This is a dusk shot we took for DLR Group in Garden City. This is their high school and it is one of the largest in Kansas. We started setting up and shooting about an hour and a half before the sun was going to set. Throughout the evening, we set close to a few dozen lights in different locations and at different times. I can also remember being very cold towards the later hours of the shoot. Brrrrr! Lousy unpredictable temperatures.
In post, I blended two skies, one from earlier in the day, and one from later in the evening. I comped in a series of images where the lighting was switched up as we placed lights in a series of locations throughout the elevation and comped in for the interior lights in the window on the left side of the frame. I remember running all over that school trying to figure out which room that was. It’s kind of funny now that I look back on it. After all of the comps were brought in, I had some things to clone out. There was a bright spotlight on the side of the building, a couple of security cameras, and dust specks of course.
There is one thing about this image that I wish I could change. The star patterns around the street lights are a bit distracting. I could clone them out, but it would take a while, and there’s got to be a better way! I think it has to be done in camera. I can’t think of any way to get rid of them in post production. Possibly a circular polarizer? I’m open to suggestions if anybody has them.
This was one of the main images that the client absolutely had to have done perfectly so they could really show off their design work. They wanted to show off the transparency in the large glazed prow, and so we determined it was best as a dusk shot. We set up the camera and over the course of six hours carefully lit sections of the building to bring out the texture and landscape. As a road trip we only had enough lights to get a section at a time, and then combined those in post for the final shot. The cool thing is that everything you’re seeing was captured in camera, just a lot of work to combine them all.
If you take a look through the images above you’ll see a shot of the building as lit it (mostly foreground and the prow), one of the first frames we captured at the start of the shoot, and the last frame which shows you the actual lighting on the building. This was a really fun shot and well worth those six hours!
Photographer: Alistair Tutton
Assistant: Adam Caselman
Retoucher: Adam Caselman
Client: DLR Group