Traven Stout Photography

New Orleans Audubon Park Proposal

February 18, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Proposals like this are what make me love photography. I was contacted by Drew in late January to do a proposal shoot in Audubon park. His plan was to pop the question during an early morning jog with his girl friend. I shoot portraits pretty often in Audubon park so I was excited about being able to capture a proposal there. The oak trees make for a good backdrop and give off beautiful New Orleans / southern aesthetic. I met with Drew a week before to discuss and plan out the shoot to get an idea of the location and how I would compose my images. It was located right next to shelter 10 in a part of the park that I have never shot in before. The plan was for Malea and him to veer off their path down a row of trees and propose at a grandstand, with me shooting the whole time. The day of I met two of his friends who got there early to set up some flowers. Everything went smoothly.


New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal


Drew and Malia as the run up and approach the grandstand. I was super stoked about this shot. The trees and light polls formed a nice and symmetrical scene. I stood on the opposite side of the grandstand on a step stool. I think it was right about here that Malia realized what was going on with me taking pictures and seeing the flowers set up.


New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal



New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal

New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal Priceless reaction!
New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal Drew and Malias freinds who helped out by setting up the flowers and cordinating.

New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal Afterward we took a couple more photos. This grandstand was beautiful.

New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal New Orleans Audubon Park ProposalNew Orleans Audubon Park Proposal After we spent about 20 mins taking a couple of photos, they ran off to finish their jog.  <3<3<3


People of Mardi Gras 2017

February 05, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Carnival time is a special time of the year for me. For a good 10 days during the carnival season the city of New Orleans practically shuts down for parades. The parades basically equal one big street party. The beauty of it all is the mingling of people. Random people from all walks of life coming together to have a good time. There's a certain kind of magic to it; and there is so much background, tradition, and culture behind it that it's hard to explain it with out being there. During this time I try to get out and into the streets as much as possible to capture it with photography. It was when I was at the University of New Orleans in 2013 studying sociology that I started this series. It was then when I realized that it isn't Mardi Gras that is special, it is the individual people that make Mardi Gras happen that are special. Mardi Gras wouldn't be Mardi Gras without the people that put work into Mardi Gras. People put hours of work into making costumes, making floats, and the people actually working the routes(police,EMT,Public Workers, service industry) All of this mixes together into one big result. This series started as a way to look at how the individual plays into the whole of society... from there it's turned into a progression of my photographic style, to a way for me to attempt and try new photographic techniques, to a way for me to play with new gear and cameras. 

These photos are from last year. Most shots were made on my medium format camera shot on tmax 400 film, some on a large format 4x5 camera, and some digital.


Why did I wait a year to upload these photos? 

1. So I forget what I shot. It's a photographic technique. 

Sometimes when shooting it is hard to not get emotionally attached to a certain shot. It's important  for a photographer to be able to detacth from the feelings they get when shooting an image to the image itself. Ever take a photo that you loved but no one else liked, then looked at it a year or two later and wondered what you were thinking? I have. It's typically because you enjoyed the feeling you got from shooting the image more than the actual image itself. 

2. It's hard to process film, scan it, and edit it all that quickly. but mainly number one.


You can see more on my instgram account specificaly dedicated to this series.

Treme Bridal Shoot

October 18, 2017  •  1 Comment


There is nothing more interesting to observe than when a group of talented, creative people get together. Being in New Orleans is amazing because there is never any shortage on artistic, thoughtful people looking to make art in all forms. This bridal shoot was the culmination of many talents coming together for a beautiful final product. Much of the shoot was styled around an incredible space found for us by Hily Trowbridge. Treme Market Branch is a truly historic, breathtaking venue with cathedral ceiling and 15 foot windows that allow in soft natural light. The mother and the daughter who owns the venue, were a pleasure, and after a bit of convincing we were able to have the daughter, Theresa, model for us. She was a natural and seeing her in a wedding dress was magical. Hily also helped style the venue for the shoot, making a aisle out of a vintage Persian rug and adding fresh cut flowers and candles. The entire shoot had an authentic, New Orleans, bohemian feel.

