Photo Tip: Being Flexible

Some shoots allow the luxury of a budget, scout, crew, motorhomes, catering and other don’t. But note, the end result  is not directly proportional to the budget.  You can make due with the resources at hand and create award winning work.

Creative director John Umlauf is responsible for several awards the studio has received, the Chain Reaction shoot was not any different. So what about being flexible? So as cliche as it sounds, when you are faced with an obstacle or challenge, how you respond means everything. I learned the hard way with meltdowns, tantrums and getting grumpy. The positive approach works way better.  And what about the earlier comment about the budget?  Basically, for this shoot, there was none. The concept was good, 3 ads for his brother-in-laws shop, free lunch, a future discount on a bike and a couple hours of conversation with a great creative mind. 

Challenge 1 - No bikes. Sometimes there is a communication breakdown, other times people oversleep. Whatever the reason, we arrived to the shop to a locked door.  The staff that was supposed to meet us, forgot.

Solution - Get breakfast and bullshit about the good old days of advertising.

Challenge 2 - No space to shoot.  The shop is fairly small, loaded with inventory and now ready to open. Remember we were eating breakfast instead of shooting…

Solution - Set up small cyc outside and use open shade instead of strobes inside. Using open shade and fill cards lights up the metal and chrome nicely.

So, no bikes, no budget, no space, no problem. Thanks John for the inspiration and awards. 

John holding Macbeth card for white balance reference.

Expert burger styling.

One of the three final ADDY winning posters.