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06/16/2021 07:43:38 PM · #1
I will start out by saying that the photos turned out ok. But if I hadn't been doing this for a friend, I would have fired my own butt...

Sydney needed to have some "catalogue" photos of her jewelry, and hired me, even after I told her that product photography really isn't my wheelhouse. It didn't matter - this was just the first part of a more creative phase. Fine.

She arrived on time, with 53 pieces to photograph, and right away there was a problem: I couldn't find my tabletop tent. I looked everywhere, and even though I just KNEW it was in the studio somewhere, it refused to materialize. Mind you, the studio is TINY, so there really weren't very many places for it to be. Finally, she calls out "is this it?", which it was. So there went 15 minutes...

I set up the tent, and to my dismay, the white backdrop is a mass of wrinkles. I tell her that I need to iron those out, and run into the house. Yes, I should have done this the night before.

When I get back I finish setting up the tent, then get one of my wireless strobes, set it up... where's the remote trigger? Must be back inside the house. I run back into the house, upstairs, search the charging station, where I thought I'd left it, but it wasn't there. Then I remembered that it was downstairs, in a pile of things going into the studio. So I grabbed it, went back into the studio, and finished setting up. The battery on it still read as only one bar, even after it had been charging overnight. But it was firing away, so, no worries. Until it started failing. I thought if I attached it to a power bank I might be able to limp through the end of the shoot.

So I ran back into the house to get the power bank, then returned and attached it. I got a few more shots from it, and then it no longer worked at all. What to do?

I then remembered that I'd just bought a tungsten light (for shoots with cats) which required no trigger. Huzzah!

I ran back into the house, unpacked the giant light and took it to the studio, assembled the mount, and went to plug it in. But it inexplicably had a European plug... I did not have an adapter. What to do, what to do. Which is when I remembered that I still had my wired strobes! Problem solved!

So I set up the light and suddenly realized that I had the wrong trigger. The wireless strobes I had used a different trigger than the wired ones. Which were back in the house.

So I ran back into the house to get a pair of pocket wizards and ran back to the studio. I attached them to the strobe and the camera, but couldn't get the strobe to fire.

Which is when I remembered that the D750 didn't work with those particular pocket wizards...

I was running out of equipment to try, and quite frankly it was already beyond ridiculous. The studio was a mess. It looked like a murder scene with photo equipment bodies strewed everywhere.

Which is when I had my last bit of inspiration: maybe I could use the onboard flash in commander mode to set off the strobe. And it worked!!!

We finished up the rest of the jewelry in no time, and as she was putting things away, I examined the original remote trigger. Which is when I saw the little tab, opened it, and saw that it required batteries.

I showed Sydney and we just laughed and laughed and laughed.

It was my first studio shoot coming out of quarantine, and I am so grateful that this catastrophe was shared with a friend. It was also an important lesson: not only have the right equipment, but to know how to use it, and workarounds when it acts up.

Message edited by author 2021-06-18 15:39:10.
06/16/2021 09:05:42 PM · #2
I am laughing out loud because this is so like me. My little studio is across the driveway from the house and I find myself going back and forth searching for something and then I have such a mess to clean up, especially after doing still life setups. Happy it turned out well and she was laughing with you.
06/16/2021 10:03:02 PM · #3
Oh, Johanna! You're reliving my life, 30 years later :-) Except in MY case, it's a 30-minute drive to the studio from the shoot...
06/16/2021 10:22:24 PM · #4
thank you for the tale. I panicked with you, but to tell the truth the tale confirmed me in my reluctance to expand my gear, pitiful as it is. but you triumphed!
06/16/2021 10:29:24 PM · #5
Thanks for sharing the story. A good learning experience. I think it may take all of us a little time to hit our stride again.
06/16/2021 10:37:02 PM · #6
Sounds like a nightmare, Johanna. I'm glad it all worked out in the end.
06/17/2021 12:45:43 AM · #7
Wild, fun - in retrospect - story. Did you feel like you were in a Keystone Kops film? I go through a shortened version of this every time I take out Mochi, our dog, for a walk. Valuable lesson learned, though.
06/17/2021 12:52:29 AM · #8
Originally posted by streetpigeon:

Wild, fun - in retrospect - story. Did you feel like you were in a Keystone Kops film? I go through a shortened version of this every time I take out Mochi, our dog, for a walk. Valuable lesson learned, though.


The interesting thing was that I never panicked. I was in full-on troubleshooting mode. If anything, I realize I need to reorganize my gear after a year of pulling bits and pieces from the studio to the office....
06/17/2021 01:13:47 AM · #9
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Oh, Johanna! You're reliving my life, 30 years later :-) Except in MY case, it's a 30-minute drive to the studio from the shoot...


Yikes!
06/17/2021 06:48:06 AM · #10
Great story. Another lesson in life! No matter how prepared we think we are always expect the unexpected. You recovered nicely. That’s where professionalism comes in.



Message edited by author 2021-06-17 08:32:37.
06/17/2021 08:10:13 AM · #11
Ohh what a palaver, you poor thing, you most certainly got your steps in though that day! Glad it worked out in the end
06/17/2021 11:23:42 AM · #12
Whoa dang! Poor you!

