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Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned

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Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By JudasNZ. 26/03/13, 03:20 am

Hi everyone
well, I did a shoot with Daddylion and Monochromaticsky. It went pretty well, results can be found at either Flickr, or a smaller selection at Digitalrev (under cosplay).

Things that went well:
  • Having locations pre-determined
  • Having all the right equipment to shoot with
  • Having all costumes and accessories sorted
  • Having food and water


I would have to say the biggest shortcoming was probably not knowing the manga/anime myself, and what poses would work. The pick of architecture was ok (parliament library, back grounds, waterfront) and gave some good backgrounds. So definitely bring along some printouts of poses that are typical for the character, or practice in front of a mirror at home. This will help the photographer infinitely (since cosplay is a little different from traditional shooting, in that you're possibly wanting shots of poses that aren't normally natural).

Furthermore (if you're struggling for poses), in the final set at St John's church, I found another style that certainly helped me get some excellent shots. That was enacting a moving sequence. It's slightly more awkward to shoot, but by giving motivation and planning the movement out, gave what I was wanting.

Colouring - I hadn't considered the impact of this (I normally cover events and so use faithful colours). I am really happy with my final set at St Johns church, where I desaturated the shots giving a nice dark tone. If spending more time on post processing, I would add more black grain for a grittier and darker look.

It was refreshing to shoot outside of Armageddon with a different schedule. So I would say if planning a shoot, take the time to prepare, talk to the photographer about where you want to go, what you want to shoot. Also consider the shooting location and environmental challenges - e.g. at Parliament we were challenged by security as to whether it was a commercial shoot. However, reassurance to them quickly led to it not being a problem. Churches might have weddings or funerals, etc.

Thoughts on the next shoot? I think a night time would be interesting (with it's own challenges and demands on the cosplayers as well (hold still!)). I'll leave it to Daddylion and Monochromaticsky to add some more comments about the shoot from their perspective.

Thanks :)
JudasNZ
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Re: Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By Daddylion. 26/03/13, 08:21 am

I think printing our pics of the characters for posing references works well if you have a printer... which i don't hehe. But good idea.

Incidentally, the best person I know for setting up poses is sakuramiyabi. She's really really good at setting up poses and scenes and might be able to give advice... or not, I don't know. Her advices tend to me on the scene when I cosplay with her so for those who don't cosplay with her I'm not sure how that will go :p

Food and water... you had water... food? I was on the verge of collapsing by the time I finally got food so yeah, definitely bring food and water hahaha.

For the colouring, yeah, the Lunatic photoshoot had a lot of issues with that... I hadn't considered that myself, it's really a costume for night shoots and the colours look very weird on him during the day... thankfully, I always have photoshop as a friend there.

This is what I've done to the Lunatic photos before posting, just making the whole thing a lot darker so it doesn't look out of character mostly.
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.525880917454548.1073741852.519926264716680&type=1

A night shoot would be good if I was doing Lunatic again but my next planned shoots might be for the costume that i didn't get to do this time... which ironically suited the day. Cause i have a Gintama costume i want to do with a friend, but that one requires 2 cosplayers and if her costume isn't finished in time I won't be doing it yet. Also want to do the bleach one, which i think would work for day and night, but day might be better... but if you guys are doing night shoots that'd be cool.

A major problem for me this time was the costume switch, cause I had to switch from Lunatic to Yukio, and the make up for these two are completely different so I had to redo the entire make up scheme which ate up a lot of time so there wasn't time for more photos. So if you're doing more than one costume I think i'll recommend that the costume that's chosen has similar make up base... That said not everyone spends as long as me on make up so it might not matter to anyone else :p
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Re: Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By JudasNZ. 26/03/13, 08:41 am

Someone brought biscuits, I always have water :)
JudasNZ
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Re: Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By Daddylion. 26/03/13, 09:05 am

True.
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Re: Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By monochromaticsky. 26/03/13, 01:27 pm

Well writing back with regards to the shoot with my sis and my own opinion, I really enjoyed the environment, it was a nice relaxed and fun time for the both of us.

Since it was also our first time experiencing a shoot I thought that it was well done, and having photographs taken as we walked was an interesting idea as it allowed us to really get to know/look out for places.

We will definiately take into account finding poses/images of characters not only for us but so you have a better idea OTZ, but the settings were really good/architecture is always love~

It would have also been good if we had sat down and had a picnic lunch thing, i've found that they always allow for good conversation to flow and time to sit and get to know other people, *sorry about how rushed we were since we had to leave, we'll definitely take into account the time a shoot would last for*BUT GIRL GUIDE BISCUTTS WERE DELICIOUS!

Both my sis and I would love to have a night shoot we'd just have to confirm with our parents before the dates as they may not be as okay with it *parents being paranoid but thats their nature* we may have to make plans for accomodations etc, but if you plan for one both of us would DEFINIATELY join,

I also loved how the photos came out, some of the shots on my sister are really really well done compositionally and I'm impressed at how you were able to get emotion out of my sister ^^, I RECOMMEND MORE SHOOTS~ I'll have to keep my eyes open when i'm walking to classes in the morning/walking home in the evening, I could also ask some of the people at Massey Anime/Manga club if any of them would be interested in photoshoots as I know some people that are interested in cosplay and it would be a fun/good experience to have shoots together
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Re: Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By monochromaticsky. 26/03/13, 01:49 pm

*and i did not realise that you guys had been questioned by security.....OTZ*
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Re: Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By Duckeh. 27/03/13, 02:00 am

It's really awesome to see how your experience went! I would really like to start doing more shoots & your review really gives me a better idea of where to start, so thank you for taking the time! :) You got some really awesome shots!
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Re: Wellington Photoshoot - Results & Lessons Learned
Post By JudasNZ. 27/03/13, 06:42 am

Re: printing of stuff - since everyone carries a cellphone, could be good to get some reference panels or clips to help guide photographer. Picnic idea is also quite good, as it gives time to discuss and bounce ideas around everyone. I occasionally make a second folder on my camera when doing a portrait shoot, put some generic pose shots and then I can "chimp" the camera, review the second folder for some ideas. To the model, it looks like I'm reviewing a shot, when in reality I'm trying to overcome a brain freeze on inspiration.

Security at parliament were fine, it's just a sign of the times. I know that commercial premises, malls, train stations, etc (although semi-public) also have restrictions in places. This can be for security, commercial reasons or preference by the owners. Sometimes shooting really quick and you might get away with it, but best to ask, explain what you're doing, and if they say no then thank them and leave. No point getting a ban :)
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