Jonathan Fleming's Blog

A Photography Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Indie

Two Feet From Jenny

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Nikon D700 + Nikkor AFS 50mm f1.4G : 1/250 sec, f/2.2, ISO 3200

We always make sure to get a front row spot when we check out Jenny Lewis in concert (see past posts about Jenny here), but this recent show in the SF Bay Area the absolute closest I’ve ever been to her on stage. She could have swung that fret board around and smacked me in the face!

As always, I try to keep the gear minimal at shows like this. My DSLR with one 50mm prime, and the E-PL2 in my pocket just in case the venue gives me a hard time for having a “professional camera.”


Nikon D700 + Nikkor AFS 50mm f1.4G : 1/80 sec, f/2, ISO 4000

Taken at 50mm on a full frame body, you KNOW this was close!

Would have loved to have the 24mm f/1.4 with me to get more context and to achieve some different looks, but I left it at home. That’s ok. Depending on the lighting, which was changing constantly, all you could see behind the performers from my vantage point was a lot of f/0, ISO kabillion.


In typical Jenny and Johnny fashion, though, the performers moved around the stage enough to let me vary my shots a little.

A very cool show, as always!

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Nikon D700 + 50mm f/1.4G
Olympus PEN E-PL2 + Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 (used only for that shot of the “Jenny Keys” plug…hah.)

Written by Jonathan

June 2, 2011 at 9:55 am

Photo shoot: Jasmine Libatique

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Got a call yesterday from Jasmine Libatique, a local singer/songwriter here in San Francisco, requesting a photo shoot for her upcoming album entitled Dreaming Away. Her album is still in the recording stage of development, but she wanted to start compiling some concepts for her album artwork.

San Francisco’s Mission District is filled with cool urban art, and Jasmine selected one of the Mission’s many murals to incorporate into the shoot. This will be the first of likely several different concepts we will attempt before she makes a final selection of images to include in her album.

It was a very last-minute shoot! Had to rush home after work and quickly grab whatever gear I could get my hands on before heading out to the Mission District before the sun went down. My SB-800 unit failed on me due to bad batteries during the shoot. I was using it as a commander so I could get my command pulses firing behind or above me to my remote SB-900. Without it, I had to bounce the command signal from my camera’s pop-up off my free hand towards the remote unit. It actually worked! It also made me think a little more about how nice it would be to have radio triggers.  Anyway, despite the rushed nature of the job, we had a great time!

Want to get a preview of Jasmine’s music? Head on over to her Fanpage, where you can listen to all the songs on her upcoming album. Become a fan!

Also, check out more images from this shoot on my website!

Jenny Lewis at the House of Blues, New Orleans LA

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

I don’t think I’d ever buy plane tickets only weeks before flying out for a one night stay halfway across the country where temperatures easily exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit, only to spend hours in various airports along the way because cheap tickets mean many connecting flights. Unless of course, I’m going to see Jenny Lewis.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

My wife orchestrated this whirlwind trip after we missed seeing Jenny in concert at the Fillmore in San Francisco (it was my fault, but that’s another story).  Jenny performed on June 26th 2009 at the House of Blues in the French Quarter area of New Orleans. Yes, this is old news, but hey, I just started this blog! We landed in Louisiana at dinnertime, had dinner at the venue’s own restaurant, enjoyed the concert, which ended around 11pm, woke up at 5am the next day and flew back home. That was it!

No cameras were technically allowed in the venue, which ruled out bringing my D90 to the event. But stealthy use of

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

my Lumix LX3 allowed me to grab some decent shots of the performance. Most of them I recorded in black and white, processed by the camera. There seemed to be too much of a mixture of color on the stage from multiple light sources, and so I felt that black and white captures were much more pleasing to the eye.

One thing I wish I could have done was do a photo walk through the French Quarter. But I had absolutely no time to do so unfortunately. One day I’ll have to return to gorge on some real southern cooking, and capture some great images of this interesting area. But NOT during the summer!

I couldn’t remember all of the songs that Jenny sang, but my wife remembered the following, in no particular order:  See Fernando, Jack Killed Mom, Pretty Bird, Rise Up with Fists!!!, Happy (a slow version), The Charging Sky, You Are What You Love, Handle With Care, Trying My Best To Love You, Carpetbaggers, The Next Messiah,  and an acoustic solo version of Silver Lining. The Encore was three (or 3.5) songs: a brief “Man in the Mirror” acapella tribute to Michael Jackson (RIP), Acid Tongue, a new song (didn’t catch the title), and Born Secular.

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

Though we were exhausted after our return home, and sick of airports (there were TWO connections on the way back), the experience was worth it. Life needs crazy spontaneity  sometimes, and Jenny’s performance was stellar and unforgettable. She has an incredible stage presence, a great personality, and of course, a beautiful and unique voice.

You know what else was unforgettable? Losing my $500 dollar earphones somewhere along the trip. Ouch…

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3