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Q&A: Shooting

Lesson 34 from: The Ultimate Photo Storytelling Workshop

Finn Beales

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Lesson Info

34. Q&A: Shooting

Alex asks Finn about his processes to shed some light on why he approached this shoot in the way he did.

Lesson Info

Q&A: Shooting

So we're back at the house we're done with a three day shoot, but I think you rocked it. Thank you. So I'm gonna ask, Finn some questions about his process, about why he did some things. I've just been watching him closely for three days now. So I've got even better understanding of his work. So Finn. Alex. I just wanna say that it's been good watching you work for the past three days. Interesting. Yeah, it's been pretty chill for me. I've just been writing... I mean, (indistinct) in a way that I haven't been shooting. You're like an adjudicator, like you're like. I've just been writing notes, almost like a judge. Yeah. Writing down notes on you on how you've been shooting. Right. So this is gonna be an interesting chat. I think so, because actually I could, you know, I know what's going on and what you're doing, but some things, I was like, oh, you know, this is new. This is interesting. So this is what I've been writing down. Okay. So I just wanna use this...

hour, half an hour, we have together to ask you some questions to shed some light on some of your processes and what you did and how... So should we just begin? Yeah, sure. I got a very long, very, very long list of difficult questions for you. I can't wait. No, they're pretty chill. Well, I mean the first one is really generic. And is, there any special gear you brought on this? So I always like to start with the equipment. Is there any special gear you brought on this that people might forget or that everybody should pack? Just the first thing that comes to mind. I only shoot prime lenses. Okay. And I do that for a reason because if I shoot at set focal lengths, when I'm pulling images together in the edit, it'll kind of work together. If I'm shooting a range of different focal lengths, I find that when I put the images-- Oh they gonna work together. Together. Yeah. It's hard. It's possible, but it just takes longer in the edit. If find it set at like 24 35, 50, 85. I know that they'll sit together. So you're keeping the set in mind as you're shooting? You... Giving the final product in mind as you're shooting. Absolutely. Yeah. Always, always, always thinking about that edit, shooting for the edit. So, but it saves you time in post. Yeah. Completely. 'Cause if you get to the end of the shoot and you have a whole bunch of pictures and then they don't quite sit together, it just takes a lot longer. And the edit's gonna take longer than the shoot anyway. Yes. So anything that I can shorten, any shortcuts that I can make while shooting to make that process flow more easily, I'll take them. So, but was it always, I'm just gonna build on that because I think it's interesting. Like was it always like that when you were beginning? Did you-- No. What did you shoot a lot of volume and then you figure it out after in the edit? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. No, this is a definitely a process, but I would say that the quality of the image from a prime lens, I prefer to. Yes. I find the grade easier to apply. I dunno why. So like a 35 Canon 35. I just find it very easy. Yeah. Yeah. I just find it very easy to grade it. You know, image comes in, it's very clean. It's got lovely soft focus in the background. Yeah. I traveled Alberta. I did with the 35. Yeah. That's all I had. Really? Yeah. I traveled for three years across-- In the world. Only a 35 Alberta and you know. Yeah. It's a great walkabout lens. Yeah. It's like a really nice focal length. You can do everything at portraits. Right. And wides. Right. That's why I love it. Yeah. But so you're saying bring primes and then-- Well, that's just my preference. You brought your primes? Yeah. And you kept the edit in mind throughout the shoot. Yeah. And that's something that when I'm in Finn, he didn't start doing that. You know, you start volume and then you slowly refine your process as you were through the ages. Yeah, for sure. Yeah. For sure. And still am, you know? Yeah, yeah. Of course. Shoot volume first when you're beginning. And then as you progress, you know, you-- Yeah. You'll work out your own way of working and your own style of image. I think that applies to photography. Generally shoot everything. If you're starting out, just shoot everything, shoot friends, weddings, events, travel, you know, just to-- Gotta find what you like and you don't like. Yeah, totally. Yeah. Cool. Well the second question. Okay. So I know initially you wanted a super old, when we were planning this, you wanted a super old land Rover, like a series one, like the convertible series one we saw. Yeah. 1950 something. And then as we got close to the shoot, even