http://www.emmamag.com/qa-with-michelle-herrick-photographer/ And feel free to leave me some love…cuz I love it!

And stay tuned because we definitely have quite a few FANTASTIC things being cooked up for future issues.

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October 12, 2012

Where do I even begin? This has been one of those projects that has been buzzing in the back of my head for months. I kept coming back to this idea…instead of telling my senior clients and their families what the senior session is going to be like, SHOW THEM!

That was when my SENIOR FASHION EXPERIENCE promo video was born!

I’ll be posting more pics from this session of CheyeAnne who is part of my new senior rep program… MH | Senior Model Crew!

Oh, and did you spy the tulle skirt?? Pretty fantastic, right?!

Rosie Reed | make up & hair
Whitney Helmich | wardorb & styling
Cortney Talbott | video & behind the scenes
Michelle Herrick | photography

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