Soliders Can’t Dance

6 03 2013

Flash – a-ah – saviour of the universe.
Here’s part one of my weekends shootings. More to come soon.

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This week Soldiers Can’t Dance were treated to the Deadl.ie treatment and were the first in line to scoop up a free shoot. The shoot took place in an abandoned building in the city that was as scary as it was amazing. With thin corrugated iron crumbling beneath our feet, pigeons taking flight and shaking the walls in the process, not to mention the eerie discarded children’s toys littered about the place, the building is one that after this weekend, I’ve probably seen enough of.

The band arrived as I’d hoped. Stylish, on time and up for a good explore of the place. The building was huge so after a good 30 minute search of the place, we’d found our locations. First up the ‘X’ wall (picture 1). A flat wall, with one light pointing at it, with a smoke bomb between the guys and myself and a light above the smoke and the band was how the shot was set up.

As I couldn’t have the light directly above me – given I was shooting quite zoomed in, and the assistant would’ve been visible in the shot, I had the light come from the left. This gives a small fall-off in the light come the right side of the image, but nothing I don’t find acceptable.

The second shot was in the main body of the building. It was full of thick, thick dust, pigeon shit and oddly, rolls of film. There was a large walkway that led down the building about 9 feet above the ground. I raced down this and placed a light at the first crossing of walkways,  point back directly towards the camera and a smokebomb in between the two. The flash behind the smoke was set to full power to really blow out the background, and as the light was slightly tipped up, it also gave a slight fill to the dungeon-like background.

The smoke bombs run for above 30 seconds outdoors normally. Given the dark conditions in ‘the cave’ and the lack of wind, they ran about twice as long. Even after this, they hung around in some sense for a while. Initially they looked too thick, but after a few moments it became manageable. Unfortunately – I missed a few ideal conditions of the smoke given my flash recycling time, but overall I’m happy.

This time I was closer to the band, shooting wide, so I could have my assistant behind me lighting the scene evenly. You can really see the difference. It’s much more even and it’s my personal favourite of the shoot.

I deliberately left Luke (in the orange shirt) to either side of the shot. The guys were all wearing dark colours initially (Luke had a leather jacktet) but I needed to make them stand out slightly. We ditched the jacket and I felt it too obvious to put the only guy in black in the middle.

So there y’are now. Any questions, just ask. I’d be more than happy to help.

Big thanks to Aaron Corr and Aisling Finn for assisting on the shoot!

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Smashing Pumpkins… Watermelons

23 11 2012

Righty-oh, so. Given the massive viewing figures of my last post (I was ‘this’ close to double-figures), I thought I’d update you on some of the best bits over the year since The Darkness post.

First up, Tuner knocking seven shades of shite out of watermelons.

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I started to realise my photos were getting a bit samey; band with guitars here, band against a wall there. Y’know, it started to get a bit dull. My first idea was to fling paint at them, but y’know, that’s messy and a bit over-done. So I thought, why not push the shutter on the next one. Go for that split mili-second look, y’know the speeding bullet going through an apple… or that woman micro-seconds away from being gored by her dog.

Anyway, the initial plan was to smash pumpkins. At least, it was for me. However July isn’t exactly pumpkin season. It is indeed Watermelon season, so we went with that. We bought four, and four melons as testers. The guys really got into it and after four successful attempts with the melons, the guys wanted to try a few other things before we got onto the main event.

Not our best idea. After someone lobbed a Ramiro pepper at Stephen, who promptly smashed it to smithereens, we had to take a small break to clean our eyeballs and wait for the burning to die down. Anyway, as you can see from above it went quite well in the end.

I placed two umbrellas either side of the frame 90′ left and right. It stopped the light spilling into the background and also gave a nice round shape to the light on the models. The shutter speed was at 1/200, the faster the shutter sync most Nikon camera’s will allow. The aperture wasn’t overly important thereafter – it was at 4.5, but truth be told, it was what it was – any narrower and it would’ve made the scene too dark. I was already firing both flashes at 1/2 power and it made sense.

Then we played around. I exposed for the sky, while keeping everything as well lit as I could. It gave me this for Al… Who had a beer thrown at him and caught it right on the hop. Nice one, Al!

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So there y’are now. #1 of the year so far, only 11 months late. More to come.





Tuner Photoshoot

10 07 2011

This is Tuner, a great band, being blasted with lights from all angles. After a quick edit of the 4gbs of photos from today, here’s a few early highlights. More to come soon!

Anyway, we started off at the back of their own studio (thems the wooden background images) – and moved towards St. Annes Park (surely the best place for photoshoots in Dublin.) Two flashes were used for all the pictures- an SB-600 and the impressive Metz-50. They’re relatively cheap and amazingly easy to use with radio triggers and deliver great results every time. I never thought I understood flashes completely, but after today I reckon I’ve got it down.

Anyway, if you like what you see and would like some pictures like this of your own, gimme a shot. Contact details are, handily, under the ‘contact’ tab at the top of the page!

 

 

 

 

 

 





Talking Shop Ensemble

27 05 2011

As promised, here’s Talking Shop Ensemble:

 





Logikparty

15 01 2011

Click to see on black


The hunt continues! Richter Collective’s show last night in The Button Factory saw me interview and shoot some fantastic bands and interesting people. Some of Ireland’s best new bands were present and making a hell of a sound and they were more than happy to answer a few questions and stand in-front of my lens! Huzzah!

Logikparty were first up and proved to be the most natural in front of the camera. These guys made life pretty easy on my behalf. I finally think I’ve got my lighting ratios and style down too. I mean lookit that, eh?

Magic.

Keep your eyes posted over on my FlickrStream for more piccies from the Richter Collective guys as they come/when I get the finger out and edit them.





Retarded Cop / Gaz Le Rock

14 01 2011

 

 

Where to start with Gaz Le Rock / Retarded Cop? You could check out his fantastic show here, that airs on 2xm every Friday at 12:30 and again on Tuesdays at 9:30pm. Or you could  check out his awesome videos over on his YouTube Channel. Personally, I recommend popping over to his house for the best cuppa coffee you’ll ever have (seriously – that was some damn good coffee).

Retarded Cop has been chosen as one of State.ie’s Faces of 2011. It’s a deserved reward. The one man band seems to love doing what he does, and he is responsible for some of the catchiest hooks in Dublin at the moment. It won’t be long before he takes to the live scene and it’ll be great to hear songs like this get the reception they deserve:

 





The Cast of Cheers

12 01 2011

My project to photograph every important Irish band around continues with The Cast of Cheers. Plagued with technical issue (gammy flashes, broken remote releases and an umbrella adapter for a lightstand that disappeared during the drive to the location) I did the best with what I had. And it worked out alright in the end.

Taking promo shots at night is horrible – especially when you have one flash to work with and only a small softbox to use – in windy conditions.

Taking a band called the Cast of Cheers to an off-licence for a shoot might be a bit naff though…

 

Edit: Maybe this is better: