501st Legion Engagement Album
This album began as an idea I had after photographing Michael and Stacey for my Making Faces Project. During that initial portrait session, I realized that if I photographed Michael and Stacey's engagement session while they were in costume, using the same techniques I used when photographing typical couples, I'd be able create some compelling and unique photographs—photographs that I could compile into an album that might be worthy of entry into international photographic competitions. With that in mind, I developed a shot list detailing over 80 different concepts that I wanted to cover and I invested hundreds of dollars of my own money in Star Wars related toys and props.
When the day of the shoot arrived, time and light were against me and I was only able to create a fraction of the photos I had planned. Nevertheless, I made over 500 images over a crazy two hours. Later, when I returned to my home studio and began on my album design, my preliminary draft included over 80 pages. As I continued to work on the album, refining the story and only selecting the strongest photos, I settled on the photographs that you see before you—a 40-page album that contains only 23 photos. Less is more; that's my mantra.
Michael and Stacey are members of the 501st Legion, a worldwide Star Wars costuming organization comprised of and operated by Star Wars fans. While the 501st Legion is not sponsored by Lucasfilm Ltd., it is Lucasfilm's preferred Imperial costuming group. Star Wars, its characters, costumes, and all associated items are the intellectual property of Lucasfilm. ©2014 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™ All rights reserved. Used under authorization.
Captain Rex and Bo-Katan are characters that appear in the animated television series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The series, created by George Lucas and produced by Lucasfilm Animation, debuted on October 3, 2008. The sixth and final season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars concludes in 2014. The animated series features a prequel storyline surrounding Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker and his path to become Sith Lord Darth Vader. During the series, the Clone Wars are just beginning and the Galactic Republic and Jedi Order are under siege from the Confederacy of Independent Systems.
The character Bo-Katan is a confident, fierce, and brave female warrior who is able to withstand heavy physical punishment and who is pleasantly plain-spoken. The Bo-Katan character was primarily created to give female fans more opportunities for armored cosplay. The pronunciation of her name is similar to the pronunciation of Boca Raton. The character Captain Rex is one of the many clones of bounty hunter Jango Fett. These clone soldiers were bred to fight against the Confederacy of Independent Systems. Rex has served in command roles within the famous 501st Legion and was assigned to Jedi General Anakin Skywalker, participating in missions both separately and alongside the Jedi Knight. For additional flavor and character, Rex has a scar on his chin that is modeled after the one on Harrison Ford's. Captain Rex, believes strongly in his humanity and the humanity of his fellow clones. And although he doesn't hesitate to follow great leaders into battle, he reacts violently when he feels that his men are treated inhumanely.
This album was entered in the 2014 WPPI Print, Album & Filmmaker Competition. It awarded First Place in the Engagement Album category, receiving a Gold Distinction Award with an unexpected score of 95. At the time, this score was the highest that I'd ever received in any competition. For this competition, there were a total of 2544 entries with 32% of those entries receiving an award. To put these awards in perspective, 8 entries received a Platinum Award. A Platinum Award is presented to entrants with a perfect score of 100. A Gold Distinction Award was presented for this album entry along with only 12 other entries in other competition categories. Gold Distinction awards are presented to entries that receive a score of 95 to 99 which in this case represent only .005% of all entries. Other awards presented at this competition include 49 gold awards [2% of entries scored 90-94], 170 silver distinction awards [7% of entries scored 85-89], and 581 silver awards [23% of entries scored 80-84].
I'd like to thank the many people who helped made this album possible including Michael, Stacey, Dina Douglass, Jerry Ghionis, Gretchen Hilmers, and the dozens of others who contributed constructive and worthwhile feedback during the development process. I'd also like to thank George Lucas and Lucasfilm for my inspiration and for their creations. I hope you enjoyed this album as much as I enjoyed making it. May the force be with you, always.
These photographs were captured at Walt Disney Concert Hall located in downtown Los Angeles, California. Phone: (213) 972-7565. Website: http://www.laphil.com. Contact Person: Rob Carson, (213) 972-7565, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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