Sometimes things go smooth. Sometimes they don’t. This time things didn’t go as planned. Part of the reason was that I cut corners. I thought I knew the space we were shooting but I was wrong. It was much much smaller than I bargained for. I thought we were going to shoot in a different location so I would have a lot more room to move. My major error with this shoot was not taking the time to scout the location properly. Since I thought I would have room for an overhead boom (the garage door mechanism prevented that), and I thought I was going to be able to use big, soft modifiers (the small room prevented that) I had to scramble with some extra equipment I always have with me.
My plan (based on looking through a few images that Vince liked from other photographers) was that I was going to boom a big octa overhead and fill as needed to create a softly lit, yet contrasty, portrait of the artist working. What happened was a lot different. Given that the only place I could stand was in front and to the left of Vince, and the positioning and size of the lights was severely limited by the small workspace here is what transpired:
- The strobe with the gridded reflector at camera left is a spotlight on the artwork on the table
- The gridded strobe high and opposite the camera is acting like a spotlight on the hammer
- The heavily featherd soft box is a rim light on the artists back
- The soft box behind the camera is acting like a subtle fill because with all of the other lights the face was in shadow.
This is what it looked like in real life.
…..and the final image