Every year, I spend the first week in January out in Las Vegas for work. As a result, my New Year's Resolutions typically start a week late. Right now, I'm in the midst of a healthy eating initiative and, frankly, I kind of suck at it. My friend Laura--otherwise known as the Sassy Dietitian--however, is fantastic at it. She's currently putting on a No Sugar Challenge with a group from our gym and I thought it would be awesome to help promote it with a photo shoot.
We shot the whole thing with 12 bags of sugar (one of which ended up hiding under the seat of my car, so if anyone needs two pounds of generic sugar, let me know) on a rather cold night outside the gym. I have to give Laura credit for being an awesome sport and nearly freezing her hands off. The whole thing only took about a half-hour. If it were summer, we probably would have taken a couple more cracks at it, but I'm overall really happy with the photos we got.
Here's a look at the setup we were using:
The key light is a Phottix Indra500 fired into a very big, white, reflective umbrella for maximum coverage of the whole area. The two back lights are bare speedlights pointed at a roughly 45-degree angle to make her and the bag of sugar pop off of the background and also to give the sugar cloud some texture as it exploded, rather than looking like a big white blob.
It was unpredictable to say the least, and because of the cold, the flahses were taking much longer than usual to recycle, so I basically had one shot for each swing to try and time the picture.
In the end, this was an awesome time. I would love to start applying more crazy ideas like this to my family and portrait sessions. So, if you're a family of good sports and you want to try something wacky, I definitely want to hear about it!
And, if you're in the Albany area and are looking for an awesome place to lift weights, I highly recommend Crossfit Aevitas in Guilderland, and not just because they were totally cool with us making a huge sugar mess in their parking lot.