The models were absolutely stunning. Nora and Tiffany were both beautiful and patient throughout the entire shoot. All three girls nailed it. We were fortunate enough to have Pearl's Place loan us all of our lovely dresses. Lauren Chemin did all of the make up, giving Tiffany a more natural look while Nora’s look was more dramatic. She even did Theresa's make-up for us on the fly. Sarah Parvardeh styled all of the hair paying great attention to detail from flowers to braids to curls. She stayed close, hairspray in hand, to make sure the models looked perfect throughout the shoot.

Finally there was our talented photographer, Traven Stout. Using vintage 8X10 and 4X5 cameras he captured everyone’s hard work beautifully. The skill level required to shoot on large format cameras is unparalleled, from accounting for exposure to checking the focus with a magnifying glass. Oh, and then there was me, Kailey, who held the lights and got the coffee and carried the gear in and wrote this blog post.

These final images truly show what creative, driven people can accomplish together. They are truly unlike any bridal shoots you'll ever see between the elegant venue, vintage camera, and a little bit of New Orleans showing through in every picture.

Written by my beautiful girlfriend and assistant: Kailey Geary





ts170914.largeformatbridalWTR-170914-7ts170914.largeformatbridalWTR-170914-7 ts170914.largeformatbridalWTR-170914ts170914.largeformatbridalWTR-170914 I shot all these images on large format cameras that are older than me. "What's a large format camera?" you ask. It's a camera that uses film equal or larger than 4x5 inches. The larger your negative size the better resolution you can get. Think of a frame from an old 35mm negative, now compare that to 4x5 inches. There's more space record the image on the 4x5 negative, therefore you can enlarge the images much bigger. I shot these on a 4x5 camera and an 8x10 camera. An 8x10 negative if scanned properly can far succeed the resolution of today's digital cameras. It also has a completely different aesthetic to it than a digital camera. Large format cameras have a shallower depth of field and I can tilt the front of standard which can give a selective focus. All of this gives the out of focus areas a much more creamier look. AND IT'S FILM! So I get all of the beautiful tones you get from the different film types that are impossible to recreate on the computer.


Here's a Slide Show of the Behind the scenes (click play to view)



Nora Donnely IG: @norafromatlanta

Tiffany Brooks IG  @tiffanymakesameanturkey

Teresa Thomas : IG @teeleethom



Treme Market Branch

IG: @trememarketbramch



Sarah Parvardeh

IG: @proziumlove13



Hily Trowbridge

IG: @hilytrowbridge


Make Up:

Lauren Landry Chemin

IG: @laurencheminmua



Pearl's Place

IG: @pearlsplacebridal


October 18, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Come out on October 28th to Sailor's Cross tattoo and gallery on Feret st at 8pm. Leigh Barrose and I are showing our work from our recent trips to Cuba. Come see Cuba from the perspectives of two New Orleans photographers. There will be food, beer, tobacco and music. Come party with us! It's for a good cause too, we will be taking up donations for hurricane relief from the recent season's devastation in Cuba

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I will have on display and for sale 12 Limited Edition 16x16 prints from my puedo tomar tu photo series. I did a limited edition run of 3 16x16 prints. That means there will only be 3 16x16 prints of each one of these photos ever made.

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"Can I take you photo?" this is what I was asking strangers in my broken Spanish. It was mostly met with a smile and a nod. I would take a picture of some one and then I would take a picture with my instax polaroid camera and give them the polaroid. Havana was an interesting city. It was like New Orleans x10000 in the sense that it runs on its own time. The people were very laid back and friendly. I, being a sociologist at heart, was very interested how their society and country worked. I constantly asked locals about their culture and their country. Their seemed to be sense of contradiction in people. As I was talking to one person my age he explained his love for the culture. The vibe I got from him was that money is no big deal, you can go out at night drink have a good time run out of money and it was fine. The next day you would still have a bed to sleep and food to put in your belly. The government provides for its people. But at the same time he said he was trapped. He said he studied computer development in college, but upon graduating he learned that there wasn't any good paying jobs, that he could make more working at the cigar factory. As he described his situation more he explained that even working a good paying job at the cigar factory it still wasn't enough to afford to travel. He was literally stuck. Despite this he laughed it off and asked if I wanted a swig from his plastic water bottle that contained rum. It seemed like their was a true sense of community there. The people had each others backs. I did however feel much like a tourist the whole time I was there and I couldn't help but to feel an us vs the tourist kind of vibe. The hustle in Havana is tourism. Being a New Orleans native I understood this. New Orleans thrives on tourism and while some tourist can be annoying and aggravating they are vital to the cities survival. It was interesting being on the other side though. Instead of hearing "I bet I know where you got them shoes," it was "cigars!." One of my favorite experiences there was when my friend Anthony bought cigars off someone on the street. He took us into a back ally way through a couple corridors and into an apartment. We walked in through a tiny kitchen and into a living room. There seemed to be at least 5 people, a family that lived in that tiny apartment. As my friend bought the cigars I snapped photos, of course only after asking "puedo tomar tu photo?". I looked int the corner and saw this: havana dollhavana doll

