Some photographers spend their entire careers searching for a signature style. Brandon Woelfel a young and enormously popular Instagram influencer found his style early and has become an Internet sensation as a result. Knowing that his career began right after college a little more than two years ago when he proclaimed his desire to work as a freelance photographer.Now with over two million followers on Instagram and a photo book to his name, it certainly appears it was a risk worth taking. One of Brandons signature techniques is the use of unique props and elements he incorporates into his images. For instance, he often manipulates his shots by filtering natural light through different types of prisms such as crystal ball prisms, triangular prisms and teardrop prisms to create a rainbow effect on the subject. When held in front of the lens, the prisms create a unique blur in the foreground of his images. Brandon will use other foreground objects to give the illusion of more depth in his shots. In one image he took at the Planting Fields Arboretum State Park in Oyster Bay, NY, he held a leaf up to the lens that added a blurry, textural effect in the foreground. A trip to The Dream Machine in Brooklyn inspired Brandon to use a blurred cloud prop in a similar fashion, adding depth and a dream-like feel to the shot. Some of his images also reflect a penchant for eyeglasses. Hes also produced an online tutorial with a YouTube video that discusses how to take photos at night. This is another way for him to interact, and give back to his followers, and to make his process just as much about his final product as it is in helping other photographers create theirs as well. Woelfel uses a very consistent editing style across all of his images, which are primarily nighttime portraits with whimsical lights and flares. Crushed blacks, blues, pinks, often shot with fairy lights and a prism or CD to create reflections. Hurt first takes the image through Lightroom, making some basic edits (raising highlights, shadows, whites, dropping blacks) and then some tone curve edits to crush the blacks and bring blue into the shadows. He then tweaks hues using the HSL panel until the image resembles Woelfels dreamy style. Next, he takes the image into Photoshop, where he overlays some sparkles and bokeh that he found on a stock photo site. The final result is a completely different image to the original and shows just how powerful Lightroom, Photoshop, and a little know-how can be when it comes to developing a unique color palette for your images.
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