I was approached by one of Melbourne’s top entertainment promoters and asked to meet up with him and a team to discuss some photography work for a musical called, MINA, to be held at Hammer Hall.
Mina, is one of the most successful Italian singers of all time. She was a staple of Italian television variety shows and a dominant figure in Italian pop music from the mid-1960s to mid-1970s,
Sitting down with the team they showed me an album cover that was taken in the 1960s. They asked me to reproduce the same 60’s image using today’s star of the show.
This was an incredible challenge – this is also the reason why I’ve been a professional photographer for over 3 decades - l just love this type of work! It forces you think laterally!
The 60’s had it all with the electronic flash and medium format cameras and let’s not forget about FILM! It takes me back to the numerous hours spent in the dark room – a far cry from what we do today.
The day of the shoot
The star of the show arrives followed by a team of hair and make-up artist and wardrobe – what a buzz in the studio. We were ready to begin the shoot. Let the transformation begin!
l really wanted to capture this as if l was back in the 60s - I tried very hard to stay away from Photoshop and any other programs!
We set up the lighting using Bowen heads with umbrellas and reflectors; a soft filter over the lens (stocking); the hardest was to position and angle the face as close as possible to the album shot.
Finally it was done. If I were back in the 60’s I would have used the equivalent of 4 rolls of film!
I downloaded all 120 images – in amongst all of this was my hero shot. It was perfect - no photoshop work – it was just as if it came out of the camera and printed straight away.
The gels worked well. l used 4 heads and, of course, my trusted Nikon camera. (3 decades using this brand and I’ve never looked back) When l did my cadetship with TV Week and New ldea l trained on the Nikon F with the F36 motor drive and loved it.
As a Professional Photographer we have the upper hand using Lighting. Many people can shoot with high res and have good composition, but lighting is an art form - you create something beyond what the eye can see.
PHOTOGRAPHY painting with light