As a Photographer interesting locations are key
I first became aware of the Laurent Perrier Bar up in the Midlands via one of my good friends Katy Bird a Make Up artist whom I have worked with many times. She lives up near to Birmingham and had seen an article about the venue which was part of the Hotel Indigo. Part of the location was devoted to the Marco Pierre White restuarant and would also be accessible if we indeed wanted to shoot there. Situated on the 23rd to 25th floors, Hotel Indigo Birmingham offer great views across the city skyline. This stunning hotel boasts 52 beautiful boutique bedrooms, oozing effortless style and luxury but more that that mostly features ceiling to floor glass. Certainly great to shoot.
The Location Recce.
I grew up in Wolverhampton and so I thought I would do a recce and see them at the same time, so this would make sense travelling up to view the venue. So with a date set in mind we headed up and did the recce. The result was confirming that this would indeed be the venue that we could shoot in but not as a submission but for a bag brand which had been in contact. I mentioned the location on our return and long story short we booked Harry from Models One and set about shooting in the location.
How it all mapped out on the day.
When we arrived at our location the weather was just perfect. It was sunny and bright which was great but better still there were light clouds which would allow for amore diffused lighting plan, so in effect a choice. I was hoping on the day to use some LED lights and these would be used by me for the first time for lighting a complete shoot, although I had used them in testing and experimental work, more unusually for us was to use a small Nikon Speedlight to create direct punchy lighting.
The biggest problem were faced really was the continuing changing light as it went behind the clouds. Apart from the morning shots in front of the glass which were mostly daylight and available light we moved towards the more creative punchy light of the speed light and the LED’s. Harry the model was quite new into being a model but he nailed the shots helping us create movement and an editorial look for the client.
James Nader talks about SPEEDLIGHT & LED creative when mixed with AMBIENT light
The Marco Pierre White Steakhouse Bar & Grill offers an ultra modern 25th floor dining experience. Complete with stylish bar, rooftop terrace (where we did photograph), stunning 360 degree city views ( Behind the glass shots) and a glass fronted alfresco balcony, the restaurant embodies what Marco himself calls “affordable luxury”.
The restaurant is all about the experience; the buzz, the atmosphere and enjoying the company of friends and family in a gorgeous, comfortable surroundings. It delivered to us a fabulous lunch with a lovely cappuccino that went down a treat.
In my opinion one of the best shots or clients favourite is Harry leaning backwards against the glass, the sun has gone and all of the big city lights are visible. The great thing about using the LED light to capture the image, it allows a lot of ambient light to work in the final image. The LED allows me to balance ambient and directional light in the scene. The shot really could be anywhere but the best thing is i spent a while working with Harry giving directions to create a dynamic and strong look. At this time I had in mind whilst giving direction, images of super heroes and poses they create in cartoons and Batman films normally against villains when they avoid projectiles. I suppose The Matrix is a good example.
The full story from Hotel Indigo can be seen in the main website www.jamesnader.com The editorial was entitles Skyfall in line with the film which was current
TECH SPEC for this shoot
- Indigo Hotel ~ Nightime
- Nikon D850 Nikon D800
- Nikon 70-200mm
- Shutter: 1/6
- Aperture: F3.2
- Any Problems: low light
- Photographer: James Nader
- Senior Assistant : Phil Connor
- Lit by Speedlight & LED
- Styling – Bespoke tailors London
- Makeup – Katy Bird
- Processed in – Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop CS6