On Saturday, I did another location scouting. A couple of new spots have been added to the shoot I’m doing in the near future, and I wanted to cover that off. Where I have access prior to a shoot, I try to check out the places beforehand. It is also a process of location scouting in that I may find a place nearby that looks good. The main thing for me is to look for frames that can be used. Would it look good from up there? Rather than doing that on the day, with my subjects waiting down there, only to find something blocking my view in the frame and wasting energy and time going up and down the stairs, I can check that out. Even those places that I’ve been to many times before and familiar with, when I see it with a specific image-making in mind, I sometimes find things that are in the way. Maybe there is a white or reflective material building in the background that limits my choice of framing at that time of the morning, in this time of the year, etc. There was a poster for Romeo & Juliet show at Arts Centre. But can’t do… it was the last day so the same poster won’t be there if I came back with a couple for a romantic mood shot.
For the next shoot we’ll be using classic, iconic bits of Melbourne. I guess it is not a bad idea when they show the photos to family and friends in their home country, and say ‘this is what Melbourne look like, and this is where we got married’.
For this round of location scouting I was a bit later in the day than the time I am actually shooting there, so I kept readjusting the position of the sun from the north to lower towards horizon in the east. Hopefully I won’t have to worry so much about building in dark shadow as the sun will be on the side rather than back. I am not a fan of HDR and its artificially reproduced sense of tonality. Ideally I like to make image with the natural light that is there.
Walking back to CBD, I came across this at City Square. Yes, the Melbourne Fringe Festival is now on. At this time of the year, when it is neither too hot nor too cold, the streets of Melbourne are full of art installation and live demonstrations. Grab your latte or gelate from the take away and sit in the sun looking at so-called art with that knowing look on your face. Not a bad way to spend your weekend.
Locations and frames are pretty much all set. The rest is a bit of story, drama, that stuff. I do not normally produce it or stylise my subjects for shoot. I go along with their natural emotion and what they are doing and make the best of it. But this time, I may add a few shots here and there, with specific ideas in mind. How about him waiting behind that big tree or around the corner, with a bunch of flower and a ring in that small box behind him? I’m turning to the TV commercials JR put together on its bullet trains – Cinderella Express – they dubbed it. A couple in a long distance relationship. He gets off work on Friday and rushes to the last train across the country to see her. She puts on her best smile and comes to the terminal waiting for him. I think my subjects have seen this. They might have even loved it just like everyone did back then. Maybe we can share that vision, that sense of romance and longing. Once it’s in their head, they will do the rest for me. They relate to their own experience, and the natural expression will come to their faces. That’s what I am betting on. A few more screenshos from YouTube will be stored in my iPhone on the day.