Close-Up is a photography series from the lens of Gregory Nolan.
I shot Ella Mai on the roof of the Interscope building after a mini industry showcase. We kept this shoot very simple—looking into the sun with a plain background, trying to bring out her energy and passion through simple portraiture.
As I usually do before a portrait session, I looked online for the portraits that are out there and the look and feel of the artist’s imaging. With Jack, there were very few of him smiling, very few close-ups of his face looking natural and dynamic. That was my hope going into the shoot. Having only 8 minutes, I walked out of that session feeling like I hadn’t gotten anything—that the bad lighting and saggy furniture meant I hadn’t gotten anything worth keeping. In post I was able to bring out the color and play with the lighting. I didn’t get the smiling photo I really hoped for, but I ended up pretty pleased with the shots I got.
It was great shooting with someone like Skylar Grey because she knows exactly how to pose for the look she wants. The shoot was right at twilight and we had the chance to look for different locations outside the venue, and we ended up with some interesting shot that used the outdoor lighting that was available.
I haven’t spent much time in the rap/hip hop scene, so this was a first for me. The lighting at this show was perfect for live photography, and I was really pleased with the shots I was able to get from the photo pit. The energy and athleticism of the band made for great action shots as well.
Check out more of Gregory Nolan’s work at gregorynolan.com