Canadian photographer A.J. Messier is the owner of Hogtown Studios in Toronto, Ontario. His clients include Toronto 2015 Pan American Games, Hockey Hall of Fame, NHL, the Royal Ontario Museum, and Save the Children Canada. No stranger to sports photography, Messier takes us behind-the-scenes of his recent shoot of Damian Warner for Nike.
©AJ Messier-Hogtown Studios, Toronto, Canada
- Damian Warner, 23 years old, for Nike
- Canadian Olympic Decathalete
- 5th in 2012 Olympics in London
- 3rd in Decathalon IAFF 2013 World Championships in Moscow
I approached Damian Warner’s team about eight weeks ago with an idea of shooting Damian in Toronto. My concept was of him being a mild-mannered urban hipster like a Clark Kent, but with his uniform on he transforms into Superman. They immediately loved the idea, and mentioned to me he had never done a professional photo shoot before they were pretty much up for anything. Damian had just signed a deal with Nike. The logical hook into him, his events, and his Nike gear became my focus. The next issue was how to show Damian doing super human feats while in all the newest and brightest Nike gear and make it look dramatic, fresh, and more importantly stand out from all the other images of athletes over the years.
Making Waves is a weekly round-up of current posts featuring PocketWizard products.
Brazilian photographer Pablo Vaz has recently been featured on Portal Photos. To freeze a variety of fast-action sports, Pablo relies on his PocketWizard MiniTT1® and FlexTT5® radio triggers.
Stay tuned for a feature story on Pablo and his work to appear on the PocketWizard blog. Until then, learn more about him at his blog, 500px, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
Regular readers of the PocketWizard blog are no strangers to the photography of Bob Carey and his Tutu Project. We’re strong supporters of Bob and Linda Carey and the good work they’re doing to directly support cancer patients via the Carey Foundation. Now it’s your opportunity to not only help a charitable organization, but get yourself some very hard-to-find pink PocketWizard gear.
How would you or the photographer in your life like to show up on set rocking a pink G-Wiz Squared Gear Case? Now’s your chance, with all proceeds going directly to the Carey Foundation.
The Tutu Pink G-Wiz Squared Gear Case from PocketWizard is a padded, rip stop nylon case that holds up to four PocketWizard Plus® III Transceivers. The case opens from the top via a three-sided zipper giving you full view of the contents. The G-Wiz Squared features a zippered interior pocket for connector cables and other small accessories. Padded touch fastened dividers allow you to configure the case to suit your gear needs and help guard against incidental contact and impact. Snap Closure attachment straps allow you to mate the case with another bag. They can be yours via this eBay auction.
Dave Hahn of New York’s CSI Photo has been covered on the PocketWizard blog previously. Known for his atypical but exciting camera angles used at sporting events, Hahn covers burst-firing in his own words.
Dave Hahn at work.
Over the next few months I will be writing about a few of the differences between the PocketWizard MultiMAX transceiver and the Plus® III radio triggers. As you know the Plus III transceiver is packed with a host of great features for the advanced photographer. But, over the next few months I will be explaining some of the more advanced features of the MultiMAX transceivers for when you may want to step up your game.
In this review I am going to talk about how you can set the contact time of the MultiMAX. Why might you want or need to adjust the contact time of you transceiver? Let’s say you shooting sports, where you know where the action is going to be, such as basketball or maybe baseball. And you’re going to be using a camera as a remote from a location that you would not be able to check to see if you are getting the shot you want. Here is where adjusting the contact time would help. If you camera fires at five frames per second and you would like to shoot 3 frames each time you would simply set the contact time to 0.6 seconds. To adjust the contact time you would go into the menu of your receiving MultiMAX by pressing: MENU(*) B A and using the up and down keys to adjust the time.
MAC Group, the U.S. distributor for PocketWizard Photo Products, announces a Fall Rebate Program. From now until November 30, 2013 you can receive money back on all your favorite transmitters and transceivers.
Get $15 off your purchase of a Plus®X or Plus® III.
Get $25 off your purchase of a MiniTT1® or FlexTT5®.
How it Works
Purchase one or more of the items above from your local PocketWizard dealer in the United States. Save the receipt and send it along with the filled out rebate form, which can be found via this page, and the original silver product label(s) from product packaging to this address:
PocketWizard Fall Rebate
Dept # MG13-9454
P.O. Box 472
Scottsdale, AZ 85252-0472
You can receive money off each radio purchased. There is no limit!
If you’re wondering which PocketWizard radio unit is best for you you can read more about them here:
Offer available in the U.S. only.
Photographer Bobbi Lane has shared with us many of her secrets for creating gorgeous portrait photography in two Webinars. Here, in her own words, she goes into detail about the most recent session she gave for PocketWizard viewers.
