The Mechanic [pinit]I made a few shots of Justin as the mechanic in a garage a while back. In most of them, we had a female model who was flirting with him as he tried to check out the car. Not a bad little story in itself, but I keep coming back to the shots of Justin alone as my favorites. Combining two models in the same shots can multiply your challenges. You get a great expression on one face, but perhaps another isn’t quite right. One of those shots seemed absolutely perfect until I noticed some goober peering in from the background. It happens, which is why these shots are rarely a matter of grabbing one click and calling it a day. There are two or three that work, so perhaps I’ll show them later.
If you think getting a group shot with two models introduces some complications, try doing it with hundreds of people. The folks at the Star Wars Celebration VI conference in Orlando did it over the weekend and it was a 30-45 minute event just to get everyone in place. Even with all of those characters in costume, other distractions appeared. One photographer had a flash on a light stand that was in the way of everyone behind him. A father apparently left his young child dressed as a Jawa in the middle of the group. Fortunately, a woman who was coordinating the group picked up the child and carried him until his father finally came forward. Just a note – no group photograph is worth abandoning your child.
Once that was in place, just moments before time to shoot the group photo, the folks from G4 TV came in and pissed off a few hundred photographers by standing in front of all of them just to get some iPhone footage. When it came time to shoot the group, a photographer with the G4 guy turned around to photograph the photographers – using flash. You know what happens when someone shoots a flash right into your lens as you’re taking a photo? That’s right, you get a shitty photo with flare instead of the group of characters you planned on shooting.
Fortunately, there were no flashes or G4 TV jerks around my shot of the mechanic. At least that large group experience gave me an appreciation for the simplicity of an environmental portrait.