Finished for the year with workshops at my favorite aging hulk of a building down by the Hudson. Had a studio there for about six or seven years, and for a while, during a very turbulent time in my life, I actually lived there. With the trains, there was no need for an alarm clock. There are long time tenants there, characters all, to be sure. One of the most wonderful is Charlie Kron, a master bagpipe maker and player. You can hear Charlie tuning up and playing the pipes, with the distinctive drone and melody drifting up through the hallways, inducing march or melancholy, depending on Charlie’s mood.
Charlie’s shop is a chock-a-block wonder. I brought the class in there, and he was his usual, accommodating self, always ready to talk about the arcane intricacies of bagpipe playing. He’s in the process of moving to a smaller space, so for me, this picture immediately loomed as much more important than a lighting snap or demo. (This is done with two SB900s, one camera left with a Ezybox Hotshoe softbox, and one camera right with a Flashpoint snoot aimed down at the spare pipes. Auto white balance, letting the place just be what it is. As I said to the class, it’s not pretty light. It’s light that might already be there.)
Reason for it’s importance, I thought, was that this shop, which I speculate is just a mirror image of the interior of Charlie’s head, will now be gone, and will no longer reverberate with stirring wind blown notes, and be cluttered with tools and machines that really only Charlie knows how to run. Bagpipe repair. Talk about a niche industry.
I was glad we caught up with him before he closes the doors on this messy little piece of heaven. I asked him to play while I shot. I damn near cried….
Maggie came back, and her presence on the set pushed us to craft light that was really just for her. This is a combo of real big flash, and real small flash. The Elinchrom Octa is right at my back at camera, and the Deep Octa is overhead, just to key her face. And there are two SB900s below her, bouncing off the floor, with a silver Skylite Panel reflector. Very even, very frontal, very much a pale wash of light, just enough, just for her.
Then of course, we once again couldn’t resist blowing her amazing mane of hair around.
Turned on the wind machine (aka the eyeball dryer) and blended ambient, steady light. (Light that doesn’t flash, who knew?) The main light is small flash V flat lighting, where I just put up two V-flats, and pound 4 SB units into them. The V-flats then backwash them onto a wall or big white surface, which then just pours light over your subject. (Think of it as playing ping pong with the light.) I’ll have a sketch of this light up in couple days.
Same light here, for a decidedly different mood. I really had to speak to Kristina about her energy level in front of the camera:-)
We constructed a bit of a quieter, more classical beauty combination for Katherine.
And finally, we went to the roof, and, as I said to the class, we tried the high speed sync technique, in a big way. Six flashes, all firing the same direction.
Our subject is the nearly legendary Maria Arce, who is a martial artist, specializing in knife and sword play. Yikes!
All different subjects, all beautiful in different ways. Kinda cool. I’ll try to post some tech stuff on these soon. We had quite a year at Dobbs. Flying right now….more tk….