almost on the shoot day, we decided to switch it for the newer one. Is there a... I just wanna know the reason behind that. There's a practical reason. An aesthetic reason. Okay. The practical reason was there was no roof rack on the convertible series one and this was a surf shoot, which involve a lot of surfboards. So we couldn't actually attach the surfboards and they're quite precious surfboards. Yeah. We couldn't put the boards on the back. Couldn't put the boards on the truck, but also there was an aesthetic. When the other one arrived and all the boards were strapped to the top, it just looks sexy. Pretty right. Really, really nice. So this is important. Like Finn change his mind, you change your mind in the last-- Yeah, cause I specified that blue open top Land rover. I was like, that's the one I want because they initially offered the quite a, like a modern defender. Yeah. They had this. Yeah. Which is lovely car, but I just felt for the whole vibe of the shoot, this is a classic surfboard shaper. This is like a classic surf project. I didn't want a new defender. Yes. I wanted an old one and I wanted a battered one because I wanted something that had history. It had been, it would feel like it had been driving up and down these coastal roads, these dusty roads. So it sort of fits. Well I think that this is gold it's worth mentioning is that you thought about the story first, which is, it's an old... The guy, I mean the guy's company is called the Retro Movement. The surfboard shape by Dan . Right. Dan Costa company is called like that. So he decided to switch it at... Yeah he decided to think about the story and put the story first, I guess, for the purpose of, we can't use this new land rover, even though it looks really cool. Yeah. Could use the old one cause it matches the story. Yeah. I think it gives the story more integrity. And I think that's really, really, really key because if you start putting props that don't quite suit the vibe of the rest of the story, then it, you know, the audience will spot that. And I was like, oh, this feels a little bit off, if like-- So it could be integrity top of mind. Yeah. A 100%. Okay. A 100%. People should. Yeah. Yeah. When I'm shooting like a, any project like that, think about the era that you're setting it in, should set your wardrobe accordingly, props you use. Yeah. Anything that reinforces that story is gonna help you know, anything that detracts from it, take it out. Clean out the way. So, okay. This is really important. Thank you for saying that. Integrity. You're welcome. We'll talk about that later. Yeah. Yeah. I think integrity is a big one. Yeah it's a big one. Yeah. Well this is next question. More technical. Okay. So you shot a wide variety of shots. I saw you like switching, Finn switching lens is every five minutes. I admire that. I rarely do that, but you're switching lenses a lot, which is good. But I just wanna finish my question is that, why did you shoot this variety of focal lens and also inside, outside of the car? Why? Right. Two questions. So two answers. First one in terms of switching lenses, that's no different from adjusting a zoom ring. So if you're shooting a zoom, you're-- 2470. 2470. Yeah. Whatever. You are adjusting focal length, but you're just doing it like this. So I'm having to switch lenses to get those different. You like the prime feel. I like the prime feel and I like the constraints that comes with a prime. I like being... Framing using my feet, you know, instead of like standing still and adjusting that zoom ring, I'm like always moving. I'm like following my model and moving the prime, moving around the truck. I have to. Yeah. 'Cause I can't get any other variety of shot unless I'm like moving around. Yeah. Because you could have the and just stand there and zoom in. Yeah. But you'd rather go walk, pick the 50 and get closer. Right. Yeah. Just to... Just because then you explore different angles. Like, now I have to bend down or, you know, because yeah, just if I'm standing still, otherwise I'm gonna be taking the same shot. It's quite easy to take different shots with the zoom from the same position because you can adjust that focal length easily like that. And then second question, which was why you shot this inside, outside and this variety for your story. Inside, outside. Well, just to give the audience to embed the audience in the story, I guess it's more in terms of bringing them into the scene. So obviously we need the sort of big, wide landscape shots of the car in the landscape. But if I'm just showing the audience that they're sat at home, watching that if I like get in the car and I shooting over the shoulder or if I'm in the boardroom and I'm right up close to Dan shaping the boards, then the audience is there too. So it's about telling a sort of richer story or involving my audience in the action, putting them into the scene rather than just watching the scene. There's almost like a cinematic approach, like a film approach. Cause you have all these different charts and cutaways. Completely. Yeah. I mean that's where it comes from. It's like you have the inspiration. Yeah. Yeah. Watching films. