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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Waves of music in a sea of beer

I have written before about how much I love my Lumopro LP160 and I am going to do it again. Another location that I love shooting in is a nice and dark bar or small club. I was shooting a local band named In Repose last night and I needed to throw in some flashes to help out lighting. I asked the band if they had a problem with lighting the playing area before I did anything. They did not have any problem with it so I went around and placed some flashes around where they were set up.

I love shooting in environments like this when the bands let me light the area as needed. I know that a lot of photographers look down on concert photography with flashes, but when there is not any real stage lighting going on I don't think it's a big deal. I just do what I need to in order to get the bands the images that they are looking for.

I set up three lights around the area that they were playing and set each one to a different group so that I could add them or subtract them from my shooting area. I had a Nikon SB900 set in the very back behind the drummer, another gelled blue with an Expoimaging Rogue lighting filter bounced off a large Rogue Flashbender, and the last one I had on the floor at the front of the playing area aimed up. As I shot the set I was adding and removing the lights via my Opas camera mounted trigger.

As the set went on I was able to turn my flashes on and off as needed from my camera position. If I had not set the flashes to different channels I wouldn't have had this as an option. All of the flashes would have fired every time I shot a frame. The main benefit of shooting this way is that when you change camera position sometimes you will get a flash aimed toward your lens and get an over powering lens flare, so using the channels feature is a great way of controlling this.

The crowd was really into the performance, it was getting rowdy to say the least, and the drinks were flowing. Now what normally happens when a great show is going on along with lots of drinks? Someone ends up spilling something. That’s exactly what happened to one of my flashes. I placed my LP160 on the ground pointed up at an angle to under light the singer and guitar player. What looked like a sea of beer came crashing down and around the LP160 and I thought it was a goner for sure.

It turns out that not only did it survive the waterfall of beer but it also kept on going while it was adrift in the sea of beer that claimed that section of the playing area. No sparks, no burning out, and no misfires.

I have no idea how it survived, but it did. When the show was over I pulled out the batteries, gave it a good cleaning, and let it dry out over night. In the morning there was no evidence of the mishap.

So this and a million other reasons go on the list of why I love the Lumopro LP160 so much. I cannot recommend this flash unit enough to photographers. It has a low price and fantastic connectivity and reliability.

Pick one up and do your best to keep it out of beer tsunamis but if you can't, you have a fighting chance of it making it through.

For more information on this flash unit you can read my review of the LP160 here or head on over to the Lumopro website at www.lumopro.com

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