Haley Constance, 17, is an up-and-comer at Evergreen Speedway. Photographed in Snohomish, Washington on June 16, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald) 

The sun was high in the sky when I photographed Haley at her home in Snohomish on possibly the worst day ever, in photography terms. I used 4 Canon speedlites to counter the sun and add the spectacular highlights which contrast nicely with the blue sky.  

Haley, her father and I pushed her car out the garage to get a clean background. The wind picked up to blow her hair but died before I could get the shot. Enter dad, with a leaf blower. 

Canon EOS-1D X Mark II 
EF 24-70 f2.8 II lens at 28mm.  
ISO: 100
Aperture: 2.8
Shutter: 1/8000

Behind the lens: Herald photographers share how they got the shot

Three Herald photographers chose a favorite photo and share the behind-the-scenes of how they got that shot.

Have you ever wondered how a photo in The Daily Herald was taken? Why did the photographer chose that particular composition? What equipment did they use? What about their choice in lighting — how they shot a bright portrait in harsh sunlight? What’s their favorite lens for landscape versus street photography?

Three photographers from The Daily Herald are here to answer those questions: They each chose a favorite photo and shared the behind-the-scenes of how they got that shot.

Read on, and perhaps you’ll be inspired to try out a professional flash or even to dust off that old Nikon in the closet.

Caption: Vaughan Rody dons his linesman gear for the first time since his final NHL game in April, on Monday, June 6, 2022, at his home in Lake Stevens, Washington. Rody officiated in the National Hockey League for 23 seasons. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Description: We had to dig through the garage to find his uniform, but we figured it out. 

“Still smells,” exclaimed Vaughan Rody, who had just retired from his 23-year career as a linesman in the NHL.

Since his final game nearly two months earlier, Rody hadn’t touched his uniform, but when I visited his Lake Stevens home knowing I needed a portrait of him in his gear, he happily scoured the house in search of his striped sweater and helmet.

We went upstairs to his memorabilia room, he threw on the sweater we had found in a gym bag and I turned off the lights, opting for the window light coming from my left. Using the oldest lens in my bag — a 50mm I bought as a teenager — I asked Rody to slowly put on his helmet as I fired off a couple dozen frames. I made some adjustments to the camera, and had him do it again. And again. And, you know, one more time please? Each smile was as genuine as the last, and within two minutes we had the photo I had hoped for.

It takes two to make a portrait, and I cherish the opportunity to work with people who give so much of themselves to the camera. Assignments like these leave a positive mark and really help me keep going.

At 50mm, the focal length used here minimizes distortion of facial features and at the time gave me a wide enough frame to work with in a tight room. I shot at f/3.2 for a shallow but not-too-shallow depth of field, 1/320 of a second to avoid any type of motion blur as Rody donned his helmet, and iso 2000 simply because its what my other settings dictated in the moment.

Vaughan Rody dons his linesman gear for the first time since his final NHL game in April, on June 6 at his home in Lake Stevens, Washington. Rody officiated in the National Hockey League for 23 seasons. (Photos by Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Ryan Berry on the photo:

We had to dig through the garage to find his uniform, but we figured it out.

“Still smells,” exclaimed Vaughan Rody, who had just retired from his 23-year career as a linesman in the NHL.

Since his final game nearly two months earlier, Rody hadn’t touched his uniform, but when I visited his Lake Stevens home knowing I wanted a portrait of him in his gear, he happily scoured the house in search of his striped sweater and helmet.

We went upstairs to his memorabilia room, he threw on the sweater we had found in a gym bag and I turned off the lights, opting for the window light coming from my left. Using the oldest lens in my bag — a 50mm I bought as a teenager — I asked Rody to slowly put on his helmet as I fired off a dozen or so frames. I made some adjustments to the camera, and had him do it again. And again. And, you know, one more time please? Each smile was as genuine as the last, and within two minutes we had the photo I had hoped for.

