Revisiting My Former Muse: An Erin Valakari trifecta

by | Aug 2, 2019

Today’s Post by Joe Farace

In their book, One Face Fifty Ways YouTubers Imogen Dyer and Mark Wilkinson demonstrate lighting, posing and other portrait techniques that were used to capture the many different looks and moods of a single model. This is similar approach that was used by noted photographer when photographing Kay Sutton York for their amazing 1988 book, Burning Gold.

As I previously mentioned, over the next who-knows-how-many weeks I’ll be show-casing a different image of Erin Valakari that was made over the year or so we worked together showcasing all of her many different looks in many different styles as well as the photographic gear and lighting techniques and tools that were used to capture these images.

Unlike Pam Simpson who I photographed for many years, I only photographed Erin from October, 2017 until November, 2018, yet we literally made more than 4,000 images during that time and I had some of the most creative shoots and the most fun photographing a model in a long time. She is truly one of the most wonderful models and human beings that I have ever photographed.

Erin’s current non-modeling job monopolizes her time so much that we have been unable to shoot since last year, although we’ve tried. That’s why I am currently looking for a new muse. If you have a friend or maybe yourself who would like to be a model and have any questions or want to schedule an interview, please click the Contact button or send me an e-mail at joefarace at gmail dot com. There are more details here.

How I made this shot: Today’s image is from our third photo session together that was held on January 27, 2018. This, like most all of my sessions with Erin, was made using Olympus and Panasonic mirrorless cameras and lenses.

This particular session, like most of them that I shot with Erin, was shot for her on-line portfolio.

I photographed her in my 11×15 home studio using a Panasonic Lumix GH4 mirrorless camera using a Lumix G Vario 14-45mm f/3.5-5.6 lens (at 45mm.) Lighting was provided by the affordable ($49.95) Flashpoint 19-inch AC Powered 600W 5500K Dimmable Fluorescent Ring Light giving it that distinctive ring light look. Program mode exposure was 1/13 sec at f/5.6 and ISO 800. Background was the no longer available 6×7-foot Westcott Collapsible “April Showers” backdrop.


If you enjoyed today’s post and would like to treat me to a cup of Earl Grey tea ($2.50), please click here. And if you do, thanks so much.

One of my biggest regrets is that I never got to photograph Erin for one of my books, before my book writing career came to a crashing halt. If you would like my take on glamour photography, please pick up a copy of my book Joe Farace’s Glamour Photography. It’s full of tips, tools and techniques and includes information on all of the gear used as well as the exposure data for each image. New books are available from Amazon for $27.43 with used copies starting at $5.25, as I write this. The Kindle version is $11.99 for those preferring a digital format.