For the clients – something different

Creating something a little different to fit what your clients want can be great. I was tasked with creating some head-shots for a client that fit the overall look and feel of their branding. The portraits that I create usually are on the more dramatic side, darker backgrounds with a more classical feel. With this project I was having to switch things up a bit. Not only because I wanted to do something different but also to fit my client’s look and established brand.

I worked out a lighting set up and editing style to create the look desired. Here is what we came up.

A lighter, lower saturated, higher contrast images with a white background shot with a single light. One strobe with a 36″ octo softbox on stand, Nikon D800, 24-70mm, F2.8, edited in LR. Here are a couple diagrams showing a basic layout of the light and subject positioning.

Nothing really complicated or extravagant just a simple setup with some basic post work. But the final look that we got is what we wanted. This is a reminder of the KISS method, keep it simple stupid.




Angel in Black and White

I’ve been wanting to change up my shooting style, if I really have one, to try something new. Wanting to do more black and white portraiture. I was working with a friend the other day and I asked “may I do your portrait?” and of course she said yes, well she chirped back “sure,” so that’s what we did.

The only light I had with me was a SB-600, yes I still have and use it and yes it still kicks out some good light, I have a small 6X9 Impact soft-box for the light modifier, it attaches with Velcro, works great in a pinch just like this one. The stand for the SB-600 I used a tripod, I attached the mount for the speed light to the head’s plate. Positioned the tripod on the table and used the swing-arm on the tripod to position the light right above me and the camera.

I wanted to go with a white back ground so I used a piece of white expanded PVC that we had behind a wall cutter cleaned it and placed it on a cart against the wall.

After getting everything setup and the flash’s power set, it was time to go to work sorta speak. I like to talk and have a conversation with the people that I photograph, it helps to relax and keep a calm setting, even joking around can get you a nice candid shot, a moment out of the norm, or other words the images that people don’t like to show. These are a few of them. I do want to go back and get some with a larger studio light but I still like the way they turned out.

Angel Adams is a creative in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area. You can learn about her here on her site here or @angeladams

A walk at Oxley

The Mary K. Oxley Nature Center located in Mohawk Park, Tulsa, OK is a gem of a place to go and be lost for twenty minutes two hours or an entire day. Trails that crisscross or lead off in one direction through the woods, along creeks and following the edge of a lake. You’ll discover a myriad of birds, possibly some deer and an armadillo or two or three. Along with all of the fauna there are also all the flora that comes along with being in the woods in Northeastern Oklahoma. Here are a just a few glimpses at what you’ll find.

The Mary K. Oxley Nature Center located in Mohawk Park is located at 3452-3676 Mohawk Blvd, Tulsa, OK 74115. You can contact them at (918) 669-6644.

Why I ♥ Oklahoma?

Sometime ago I was asked, what is there to like about Oklahoma? Well there are a lot of things, but more importantly I don’t just like Oklahoma, I love Oklahoma. Now that’s not to say there aren’t a few things, well maybe more than a few, that I wouldn’t change. But its my home, where I was born and raised, and I can say that. We do have a few things to learn here at home, a few things to change and improve on. But I still love it here, now it was almost 100* today, and well I’m a fat man and it’s not very good to people of the larger variety in the summer, but that’s on me. Anyways, I caught a couple of images of Oklahoma that say why I love it here. They are simple, however I think they say a lot.

If you click on the images below you will be taken to my 500px page where they are available to be purchased as stretched canvas prints or digital downloads.

Oklahoma afternoon Sea of grass

Now I know you could find images like these in other states, but these are not from anywhere else but my home, Oklahoma!

2013 Tulsa Tough…shooting the Tough can be mighty tough!

I had just gotten back into town a couple of days before the start of the 2013 Tulsa Tough, and I thought to myself that I would spend the entire weekend shooting the Tough. Ambitious I know, but as it turned out well worth it.

Friday, June 7th 2013.