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Watching films. Okay. Yeah. Yeah that's an excuse just to sit home, watch movies. It's... Take notes. I mean it is true. You see it all over movie making. Yeah. Well with movies it's easier. But what I think what people have trouble with is doing it with photography is giving this sequence pacing and I've seen you do it really well. That's why I wanted to have you here. Yeah. Is doing this sequencing on stills, so. Well I think if you think about it, like you, you take your big epic shot, which is what kind of what everyone's after that like big scene, it sort of tells the story in one shot that shot all the context. And if you, if you're telling a story or a, we are telling a story from a board shaping room to a beach, you could effectively do that in three shots, one, two, three, you know, board shaping room, road shot, beach-- And nothing in the middle. And nothing in the middle. But what I like to do is join up the dots between those three images, because then I know you get more heart, more emotion, more involved with the character. If I've got close up shots of the character, then you kind of get to know him. Yes. As much as these three big scenes where you are just standing from afar. Well then building on that, I think that you do 'cause sometimes when you are showing too much, I feel like it's almost like hand walking the audience through something that with no mystery. But I think that you are able to do, leave something missing. Yeah. So there's mystery. Yeah. I'm just wondering how you pick what is gonna be shown. Do you pick that while you're shooting it or does that happen? No, I think that's in the edit. Okay. I mean, I've shot a ton of pictures. (indistinct) (laughing) I've got a ton of pictures to sift through that will come together in the edit and-- Okay. Yeah. It's more a feeling really when you start to put pictures together and you're like, well, that doesn't work or that reveals too much. Yeah. I think like a big part is like less is more. Yeah. But keeping stuff back. You know, if a picture... You you might have like a, an amazing shot, but if it doesn't fit with the story that you're trying to tell, I leave it out and that's very hard to do sometimes, you know, because it might be your most favorite image, but. Yeah. Okay. Keep that one for Instagram. The big one. The summer shop the banger. Yeah. Good. Another question, more technical is, I mean, you probably know that I shoot most of my stuff, sunrise or sunset. (indistinct) 'Cause I like to wake up, but especially sunset. But I saw you shoot a lot of things on day two-- Yeah. On the journey between the surf shop and the beach. Yeah. I saw you shooting a lot of stuff midday. Yeah tell me why. Because my character is not just traveling at sunrise or sunset. Okay. I know the light isn't gonna create the most atmospheric beautiful image, but it's realistic. It's natural. And I think that's also key. It's... I tend to, when I'm putting these stories together, I guess start from a morning scene transition through. Yeah through the day. The day and then come to an end at sunset or an evening dark shot. Okay. Yeah. So I guess it just actually gives me a bit of an arc to work through, you know. He's yeah, yeah, yeah. So he is been like working all morning. He gets in his truck, he travels down the coast, gets to his spot at sunset. Yeah, well, so I guess you are okay reducing the final impact quality like light qualities of the images for the story. Yeah. It's like story first. Yeah. Okay. That's good. Yeah. Totally. I mean-- (indistinct) I wouldn't necessarily like, well, I dunno. I mean, I've definitely shot some pictures in that midday sun of him in the car. I really like, they're really quite-- In the car. In the car. So you've got this like very harsh contrasty light, like coming through the window and it's some of it's lit up lighting up his face. Some of it's like throwing the interior of the car to shadow. Can you edit those by way? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Insights, cause it's really difficult. Yeah. Like when this harsh light I have trouble editing this really harsh light. Yeah. I see that. Okay. Just reduce the contrast, bring up the blacks, you know? (indistinct) Balance it a little bit. And then yeah you can throw some color into those shadows. You can make it quite moody. I really like that sort of stuff. I mean, it's similarly in the board shop, you know, the lighting in there was tough. It was like-- The board shop was tough? Yeah. But-- This is like Neo lights. Neo lights. But you know, turn that into an opportunity to actually really cinematic, you know, it, these like almost likely sci-fi type look, put some color into those blacks in the grade and