Iain Crawford puts the Pro-10 to the test in a grandiose powder shoot

Written by Jens-Linus Lundgren-Widén on . Posted in Videos

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Iain Crawford is renowned for his stunning high-speed beauty photography. He is also one of those photographers who thinks big. This time, the recipe for his grandiose idea involved 60 kg of holi powder, a strong compressor, a daredevil model and an army of new speed redefining Pro-10 studio generators.

Iain has made a name for himself with his high-speed beauty photography. He has a knack for capturing the emotion in the moment and is famous for his stunning images of frozen liquids, paint and powder. He is highly experienced in high-speed photography and its technical challenges, having developed many unique techniques to set up and capture his striking imagery.

“I find it interesting to capture moments of controlled chaos. That’s why I find flash a particularly powerful way of doing it because it allows me to capture that exact moment which only exists once. You’ve taken a moment in time and frozen it.”

The shoot

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

We asked Iain to come up with a creative idea on the concept of “Color your beauty.” The result was not to only be a fabulous and colorful final image but was also to demonstrate the speed and power of the Pro-10. This time Iain’s idea was a beauty shoot of pastel colored powder that exploded onto a model’s face, coloring her cheeks and face beautifully, with every particle of powder perfectly frozen. A make-up advertisement that would blow you away.

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

To capture his images, Iain takes the creative concept and develops inventive technical solutions to deliver the perfect result. High flash durations are an integral part of this process. This made him the perfect partner for this project, and a real authority when it came to exploring the capabilities of the Profoto Pro-10.

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

Iain and his assistants turned the studio into a laboratory, mixing powder and liquids and mounting homemade contraptions inside a cage of plastic film. Outside the cage, six Pro-10 studio generators with ProHead Plus where waiting to be put to the test. Anyone peeking in through the studio windows might have thought that sci-fi flick was being filmed.

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

The challenge

 

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© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

Iain placed a Softbox RFi 1×1,3’ with a softgrid slightly angled above the model’s face. By also using a Softbox RFi 1,3×2’ with softgrid on the model’s face from underneath he could avoid shadows under her chin and turtleneck sweater.

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

To achieve that classic diffused fashion and beauty light he lit the model’s face with three TeleZoom Reflectors: one placed high above her head and two placed in each back corner approximately 2 meters away. Iain lit the background with an Umbrella Shallow White M.

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

To get the shot Iain tethered up his Canon EOS-1D X Mark II with a USB 3.0 MicroB cable from Tether Tools and made a peep hole in the plastic film that surrounded the cage. Inside, the brave model was bombarded with heavy chunks of powder that exploded on her back on impact. She needed to be a real daredevil to stand in this limelight.

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

“Having the confidence to know you can freeze anything pin sharp at the power you want opens up a whole new world of creative possibilities,” Iain says.

Working on studio shoots as complicated as this you need intuitive equipment that is easy to set up and with the ability to change settings in a millisecond.

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

The result

 

© Iain Crawford

© Iain Crawford

 

© Iain Crawford

© Iain Crawford

 

“I’ve grown up using Profoto ever since my assisting days. I love it. The Pro-10 takes it to a whole new level. The durations it has are astounding. Extraordinarily you can actually go to 1/80.000 of a second, which can freeze anything,” Iain said after the shoot.

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Patiel

 

The final image shows the different colors and textures beautifully composed together with the face of the model, as if her favorite rouge had fallen to the floor and was crushed into millions of atoms. Ian caught the exact moment when the powder hit her cheeks. It was just the dynamic Iain was aiming for. We are all excited to see what his next spectacular shoot will hold.

 

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Patiel

 

The gear

6 x Pro-10 2400 AirTTL
6 x ProHead Plus
1 x Softbox RFi 1×1,3’
1 x Softbox RFi 1,3×2’
3 x TeleZoom Reflector
1 x Umbrella Shallow White M
1 x Air Remote TTL-C

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

© Evan Pantiel

© Evan Pantiel

 

Thank you

© Evan Patiel

© Evan Patiel

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Jens-Linus Lundgren-Widén

I'm Marketing Assistant at Profoto Global.

Comments (9)

  • Felix

    |

    Really enjoyed this video and the BTS. I saw about four weeks ago Profoto mentioned you will be publishing the t0.1 specs for the lights soon, will that be released soon? I believe many people would also wonder how much advancement have the newer tech has pushed. Please keep us posted if there’s any news! Will be saving up for a workhorse like this.

    Reply

  • Trond Helge Høie

    |

    Its fun creating images like this, but with equipment with a price tag of over NKr 1300.000,- (USD 157.640,-)Then it is not for all the people.
    I am also interested in the t0.1 specs, i will assume 1/12000 to 1/15000 sec. At the best, If it is faster, i will be very impressed!
    But whats even more important is what power it will have on this fast flash-duration…?
    Sorry for the bad grammatical English 🙂

    Reply

    • Jens-Linus Lundgren-Widén

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      “We will publish the t0.1 specs within soon. Until then we can only say that the Pro-10 has a shorter flash duration at any power setting compared to any other studio flash. The ability to turn up the power and still keep short flash duration and recycling is the real magic of Pro-10. Stay tuned for the t0.1 specs…”

      Reply

  • Luis Fosse

    |

    Muchas Felicidades
    Simplente espectacular y muy inspirador. Ya siento los deseos de ir a buscar el mío. Gracias.

    Reply

  • Joe

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    I am glad to see that you are trying to push the boundaries of short flash, however I would really like to see 100% crops of the powder in this example to see if there is any motion blur.

    Also, I have not read anywhere that you can control the flash duration independent of the power, making it harder to freeze more transparent substances, like water, without ghosting when using multiple heads. How are the Pro 10s handling this?

    Reply

    • Jens-Linus Lundgren-Widén

      |

      There is an optional Freeze/Normal mode selection on the pack.

      • In FREEZE mode you´ll get the shortest possible flash duration at the selected power setting. The consequence is a generally “colder“ color temperature that fluctuated more across the power range.
      • In NORMAL mode you´ll get a consistent color temperature regardless of selected power setting. The consequence is a longer flash duration than in FREEZE mode. How much longer is depending on power setting.

      To best achieve what you are asking for in your question you should select FREEZE mode.

      Reply

  • Michael Eastwood

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    What amazing work just awesome results

    Reply

  • Albert

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    Merci pour cette vidéo, une véritable force de la nature ce Pro-10
    Toute ma compassion au modèle
    Merci à Iain Crawford et à son équipe
    Albert

    Reply

  • Bryan Bishop

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    Wow i need to get me a set of these. Portable flashes, that power and High speed shooting. Thats my line of work. I always shoot fast and in the furthest remote areas of Ontario.
    Great results https://www.bbiamge.ca

    Reply

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