Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Todays Shoot - U-God of The Wu Tang Clan

My girl, has been friends with the Wu-Tang crew for a while - so she mentioned my work, what i do, etc. to the guys, and U-God - who is a close friend of hers - wanted to come up for a shoot.

SO! She rolled up to the studio with U-God for a quick shoot

I decided to try and do this entire shoot with just ONE LIGHT!

We started in studio - shooting with a boomed profoto compact 300 at 50% pointed straight down with a beauty dish

I was shooting with the 70-200 2.8 L lens - shot at F20 - ISO125 - at a 160th - we did some serious shots and some fun shots - he saw the guns in the studio and right away was like "we GOT to use them!" haha.

After shooting in studio we went outside and shot against a concrete wall using a boomed dynalite uni400 with a beauty dish - again pointed down but with a slight angle toward the wall - this time shooting with the 24-70 2.8 L ISO100 - F20 - 160th

I wanted to give him a different look - more stylized and darker than what ive seen in previous work, but I also wanted to give him some warm, brighter photos - So I did some with natural light shooting at a 2.8 at a 200th - he even gave a DIO/Metal tribute during the shoot

We did a set inside the building - which, as im sure youve seen, is a creepy industrial building, I wasnt feeling it as much as outside - but I got one shot I really liked - same settings as before 160th at F20

So being that I liked outside better - we went back outside - I wanted to get some shots against the stormy sky - these were shot at a 125th F20 - I really like the shot with his hands up.

I get asked alot why I shoot at a high f-stop sometimes - and generally its because I want EVERYTHING in field, sharp. with very little fall out. - hope that makes sense? - in these images - you can really see everything as sharp as can be - in other situations ill shoot a lower Fstop - more like a 10th-14th... i think every shoot has its own necessary settings :)

After the quick shoot, They took off as she had a shoot to do, but even with a quick shoot, the outcome was so awesome. Hopefully I will be working with a few other of the Wu-Tang dudes, and if all goes well - im really hoping - and its looking like - i may do a shoot with the ENTIRE CREW! in the near future.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Todays Shoot - Slayer


also know as Slayer, have been one of the most legendary and influential bands of all time, not to mention a band I have followed and listened to since I was about... 9.

I had an excellent opportunity to shoot both Slayer and Megadeth back to back in one night on the American Carnage tour. Now - a shoot like that is kind of surreal - getting to work with two of the most legendary metal bands of all time - both in one night?! AH! SOME!

For Slayer I wanted something darker, more evil/creepy than Megadeth - obviously as that is more their style, musically and lyrically, but I never see them shot that way... soooo I figured it was about time.

I wanted to shoot them against a smooth concrete wall, but the building lacked it aside from one spot just outside the loading docks, I had to clear out a bunch of random stuff like ladders, pallets, etc. but I found a spot with a little bit of ivy but a mostly smooth wall to work with.

I boomed a Dynalite Uni400 with a beauty dish - and shot at ISO100 at F20 - at a 160th using the Canon Mark 2 1ds and the 24-70. - it was about 830 so the light was BARELY there to get a focus point, but we made it work! - see images below

All in all it was a massive honor getting to work with Slayer again. Anytime I get to work with people I've followed or looked up to for years, and they end up being super nice, easy to work with, and you get the shots you want... cant really ask for more.. other than to wish I also got to see this same line up in like 1994 haha. So until next time - remember that the longest band name - and word ever created is SSSSSSSSSSLLLLLLLLLLLLAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEERRRRRRR.

Todays Shoot - Megadeth

If you told me when i was 12, I was going to get to do an assignment - for work - and that job would be to do a photo session with MEGADETH - i would have asked for a time machine to that day to prove you wrong... buuuuut given a very fortunate turn of events - I did actually get the opportunity to do this shoot.

Originally I was supposed to do three sets of photos and solos, and have about 15-20 minutes with the band.

That turned into five minutes, and one set. - no biggie - i knew how to make it work, and have worked with WAY less before.

So there was an empty trucks trailer - and i figured i could light it to look awesome.