keep the light kind of neutral. You get some really, you get some good mood. Yeah you can create mood out of that sort of situation. I can't wait to see how you edit it. Next question is on transitions. We kind of touched on it before, but how did you craft the transition and tell me if you've already answered it, but how did you craft the transitions between the surf shop, going to the beach, the beach and surfing in your mind, did you pre, did you have a shot list? Did you craft them in your mind before? Or did it just happen as you were traveling? No, I mean, I got a general process. Obviously we had to get the board is fairly central to the story. He needs the board to surf. So use that as the motivating-- So you started with the prop? Prop. Yeah. Client and vintage prop the surf board. Yeah. I mean, that's like gonna run throughout the whole narrative. So you started with this guy guiding line. Yeah. But you ask about transition, so. It was really good tip that you started with the prop to help you sequence it. Yeah. Did you rely on it? Yeah. That's my like focus. So then I use that as a continuity element that runs throughout the whole story. So to get surfer to car, car to beach, use him, obviously leaving his board shop with that surfboard, same surfboard. Don't move your props around. Otherwise it will falls apart. So board loading up onto the truck, drives down the road. Maybe his board starts to come loose. So like jump out the truck. He's like adjusting, reinforcing all those things gets to the beach, takes that same board off starts waxing it. So you're seeing it again. So his actions. You start with the prop and then you think about actions around the prop. Yeah. It was like a two step process, I guess. I'm just trying to deconstruct it, like start the prop. Yeah, yeah. Actions around it. I'm not a surfer. So it was important to ask Dan what his processes were because I don't really know what you would do on a surf. So when I first met him, I was like, talk me through your processes. So then when that happens I can capture it. That's good. Yeah. So ask questions. Yeah. Totally ask questions, a 100%. So when we got to the beach, I knew who was gonna take it off and start waxing the board. That's a nice action. He's gonna be used to doing that. So he's gonna feel natural whilst he's doing it. So I don't have to direct him too much. You're gonna get a natural picture from him. Okay. Yeah. So, well this is the.. Okay two step process. Good. Yeah. Prop and then actions are on the prop. Yep. Okay. And then communication with the subject in advance. Yeah. Okay. Brilliant. Thank you. You're welcome. How do you know when to shoot a moment? Do you already see it in the final set? Because I was looking at your website a couple days ago, looking at the photos of Montana again. And there was some moments that I, when I saw you shooting them, you were like-- Cause I was there. I was like, no, no. I was like, cool. He's just shooting that, you know, never shoot that. And I'm like, I wonder how this is gonna play the whole thing. And then I see them on the website and they flow well. What do you mean by moments? Moments, just like we're I remember we were just unloading the land cruiser and you shot that. Okay. I was just to-- When we went to ski lot ski hunt. Yeah, so some of these moments, I was like, how do you know you were gonna shoot that? Because I came to Montana and I wanted to capture that memory. And that was part of, again, it's the process. I guess it comes down to processes what it, what goes into me getting somewhere so on in that-- Journey again. Yeah. For that... In that example, we were arrived at the bottom of a mountain and we were going up to the lodge and like, I didn't want to just get up to the lodge and shoot this beautiful scene of the lodge with the stars over the top. And we were like, what goes into the. Get is great. So-- Yeah. (indistinct) Again, your surfers. Yeah. It's interesting memories. I'm getting old, I forget stuff. So it's quite nice that, yeah. Okay. So in terms for you. Yeah, I think, well, those 72 hours projects, a lot of those are personal projects and like they're just memories for me. Yeah. It's almost like a fruit album, for me, but that's sort of fed into my work and I think people are enjoying that and commissioning me for that now. Because you start with a personal project and it became the work thing. Yeah. And brands see their products. In there. Yeah. In there. 