Joebama: The college years

This whole post (and shoot) was inspired by this photoshoot of pres. Obama while he was in college.

My housemate Joe was dressing up as Obama in his college years for a pre-halloween party and we were entertaining the idea of doing a similar shoot for a while now. So the day of his party we set a simple lighting scheme; with strong harsh light from two sources into the wall behind him (that would also bounce off the ceiling) and one low power fill light (normal light in the living room).

I tried shooting it in film; Firstly, so I could emulate the grain in the original Obama shoot and secondly, so I could use my ever handy FD 50mm f/1.8 lens. This failed when my tripod mount broke in two. Seriously.
Nevertheless, we continued with my DSLR, handheld with the kit lens.

At first I tried keeping it really strict to the original Obama shoot; same pose, same lighting, same expressions etc (this being my first such shoot, I assumed it would be easy). This didnt work out well and while I was trying to figure out what to do, Joe picked up his computer to change music or something. At that point I took this shot:


It was then that we realised that we I was going about this whole shoot completely wrong. I mean it would be impossible duplicate an impromptu photohoot from the 80's, however hard we try. SO we kinda just winged it and tried to keep things simple, in theme and spirit to the original shoot. Im pretty happy with how everything turned out.

Here is the first batch of pictures


In the original obama shoot, you can see him happily puffing away at his cig, and we wanted to do that. But, for some reason, I didnt let Joe light this one. I really dont know why.It looks lame if its not lit, I know.

And one in colour: Just because I prefer this one that way.


  1. Fantastic work! Everything looks wonderful.

  2. sexy! love the black n whites.
    and ps. your tripod broke in 2???? WTFFF? :S