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  • Johan Visschedijk

Rock the boat.....baby

Updated: Oct 10

The phone is ringing ...... a client asks me if I can come into the office talking about shooting a boat. Well that sounds interesting.... a boat. The next day around five o'clock I run into their office and find four people full of adrenaline sitting around the table. They have been in a brainstorm session for almost all day. After having a nice espresso and a glass of cold water they start telling me about their ideas, showing me the mood board and after that informing me about the timing. The timing.The timing is killing but not impossible. Shooting a 10 meter boat with models, who is lying dry in a dusty wharf, inside and outside within a long day. This means that that day should have at least 24 hours. If you believe it or not but I love these kind of assignments. The only thing which isn't clear at this moment is the available models and the styling. The agency will sort this out so no direct worries for me. I like the mood board very much and look forward to a nice and challenging shoot.

As time flies by fast like always we are in a no time with the whole crew starring at a huge boat standing on docks in a wharf. The first thing I realize is that standing on this docks I will not be able to put my lights really high above the boat. The creative producer asks me straight away if he should rent a cherrypicker. Not a bad idea! The second thing is that the agency tells me that they couldn't fit the models and stylist within their budget and therefore they decided to do it themselves. Mmmmm don't know if that is a good idea. Feeling a bit annoyed about the situation I start building up my lights and put the camera in position for the first shot. Trying to find the right angle the owner of the yachting company asked me if I could start wit a profile shot, because he wants to see the whole boat, while in the brief we are more talking about shooting details. These discussions should better have been done before the shoot and I got even more annoyed. But hey that's life.... we can't think of everything ahead and a photographer needs to have the capability to adapt to this situation. One run to the toilets having a minute by myself to pee I realize that I just need to move on. Try to squeeze an extra shot into the time schedule.

I made the profile shot, the cherrypicker arrived, two girls form the agency are doing the modeling and I am off for my first topshot. Easy, but keeping the deck clean is a pretty tough task because normal on the water you don't have dust and dirt coming in.

As you can see in the shot above the boat has a shiny surface which makes the shoot more difficult. We are not in a professional studio with a "white egg", but in a wharf. This white egg studio is like the word says, totally white and round like an egg so you will not have shadows in corners who will reflect in a shiny surface. Nevertheless the atmosphere is red and blue so we probably can disguise all these nasty reflections with it.


And yes as you can see we got rid of all these nasty reflections and in cooperation with the postproduction people from the agency we made these final shots. Our models are not too bad either regarding their not models but account managers. Even the art-director did a great job. So actually no reason to be annoyed at the started and better but my energy in doing a good shoot. Learning all the time.

The second the day we are shooting details where in you can see the boat as it is, nice, shiny beautiful details. These shots are all about the design of the boat which I really like. The designer has thought about every detail and one can compare this boat almost with an Iphone.


Maybe you can see it, all the lines are perfectly going in one direction, ont he deck, the floor and in the cabin. Even the lines on the table matches. Color wise we have brown and blue in several degrees which in my opinion makes a really smooth match. Very classy. I tried to light it in that way as well. Smooth tones with so now and then a sparkling highlight.

If you want to see some more of this boat or read about how they construct these boats you can go to their website https://zinderboats.com/nl/modellen/zinder-990/ . The other models can also be seen at this site. The agency who has been responsible for the campaign? https://more.nl/

Hope that you will like it and yess i will appreciate if you send me a personal email with your comments in it. johan@limelight-today.com




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