I used two bare parabolics one pointed behind them and away and up - to light everything behind them and above them - then one pointed at them and down toward to floor to give some leading lines - drop shadows on their legs - etc. - then used a beauty dish main as a hard light - figuring i wanted these images to be REALLY bright - and metal - lots of highlights and mids - not many shadows - if any at all.

All of these shots are at 160th - F14 - ISO100 - with the 24-70 lens - it was a tight shot so being able to go wide with out having a ridiculous amount of distortion was key!

I started with group shots - did some shots of the two daves - then some solos - check it out!

All in all - it was the biggest honor and privilege getting to work with David Ellefson yet again - as he is one of the best dudes in the industry - also getting to work with a band that is not only legendary in their own right - but has inspired many, if not most - of the bands ive had the opportunity to work with over my career. - Look for these images in outburn and hails and horns soon!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Todays Shoot - Slayer - Megadeth - Testament (live)

Today was the first of two days shooting the american carnage tour.

I wasnt sure exactly what days what shoots were happening - so this day ended up just being live stuff - which was cool, because that meant I would have a day to really see the show/shoot it before shooting it a second time to get better shots (which I did)

Now being that this is one of the bigger shows, at a bigger venue, that means no flash is allowed (booo) - for some bands with good lighting, that doesnt matter, but with some bands that flood the stage with a heavily saturated color - your shots either need to be edited or they will all look like the devil or the hulk or avatar. haha.

First up was testament - whos lighting was terrrrrrriiiiblleee. it sucks to have one of the best bands in metal.. EVER! in front of your lens and not be able to really give them much justice due to the lighting limitations generally set onto support bands.

I shot at 2.8 at F400 - there werent any spots used and it was mostly backlighting - red and green - but every now and again some whites and yellows pop through and I could get a solid shot. All in all I ended up getting more than enough good shots to work with, but I cant wait for their next headliner where they have awesome lighting!

After Testament it was time for Megadeth! They always have solid white lighting or spotlights, and on top of that - they are one of the best sounding live bands - on earth, so its always good getting to shoot them. For Megadeth i was pretty much at the same settings, because there was alot of red flood happening during the majority, but still managed to get some solid shots during the set.

Last up was Slayer - whos stage movement is always minimal - so they are pretty easy to get good shots of... all you really have to do is wait for the lighting to hit the way you want it to.

The singer - Tom - always had some pretty awesome white light hitting him, but the rest of the band barely had any front lighting the entire set, so you pretty much have to wait until their head turns up to get any sort of solid shot of the guitarists (Kerry and Jeff). BUT! paitence pays - check it out

Monday, August 9, 2010

Todays Shoot - My Children My Bride

So if you follow this blog, youre probably sick of seeing MCMB, right? NO WAY! - best dudes ever! - so when I got the word they needed a new shoot - of course I was down to shoot it and hang out

So the concept was to have them more dressed up, classy, somewhat model-like in some of the images as well.

I knew ahead of time, they if they dressed up - on a hot day - they would be sweaty and shiny - but whatever - I've dealt with worse - so going in knowing what to expect helped a bit.

We started in studio - I did a set up with two rims at the side of the paper about 2 feet above their heads pointed toward their shoulder - using and switching out a beauty dish and a 3x4 softbox - I shot these at ISO100 - F10 (softbox) F14 (dish) - at a 160th - using the 70-200 2.8

After shooting a bunch inside we went outside and started off by shooting against a concrete wall with a uni400 with a beauty dish boomed above - shot at F22 ISO100 at a 160th

The next set was THE set we were looking to do - I shot this natural light with the 24-70 2.8 L - at 2.8 - the speeds varied between an 80th and 200th - depending on where they were in relation to the sun - which was fading and overcast at that time. We really wanted it to look like nothing either of us have really done before - and it worked perfectly.

Working with the MCMB dudes is always awesome, matthew has ended up being a really good friend aside from just someone who is always awesome to work with. So with that said, the shoot was a success, we got exactly what we both wanted out of it!