Saturday, January 30, 2010

Todays Shoot - Epica

Today was going to be an interesting shoot

First it was a band I had never worked with before called Epica - who are symphonic power metal with female vocals, VERY cool.

Second, the photo shoot was set up and confirmed just a few hours before the shoot actually took place.

So being that the shoot was at The Palladium, where I do a solid 50% of my shoots, if not more... I had to do something different.

We did a few sets, but the one I liked the most was in the seats above the front of house sound board.

We pulled out the tables to the left and right of the center seat, and put umbrellas there - then put a beauty dish about as high as it could possibly go by the front of house area - which was about five feet lower then where they were sitting.

I really like the ceiling being blue, and the seats being warm tone/red..ish... it makes for a cool contrast.

The only thing to note is that Epica's keyboardist was off being married so Samone's (singer) boyfriend, and Kamelot Keyboardist was filling in both on tour and in the shoot.

The other sets we did were on the empty stage, and floor of the downstairs palladium, but the shots in the seat were my favorites.

The band all in all was suuuuper nice and kind of adorable.

At one point the singer asked if i had eaten - I said yep - next door - shitty burgers.

She said she went to get hot dogs, but they were not good, kind of "not-so-hot-dogs"

Trust - in a netherland accent thats pretty much the most adorible thing ive heard in a long time.

anyway - the lighting set up is above - shot wide angle because i had ZERO room to shoot from where they were sitting - i shot from the next level below - which was the front of house area

I shot this around F10 - 15ish? at a 10th 20th or 30th to soak in some of the bar lighting - ISO 200

here is one of the final shots

Friday, January 29, 2010

Todays Shoot - Behemoth

YES! every day with Behemoth in front of my lens is a very very good day.

I also know that its going to be a very hectic nightmare, because generally, when shooting a band who wears make up or costumes you have about a 2 minute window (max) to get the shots done in a very small area, directly before they go on stage.

So, being that I have shot behemoth about 5 times or so, I was very well aware of the circumstances.

On top of the regular nightmare it generally is to shoot them before set, they were combining their tour of three bands with the Devil Driver tour of 6 bands, for the first day, so that was also a logistics nightmare where everyone was running around super busy and stressed out, and on top of that they got a new guitar tech, THAT DAY! AHHH.

Luckily their tour manager is my old roomate, so that made things a bit easier in terms of locking down everything and sorting it out.

I basically had to set up my gear, and be ready for them to sit in, get shot - and go on stage right away and the only area i had to work with was a very full and cluttered dressing room that ive shot in several times... so... what to do????

I shot toward the middle of the room and used a black leather couch. I used two umbellas for split lighting but put them up a bit high - probably about 2.5 feet above the head of anyone sitting in the seat - and pointed them downward. - then used a beauty dish at 3/4 power for a main.

So the shoot ended up being less then a minute because they had trouble with their guitars, so basically as their intro music started for them to go on stage - is when i started shooting them.

While I was shooting Nergals solos - there were people behind him so i had to shop them out in post and unfortunatly the massage table is in the shot, and there was nothing i could do about that as it could not have been moved.

When i took my last shot - and said "all set" they RAN onto the stage and started playing - as i ran downstairs to get live shots while my assistant at the show - Andrea - packed up the gear for me.

Here is a final edit of a Nergal solo shot.

F14 - 10th - ISO 125

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Todays Shoot - Hail!

Well... once, maybe twice a year, I get to do a shoot I am really excited about.

This one came in January so... could be a good year, right?

My shoot was with HAIL! for a slew of different magazines

David Ellefson of Megadeth/F5

Tim "The Ripper" Owens of Judas Priest/Iced Earth

Andreas Kisses of Sepultura

Mike Portnoy of Dream Theater

is a band called HAIL!

So needless to say, save for Sepultura, every single one of these bands were bands that have been in my life since i was 10 years old or so. (yes I had a very early start in metal).

Every one of these dudes are legends in their own right, so I was super excited for the opportunity to work with them.

We did about 5 sets, first on the stage with the hail backdrop

Second were in seats at the venue

For this - two umbrellas up high - pointed inward to get the opposite side of the table - then a beauty dish behind them pointed at a 45 degree angle for hair/table fill F16 30th

Third was in the very cool hallway of Gillette Stadium (see below)

Fourth and Fifth were in the Gillette Stadium loading docks, and in the docks on a Gillette club cart

My favorite set was in the hallway, because I am partial to really industrial areas with fluorescent lighting and thats exactly what the hallway was.

I did group shots and solos of everyone in two of the sets (hallway and stage) and all the dudes were pretty pumped on the shots.

David has been a great friend to me in terms of giving me the best quote EVER for my book bring the noise - and then during this shoot - he compared me to Ross Halfin and a few other name rock and roll legend photographers... which is just unreal, to have a dude whos worked with the best, EVER, in the industry, to say I am the next era... its very unreal and incredibly kind of him.

Hallway shots are beauty dish up high - side lit with two umbrellas but the umbrella camera right is about 1-2 feet before the umberella camera left to offset the lighting a bit.

shot at F22 (to get full hallway somewhat sharp in there) then at a 10th to really bring in the hallway lighting (which made the hallway a bit blurry by the lights, but the band was locked in so i didnt mind the slight movement).