- ©Bobbi Lane
The idea for my portrait of the young woman with the nest and egg and feathers came out of a dream. I am a committed believer in exercising creativity and going through several processes to help develop ideas. One of the first steps in that process is brainstorming with other creative people, then writing down words to trigger ideas, and then letting it rest a bit and coming back to revisit the ideas in a few days. My associate Matt Burdick and I were sitting around one day talking about “what’s cool.” We tossed around a lot of concepts and then I arrived at “feathers.” I’ve been a birder all my life, even worked one summer at a bird observatory/banding station in Manomet, Massachusetts. I find and collect feathers wherever I go. To me, feathers are really cool.
Canadian photographer John Rathwell is best known for his sports shooting. He’s the kind of artist who prefers capturing a kayak being piloted through rapids over a pitcher waiting for a signal, a surfer in frigid waters over a soccer match, or a closeup of a skateboard humming on blacktop over a golfer walking to the next tee. He recently was kind enough to explain how he got the below photo of mountain biker Felix Wilberg. Here’s Rathwell’s own account of how the shoot came together.
Felix Wilberg as photographed by John Rathwell. ©John Rathwell
Here is a shot of downhill mountain bike sensation Felix Wilberg at Camp Fortune in Chelsea, Quebec. The goal going into this shoot was to come out with something really showing the speed and intensity these guys come into banked turns with. I find the sense of motion is left out in action sports photos way too often, and, with flash, it’s so easy to have motion and still keep your subject sharp. The flash duration will freeze your subject, but the ambient light will still continue to absorb into the sensor.
My first few attempts at the shot where at 1/50th of a second and the background was put into an abstract blur. I didn’t realize how fast these guys actually come into the corners. I ended up moving up to 1/100th of a second for the shot to get just the right amount of motion blur in the background.
One of the key features of the PocketWizard Plus® III is “Quad-Zone Triggering.” This feature traces its roots back to the MultiMAX® where it has proven itself to be a game changer for many professional photographers. With the feature now found in the more affordable Plus III, more photographers have this capability within their reach. So what does it do?
Quad-Zone Triggering allows photographers to assign lights or cameras to one of four zones; A-B-C or D and then they can turn a zone on or off with the simple push of a button on the transmitting radio. This could be used to turn a single light on or off, or a group of lights on or off (you can have as many lights or cameras per zone as you want). It can also be used to turn a remote camera, or group of cameras, on or off. We’ll take a look at each scenario.
Building your Lighting
You’re in a studio situation taking portraits. You’re using five different lights; one is the key, one is a fill, two are for the background, and one is for highlights. You want to be able to see the impact of each light and make sure you have the proper power setting. Without Quad-Zone Triggering, this would be a very challenging task unless you had a group of assistants to turn the various lights on and off. With Quad-Zone Triggering you simply select the light you want to turn on/off from the transmitting radio and take a shot. Each light or group of lights (in this case the two background lights) is assigned a zone, either A-B-C or D. Turning on one zone at a time allows you to see just the light from that zone making it far easier to make adjustments.
Multiple Lighting Setup
You’re shooting a wedding reception and you want to offer a variety of images and a few different looks to the couple. Prior to the reception you’ve set-up several lights around the room with Plus III’s as the receiver and assigned a zone to each light and/or a zone to groups of lights. Using Quad-Zone Triggering, you can turn the light(s) from each zone on or off at-will right from your camera to change the lighting on the fly and create different images from the same scene.
Making Waves is a weekly round-up of current posts featuring PocketWizard products.
Here’s a collision of a great photographer, Disney, a powerful singer, and PocketWizard. Check out the behind-the-scenes video of photographer Annie Leibovitz using a Plus® II on a Disney shoot with Jennifer Hudson.
We previously featured news about Melody Hood’s Breakout Session with ClicknMoms. If you participated in this educational opportunity, you had the chance to win four PocketWizard Plus® III Transceivers and a G-Wiz Squared bag!
Kerry Riordan of Blu Lemonade Photography in the greater-Boston area attended Melody’s Clickin Moms session, and was the winner of the Plus III transceivers and the G-Wiz bag. Kerry chose the color blue.
Kerry Riordan of Blu Lemonade Photography. ©Kerry Riordan
From Kerry’s POV
When I saw renowned photographer Melody Hood was going to be offering a Clickin’ Moms breakout session, I knew I would be signing up immediately. Her amazing ability to move beyond capturing moments, to creating stories is magic. The mood, the lighting, the atmosphere; she weaves them all together in a way that is not contrived, but rather timeless. You see her images and create your own backstory. They evoke that kind of response. And as if this breakout couldn’t get any better, PocketWizard announced one lucky participant would win a set of PocketWizards. What?!? This was the marriage of two beautiful things and clearly a no-brainer.