Children of Celebrities

Children of Celebrities

Children of Celebrities

Children of Celebrities is a great Victoria band that describes themselves as “Delivering more than a half ton of fun and with more than 250 years of cumulative life experience”. These folks do have fun as I discovered when I photographed them a few weeks ago.

The photography consisted of photographing two live rehearsals with a break in between to shoot some quick portraits. It worked out to be a very intense 3 1/2 hour shoot with lots of great music and humour backing it up. I should mention at this point that when I am shooting music gigs seriously I really don’t have a chance to “listen” to the music; it’s more of a background noise, what a shame!

Mike Raymer - Children of Celebrities

Mike Raymer - Children of Celebrities

From a technical side, this was one job that would have been very difficult to shoot with film as the effect I was looking for was “natural light” and being in a funky coffee bar without artificial lighting I could best describe it as “dark”. Add a large window streaming bright backlight into the room and we had a very challenging situation to work with. Fortunately the newer cameras (Nikon D300 in my case) are capable of amazing results at high ISO and for much of the work I left the ISO at 1,600. With modern noise reduction software the results are amazing. I used fill flash on most of the rehearsal photos with about a -1 stop flash exposure compensation. A typical exposure was 1/60 at f3.5, not much depth of field and a somewhat slow shutter speed for catching guys bouncing around a stage. I tended to shoot burst of 3 or 4 images and as I have discussed previously my experience has been that one of these images is typically a little sharper than the others.

Andrew Bartley - Children of Celebrities

Andrew Bartley - Children of Celebrities

The portraits were all photographed outside in a generally “artsy” manner without too much pre-planning. I did scout the area behind the coffee bar when I first arrived and had an idea of what we could do but worked very flexibly with each individual as they had ideas as well. In general I think they worked well.

This was one of those photography jobs that you come back from with a smile on your face after facing some big challenges and having a blast with a bunch of crazy guys. Tomorrow night I’ll have some fun again. I will be photographing the band at a live concert here in the Cowichan Valley. This time I’m going to enjoy the music as well and only photograph a few songs. I’ll likely be smiling again!

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8 Responses to “Children of Celebrities”

  1. Diane C. says:

    You have such a fascinating occupation. I enjoy reading about the challenges as well as your feelings about the assignment. I’ll bet the Children of Celebrities were pleased with the photos you took!

  2. kevin says:

    Hi Diane,

    Photography can be a fascinating occupation, certainly the type of work I do changes all the time. Whether one can make a decent living doing photography is another story but like so many of the arts we love what we do.

    I’m looking forward to seeing how Children of Celebrities uses the images.

  3. LisaNewton says:

    I love how you told this story. Your thoughts really brought the shoot to life. I’ve been challenged recently with shooting indoors, with very mixed results. There’s a part of me that wants to stay outside, but my brain is telling me I need to learn more about shooting indoors. Your ISO info was very helpful. What software did you use to reduce the noise?

    I’m looking forward to seeing pictures of the concert. It sounds like so much fun…………..:)

  4. Chrissy says:

    Your photos inspire me to leave the mainland of Vancouver and move to the islands. It really looks beautiful. Thank you for sharing your lovely photos and stories.

  5. Mike Raymer says:

    Wow, Kevin, are those guys ever handsome!! It must have been very easy to make those folks look good!! Kevin, all kidding aside these pictures are just stellar. I’ve seen a lot of our band photos and your’s make us look good. They capture the spirit of our group and the joy of playing we all share. I’m not much for understanding the tech part of photography but these pictures ROCK!!!
    Thanks so much and I’m looking forward to see how we can use them too!!

  6. kevin says:

    Hi Lisa,

    I finally have an update with new images. Moving the house contents for a few weeks, it’s amazing how much one can accumulate in about 20 years!

    You really should shoot more indoors. Your Noah’s Ark Exhibit article turned out really well. I primarily use Nikon NX2 for noise reduction now although I used to use Photoshop. My unscientific observation prefers the quality I’m getting with the Nikon software, perhaps because Nikon has tuned the software specifically for their cameras.

  7. kevin says:

    Chrissy, Vancouver Island is very different from the mainland, less crowded but still offering everything one could require for a good life. I lived in Vancouver for one year and while I love the big city it’s just not me. Just don’t spread the word too much, we don’t want this beautiful area spoiled!

  8. kevin says:

    Hi Mike, you guys are very photogenic and have fun, makes my life a lot easier. I find that if everyone involved is having a good time the results come easier. Putting the bands enjoyment of music and my enjoymnet of photography together always will work. I only wish all photo shoots were this entertaining!

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