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Lighting question for you all....
Old 01-28-2003, 12:22 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I'm going to be working with a lovely friend of mine who is a fitness freak and thinks she could do well modeling. I want to do a shoot with her in the Women's Fitness Studio in town. I am wondering if I should bring my studio lights and set up shots that way or should I use some tungsten film and use available light. The place is very well-lit. I'm going to try and get the place after hours as well. Although, I have toyed with the idea of doing it during their regular business hours just for the exposure (no pun intended) and perhaps some other nice ladies would like to hire me to do their own fitness shots. How do you think I should approach this (from a lighting perspective....or business-wise if you have experience doing this sort of thing)?

Good day!!

Mike
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It all depends ....
Old 01-28-2003, 02:17 AM   #2 (permalink)
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If you want amateurish looking snapshots with greenish skin tones from overhead flourescent lights and deep shadows in the eye sockets, then by all means use their existing lights.

But if you want anything resembling professional looking results, then think about controling both the qualtity and quality of light. I would never even consider doing a shoot such as you describe without the ability to control the light, ie side light to show the musculature, fill to light the face and a back light to outline contours. There is absolutely no diference in lighting requirements between shoot in in a studio environment and on location. On location, you need to bring at least a minimal studio with you. Beyond that, I would personally include baby oil or glycerine to simulate sweat along with full makeup.

If shot during business hours, how anoyed will those waiting for the exrecise equipent be because of delays you cause? If there is any nudity at all involved, how will that be received by the regular jocks present and watching?

I suspect you would gain more of a chance of follow up shoots from having the photos shown in the gym than from those waiting for the equipment you have tied up during the shoot.
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Re: Lighting question for you all....
Old 01-28-2003, 08:52 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Don't use tungsten film! Tungsten light is what you have in the lamps at your house. In a gym, you are more likely dealing with flourescent or maybe even mercury vapor lights. Either way, using improperly balanced film will cause dramatic, unwanted, and unflattering color shifts.

I'm with Doug -- control your light. Use strobes or all natural light if possible (the gym I go to has one wall that is nothing but east facing windows - great light in the morning). Check with the gym managment for permission to shoot on their property during their working hours. Watch out for flashback from the myriad mirrors.

The opportunities for getting more shoots are great if you work well with the gym and create good images.
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Re: It all depends ....
Old 01-28-2003, 09:32 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks Doug. You and Ed are completely right. I pretty much thought that I should bring some lights anyway but was hoping against hope that perhaps I could get away with their lights (they are full spectrum flourescent, by the way). In any event, I certainly don't want to interrupt anyone's workout lest they are left with a bad opinion of myself and/or the photography profession. There would be no nudity in the shots as of yet but I do think I will go with what you said about showing my work in the gym after I get it back from the lab and can have them nicely matted and/or framed for use at the gym. After all, when I go to the gym I know that I am always looking at whatever is on the wall in front of me, whether it registers or not, and perhaps this will help to generate some calls as well.

I have a make-up artist for the shoot and I planned on getting some glycerine as well and going for the typical "gorgeous but sweating" look (for lack of a better description). I haven't done anything like this before so I hope I can pull it off. Hey, I'll never know unless I try, right! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

Thanks for your thoughs, guys. I appreciate all of your excellent suggestions.

Good day!

Mike
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Answer.
Old 01-28-2003, 09:33 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Shoot after hours if at all possible. Shoot at very slow time of day, otherwise.

Use studio lighting, turn off all flourescent lights, and drag the shutter for any accents of tungsten.

The lighting must be done very well, to accentuate the body tones, and muscularity of the subject. If working during hours, nudity should not be included.....essential coverage should be utilized.
 
 
Re: Lighting question for you all....
Old 01-28-2003, 11:04 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Mike

"Well lit" is a relative term. It may look bright to you -- but the film won't see it that way! Go over and take a few meter readings with your handheld meter just to see what the reflceted light is really like.

I think you'll end up doing the shoot after hours with the studio lights. I imagine the lights will be in the way if you try and set up during regular business hours.

Bob
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