I had previously worked with Slipknot a bunch of times, and when the opportunity to work with Stone Sour came up (as I was asked to do solo shots of Corey, but figured a band shoot would be better for more outlets) I jumped at the opportunity.
I had done many photo shoots in the storage area of Tsongas Arena, so I pretty much knew what I was going to be working with, but being that its also a hockey arena, the equpt is never in the same place and things get moved around constantly.
This time though... I was going to make a VERY huge mistake...
and yes - im not a photographer who doesnt admit when they make really dumb mistakes - I mention them so we can ALL learn from them - pretending everything you do is perfect and you never make any mistakes is just... ridiculous and unrealistic sooo - read on... and you will see what i did wrong.
I found a big open area - which had a really cool "under the bleachers" look, and did a bunch of test shots because I had a very specific look I wanted to get... the final set up was a bare parabolic pointed somewhat upward toward the concrete behind them - because the area was so large, I HAD to light it to make it look that way - then a second light boomed above them for more of a darker look.
I shot these at F14 at a 160th ISO100 with the 24-70 2.8 lens. I did two quick group sets here - I really liked the leading lines in the first set - but the second set was a bit off... no worries cause I already got the solid "keeper" shots anyway.
For the next set we went across the way to an area where i had previously shot - my chemical romance, the used, suicide silence, etc.. but the spot we shot in has NEVER been clear before - So i set a bare parabolic and pointed it down to get some leading lines in the vertical shots and even in some of the horizontal shots, I used a beauty dish pointed a bit above them but not directly pointed down like in the last set - I wanted this to be brighter.
I shot these at F11 at a 160th - and we did some serious shots then some fun shots.
After shooting the group shots I had Corey hang for solos while everyone else took off to do their thing... I used the same light set up for the first set with Corey.. after two shots it hit me... I done FUCKED UP BAD!!!!!!!
can you figure out what I did wrong? I look at my camera, look closely at the lens... and sometime while it was in the bag - the auto focus switch had been turn to manual focus... ...fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck. I basically said fuck about 375 times in my head while i switched over the auto focus - and started shooting again. I couldnt ask the band to come back - I just had to persevere and hope the images were salvageable. (conclusion of that at the bottom of the blog).
SO! I finished shooting the first set with Corey - then moved to the first location and to mimic the first set we did in group photos - these were at F14 - 160th - iso 100 - boomed dish pointed straight down - then a parabolic pointed toward the concrete.
After doing that - he saw i was wearing a michael jackson off the wall shirt - he commented "that shirt is awesome, i have that on me". I didnt know what he ment til he lifted up his shirt and tadaaa - he had the off the wall print tattooed on his back! so cool!
so! for the last set i pointed the dish at him and used the parabolic as a rim - and finished up with the same setting - at F14.
He took off to go do what he had to do before playing - then i furiously checked the images in back of camera zooming in all the way in every set - and alas... the images were sharp... but!!! I wanted to check on my comp, which i couldnt do til i got home..
SO! I got home and loaded the raw images - and most of them - id say 95% were TACK SHARP! I dont know if it was pure luck - or second nature - but the images were sharp and totally usable. - I didnt even have to sharpen them in PS - they just worked! - SO AWESOME! - that could have been a ruined shoot easily - and its the most amateur mistake that can be made!!!! - and yes - we all make mistakes - today I made a BIG ONE! but luckily it wasnt a bad one.
Working with Stone Sour was awesome - great dudes - always fun to see Corey - who is honestly one of the best dudes in this industry. He is always beyond nice, super easy to work with, and just an all around great dude with a billion mutual friends, which is why I will always opt to work with anything hes doing.