Making Waves is a weekly round-up of current posts featuring PocketWizard products.
We’ve written about Adrien Broom’s career and her use of PocketWizard radio triggers before. We recently caught up with her while executing another project which bears all the hallmarks her elaborate sets and photography are known for.
While walking through the streets of New London, Connecticut, Broom came across the New London Antique Center. In the window was a taxidermied lion which she absolutely needed to photograph. Since the owners were unwilling to rent the lion, she rented the Center on a day it was closed. A crew was brought in, and bears, birds, and other examples of taxidermy were taken to the top floor, which was empty.
PocketWizard Photo Products partners with SmugMug to create the first
PocketWizard Photo Contest
POCKETWZARD PHOTO CONTEST 001:
- Show us how you MAKE IT POSSIBLE™ using PocketWizard Wireless Triggering Systems. Submit a photo which was simply not possible to take unless you were using PocketWizard radios.
- Photo must be taken with a minimum of one off-camera flash triggered using PocketWizard radios.
- Winner will receive one MiniTT1®, two FlexTT5®’s and one AC3 ZoneController for either Canon or Nikon and a PocketWizard G-Wiz Trunk bag and 1-year SmugMug Pro Subscription and photo Web site customization.
Please be sure to read through the PocketWizard Photo Contest Rules before entering contest.
SUBMISSION PERIOD ENDS: December 30, 2011. To enter the contest click here.
Final Judging to be done by commercial-fashion photographer Mark Wallace based out of Phoenix, AZ. Mark is the face behind numerous PocketWizard Tutorial videos as well as host and creator of the web-based video series “Digital Photography One on One” and “How’d They Do That?” sponsored by AdoramaTV. Mark is co-founder of Snapfactory studios.
A lot of things have to come into place for a successful photo shoot, especially when shooting outdoors. Add some animals and things become very challenging — just the kind of challenge photographer Adrien Broom thrives on. It is not surprising then that Adrien and her team of models, stylists and construction crew, pulled off an amazing photo shoot at the Ray of Light Farm in East Haddam, Connecticut.
The city of Memphis has learned what many other U.S. communities have discovered for quite some time. Greenways made from abandoned railways are a huge public asset for citizens to enjoy year round. They create a sense of community, better the local quality of life, and have the added and real fiscal payoff of curbing illness and medical costs as the populace gets healthier from more exercise.
Despite the objections of local naysayers who couldn’t learn from longstanding examples such as Seattle’s gorgeous Burke-Gilman Trail, the Greater Memphis Greenline is now a reality, and local walkers, joggers, cyclists and in-line skaters can attest, it’s a major hit.
Not to be left out of the fun, photographers have been actively capturing some of the folks enjoying this public asset. Possibly the most interesting project happening on the Greenline is a photo rig built and run by Joe Sankey of Sankey Photography. In a recent blog post, Joe details a bicycle rig which features, among other things
- A bicycle
- a tow-behind trailer
- a camera (unspecified make and model, presumably a Nikon due to flash units used)
- a video camera (unspecified make and model)
- Manfrotto Super Clamps
- Justin Clamps
- a Magic Arm
- PocketWizard FlexTT5 radio triggers
- PocketWizard MultiMAX radio triggers
- PocketWizard AC3 Zone Controller
- Nikon SB-800 AF Speedlights
- Nikon SB-900 AF Speedlights
Sankey goes into some detail about how he set up the rig, and the video shows shots captured of fellow cyclists. Both our readers and ourselves love to see interesting ways PocketWizard technology is applied in the field, and this one definitely is not your typical off-camera flash set-up. Nice work!
Photographers write us often with details about their use of PocketWizard units on specific photo shoots. We love to share their experience, particularly when the results are this exciting. Timothy Armes has reached out and pointed us to a blog post with full details of how he achieved the below image.
Armes wrote us to say he used PocketWizard triggers and ControlTL technology “extensively with Canon.” At the end of last year, he switched to Nikon cameras. He also replaced his Canon PocketWizard units with Nikon-compatible PocketWizard radio triggers. “Being able to mix studio strobes with speedlights is great,” he writes.
Bowling Green, Kentucky photographer Daniel Houghton recently posted about something we don’t recommend. He was able to use PocketWizard Plus II units to fire his Profoto heads underwater. Yes. Underwater.
Back in October he photographed open-water marathoner Mallory Meade. After shooting Meade from a boat as she swam in a lake, they moved the photo shoot to an Olympic-sized pool. Houghton got underwater and was able to fire his Profoto heads with his PocketWizards submerged.
PocketWizard radios utilize a high frequency radio signal transmitted on at a very low power, which work great when the radios are transmitting through air. Unfortunately, the requirements for a reliable system underwater is the exact opposite of this. You’d need a very high powered, low-frequency transmitter to get any sort of reliable range (think military submarine or whales). In the limited testing we’ve attempted with our radios underwater, your triggering distance would most likely be measured in inches or centimeters instead of meters or feet. PocketWizard does not recommend submerging your equipment in water of any kind.
Keith Pytlinski is still hiking to remote locations and coming back with some great photography. With all the excitement over the Nikon-compatible PocketWizard MiniTT1 and FlexTT5 units, Pytlinski wanted to test the Canon versions of those products on this recent mountain bike shoot.
Pytlinski shot in a few locations, with strobes out of his line of sight at different distances. It seems the furthest he set up on this shoot was 100 feet, with rock between the Pytlinski and his strobes. The PocketWizards did their job well, according to this demanding pro shooter of extreme sports.
Readers can see more of Pytlinski’s photography at his site. It’s definitely worth checking out!
The review covers her initial testing of the units after an overview of her experience using off-camera flashes, particularly the Nikon Creative Lighting System’s line of sight functionality and associated limitations. She explains her more recent advanced lighting set-ups with flash units hidden, and gives some wonderful example photos to illustrate this. These creative new shots would be impossible with line-of-sight flashes. New PocketWizard Nikon units to the rescue!
Zettl provides a variety of sample shots (including behind-the-scenes images), both indoor and outdoor, which amply illustrate her methodology and results with the new technology.
“The Pocket Wizards are an industry standard when it comes to consistent, reliable radio triggers,” Zettl writes. “In my initial testing of the product I was really pleased with the results. It was extremely easy to set up the units. I would almost call them plug and play. In every shot, the units fire consistently and accurately. This meant I was able to set my lights and focus on my subject versus worrying about if my OCF unit would be able to see my commander as I moved around,” she also writes.
Zettl ends her review with the promise of “more detailed testing to come.” We can’t wait to see more interesting breakdowns of her workflow as she puts PocketWizard technology to the limits. Be sure not to miss the work on her site, or her own blog.
One of our peeps got a note from a fellow Vimeo user sharing this video.
Ella Manor has posted Power House, a short fashion film. Some beautiful still images and video can be seen, particularly toward the end of the piece.
The moody, atmospheric project also has an accompanying Making of Power House, in which the PocketWizard Plus II can be seen multiple times. The popular and creative tools from Lensbaby were also key in the production’s final results.
Be sure to check out both videos, and see her site for more original portrait photography.