Coming soon

From weddings in Ibiza to the mountains of Tuscany.

1:47 am. Leaving for the airport in 43 minutes. Do I have everything.

Yes.

Probably.

I’ve been preparing for this trip for a while. I’ve been booked to shoot a wedding over three days in Ibiza since last year. The couple have a history there and though they’re both from the UK, family and friends are traveling to join them for what promises to be a beautiful event.

Photographing destination weddings should be easy. Just take everything you normally need and treat it like any other. Except it’s not like any other. I never have to worry about the size or weight of my kit in the UK. Why not throw another tripod, stand or modifier in the car? Why not carry 20 extra batteries?

My wedding kit can be pared down to an efficient minimum. 2 cameras, 4 lenses, two flashes, one stand, one reflector, one umbrella. It’s easy to fit that on a plane without too much worry but recently I landed a rather unexpected job with a rather limited time frame.

A cycling tour company based in Italy wants me to produce a series of videos and stills for their website. Did I mention it’s in a gorgeous house in the mountains of rural Tuscany? Not a difficult decision so now I’m flying from Ibiza to Pisa to meet up with the company before traveling up through Italy to shoot for a week.

This is where it gets tricky, video is a whole other ball game. Now I need a fluid tripod, a complete Gopro kit (Thank you Snow and Rock Wirral) stabilizer and video lights and enough backup that I have at least one copy of everything I take in each bag I have. Now the weight is starting to add up so after packing, weighing and repacking too many times I’m ready to get on a plane.

Here’s where the inevitable panic sets in. You know the old mantra of ‘passport, wallet, keys’ that resounds like a religious chant before you finally close the door and commit to your journey knowing that anything you’ve missed stays behind?

Image the list in my head right now.

And now, at T minus 29 minutes I have to stop the OCD like behavior, take a breath and remember how much I love my job. Taking photographs for a living is a dream come true. Seeing the world in the process makes it just that bit sweeter. All the charging and packing and prepping is a small price to pay to be able to broaden your horizons, meet new people and experience other cultures.

I shall leave it there for now. I hope to be able to access the site on the move so look out for more adventures and images. Remember to follow the site for updates or find me on facebook or twitter `@jonhallphoto

So with that… Goodbye, Adiós and Arrivederci!

Helen and Gareth-20

Helen and Gareth at the Bolholt Country Park hotel

Helen and Gareth contacted me with a very clear brief. They wanted relaxed and candid shots without any of the ‘boring’ traditional shots they had seen on so many other sites.

I was only with the couple for a few hours so it was a real whistle-stop wedding tour that took in some of the bridal preparation, the ceremony and the start of the festivities that followed.

Colour was a big theme of the day and this comes through in the more than usually vibrant images. The kids in attendance were of particular importance and they did not disappoint. I always take time to introduce myself to the younger members of the wedding party rather than just being a hidden face behind a monster lens.

Note Helen’s bridal footwear, a pair of purple wellies that set the good time tone for the day right from the start. ‘Key shots’, or posed couple shots were not on the agenda for the day. I encouraged the couple to spend a few minutes together out of the limelight and managed to snap some lovely candid images of these intimate moments.

West Kirby Triathlon

Shooting Triathletes in West Kirby – A 48 hour D800 film

West Kirby is a quiet little beach town on the Wirral peninsula. Considering the vast beaches and epic marine lake it’s amazing that it hasn’t been home to a triathlon before.

On the 31st of August hundreds of competitors, friends, family and spectators descended on the lake to witness some extreme athletes put themselves through a combined course of swimming, and cycling before a run to the finish. Organised by Mersey Tri this looked like a huge turnout for a first event.

I had been invited by a personal trainer friend of mine to from Elite Fitness photograph the event with the intention of providing stills for his athletes. Upon arrival I knew I had a problem, more specifically the monster lens of an events photographer peeking out from behind a high-viz jacket. 

Oh.

As good as my photos will be, if they already have it covered for the whole event I’m just overkill. So do I stay to watch strangers get wet, then disappear on bikes before retuning to disappear again on foot or do I turn around and go straight back to bed (considering that it’s now 7:15 on a Sunday morning)?

Or…  do I make the best of it, put down the rapid fire D700 and see if I can make a film with zero preparation, zero planning and only the kit I have for stills photography?

Never one to waste an opportunity I grabbed the D800 with the Nikon 70-200 f2.8 for a shallow depth of field, the 16-35 f4 for it’s super wide angle and a sturdy tripod and set to it.

An event like a triathlon poses certain challenges to a lone cameraman. Unable to film more than one angle at once I had to pick my shots pretty carefully on the fly. Fortunately there were three waves of athletes that provided some opportunity to move and reset the camera during the action and with the kind assistance of a driver from Checkpoint motor stores I was able to follow the cycling action whilst hanging out of the window of a VW Polo. This was a real test for the active VR of the 70-200 and obviously an area which requires practice.

The film is shot in 1080p at 30fps so full screen viewing is recommended. It was cut in Premiere Pro and graded with Adobe Speedgrade before titles were added in After Effects.

If you enjoy the video (or not) leave a comment, I’d love to hear what you think. If you have any questions about how this was made or you have an event coming up and want a film for yourself just get in touch.

Enjoy

 

West Kirby Triathlon West Kirby Triathlon West Kirby Triathlon West Kirby Triathlon West Kirby Triathlon West Kirby Triathlon Wirral triathlon

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