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June 2010
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Shooting Zaftigg at Durand Eastman Park

Take a model I’ve never worked with before, a park I haven’t spent much time shooting models at, a hot & humid day with intermittent downpours and mix.  The result is a very tiring but fun shoot and some interesting photos.

Durand Eastman is a great location for a lot of reasons but my favorite part about it is the variety of locations available within its limits.  You have the beach at Lake Ontario, more than one additional smaller lake, woods, marshes, a golf course and a lot of room to wander about.  There’s even supposed to be a ghost, called the White Lady, haunting a part of the park.  We shot in her supposed area and never saw her… dang.

In addition to shooting at the “White Lady’s Castle” twice during the shoot, we also spent a good amount of time on the beach and we shot at the marsh towards the Culver Road entrance.  The weather was entirely unpredictable, sometimes heavy clouds would pass over and nothing would happen, other times we’d get heavy downpour.  While we were shooting in the marsh the sun came out in its full glory and started roasting and steaming us all at the same time.  We abandoned the marsh and got ready to shoot at the beach again where I got the 10 stop ND filter out for some long exposures for an idea we had been discussing.  Unfortunately once again the weather would give us alternating blinding sun and pleasant overcast and for the shot I needed the overcast!

t4g1869 Weather like that can really try your patience but I’m used to being at the mercy of the conditions.  A lot of the shooting I like to do relies on getting the right natural light or the right combination of natural & created light.  For around half of the shoot I was using my 60″ Softlighter to add to the very soft ambient light.  That allows me to add a bit of contrast or shoot in the direction I wanted while still getting the quality of light I needed.  I really love the Softlighter for giving me the big light source without throwing a lot of light away in the other direction as would happen if I used it as a shoot-through umbrella.  The Photek Softlighters have proven to be very versatile light modifiers and decisions I don’t regret at all.

In what seems like a miracle, nothing broke during this shoot.  It wasn’t without excitement though; the umbrella and stand fell over on the beach a couple times and I kept trying to trip myself with the sync cable.  Switching to a radio trigger system would make things so much easier but I haven’t been able to decide which one to go with.  Perhaps the trend of things trying to break during every shoot -sometimes due to no fault of my own- has finally come to an end.  I can live with that.

Because of nudity in one of the photos I’ve hidden the gallery, to see all the photos click “Show Gallery” below:

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