Sue Henry, Tulusa

There’s this hip little townhouse in Del Ray that you can’t miss. In fact, I would say that it’s one of the most unique pieces of architecture in this neighborhood. Turns out that the house is as eclectic and original as its owner, artist Sue Henry. She’s the owner of Tulusa, her “personal line of original block printed and embellished textiles.”

Sue Henry, owner of Tulusa
Sue Henry, Owner of Tulusa. Nikon D810, Tokina 17-35mm f/4 @27mm, ISO 64, f/7.1, 1/80 sec.

Sue works out of her basement studio, which is flooded with light from a glass-filled garage door. That light was the inspiration for the lighting in these photos, and it was a marvelous place to create portraits of her.

As I was admiring her work, I asked where she got her inspiration. “Nature,” came the immediate response. She went on to explain that her color palette is sort of at the intersection of jewel tones and earth tones, which I totally get. It’s warm and inviting, yet also sophisticated.

Sue Henry, Owner of Tulusa
Sue Henry, Owner of Tulusa. Nikon D810, Nikon 105mm f/2.5, ISO 64, f/2.8, 1/60 sec.

Her work can be purchased online at Tulusa.com or locally at Red Barn Mercantile in Old Town Alexandria. Also keep an eye out for Sue’s pop-up shops around town.

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Ethan DeNolf, Virgina Barbers Club, N Lee Street

 

Ethan DeNolf, Virginia Barbers Club
Ethan DeNolf, Virginia Barbers Club. Nikon D810, Nikon 50mm f/2 K, ISO 400, f/2.8, 1/50 sec.

I’d like you to meet Ethan DeNolf, founder & owner of Virginia Barbers Club, which recently opened doors for business in Old Town Alexandria, on North Lee Street between Cameron & Queen. At first glance it’s a specialty men’s barbershop. But it’s so much more. Although clients can schedule day-of appointments, it pays to become a club member. Members get special perks, such as monthly networking events, priority access to the booking system, and special access to the almighty fridge.

Ethan DeNolf, Virginia Barbers Club
Ethan DeNolf, Virginia Barbers Club. Nikon D810, Nikon 105mm f/2.5 AI, ISO 125, f/5.6, 1/160 sec.

It’s clear that Ethan has a passion for community, both in the barbering world as well as the local community. Back in 2015, he started VBC as an association to raise awareness amongst barbers about state rules and regulations, especially pertaining to licensing. Now that the shop has opened its doors, Ethan is planning various community outreach events, so keep an eye out for those. You can check it all out at www.virginiabarbersclub.com.

Ethan DeNolf, Virginia Barbers Club
Ethan DeNolf, Virginia Barbers Club. Nikon D810, Nikon 50mm f/2 K, ISO 400, f/4, 1/100 sec.

Street Performer, Old Town Waterfront

Street Performer, Old Town Waterfront
Street Performer, Old Town Waterfront. Nikon D200, Nikon 60mm f/2.8 AF Micro, ISO 100, f/4, 1/250 sec.

I’ve tried making pictures of this particular performer in the past, but had never come up with something that I liked. He twirls a baton and I’ve tried to capture that action. The main problem is that he’s usually standing in front of a bunch of trash cans, so it’s not the most flattering background.

Yesterday, I realized that what interested me most about him was his face, and to a lesser degree, his hat. So I asked him if he wouldn’t mind me coming in close for a portrait. He speaks very little English (as far as I can tell) so there was a bit of pantomiming on my part to get him to understand what I wanted him to do.

I like this shot the best out of any I’ve taken of him so far, but I’d like to try more in the future. He has a great face, and is quite an interesting character.

Curly, King Street

Curly, King Street
Curly, King Street. Nikon D200, Tokina 11-16mm 2.8 @ 16mm. ISO 200, f/8, 1/250 sec.

One of the best things about being a photographer is the people you get to meet along the way. I met Curly yesterday as he was playing conga in front of Market Square. We chatted for a bit about music and then he was gracious enough to let me take some photos.

Steve the Musician, King Street

Steve the Musician, King Street. Nikon D200, 50mm 1.8 AF, ISO 100, f/4, 1/125 sec
Steve the Musician, King Street. Nikon D200, 50mm 1.8 AF, ISO 100, f/4, 1/125 sec

As I’ve mentioned before, weekends are a great time to see a lot of sights in Old Town. In particular, the waterfront and King Street are bustling with tourists and street performers.

I’ve seen Steve playing around town for a while now and I’ve always wanted to photograph him. I’m actually terrible at going up to strangers and asking if I can take their photograph, but I’ve been working on it and getting a lot better. What is there to lose, really? Maybe they say, “no”—worst case, they throw a banjo at you.

Actually, Steve was very gracious when I asked to take his picture and for that I was thankful. I had been standing around with the kids listening to a few songs anyway, and I was delighted when he launched into a rendition of Hero of Canton, The Ballad of Jayne Cobb. I may have been the only passerby to recognize its origin.

This photo was taken with a Nikon SB-26 speedlight mounted to a monopod, optically slaved and fired with my camera’s built-in speedlight. I’ve been working with this technique a little bit and I have yet to feel totally comfortable with it. It can be a challenge to get the aiming just right, especially with people walking by on the street. I’d like to get the light a little more off-axis, which I can certainly work on. Hopefully Steve won’t mind me taking a few more photos in the near future!