Sunday, November 13, 2011

Nikon Video Shoot (Part 1)

I've got to be one of the luckiest persons on earth! Way back in June, I received a wonderful email from Nikon asking me if I would be interested in being involved with a project. I had was thrilled to have received that email, the project entailed me being video taped shooting 3 different scenarios for the Learn & Explore online training at Nikon USA website.

My first contact with Nikon came back about 14 years ago. I was in NY visiting clients and decided to make an appointment to show my work to Nikon. From that meeting 14 years ago, I've had minimal contact with Nikon. I was once featured on their website with a article about my work. Two years ago, I took part in a video interview with fellow photographer Steve Vaccariello while visiting Photo Plus in NY.

This project involved 3 separate photographic techniques; bounce, day for night and artificial sunlight.

The first photograph I'll discuss here will be the Saxophone player. This photo was taken on a street corner in NY in the middle of the afternoon in open shade. I was given several choices of doorways to select from, the production team of John Sepe was absolutely super. I selected these doors because of the color and the fact that they would be in open shade at 1:30 PM. I knew this because I use a software program (TPE) which tracks the sun movement.

In this first photo you can see the ambient exposure, this was what the camera metering thought was a correct exposure. As I tell my student when I teach, your camera is only a light meter, the exposure meter is between your ears. When I look at the indicated "correct" exposure the camera gives, I think to myself... this doesn't look like night.

I than drive down the exposure using both shutter speed and aperture to what I would consider an under exposed image looking more like night. I'm not moving my shutter speed above my native sync speed of 1/250 of a second, because I want full efficiency from my speedlights. If I move into high speed sync, I loose a tremendous amount of power from the speedlights.

Needless to say, I'm delighted to appear on Nikon's radar screen once again. This was a substantial project for me, one with high visibility for me and I hope it leads to more projects with them down the road.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

It's a Matter of Security

Back in the summer while teaching at the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, I was contacted by the President of Securitas Energy Service to shoot some new photography for them. After several weeks of moving dates around the calendar we shot the project.

Securitas is a huge security company, one of the largest in the world. I was shooting for only one of several divisions they have, I was shooting for the energy division. Securitas provides security for highly sensitive facilities like Nuclear Power Plants.

My assignment took me to Pittsburgh, PA and Sacramento, CA to photograph to nuclear plants. The Pittsburgh facility was an active plant and the Sacramento facility was a commissioned plant where fuel rods are still stored. It was my first time shooting at such a facility, it was fascinating to see let alone photograph.

The photo at the top of the blog was taken at the Sacramento facility, I noticed the strong graphic shape of the structure suports of the old cooling towers. I placed an employee in the triangle shape and had him walk, stand and various other things that I thought might work.

The photo just above was taken at the Pittsburgh facility. I positioned an employee alone the fence line on patrol. I also made several shots with him looking through a pair of binoculars and talking on the radio.

The photo below was taken at the commissioned plant in Sacramento. I liked the diamond shaped opening in the second story floor. I had John, my assistant hold an SB-800 directed at the security guard. You can see a very slight shadow of the employee against the wall from the flash.

I have several other photos from this assignment I'll be sharing in the weeks to come, many of which show some behind the scenes lighting done on location. I hope you'll come back for those. DT