Teesfuse Performing Arts Festival – Photography

Last week I had the opportunity to photograph a Performing Arts Festival, hosted at Middlesbrough College. It turned out to be really interesting, and gave me a whole new appreciation for live acting. I’ve been making short films for going on three years now, and I have become used to being able to say ‘One more take please!’ (hence my nickname – Another Take Cake), but these folks couldn’t do that. They didn’t have that chance to mess up. They had to perform perfectly infront of people. It sounds obvious, but it really did impress me!

So I did the photography for them, and captured some really interesting acts, which made for some nice shots I think.

Check them out here!

Lights, bikes and stars!

At the beginning of the week I met with a good friend for a coffee. Turns out he was that night going to do some nighttime photography for his new project. I’d heard about this project and was so excited when I was invited along!

The project is based around Kielder Water and Forest Park, and that night he was doing some test shots to see how it would turn out.

The Arrival:

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After climbing screeching and turning some of the tightest bends possible we made it! At the top of the massive hill (the name escapes me at the moment!), we parked and instantly started to get everything ready as we were losing light quickly. The most prepared person I know, my friend brought a hiking backpack to store all the gear for a possible long trek up the hill. Thankfully we didn’t need to move too far with all the kit!

The Lights

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Being the main focus of the experiment, a reel of battery powered LED lights were acquired. We had used these on a previous shoot – Absolution, and they can in so handy! They can be trailed, cut and rewired, dangled and taped! So they can be used for quite a lot of different purposes.

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Here we see the lights being hooked up to the battery pack (although not a very good picture!).

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Here we see Andrew, our trusty biker. We wrapped the lights around him, using safety pins to hold them in place. In order to not stab him, we used an old coat on top of his – health and safety. Image

Above we see Andrew testing out the lights. The wires towards the battery pack can be quite temperamental as they are quite delicate, so a few tests were done to see if his movement would bend the wires.Image

The lights can also change colours! They have a handy little remote control so you can change them from a distance, so cool!Image

Andrew riding away into the darkness. After this we realised we needed to give him a torch on his bike, we didn’t want any broken bones.

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First test is shown above – The combination of the torch on his bike with the lights on his coat gave an interesting effect. The problem was that longer exposures caused the white light to blow out the picture due to it being much brighter than the LED’s.Image

Second test shown above – getting there! Starting to look very cool indeed.Image

Test number 3 – Changing framing slightly to get a continuous light streak. Also longer exposure to try and include the stars when Andrew has gone past.

ImageTest number 4 – Different colours!

Indie Lighting for Diary of Earth

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Indie Lighting for Diary of Earth

So this weekend we filmed the 2 page advert for an online e-book called Diary of Earth.

As expected there are always a few hiccups with filming – trying to find an actor who can shout convincingly in another language, hoping that actors will let me have them outside for a 7AM run and film, and of course lighting!

One of the main scenes happen in the kitchen, and trying to light a kitchen nicely is -hard work-. So as you can see in the picture we ended up hooking the light around a washing line and controlling the spill (and protecting the light!) with umbrellas. All in all it turned out really well! You’ll have to stay tuned to see how it turned out on the actors though :P