Saturday, March 20, 2010

Addison Group of Singers: Classical Concert Shoot

Continuing the choir shoots, today I visited the St Michael's & All Saints Church in Chiswick. The Addison Group Of Singers was having a classical concert this evening, however no shooting would be allowed then. The rehearsals were fine though, and they want pictures for their website, and I thought it was a good chance to try something different, so it's a win-win situation here.

It was a slightly ardous journey as the tube lines near the church were under servicing, and I took about half an hour to hoof it to the location. It wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't raining! I arrived at the church with my jeans drenched as I didn't pack my overpants gah.

My usual mantra: Get close. No, even closer.

The night before, it was the usual agonizing over which lens to bring. The gig twins, the 24/2.8D and 50/1.8D were definitely in the bag. The 16-85 was also included since the place was totally unknown.  The 70-200VR was heavily in consideration, but dropped it as a) I would definitely need to bring a monopod. b) London tube with monopod and 70-200 on weekend? NO! c) Draws waaay to much attention.
50mm FTW!

I like the juxtaposition here.

The rear of the church had a big open area which unfortunately came in very very dark in the shots, even with the magnificent stained glass windows.

Thankfully, as I was warned it's a reasonably big church, I brought out part of strobist kit: my main SB600, 2x SB28s and radio triggers.

I placed one SB28 set at full power behind the last row, equipped with something I seldom use - a diffuser! I thought it worked reasonably well to bring out the color of the walls.

 Doing my usual tilt-the-frame thing.

Enjoying the music

There was not enough ambient light from the front to fill in the conductor and some of the front row musicians. I also didn't want to use direct flash at them, instead bouncing the remainder of my flashes off the walls. The SB600 and SB28 were triggered to the left of the stage, to provide fill for the lead singers.

Yes that's TWO flashes providing the fill. And it's not enough.

That's it with no flash, just pure ambient.

The effect is very subtle, but it's there. And that's using TWO flashes at full power. To double the power, I would need a total of 4 flashes. Gah. Still I think it works out alright.

Next week I should be in Germany doing what I do best. Shooting wolves and bears in Bavaria :)

Till next week...


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