After FotoChaos, Casey took my car home and I hopped on our tour bus. If you follow my blog, Instagram, or Facebook, you have most certainly seen this bus! If not, his name is Benny and here is what he looks like.
Benny is owned by my friends Scott and Kelly Crosby. They actually bought him after he was used as a prop in a movie. He is entirely hand painted and the inside has been completely remodeled to match the style of the hippie era. I’ve taken a couple trips on this bus and it is always a good time hanging out with the Crosby’s. When I announced that I was thinking about doing another tour, Kelly commented and said that Benny would love to take a trip. I told her that I thought this one might be too long for Benny because I was looking at the West coast. She said they had been thinking of heading west and to send her the dates. Well, I got to mapping out a route and sent it to her that day. Within the hour they messaged me back and said they were in. Just like that. 40 days on the road… why not? That’s just the type of people they are. Go with the flow and find the adventure.
So we made the drive to Denver and had our workshop at the Aloft Hotel (which is a super cool chain of hotels if you have never been!) They had a pool table so of course, I played for a few hours
We had a really fun group of photographers that had come from all over (the most crazy being Geraldo who flew in that morning from Chicago! He had to get up at 3 a.m. to make it, haha.)
The shot on the left was taken at the hotel pool. We gelled pink lights and shot them on the white wall in the background. The image on the right was taken at the bar in the hotel.
This shot shows what this setting would look like normally. I have one flash on our model and one flash gelled blue shooting into the chair thing behind her.
This one was taken at the exact same spot with the same lighting. The effect was created by twisting the camera with a slow shutter, which streaks the lights across the shot.
After Denver, we headed to Seattle. This drive was the longest and most grueling of the entire trip. We only had two days to get to Seattle in time for my workshop and we had 30 HOURS on the road to do it. We drove all day, slept on the bus for a couple hours, and then drove all the next day to make it. It was pretty brutal. Scott did a majority of the driving because he is a machine. I got the privilege of driving a 35 foot bus into Seattle… at night…. in the rain. Scott said he would never let anyone drive the bus at night or in the rain, or through the mountains. I did all three at once! Some people would freak out driving this thing (my mom would have a heart attack) but it doesn’t really bother me much. I just turn my music up and cruise.
I had been watching the weather in Seattle on my phone for the week leading up to it. It had been really nice every day and then, of course, on the day of the workshop it rained… all day. Luckily there was a parking garage next to where we were having the workshop so we went in there to shoot. I actually would have shot in there whether it rained or not. Parking garages offer up a lot of different backgrounds for pictures and they are perfect for a workshop environment because they are fairly quiet and everyone can stay close. I always tell people, if you can rock a parking garage with flash, you can make anything work. Being stuck in one location forces you to be more creative and to look at things differently. All the shots below were taking in a parking garage, except for the last one which was taken at Salsa N Seattle where we had the workshop.