I had previously worked with Vulgod guitarist Grant Burns recently with his other band Mason. Through that working relationship, Grant had recommended me to Vulgod and we had mutually decided to work together on a promo shoot for them as well.
Booking a band for a photo-shoot is all well and good, now we needed a theme and a location to shoot at. I had some preliminary ideas of where to go for this shoot, but before I could even present them to the band, lead singer Kama Way gave me a location to check out first.
So, a couple of weeks before our shoot, I headed to the location to check it out and do some location test shoots. I wanted to see what it all looked like in-camera so I could prepare some preliminary compositional ideas in my head.
above: Test shots from the Revolt Art Space complex in Kensington
On the day I did the test shoot, the sun was awfully bright with not a cloud in the sky. Whilst that would provide ample light no matter what time of the day, I was hoping we could do the shoot on a much more overcast day. I wanted to ‘gloom’ things up a bit and was concerned on a bright sunny day, we’d lose a bit of atmosphere.
Come time to get the shoot underway, we kicked things off late in the afternoon. With the shade created by the surrounding infrastructure, I think we captured enough ‘gloom’ even for my liking.
When kicking things off in a shoot like this, initially I like to give as little direction as possible to the band. I want to see how they would naturally stand and pose, fire off a few test shots, check the composition and then work from there. Anything else, and it begins to look a little forced and coerced. Exactly not the look I, or the band, are wanting to capture.
At one point I asked one member of the band to give me a look like they wanted to kill me. The resultant photo looked exactly like I described. Forced. Fake. And phoney. For the rest of the shoot, I let them be who they are without any coercion at all. It worked. Beautifully!
The first lot of shots we did feature the rear of the building which had a laneway running through the middle of it with two lots of horizontal walkways above, leading from one side to another. An absolute visual treat I can assure you feeding some nice light cutting through superbly!
For one of the shots, I told the guys in the band to step back underneath the overpass and for lead singer Kama to come a little forward. Here, I was wanting to get mere silhouettes of the guys to create a more intimidating, sinister look and feel.
I think it worked perfectly and again, the light pouring through worked nicely. Even in such a bright and sunny day that we were greeted with, the shadowy areas of the location made things nice and dark as we wanted.
Black and White Vulgod
With the shoot done and as we were about to say our goodbyes, I asked the band if we could do one more series of head-shots as one of the walls outside had a beautiful old texture that it would be a shame not to utilise it at all. Those head-shots are featured below…
Still, with all our nefarious intentions aside, it is always fun having a sneak peek behind the curtain (of brutality!) and having a gander at some of the outtake shots. As you do!
Here’s a few…
And for the full gallery of today’s shoot, view below…
All in all, a great day and a fun shoot! If you would like any further information on Vulgod, please visit the Vulgod Facebook page.