This environmental portrait of Monica Vetter was another image shot a couple weeks ago of colleagues for one of our core funding grants at the Moran Eye Center from Research to Prevent Blindness. Jun’s portrait is here.
In the post on Jun, I talked about how bad lighting can be in laboratory environment and that held true with this portrait as well, except we had the added complication that this portrait was almost literally shot in a dark closet. Space in laboratory environments often comes at a premium and imaging equipment like the microscope in the background is commonly placed in the only dark environment you can find which are often former storage closets. In this case it was a nice, though small storage closet with abysmal lighting. Of course you don’t want any lighting in an environment where the only light you want is the controlled light that comes from the microscope through your specimen. While great for microscopy, this is not so convenient for photography. In a closet we had fewer different light sources as I simply closed the closet door, wedged myself against the wall and shut off all the lights, relying on the computer display at the right to fill in some light, supplemented by two strobes, one literally a foot to the left of Monica’s right shoulder and an on camera strobe pointed behind and up and to the right towards the wall and ceiling behind me.
Monica’s lab is filled with wonderful people who are passionate about exploring molecular aspects of retinal development and retinal degenerative disease, specifically glaucoma.