Monday, 5 January 2015

Ultimate Gym Selfie

So 'selfies' are the thing, everyone's taking them, they're a cultural phenomenon. I'm not a fan.
At least the Kardashians are using the rear camera...
I sort of understand the mirror selfie, the best camera on your handset will generally be the rear facing camera. But using the front facing camera you'll end up with blurry or grainy images of yourself that you want (probably) to be flattering.
I mean, of course I've taken a few selfies, I do occasionally use Snapchat and I will use the front-facing camera on my phone when necessary, but I really don't understand SELFIE STICKS!

When did it become appropriate to carry the 'Wand of Narcissus' around with your phone bolted to the end of it?
While I appreciate that most smartphones have capable cameras these days, they're still PHONES! How can you effectively make or receive a call with a meter long pole attached to your handset?!
Photo courtesy of The Huffington Post
Sadly, whether I like it or not, selfies are a thing and the selfie stick seems to be the winter 2014/15 must-have accessory.

With that in mind we set out to make a testosterone-fuelled ULTIMATE GYM SELFIE, complete with the manliest selfie-stick ever!

If you can't beat them, join them!

Armed with some pro camera equipment, pro weight lifting equipment and the man-tank that is William Wayland, we headed to mi-gym to create the Ultimate Gym Selfie!

The concept was simple, Wayland would be holding an Olympic Weightlifting bar with a DSLR (complete with big lens) attached to the end of it. Simple, right...?

Well an Olympic bar weighs 20kg before you've added a weight to the it, the ends also rotate so the lifter doesn't have to let go of the bar to re-grip. Finally, how were we going to attach a DSLR to a smooth, round patch of metal?

We opted to use bandages to attach the camera (what's more manly than bandages?!) with a solid amount of gaffer tape to stop the bar from spinning.
The camera that was strapped to the bar was a Canon 7D DSLR with a Canon 24-70 f/2.8L attached to it - that's about £2500 worth of my kit being swung around on a metal bar.

We added a 5kg weight plate to the end that Will was holding, this added to the manliness of the image and gave him some counterweight to offset the weight of the bar and camera.
Wayland and Mossy trying to figure out the pose
It truly is a thing of beauty
I wanted the final images to be dark and gritty, sticking the MANLY theme. The subject was lit with 2 Nissin Di622 MkII flash guns that were set off with Godox wireless triggers.
All images shot on Canon 5D mkIII with Canon 16-35 f/2.8L lens.

Here's the finished picture.
As a bonus we decided to mock up what the pictures taken on this ULTIMATE MANLY SELFIE STICK would look like.

Look at that duck face!

The shoot was definitely one of the most fun photoshoots we've ever done, we were all laughing the whole morning.
Always a pleasure to work with William Wayland and once again thanks to in Chelmsford for letting us play silly games in the gym.

All images copyright Brad Wendes 2015

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