At least twice a month we set up test shoots to work with new lighting, new cameras, new models or even new locations. Last week we were using the new Canon 5D Mark IV with some lenses that had just be re-aligned by Canon for a fitness test. We put the camera and new fitness model, Julia from JE Models, to work under difficult light. I was hoping for a beautiful fall afternoon, but instead we had nothing but overcast skies. Using high-speed sync capabilities of the ProFoto B1 while shooting at 1/2000 sec allowed us to clean up the shadows.
Two hours and some 2000 images later, I had quite a bit of homework to do on the plane to this week’s shoot in Dallas. I think I most like the moody running shots on the road, but this test was just plain fun.
We had a great opportunity to work with the folks from GA Communications on a project for BioMarin this past fall photographing a series of patients. We spent three days on location around the Bay Area making images that had to have a strong sense of flared backlight. While we couldn’t shoot all of the images late in the day, we made use of both ideally placed sunlight and a strobe set far off in the distance. For the swing shot I made a swing from an old piece of redwood and some nice looking hemp rope. Using high rollers for a large silk above, we slid medium rollers underneath with a speed rail tube across so that we could place the swing wherever we wanted. I knew we weren’t going to find a perfectly placed low hung tree branch : >
Yes, I got into the pool. I had to. With the tether cord held by an assistant and connected to a computer on dry land, I shot with a long lens handheld. Most of the project was photographed using Canon’s new 5dsr 50 megapixel camera and a ProPhoto B1 in the trees. And, lots of large silks.
Early this week we brought back a hip hop dancer that we have photographed in the past. Staying in the outdoor studio and keeping the huge silks for our lighting, we moved around to get a more natural blue sky background. A little less studio feel, a little more natural – while still using beautiful big light sources.
Bob and I got to talking yesterday about this work – why dancers, why flying? It seems like he is drawn to this as a more pure form of the motion portraits he sees us doing in our fitness work. The dance images are still about photographing people, still a portrait, and the motion is still fitness. But working with these dancers, the project feels more like a study of form and movement.
This Oakland based dance teacher is great to work with and we hope to collaborate with her more. Using the blue sky felt more authentic and true to her as a performer. Here are a few from the shoot. We will keep putting these on Instagram and Twitter, so please check our feeds.
Enjoy. – Kala
This week we completed the framing of the latest Facing Chemo exhibit – Before & After. The show hung this past Wednesday at a corporate event at Genentech. We are looking forward to seeing the show hang again soon.
We are back in the studio this week after traveling quite a bit of traveling for BioMarin. At the beginning of this month we took off to the Midwest to photograph a couple of amazing people with the rare disease called MPS-IV. The warm welcome into these people’s homes and spending time getting to know them is something that will stick with us for a while. It was incredibly rewarding to see into their lives and capture them as people, not as patients. Our First stop was Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Upon stepping into the airport we quickly realized that we had arrived at the peak of quail hunting season. We were greeted with a huge sign that read, “Welcome Hunters.” Being immersed in hunting culture from childhood, I had to get a selfie with some orange. The “shoot”went well. We had an amazing crew and walked away with some great images.
Next Stop: Fort Scott, Kansas. We got to explore acres of farmland and lose a few games of CLUE to our host and his siblings. The Farm was beautiful, we found a rad barn to photograph. It was so inspiring we had to go antiquing after the shoot and picked up a few things for The Ranch.
Rad Barn: To see more pictures check out the Instagram.