Friday
Nov142014

Oh No You Didn't...

I did something really scary this week.  I went on a shoot without a single strobe (add ghasp sound effect).

 

Hi, I'm Michael, and I'm addicted to strobes.  

 

I get sent on a one day social media tour with Garth Brooks for Entertainment Tonight.  I always bring a still camera, usually two, along with a host of strobes and hand held diffusers, like the kind I post about here.  In fact, they've become something of an extention of my shooting style, thanks to the inspirational work of guys like Joe McNally.  

But this shoot was different.  I would be moving with a pack of personal assistants, social media experts, reporters, and bloggers as the fabulous Mr. Brooks joined the social media universe, and I needed to travel light.

I grabbed a couple of batteries, my trusty D800E and a single lens-- a 50mm.  Why not the 24-70mm?  The 24-70 would give me more range, almost as much speed, and bit of flexibility, right?  Yes, that's true, but the 24-70 is a big, heavy lens.  It's obtrusive, and my thinking is that a big lens draws big attention.  The 50 is short, stubby, and doesn't scream "HEY!  I'M TAKING YOUR PICTURE!"  It's also faster, it goes down to f/1.4, allowing more light in bad situations.

It was a throw down challenge to myself to only shoot in good light, and to search for it before firing off a shot.  

It's not something I would do on a daily basis.  Strobes allow me a lot of flexibility and creativity in some of the worst shooting situations imaginable (think blank hotel room the size of a closet).  But for this trip, it was probably the right decision.  I got to shoot on a more personal basis, get to know the subject a bit more-- we spent the whole day together-- and capture more intimate moments which felt less posed.

Technically, it meant watching my settings constantly.  ISO was the biggest challenge.  I was constantly adjusting for the changes from indoor to outdoor, and I found myself shooting aperture priority, and bumping ISO so the shot wouldn't blur under a slower shutter. 

Try shooting in natural light on occasion.  It will stretch your ability as a photographer.

 

 

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