I had gotten downtown to the Blue Dome district later than I should have. The parking was nil and far between, so after trying my usual places I ended up having to pay $5, it hurt just admitting to that. So lets move on nothing to see here. I got unloaded and began the walk to the start finish line. There were crowds, this was to be expected but DAMN! It was a double edge sword, I was glad to see so many people out in support of the races, but that also meant since I didn’t have a press pass I had to fight for the shots a bit more than if I had a pass.

So I got started shooting along 2nd street, just west of the Start-Finish line, then followed the edge of the track west and then north to 1st. Trying to get shots between and over people as I went. I did get a good spot inside of turn #2 near El Guapo’s, the sun was getting low and this provided light right into the faces of the racers as they turned the corner, lighting them nicely now it could be a bit harsh at times but it allowed the shutter speed to be a bit higher capturing the action int he turns.


These two shots are from the start of the Men’s Pro final. The one showing them clapping, is when they were announcing the results of the Women’s final only moments before where there was a crash that help to determine the winner.


And here are the men ready to get it done…over with however you decipher some of the expressions on the a few of the faces.

DSC_9522Along with these few images I have posted on here there are a lot more for view and download, available here at Billy Sauerland Photography.

Please stay tuned for more to come…

Moving on…

I love this image. I captured this image while on a road trip in 2003 to Durango, CO.

I love this image. I captured this image while on a road trip in 2003 to Durango, CO.

I am leaving my home, the place where I was born and raised. I grew up in the area just west of Tulsa, OKSand Springs, Sapulpa, Mannford, Olive, and others collected in the general area, not guilty by proximity but not innocent either. Creek county, Tulsa county, Pawnee and Osage, Okmulgee and Okfuskee, McIntosh and Muskogee. These were the names and places that we would listen for during the weather reports in the springtime. The reports would give us worry because they were to the north and west and others a sigh of relief because they were to the south and east. Either way, watching the different shades of greens and reds inch they’re way across the TV always filled me with excitement and anxiety, knowing something big and powerful was going on outside somewhere not too far away. The idea of a storm taking everything away, destroying the world you know. Sounds a bit bleak, but it wasn’t it was a time that seemed honest and simple. The sun came up you lived your life, the sun went down you went to bed, that’s it, that simple. The world at that time was black and white for me, you did what you were told, or else. You worked, then you played, if there was enough daylight left, oh and you didn’t slam the screen door. It may sound story book, to be honest it was for a short time, but then it wasn’t. The world went from black and white, right and wrong to, gray, all gray, nothing but gray. No explanation, no reasoning behind it, it just changed and that was it, thats how it was going to be for now on.

I grew up wanting something, not really knowing what it was, but knowing it was something else, something other than here, now, and connected to this place. However, the last few years I’ve really started to love the here, now and things connected to this place. So my decision to leave, to move on, to escape (not sure what to call it yet) has caused me some real anxiety, pain and confusion in my heart.

The morning sun shines on the sparkling ice covered Osage Hills.

The morning sun shines on the sparkling ice covered Osage Hills. This is just one of those places I’ve really started to love. Just Northwest of Tulsa between Bartlesville and Pawhuska, OK.

Looking back, you know hindsight being 20/20 and all, I can see different opportunities that came and went, but I was unaware of at the time but grew in clarity as time past. But this time there is one of those opportunities that is staring me square in the face. An opportunity to move, to move all the way to Cali-forn-ia, to a town called Groveland, just outside of Yosemite Nat, Park and take a job at a lodge. This job will allow me to work on my photography in a place of historical importance to our collective environmental view and direction that our country, or parts of our country have taken.

I hope that this turn in life is the correct turn, the turn to a higher level of creativity and insightfulness, or something like that. However there is a quote that keeps whirling around in my mind, “no matter where you go, there you are,” well here is where I’ve been and still am, and there is where I want to be and hopefully soon will be.

…blah, blah, blah, enough with the rambling and self…

…so this is my journey.

I hope to capture this trip to my new home, job and place of growth, then share it with everybody. My last day at work here in Tulsa is on March 26th, I leave the next day on the 27th, with the hope of it being an early departure. The day I leave, all of my belongings that I plan on keeping will be in or on my car, yup me and “Tom” are hitting the road. I just hope  my journey has a better ending than the “Joad” family.