'Cause you have so many cutaways and-- Yeah, I guess yeah. Yeah. So what would you say to somebody who's got trouble shooting the small moments like me. Like they seem not as important when you're there and then after you're like, oh yeah, it looks good. I should have-- I think it depends where you're gonna put them. I mean, you know, if you're thinking in a sort of, Instagram frame of mind, I don't put those shots on Instagram 'cause they're just, they don't really work on their own. As a carousel they could work. As a carousel they could work. But yeah. And I do put some on carousel. (indistinct) Credit. You do. But I know everyone's kind of looking for high engagement on Instagram, aren't they? And you know, algorithm. Yeah a lot. Big Q and A on that. Lot to say on Instagram, but you know, the algorithm probably puts those a little bit further down and these like big little bits of the story, so yeah. So there's less encouragement for you to sort of put them on. (indistinct) But yeah. I'd say in terms of people forgetting to shoot them. Yeah. Or like yeah. Getting people to think, to get their camera out in these moments. Cause for me, I was just loading a bag. That's it. It was factual moment in Montana. I was just loading them a bag. That's it. Yeah. Yeah. But it's, I dunno. I think it will, they, those sorts of images will actually become more interesting as time passes. I agree. I'm sold on it. Because-- How do I know I gotta start shooting? How do you know? 'Cause when the lights, the stars are out, I'm like, yeah, yeah, I'm gonna shooting, but when I'm just unloading the car, I'm just unloading the car. So I love that you're able to detach yourself from the action. Cause we're also loading up your own bags I remember. But you're able to take a break and just get a couple photos. I guess it was different from anything that I'd seen before, so curious-- (indistinct) Yeah. I was in a, like a foreign country and then shooting you guys unloading skidoos. That's it That's I'm curious. Interested. Okay. So the travel aspect of it. Yeah. But I guess I do that sort of thing at home as well. Yes. I think processes at the heart of a lot of it. So if there's like you you're starting somewhere and I know that it's gonna end up somewhere. Yes you said it. Where's were you gonna use the images? Yeah. So you start with that, I guess. Yeah. When you get to Montana, you already know you're gonna do a 72 hours. Yeah. But also like say I'm making marmalade or jam at home with Paige or my daughter is an end product and I could make a really nice still life scene of food. But what goes into that product? You know, we make our own marmalade at home. So it's like, there's a whole process there. So I might shoot all the processes that lead up to that. So when you put it all together, you tell the story of making marmalade, it's really banal sort of, but yeah. Putting it all together and you can create something out of it. So you start with the end product. Yeah. I knew, yeah from Montana to go back to that-- Or even just to the jam, you start knowing that you're gonna have this final shot of your jam ready. Yeah. And then you kinda go backwards, like, okay, I gotta show this, this and this. Yeah. Okay. Or like for the board shoot or, you know, I've got three key scenes that I know I've gotta capture. And then again, it's like joining up the dots in between. So what happens in between-- Yes. Board shop and driving down that road, lots. Lots of stuff is gonna happen. Lots of processes, lots of actions that will join up those two scenes. So I guess it's yeah. Joining dots pieces to a puzzle. Well but I like that you said you start with the three big scenes and then you stitch them together. Yeah. If that's something that people should start doing is start with your big three, whatever, how many big scenes you wanna have and then you stitch in together. Yeah. Have that in mind. And I think people have that in mind from the outset. I mean, like you said, you know, there's gonna be a really nice style. Yeah. Big one. Yeah. You know, that's the one you wanna go for. But I think a lot happens leading up to that shot. Which is really helpful. And it's worth capturing it. I mean, you know, memory cards are cheap. I agree. Put it down and then you might not use it straightaway, but you could craft a story out of that. You could craft after. So just in case shoot it. Yeah. That's that's the word of advice. Shoot it. Yeah. Okay. Yeah. I think that after watching this workshop, some people are gonna be inspired to go shoot old cars and stories like that. And they should because it's really fun to do. So we had the opportunity to know Retro vintage in advance and to have him loan us, his cars and help us. What if, I don't know anybody, who's got a cool car? Like how do I find a cool car to shoot? Where do I start? Well, we could look at cool vintages in as an example because we found him on Instagram. That's true. Right. We've both been following him for a while. So Instagram's a good place to start. And we kind of flew to him. Yeah, yeah, yeah. We spent some money flying here to. Yeah, we put the effort to, get here and to shoot it reached out to him, DM'd in he's like, yep. So that's good. First send a DM, see maybe they want. Yeah. I think that DM is actually really powerful, you know? It's it takes like two minutes to do, doesn't it? And establishes instant credibility. Yeah. Completely. If you have an audience, if you don't, you can send a DM and just have to be extra nice. