Every new day is a new challenge for a photographer. Will it be a portrait, sports, fashion or something else completely? And no matter what that day brings, it must always end in the same way – with a great shot. Follow acclaimed fashion and portrait photographer Andreas Lundberg over one week as he tries out the new Profoto D2 – the world’s fastest monolight with TTL – and see how he overcomes his challenges. Andreas starts his week with an action filled shoot pumped full of adrenaline.
For Andreas Lundberg photography is a lifestyle. Every part of his life, every little detail, could be a potential picture. It is in his DNA. He has even got ‘ISO’ tattooed on his forearm.
Andreas is a Stockholm-based fashion and portrait photographer who shoots anything from editorial, high-fashion, and beauty, to advertising, portrait, and sport photography. He has different shoots and different assignments every week, yet he always delivers every image without compromising his unique look and feel. In order to achieve his crisp, high contrast images time after time, he not only needs to be passionate and hardworking, he needs fast, reliable, and versatile equipment, such as the D2.
The Monday shoot took place at Delight Studios in Stockholm. Andreas was commissioned to do a shoot for a gymnastics organization who wanted campaign images showing the speed and agility of their athletes. Much like Andreas, the young gymnasts are genuinely passionate about what they do, and he wanted to capture that.
“Think about all that dynamic movement their bodies create. To capture that energy and motion in super sharp detail is something that gets me really pumped up,” says Andreas when asked about his artistic idea.
He wanted to make sure that the gymnasts looked cool and to do so the images needed to feel dynamic. The models in heroic poses with pearls of sweat showing on their skin and the chalk powder in the air, as if they were suspended in time and space. With beautiful lighting he could really add atmosphere to the images.
Shooting sport is demanding. There is a lot of movement and lots going on. You need to be alert and ready so as not to miss out on any of the action. The biggest failure for a photographer is to miss that special moment. As a photographer you do not want to stand in the middle of the action and worry that the flash will not fire. It is in situations like these that speed makes all the difference.
The lighting conditions were rather tricky. There was beautiful, but strong, ambient light that Andreas wanted to work into the picture.
“I try to enhance the feeling of natural light in almost all my images. I use flash in most of my shoots, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I want it to show,” Andreas explains.
For this he needed a fast camera and a fast flash – a lighting system that will not let him down. “Feeling confident about having the fastest gear there is enables you to be much more creative,” says Andreas.
To capture the passion, adrenaline and action of the gymnasts, the setup consisted of no less than eight Profoto D2 Monolights. He used two monolights for the backlight, both with a Profoto Zoom Reflector and as main light he lit the subject with two D2’s, each with a Strip Softbox 1×4’.
Using the High-Speed Sync function Andreas could match the ambient light coming through the windows to the right and overpower it with his flashes, granting him full control of the shoot. The other four D2 Monolights were used to fire through the windows from behind. They were fitted with CTO gels to give a warm feeling of morning sun shining in. Using the Air Remote TTL-C he set the flashes into burst mode and just fired away.