I do stuff like that all of the time... my life. Ha!

Last time I did a shoot I forgot my camera bag... only had my camera and a 100 prime.

I was walking WAY back to get stuff in... lol!

Acted like that's how it always is meant to be. Ha!

I'm so happy you didn't let it get the best of you and you won!!
06/17/2021 12:11:31 PM · #13
Originally posted by Lydia:

Last time I did a shoot I forgot my camera bag... only had my camera and a 100 prime.
It happened to me more than once that I forgot my camera bag WITH the camera in it going to an event which I had panned to photograph. But to bring the camera and forget the bag – now that's new ). How do you carry your camera around Lydia?
06/17/2021 07:32:36 PM · #14
Originally posted by LevT:

Originally posted by Lydia:

Last time I did a shoot I forgot my camera bag... only had my camera and a 100 prime.
It happened to me more than once that I forgot my camera bag WITH the camera in it going to an event which I had panned to photograph. But to bring the camera and forget the bag – now that's new ). How do you carry your camera around Lydia?


Hahaha!

I shouldn't go out by myself. LOL!

I carried that in my hand, put my purse over my shoulder and left... with my lenses in the bag on the counter.

06/17/2021 07:34:06 PM · #15
You've met me in person, Lev... so... you should know. :D
06/17/2021 07:47:19 PM · #16
You guys are all amateurs!

Catastrophic shoot is when you are kneeling in the ocean to get a photo of a turtle release and a wave knocks you over and dunks your camera!

Or when you've brought 3 strobes, softboxes, stripbox, got everything plugged in and the remote doesn't work. But are lucky enough to have two flashes, so you try it on slave, but it still doesn't work, so you tried taping the two flashes into the soft boxes and shoot that way.

And -- at a different one, I remembered the camera bag, with all the lenses, batteries, cards -- but no camera!!

You really need to step up your game, people. :P
06/17/2021 08:50:21 PM · #17
Originally posted by vawendy:

You guys are all amateurs!

Catastrophic shoot is when you are kneeling in the ocean to get a photo of a turtle release and a wave knocks you over and dunks your camera!

Or when you've brought 3 strobes, softboxes, stripbox, got everything plugged in and the remote doesn't work. But are lucky enough to have two flashes, so you try it on slave, but it still doesn't work, so you tried taping the two flashes into the soft boxes and shoot that way.

And -- at a different one, I remembered the camera bag, with all the lenses, batteries, cards -- but no camera!!

You really need to step up your game, people. :P


LOL!
06/18/2021 03:55:02 AM · #18
Originally posted by vawendy:

You guys are all amateurs!
Catastrophic shoot is when you are kneeling in the ocean to get a photo of a turtle release and a wave knocks you over and dunks your camera!
Why, it happened to me in Iceland, a rogue wave knocked me off my feet when I was standing on the beach with my back to the water and taking a photo. The water was ice-cold, and not only my camera, but my camera bag with two more lenses was washed by a mixture of saline water and black sand. Miraculously, all that equipment survived, a testament to the Olympus's excellent build quality of their Pro-level cameras and lenses.
06/18/2021 02:39:01 PM · #19
Originally posted by LevT:

Originally posted by vawendy:

You guys are all amateurs!
Catastrophic shoot is when you are kneeling in the ocean to get a photo of a turtle release and a wave knocks you over and dunks your camera!
Why, it happened to me in Iceland, a rogue wave knocked me off my feet when I was standing on the beach with my back to the water and taking a photo. The water was ice-cold, and not only my camera, but my camera bag with two more lenses was washed by a mixture of saline water and black sand. Miraculously, all that equipment survived, a testament to the Olympus's excellent build quality of their Pro-level cameras and lenses.


Yeah, but you both had adventure mishaps where unexpected things happen.

This was a controlled studio environment....
06/18/2021 02:53:54 PM · #20
Originally posted by tanguera:

This was a controlled studio environment....

Your description suggests an alternative adjective to "controlled" ... ;-)
06/18/2021 11:12:33 PM · #21
Originally posted by GeneralE:

Originally posted by tanguera:

This was a controlled studio environment....

Your description suggests an alternative adjective to "controlled" ... ;-)


LOL. True. I meant "normally "...
07/18/2021 10:10:32 AM · #22
WOW!

i can totally relate, after having my business sidelined for nearly 16 months. when things started back, i found that while i had managed to keep my photography skills up, my "best business practices" were, um, definitely in need of practice. things that once were habit required relearning.

the first thing i did was to dust off my old checklists; they were due for review and revision anyways and i'm lucky to have made that realization before having the opportunity to really screw things up :O

thanks for sharing, johanna!
07/21/2021 12:37:37 PM · #23
Something I should definitely have done!!

Originally posted by Skip:

WOW!

i can totally relate, after having my business sidelined for nearly 16 months. when things started back, i found that while i had managed to keep my photography skills up, my "best business practices" were, um, definitely in need of practice. things that once were habit required relearning.

the first thing i did was to dust off my old checklists; they were due for review and revision anyways and i'm lucky to have made that realization before having the opportunity to really screw things up :O

thanks for sharing, johanna!
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