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's worth it. It's worth reaching out. Maybe have a look at car ads. Anyone who's selling (indistinct) Classified. Classified, eBay. Anyone who's selling a car, an old car that you like to look of will probably have an interesting story behind them. So you mean just reach out to people selling their car. Yeah. Or if you see a for sale sign on a car, like walking through town or something like leave a post-it note. That would... That's what Andrew did in Montana. She saw this old Mercedes for sale, like a yellow SL. Convertible. Really good. And she reached out to the guy to the seller and actually it was a good story then, the man was old and he was, he couldn't use, he couldn't get into the car anymore. Pretty sports car. Yeah. So he was selling it just because of that reason. He was used this car for 30 years, first owner. So she ended up shooting a portrait of the man with his car. And then she did her shoot up the car. But the good part is that what she gave the man, the print of him and his car. So there was a good story attached to it. She could do what she wanted. Everybody was happy. Which is a lovely ending because that guy will be very fond of that car too. So to receive a picture of it, he's gonna be really stoked so. Well that's how she convinced him too. I'll give you some photos of your car. So he let her borrow the car. Yeah. So she had to convince him like, I'll let you, give you some photos prints 'cause he was old. So like I'll give you prints. So she thought-- And that's no different from like reaching out on Instagram as a DM is there? You're still having to convince someone to sort of-- Always. Use their car. If you don't own these cars, then you're gonna have to do a bit of a sales job on yourself that you are gonna do something for them, you know? Yeah. So get yourself out there, I guess. Reach out. Yeah. It's an American term that British people don't use much, but I use it. I do use it. I've started to use it. Reach out. Yeah. It's not British. It's not British at all. I dunno what you're saying British. We don't reach out so much. Yeah. We don't reach out to stiffer lip. We are I far too polite. Like. Reach out. Excuse me. May I possibly, would you mind if. Would you mind if. It's always like that's how you reach out. Yeah. So always so backwards. It's just like, would you mind anyway, so yeah. Also car clubs, there's a lot of vintage car shows that happen definitely in the UK. Do you mean car clubs? Well, vintage car shows. So where there's, it' usually a big scene around-- Go to car shows. Yeah. And then it's usually a big scene, like a car club. Kind out business cards. Yeah. At the car show. Go and talk to people. That's a good place to start actually, because there'd be a big collection of cars that you might like to look off. Yeah. You can shoot in there, but you can also strike up a conversation with the owner and they're so passionate about these vehicles. You better know something about the cars that'll probably help. Yeah, well preparation again, that's gonna sort of be a note that I keep hitting throughout this workshop, you know, prepare, do some research. Yeah. So you can have at least something to talk about with the owners and convince. Yeah. And you can do that on your phone when you're at a car show. Cause you might not know what car you're gonna be looking at, but you can be like, I really like to look at that car. What is this car? Yeah. Is it a 62? Yeah, exactly. Yeah. And then we stoked on that. They'll be like. The guy knows they like you instantly. Completely. Yeah. Okay. So what do we say? Instagram? Yep. Classified. Yeah. Something you see in the street. Leave a post-it note. Yep. And then car shows. Car shows. Okay. Facebook clubs. Boom. This is really helpful. Cool. There you go. All cars. Another question on directing. How do you know when to stop directing the model? How do I know when to stop? Well, like when to, when you said enough, like we can take a step back when you get to your subject. Yeah. And you are about to shoot something. So you've interviewed him, like we said, about what he's gonna do and then how much do you direct him after? Not so much. I mean, with something like this, Dan's gonna know what he's doing better than I, but I'll know what makes a better picture than Dan. So I'll ask him what he's gonna do. And I'll actually ask him to maybe like stand where he might stand or ask him where he'd stand. Or like natural positions. Yeah. So if we think about like that epoxy resin scene, he, I asked him what he'd do his typical process. He said, oh, I'll mix these chemicals and then I'll go here. And I had a frame in mind already of how I wanted to capture that shooting across the room with a surfboard, with his surfboard stack. The graphical scene. Yeah. Very graphical. That's good. But he said, when he epoxy resin he'd have his back to me and I was like, that's