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Walter Austin
Rick Avalos
Trevon Baker
Stanley Burgin
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Rainy Chastine
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Rick & Deborah Ferro
Dave Filler
Elma Flores
Warren Gordon
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Rick Harding
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Lee Jang Sun
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Esso Nordhoff III
Basil Pecknyo
Joseph Pellingra
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Shirlee Robinson
Joseph & Louise Simone
Bonnie St. Pierre
Richard Sturdevant

Angela Vaught
Brian & Debbie White
Winnifred Whitfield
Paul Wingler

Diane Wilson
Lora  Yeater

Trevon Baker

Fresh from His Trip to Korea

Trevon Baker has recently returned from a trip to Korea where he had a number of speaking engagements and seminars. As this month's featured photographer, we share with you Trevon's journal of this fabulous trip. More of Trevon's work with Virtual Backgrounds can be seen on his website at
Through the sponsorship of Virtual Backgrounds and Tony Oh of Bonmatch Albums, it was arranged for me to speak to two different professional trade associations while there, the  Korean Photographers Association (KPA) and the Professional Photographers of Korea (PPK).

The KPA was my first  speaking engagement and it was held in Seoul . There were approximately 80 photographers there. I gave my "Four Dimensions of Portraiture" presentation and shared with them lighting patterns, differences in quality of light, using the appropriate type of lighting for certain subjects, classic posing techniques, drawing out a variety of expressions from the subjects and incorporating unique backgrounds into the portrait to add to the impact, variety and customer satisfaction in a session. This association is best compared to our own PPA in the states. They are older, established photographers that abide by certain rules in photography technique and lean toward the conservative, classic styles. At the end, they presented me with a wonderful crystal "Appreciation Plaque" that I will always treasure.

The next day, I spoke to the PPK in Daejeon, a city a couple hours south from Seoul. Again, about 75-80 photographers were present. This group reminded me of the WPPI photographers that are in general younger, much more contemporary in their style and bend all the rules in photography. Through the translator, I fielded many questions about lighting equipment, workflow and the how the Virtual Backgrounds system works. Some time was given at the end of the program so that they could create shots themselves using the system.

The two presentations generated a lot of interest and the next couple days were spent visiting photographers studios in Seoul and the outlying areas. We did a couple of private demonstrations of the equipment, setting it up in their studios and showing them how easy it can be set up and then packed up for transporting again. The style of Korean portrait photographers currently involves many different "sets" in the studio. In order to provide their clients with variety, they invest heavily in props, and the construction of these sets...only to change them every six months. Many sets cost thousands of dollars to create, and a studio may have 8-10 different sets. Some operations also had as many as 20 locations, so imagine the amount invested in temporary backgrounds. Many of them could see the immediate value of a Virtual Background system.

Working through a translator was challenging. It seemed that I would say two or three sentences and the translator would speak for 5 minutes! I would look at him and say, "I said all that?" Though it was obvious that the styles of Korean portraiture and western societies may differ, the goal of every photographer I met was to provide top quality portraits with lots of variety, boosting their gross sales. Their clients respond well by spending more and returning more often whenever an occasion arises. The Korean economy is doing very well.

Very little time was available for seeing the sights. Tony did take me to an ancient palace that the king and family lived in starting in 1352. It was destroyed twice over the centuries in wars, but rebuilt to preserve the countries traditions. That was what I noticed most about the Korean culture. Everyone is
very proud and respectful of their traditions handed down over the generations. Very polite, courteous and helpful people. I'm anxious to go back.

24 Shots, 11 Contemporary Backgrounds,20 Minutes in Front of an Audience

Linda Kangara and Trevon Baker

Montana photographer Trevon Baker was the guest speaker for the May 2008 Virtual Backgrounds workshop.  Linda Kangara flew all the way from Kenya to attend the workshop.  When Trevon needed a subject to demonstrate how he uses the Scene Machine as a primary tool to enhance his work, he chose Linda to be his model.

Trevon wanted to demonstrate to the class how quickly and efficiently he could integrate lighting, posing, expression and background to create a wide variety of images for a subject to choose from.  In just 20 minutes, while working in front of the entire class, Trevon captured 24 exposures and used 11 different backgrounds to create a variety of images a subject would have a very difficult time refusing to purchase.

Trevon says, “When I work with a subject, I want them to have a unique experience. I create as much variety as possible for them without taking a lot of their time.  That’s what works for me today!”

The images, both the original thumb nails as well as those selected for enlargement, speak for themselves.  Without the use of the Scene Machine Virtual Backgrounds system, this just simply could not be possible.

Trevon Baker is scheduled to teach a 2 day class, June 16 - 17, 2008 at the Virtual Backgrounds Learn and Earn Center .   The class is titled Portrait Dimensions and covers the methods he uses on a regular basis in his studio.  For further information on this class contact a consultant at Virtual Backgrounds.

Click here to see all of Trevon's shots in this photo shoot.

Click here to view Trevon’s Web site








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