Exams being over, I thought it good to get some more hours of shooting under my belt, and unwittingly accepted two job offers which were potentially the hardest to date.
The first was pretty local, the Institute of Human Rights held an all day conference with a few massive names in the world of philosophy and I was shooting stills. Unlike any other shoot I’ve done, the event organiser sent quite a hefty checklist of specific shots that she wanted, of the lecturers and the crowds at certain times during the programme. Furthermore, I had to get my ninja on and sneak around trying to get them because it was a lecture and I should basically be part of the furniture, I realised very quickly that I am a very clumsy person!
Lectures are hard to do because there’s very little depth of field due to the immediate backdrop, so you can’t get nice blur. Also, my telephoto is an old-style so manual focus was the order of the day. I did find, however, by the end of the day, I got quite good at it! I would definitely recommend using Live View to get it really crisp as you can zoom right in to the smallest of detail.
One fun thing I found out about shooting at longer focal lengths is that the further away the target, the shallower the relative depth of field, so you can still get some cool blurry effects at narrower apertures! The picture below is at 5.6 and I swear it looks like 2.8 or bigger!
I did feel quite professional though, and I guess I’m going to have to get used to having to jump through certain hoops as everyone has in mind what they want from a photographer, it’s just odd not having full control over a lot of things such as walking around, noise, creativity!
The views were certainly fantastic. I’d only ever ridden the Thames at our medic boat party, and it was quite cool going again now I actually know London a little bit more, which definitely adds to the whole experience! One thing, however, that makes working on a boat different from dry pand is that there is no escape!
A few shots in, I went under to shoot some dancing shots and to my horror, the flashgun failed! At this point, the only thing I could think of was that I have 5 more hours of shooting, at a stretch, two of those would be in sunlight, and indeed, there was no way to get out of this intact. Bugger.
I guess this taught me to be more prepared before every shoot and to thoroughly test my kit! A friend of mine borrowed it to shoot the summer ball the night before, and I have a sneaking suspicion something went awry which he never told me about as it’s never failed in this way before. This severely knocked me off balance as I literally had no idea what to do but pray and hope that somehow it would come back to life – God is good and after what seemed like an eternity, it did, albeit in fits and spurts.
After my little breakdown, it quickly went on to become one of the best nights I’ve worked so far! I met a couple of girls from Lacrosse last year and lots of other people who remembered me from the Netball shoot. Knowing people does make it more fun as it becomes less like work and you actually get to join in and have a laugh!
There was also a couple recently got engaged!
All in all, an extremely trying but all the more rewarding couple of shoots!