The perils of a “group shoot”

The day started at the very reasonable 11am and went on til 3pm and involved the delightful Vicki and a big black motorbike! The studio owner Sabel was on hand to help with the setup and he also had a very experienced studio photographer Mark Bigelow on hand for inspiration.

Back Street Heroes throwback

Back Street Heroes throwback

The studio day was for up to 6 but only 4 had signed up so I was really looking forward to the day. The initial setup was on a black seamless with a large octo as the main light, a strip soft box as fill plus a gridded spot for a hair light. i don’t know the specifics of settings etc and thats really part of the limitation of this sort of event.. Basically you turn up and point your camera.. We were given some information on what the setup was and why, but I didn’t really get the opportunity to develop my own ideas.

The second problem was more specific to this event, in that the idea is that you take it in turns to direct the model and get the shots you are looking for, on this occasion my fellow “togs” didn’t want to play, instead it turned into a bit of a free for all, with all of us tripping over each over to get the shots. It also meant that if someone took a shot just before you the lights didn’t have time to recycle and wouldn’t fire.. At least 10% of the shots I took were useless because one or more of the flashes didn’t go off. Another 10% didn’t work because the model was looking at a different camera etc.

i got some good shots, and we did change the lighting setup a couple of times but did I learn a great deal? Probably not.

It was a real shame because the it’s a great studio space and Vicki is a great model, with the most amazing eyes. i’ve added a couple of shots to my gallery, a nice headshot that I’m very happy with and a 70’s throwback that looks like something out of “back street heroes”.

I really enjoyed the day, but I think I’m going to take the plunge and book a specific slot next time so I can learn a lot more about both directing the model and developing lighting set ups.

Group shoots are a great opportunity to try different things but there are limitations and I think I’ve reached those.

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