Going Back For Seconds
As part of our continuing adventure into a larger project we're working on we decided to go revisit an original character we had did some test shots of last year.
Originally when we had set out to shoot Whatagirl we wanted to actually try to shoot in a Whataburger location. For various reasons that went nowhere but the character herself was still an idea we liked. Now that we didn't have to worry about trying to shoot in one of their locations that gave us more latitude on what we could possibly do.
Since we were doing a single character we decided to shoot this one at Waveform Austin. They have quite a bit of gear and supplies to help out the up and coming photographer but is also good for more experienced people who may not have their own space yet. We went with them since they had a number of seating options that would work well with what we had in mind plus they had a range of colored seamless paper choices... one of which would be great for this idea.
With Whatagirl being a bit of a combination of Minako Aino from Sailor Moon and Eli Ayase from Love Live we already had a pretty good idea of what her "character" would be like. Allybelle had actually picked up a different wig for another Eli cosplay so she made some adjustments to make it more Whatagirl specific. Tacocat helped out with a lot of the posing along with making sure thw ig was playing nice.
For being a more structured shoot we had to make sure we had more elements that matched the Whataburger asthetic especially since we were not in one of their locations. We were able to procure trays that were super close to the ones they used. Not sure what we'll do with four of them but oh well.
The one part that was interesting was actually figuring out the food choices to use for this shoot. Now if you've ever watched videos of how they do "food shoots" for places like Whataburger you learn really fast that a lot of it doesn't actually involve food. Doing that was outside of our capabilities at the moment so we went with ordering a shit load of food from a location not far from the studio. I thought I was going to be there a while waiting but they knocked it out in a few minutes.
Now since Allybelle was actually going to be eating some of this I wanted to try to keep things at least warm enough for a bit so they wouldn't end up being gross. So I had put everything I had ordered into insulated bags. One bit that wouldn't click until during the shoot was how the heat from all the fresh food would create condensation and therefore do things like "wilt" the fries and easily cause buns to go flat. So I had to skip some ideas for shots. But we rolled with it and the results came out well.
There would be one other piece I would have to figure out fast. We had an idea for an overhead shot of Allybelle surrounded my all the food. I knew that Waveform had heavy duty light stands with boom arms so I figured they would go high enough for the image I had in my head.
Now admittedly using a 35mm f/2 lens did not help. If I had used my 16-55mm f/2.8 lens I might have been to get it. But my copy of that lens also has been rather problematic in shooting situations where low light and lack of contrast can cause it to miss focus (I was shooting everything here at f/4, ISO 200, and 1/250 shutter speed). Where the 35mm f/2 does a stupid good job in getting things in focus. So thinking the gear in the studio would overcome that was not the best assumption I've made.
Overall we got some really good pics out of this set... and a few which will help further along the larger work we have going on.
Besides... how often do people get this kind of stupid with food?