Light Kit and Location Scouting

I had initially intended to post about our trip to Chicago earlier in the semester on the blog yesterday, but decided that since we had exciting news, today’s post would be a little more up to the minute and interesting. Our light kit came in! It’s taken some time and effort, but my co-editor Alex Holmes and I have spent the past several months gathering the equipment necessary to build a permanent studio location for SHEI Magazine. Elden, a member of Fashion Team, was kind enough to pose for us in the SHEI office.

The light kit itself comprises of a pair of Genray SpectroLED light panels, each with 500 LEDs that can be color temperature and brightness adjusted by both the touch screen on the back of the light, and by remote control (how cool is that!). Since there are so many individual LEDs on the panels (and each of them emit light not just directly forward, but in all directions, the lights are soft enough to use without softboxes, or shoot assistants/Fashion editors holding diffusers in front of them as has been necessary in the past. As far a permanent light kit for the Magazine, I think we’ve done good. -In addition to having the lights come in, we’ve spent the past week without classes organizing locations, models and clothing for the Winter 2015 issue. With five of six shoots already conceptualized, we’re putting out feelers to stores we can get clothes from and starting to make the phone calls requesting access to locations in downtown Detroit, and Ann Arbor. This afternoon, we had the opportunity to scout a potential location for our first shoot which will be taking place when we get back from winter break in January. While the theme of the new magazine is still a secret, I can say that sometimes you need to get a little bit dirty in order to best appreciate the light. On location, entering the basement itself, felt a bit like being in a horror movie. We descended a narrow staircase into the bowels of one of the more infamous party houses in Kerrytown carrying camera equipment, stands, and the new lights, lit only by a string of bottle green christmas lights. The first room underground held a washer and dryer set and peeling linoleum floor with an old duvet piled on the ground. Our host, Achilles, was on his way to Chicago, so we had no guide as we searched for a light switch in the dark. We moved further into the basement through two more rooms and finally into one at the back with a tiny window where we tried plugging the light kit into a powerstrip that was lying on the ground which had no effect. Plugging it directly into the outlet? Nothing. Eventually we found a master switch and were able to get some Christmas lights strung up on the ceiling on. The LED light kit turned out to be even better on location than it seemed in the office. It stayed cool the entire time we were shooting, and we even figured out that the panels could be rotated sideways to sit vertically on their stands and directed into long narrow strips of light. We took a couple of test shots, where Aaron took one for the team and sat down on the floor among the bottles and other detritus of parties past. For our purposes, the location is going to be perfect.

Thanks to our lovely Fashion Editors, Aaron and Sola.

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