A teddy bear hanging from a rope in the corner of the room. Under it was an altar of some sort. Havana much like New Orleans has a dark side of some sort. Come to the show and I can tell you the stories behind all the photos I took. All in all I loved it in Havana and I hope to go back again and explore the city more.


Here's a link to the Facebook event:

Face Book event


Kailey's Editorial Film Bridal Shoot

August 29, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Kailey and I both had a off day so we decided to go play bridal shoot in the swamps. First we went to Bridgehouse thrift store off Airline highway to get the dress (nabbed it for $3, what what?! Kailey found some kind of scarf she was really excited about too) This is the spot if your in New Orleans and into thrifting. (Plus it supports the bridgehouse and grace house addiction recovery programs). We then got some flowers from Robert's Grocery and headed straight to the Barataria preserve of Jean Laffite National Park. If you've never been to this park you should really check it out. {BRING BUG SPRAY :) } Thirty minutes outside of New Orleans and you are in a completely different world. We walked a beautiful trail through the swamp and stopped and took photos whenever there was a decent enough back drop (every 10 feet lol).

Now besides having a wonderful time playing with my partner in the New Orleans swamps, I was super excited to shoot film. In particular the 35mm Color Infrared film. Color Infrared film hasn't been made for over five years and it's pretty hard to find in 35mm. I got my hands on some from the guys over at the film photography project. From my understanding they got a hold of some of the old kodak aerochrome sheets and cut it down to 35mm. Kodak aerochrome used to be used by the military. They would use it in spyplanes to spot the enemy hiding under fake brush. Anyways I got a couple medium format rolls and some 35mm last year and it's been sitting in my fridge until now. For this shoot I loaded up one roll of the Color Infrared, two rolls of medium  format (one Lomochrome purple, the other fuji provia that I had cross processed) some Polaroids, and the 4x5.


The shots from the lubitel came out remarkably.

The above shots were made on Lomography's Lomo Chrome Purple Its a beautiful false color film that turns just about every color purple except red

The above shots were made on fuji Provia 400 and cross processed. Provia is a marvelous slide film with beautiful realistic tones, but if you cross proccess it seems to want to give a a yellowish green tint. I cross processed this because I knew it'd be perfect with the the greens of the New Orleans the swamp. Cross processing is when you take a film and process it in the wrong chemicals. Slide film is supposed to be processed in E6. I processed this roll in c41 chemicals. 

These were all shot on the Color Infared film that I was drooling over. I'm so happy with the results. I got 9 more rolls sitting in the fridge and I can't wait to shoot more!


Yes Polaroids are still being made! A company called the impossible project bought some of polaroids old machines. Now from my understanding polaroid would sell them the machines, but would not give them the recipe for making the film. So Impossible had to make it up on there own. At first their films were pretty sketchy, a lot of time the image would be over exposed due their recipe being off. But over the years they have been working and improving their stuff. If you got a polaroid camera laying around go buy some impossible film and support the company. That company has single handedly brought back polaroid 600 cameras.

 So the nice thing about shooting Polaroids (besides the fact that it's a polaroid, who doesnt love polaroids?!) is that I can make one of a kind fine art prints through a process called a Polaroid Emulsion lift. It's a process in which you rip a polaroid apart and peel off the emulsion layer. You then take this emulsion layer and place it on high grade water color paper. 

Above is whats under the white tape of the polaroid, I always scan this because I think it makes the coolest boarder. Below is emulsion lift process.

The result is a beautiful fine art print that is read to be hung on the wall.


Last but not least was the 4x5
I shot a special film on the 4x5 too. Well it technically isn't even film. It's paper. Negative photographic paper is used to make prints out of negatives in the darkroom. (a negative film plus a negative paper = positive print)  This is positive paper. So when developed it comes out as a positive print.



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