Halloween Comes Back to Haunt

Adams Street House in Sparta

Abandoned House in Sparta

Back to the haunted Halloween shoot...

I didn't have time to edit this photo before I did my post on the Halloween workshop in Sparta. It was fun shooting this quirky little abandoned house on...wait for it...Adams Street. 

Take a careful look at the house. 

It's an odd duck.

Uncle Miltie said it used to be a plain home and the turrets were a later addition in an attempt to turn it into an old Victorian. It does look a little strange. The turrets look like witch's hats - not quite right.

Whenever I see an abandoned house, I always wonder what the story is. 

We didn't venture into the old gal. The porch was falling in, along with the stairs in the back and everything else. Falling through the stairs could ruin your day. 

We did go into the old root cellar for our photoshoot with Milt. That was a blast. 

First, everyone gathered in the kitchen at Frognolia and we made a heart - a bloody, icky heart. It started as a celery root but, hey - at the end of the day, it looked like a bloody heart to me!

Uncle Milt with a faux bloody heart in his hand

Take another little piece of my heart out, baby...

Milt took the heart over to the old house in a bucket. 

When we got there, he tore his shirt and made it look as if he had torn his heart right out of his chest.

And check out those cool mud wasp hives behind him on the wall. It was the perfect atmosphere. We were using a multicolored light as well, so some of the colors are post-processing while others were in-camera at the scene. 

We were all crammed into the hot, humid basement of the old abandoned house, tripod-to-tripod. It was sweaty and cobwebby!

But it was also a lot of fun. I especially enjoyed editing these - working on getting a haunted look. 

This is the photo of Milt with a few Lightroom edits I made before putting it in Photoshop to finish it:

Photo of Milt before edits 

I shot that one near the end after I had packed up my tripod, so it was hand-held at ISO 800, 1/50th sec, f/4.5, 65mm. These kinds of photoshoots are tricky even with the tripod. 

If the camera's on the tripod, you can compensate for the darkness by slowing down the shutter speed. But it's hard for a person to hold perfectly still for long.

I didn't want to go too slow on the shutter speed or he would have been blurry. That means pumping up the ISO a bit is the best option for the situation. 

I had the f stop opened up too, which makes the depth of field (DOF) shallow, so you have to be careful to get the eyes in focus.

Photography = patience and lots of trial and error. 

And I love it. 

Did you have a great Halloween? I hope so!

See you between the raindrops!


Christmas is coming up quick! Need some prints? Find lots on my website here