not gonna make a great picture. So can I that's direction. Can you tweak his process to make the picture better. He's still doing the bit that he knows. I'm just altering it slightly. To your advantage to get the shot. Right. Okay. So this is a little bit of alteration, but he's still doing his thing. Yeah I mean for a shoot like this, I don't wanna get too involved in how he works because what I'm doing is essentially documenting what he does. For this shoot. For this shoot. For some other shoots, you'd get a 100% involved. Yeah. I mean, I guess for a more lifestyle approach, shoot. Yeah where you are having to create a story or work with a, a model or something who isn't a board shape who's-- Direction. Yeah. And they're like, well, I don't know how to epoxy resin the board or I don't, you know, then you're gonna have to be a bit more involved, a lot more involved. And yeah. I really like working on stories where the person is a real person. They know what they're doing. They know what they're doing. I think you would get a more natural image. I mean, we could have brought in a model to shoot. We could. This story, but I think we've been. You would've missed some parts, the board shaping. Yeah. I mean, but we could have gotten them to do that, but it's a lot more process involved. And like, so. Actually this is really important. It is take subjects that are organic to what they're doing. Yeah. Real people. Be true. I think people connect with real people, especially today. Yeah. You know, we see sort of like beautiful airbrushed model pictures all over and you see it in a lot of ad campaigns. And I actually don't connect with that imagery. I will connect with imagery where there's like a more relatable scene going on. (indistinct) It's real. Yeah. And a lot of the work that I'm doing in the advertising, world's actually tipping in that direction. With real people. With real people doing real things. You know, right? The good looking people are not like five eyes or something, but-- Five eyes. What I... Like you said though, keep it real with your subjects. Yeah. And you choose them if you can. Yeah. 'Cause sometimes it's constraints and you have to use a model and professional. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. I think you'll get a more natural image and- But you're right. Is tipping that way. I feel it. Towards natural. Yeah and brands and agencies are asking me to shoot more stuff in that manner. So I feel it's connecting with people. So that tips into getting paid for your work. Yes. Let's more questions on that. That's quite exciting. So last question. Yeah. You've shot for three days. Yes. When do you know you can stop shooting? Do you know that? Oh no, really hard. You don't really know. What I keep going. I mean, I'm terrible at just I'll, you know, when it's probably when it's dark, when I literally can't expose an image anymore. ISO 12,000, I could probably stop. Yeah. Yeah. So really when--. I guess I have those three shots in mind, I need the three scenes. So I need to capture those. Once I know those are in the bag, everything else is like those little join dots pieces and I can shoot those till the cows come home. Is that an English expression? Probably. I've heard it. I've heard it too. So once I have like a good set of cutaways, medium shots that I know. Yeah. I'll run through my card. Just have a quick-- Have a look through review on site. Yeah, yeah, yeah. But I will probably still, I do keep going till it gets dark. I mean-- Just to, (indistinct) I'm a little bit paranoid. We're like, oh, how I got it? How I got it? Well, I think keep going. Yeah. So it's okay if you do that. Yeah a 100% . 100% sure. 100% Yeah. So you keep going to it's dark. Yeah. I like that. Yeah. I do the same. I do. Okay. Thanks very much. Been a pleasure. (upbeat music)

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase


Ratings and Reviews

Brent Morris

Fantastic My thoughts on the storytelling workshop. The short is; it’s fantastic. The long is I loved all the details covered, from shot types and the ideas behind them to the call sheets and shot lists, and the whole process. I felt like I had a better understanding of how to schedule a professional shoot and I really felt like I had a much better grasp on many ideas and concepts, and I believe I’ve been able to improve my photography with them, so thank you and Finn. It really is fantastic.

Oswaldo Martinez

A path to better stories Very happy I got this workshop. Finn and Alex do a great job at teaching highly useful methods and specific advice to help you improve your own work, and more importantly, tell better stories that are meaningful to you.

Tommaso Selleri

Simply the best This is simply the best workshop out there on photography and storytelling. Finn is awe inspiring and so real and authentic. A pleasure to watch, a joy to learn from such master. I really hope a volume 2 is coming soon! Thank you for this one!

Student Work