It takes two to make a portrait, and I cherish the opportunity to work with people who give so much of themselves to the camera.

Canon EOS 5D mk IV

EF 50 f/1.4 lens

ISO: 2000

Aperture: 3.2

Shutter: 1/320

Gina Touche’s glitter beard and jewels shine in the sunlight at Arlington’s first-ever Pride celebration on Saturday, June 4, 2022. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

I carry around a handful of lens filters to help enhance portraits or to help me get more creative with a simple photograph. One of the filters is a 4-pointed star filter that can turn a light source and image highlights into star shapes where light streaks out from a central light source.

When I was in Arlington covering their first ever Pride event I noticed of of the drag performers, Gina Touche, with a bear that had thousands of small pieces of glitter shining in the sun light. I immediately thought that the star filter I had in my bag would make Gina an incredible portrait subject.

I flagged down Gina, found a spot with a somewhat clean background and photographed from a lower angle to really get some of sunlight catching the glitter.

I took a handful of photos from different angles and landed on this one that had a perfect star on both their beard and jewel crown.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV
EF 50mm f/1.8 II at 50mm  
ISO: 100
Aperture: 2.8
Shutter: 1/4000
Lens Filter: 4-pointed star filter

Gina Touche’s glitter beard and jewels shine in the sunlight at Arlington’s first-ever Pride celebration on June 4. (Photo by Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Olivia Vanni on the photo:

I carry around a handful of lens filters to help enhance portraits or to help me get more creative with a simple photograph. One of the filters is a 4-pointed star filter that can turn a light source and image highlights into star shapes where light streaks out from a central light source.

When I was in Arlington covering the first ever Pride event I noticed one of the drag performers, Gina Touche, with a bear that had thousands of small pieces of glitter shining in the sunlight. I immediately thought that the star filter I had in my bag would make Gina an incredible portrait subject.

I flagged down Gina, found a spot with a somewhat clean background and photographed from a lower angle to really get some of sunlight catching the glitter.

I took a handful of photos from different angles and landed on this one that had a perfect star on both their beard and jewel crown.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

EF 50mm f/1.8 II at 50mm ISO: 100

Aperture: 2.8

Shutter: 1/4000

Lens Filter: 4-pointed star filter

Haley Constance, 17, is an up-and-comer at Evergreen Speedway. Photographed in Snohomish, Washington on June 16, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald) 

The sun was high in the sky when I photographed Haley at her home in Snohomish on possibly the worst day ever, in photography terms. I used 4 Canon speedlites to counter the sun and add the spectacular highlights which contrast nicely with the blue sky.  

Haley, her father and I pushed her car out the garage to get a clean background. The wind picked up to blow her hair but died before I could get the shot. Enter dad, with a leaf blower. 

Canon EOS-1D X Mark II 
EF 24-70 f2.8 II lens at 28mm.  
ISO: 100
Aperture: 2.8
Shutter: 1/8000

Haley Constance, 17, is an up-and-comer at Evergreen Speedway. Photographed in Snohomish on June 16. (Photo by Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Kevin Clark on the photo:

The sun was high in the sky when I photographed Haley at her home in Snohomish on possibly the worst day ever, in photography terms. I used 4 Canon speedlites to counter the sun and add the specular highlights which contrast nicely with the blue sky.

Haley, her father and I pushed her car out the garage to get a clean background. The wind picked up to blow her hair but died before I could get the shot. Enter dad, with a leaf blower.

Canon EOS-1D X Mark II EF 24-70 f2.8 II lens at 28mm. ISO: 100

Aperture: 2.8

Shutter: 1/8000

Sound & Summit

This article is featured in the fall issue of Sound & Summit, a supplement of The Daily Herald. Explore Snohomish and Island counties with each quarterly magazine. Each issue is $3.99. Subscribe to receive all four editions for $14 per year. Call 425-339-3200 or go to soundsummitmagazine.com for more information.

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