Portraits of the Aipperspach Family at the Sparks Lake Meadow

September 15, 2023 Portrait Photography

Family Portrait Photography at Sparks Lake Meadow near Mt Bachelor

The Aipperspach Family at Mt Bachelor in late July

It's been awhile since I've posted because of a very busy schedule. There's a lot more going on here besides just being a Bend wedding photographer and Bend portrait photographer. Traveling to Ireland, racing in Idaho and Sweet Home, RV upkeep (endless), trying to take care of the house, road-tripping, training for races, and a pile of other activities besides working on pictures and blog posting.

A friend told me once every five days works best. So here goes.

Christine Aipperspach called me about doing family portraits at the end of July way back around March. I love when people plan ahead for their portrait photography. Did I mention all the stuff I do besides portrait and wedding photography? I love doing this work, but it's way easier to plan ahead. My wife, the doctor, plans our family trips a year in advance, so there's never a question of what weeks are available.

Late July/early August is a really great time for outdoors portraits in Central Oregon for a few reasons. It's warm out so people aren't freezing to death in between shots. Sometimes we get fabulous clouds to give shape and interest in the evening skies. Very rarely is it lashing rain and howling wind. One issue: mosquitos. This is easily remedied with DEET. When my wife, the doctor, was pregnant she did a pile of research on DEET and found it won't deform or harm unborn babies. When necessary I go for the 90 proof stuff in the small red bottles called Ben's. It's like syrup and really protects.

For the wonderful Aipperspach family I chose the Sparks Lake Meadow in the evening for our pictures. The other option I always love is the Meadow near Dillon Falls. Called the McKay Meadow? Since they're from out of town and were staying in Sunriver Resort I picked the Sparks Lake Meadow. That way they could just drive up the road and meet me. It's a summertime go-to portrait location for me. Todd Lake rocks too, but it involves some walking.

We started with a standard setup of sitting/standing in a line with my Profoto off to camera right with the XL Profoto umbrella and a sand weight on the stand. Before doing any pictures the slightest puff of wind blew my stand over and broke the expensive umbrella. This particular umbrella was already bent from a past wind mishap. So I just did a combo of shooting bare-bulb and beauty dish. Later in the evening I just went with mostly natural light because it was unbeatable.

So I start with standard short in front, tall in back with the group shots and then try to experiment with different ideas using background (Mt. Bachelor), light (amazing sunshine), and composition to fill the frame and make interesting compositions to look at the pictures. Plus the bare bulb light I was forced to use looks overpowering.

Did the adapting and overcoming the problems succeed? I'll let you be the judge.