Posted in: Art
, canon 5D mark III
, Canon 7D Mark II
Tagged: canon 5d mark III
, Canon 7D Mark II
, Dicapac WP-S10
, flash photography
, photo shoot
Teaser shot from Dinah’s first time under water
About once a year, I organize an underwater photo shoot to bring together some of the awesome creative passionate people in my world. It is an honor to share in such energy and creative collaboration.
Our first shoot was on Saturday July 28th and went from about 5pm-11pm. We did a smaller shoot this past Friday August 10th, to re-shoot some of the scenes we couldn’t quite get right on the first go around.
We had a great team this year. I would like to extend special thanks and gratitude to the entire 2018 team.
- Nick (model) – Nick is a professional associate of mine and Sgt. with the US Army reserve. We focused on US Army themed shots featuring some great concepts I’m very excited about and look forward to sharing with you later this fall.
- Dinah (model) – Dinah is a globetrotting, Ducati Monster riding, passionate, creative girl originally from Turkey. She has a great sense of style, fashion and serious work ethic.
- Charis (model) – Charis is an awesome model, beautiful person, and cool spirit. I have had the pleasure of collaborating with her on several creative shoots. This was definitely not her first under water shoot.
- April (model & production) – April has a background in video and media production. Her sense of humor and great energy is infectious. She instrumental in helping the production go as smooth as possible. She was my hands, eyes and ears above while I was underwater.
- Sophie (makeup artist) – Sophie is a very creative soul with lots of awesome work in CosPlay and costume design. She brought a great energy to the project and I look forward to working with her on future projects.
- Jason and Chrissy (hosts) – These two have been good friends for as long as I can remember. On our last shoot this weekend, we convinced Chrissy to put on her old wedding dress and go for a swim. What ensued was some unexpected magic I look forward to sharing with you.
For me one of the biggest rewards for all the hard work, time and effort that goes into these projects is the chance to give some amazing people an experience they have never had before. I love sharing the magic. Here are a few behind the scenes shots.
Damian reaching out
The beautiful Leah
Almost a year ago I started planning and underwater fashion shoot. I wanted to gain experience with this medium and apply my experience with other genres of photography to it. From day 1 it has proved to be perhaps one of the most challenging forms of photography I have tried yet. Aside from the fact that I had to put this shoot on hold through the winter due to the weather, I have continuously run into one major roadblock after another.
It started with water proofing my camera. After careful evaluation I settled on the DicaPac WP-S10 as there was no need for a full blown scuba setup in a pool. It is a relatively very affordable solution and enabled me to mount a pocket wizard RF flash transmitter. Two triggers were mounted to two high power strobes on the edge of the pool, directed downward to the surface at a roughly 45 degree angle to each other. In my initial tests, the RF triggers worked in the water but on the day of the shoot I quickly learned that my tests were conducted in a very controlled fashion and RF signals simply will not penetrate water enough to reach the triggers.
This threatened to deal a major blow and setback as the sun was setting and sky very overcast. However I modified my shooting technique to keep just the very top of the DicaPac housing above the surface of the water, just enough for the RF triggers to sync. I shot as wide as possible to incorporate as much of the surface without having to drop below it. This obviously allowed only one vantage point, where I was going for more dramatic angles. I have some ideas on how to address this issue and will be testing them in the coming weeks. I used the Canon 5D Mark III and Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L lens.
A successful underwater photo shoot requires a team or creative, like-minded, passionate people. From the models to the makeup artists to the folks hosting and supporting the shoot. It requires a fair amount of planning and forethought. I would like to give special thanks to my good friend at Steve Phang Photography for all the support, creative and technical inspiration he has given me all these years. It was definitely a fun, very productive learning experience for all involved.