Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Batman is back in town!

I had the idea of shooting a superhero in downtown LA a couple of weeks ago. When I proposed the idea to Jones and Erin they immediately liked it and they also happened to have the prefect outfits so...it was a done deal from the beginning. Batman and Catwoman back to Gotham City...humm...I mean, LA.

So I started scouting for locations and, as you can imagine, in Los Angeles you only have to choose! These photos are from our first attempt. We quickly went from one place to another with Juanse and Natalie kindly acting as VAL's.

Their costumes were actually really good and for these photos I got inspired by the greenish desaturated look of so many action movies we have recently seen around.

We started from the bridge in the second photo, just around the City Hall. Then we went right in front of the City Hall and eventually we finished over the Disney Hall. That place is like a playground for photographers, I love it.

From there you get some good views of LA at night, plus it's super cool. We were able to shoot a few photos before we were gently asked to leave the premises because it was getting late.

The security guards even wondered if The Joker was hiding somewhere. But we were safe, we had Batman and Catwoman on our side!

As for the lighting, we generally used 2 snooted speedlights in a cross lighting pattern triggered by CLS with an SB-800 as commander. We gelled them with cold and warm tones for their faces, plus we had a 3rd speedlight with a strong green gel to fill in. My idea was to do a little bit of postprocessing to give the images the greenish desaturated look we often see in action movies, Batman included. For this reason the cold tone was 1/2 CTO + 1/2 Magenta. The warm tone is 1+1/2 CTO + 1/2 Magenta. The green light is a Full CTB + 2 full cuts of green. This way, the magenta on their faces would compensate the extra green I was going to add in postproduction making them look natural.

In postprocessing I used sodium vapor WB with the green slider almost all the way to the right and the temperature down to the min to add some more blue. The combination of WB and gels game me the tones I was looking for. I also desaturated the images a little bit.

You can see some more photos as usual on my Flickr page here.

Thanks again to all the people involved in this, especially to Jones and Erin.
But watch out, they are still around and you could find them anywhere...even in your favorite grocery store...

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Erika said...

Still time for your real job? Paolo sei
troppo bravo; devi passare a diapositiva!

Paolo said...

Grazie Erika! But no, I'd rather work on digital, it's a lot easier to work with lights. Thanks for your comment.