I had the great privilege of being commissioned by one legendary New Zealand band Trinity Roots to shoot some new promotional material for them. Inspired by the bands’ focus on whakapapa and relationship with the land, I came up with the concept of them standing in the swirling waters of Cook Strait (near Breaker Bay) to represent their oneness with people and place.
I thank them for their patience as I made them stay in the freezing waters for half an hour as we waited for the light to light to be perfect. Exposures were long and combined with remote flash units setup on an old tripod in the sea.
Below are a few ‘behind the scenes’ shots taken by my son and young assistant Morgan (who weeks earlier had modelled for test shots) and one of the ‘straighter’ press shots we took in the Breaker Bay Hall.
Once again my ever patient son Morgan was coerced into being a model for a lighting test for a shot I have coming up in a few weeks. This time he stood knee deep in the chilly waters of Cook Strait while the sun set behind the Kaikouras. A slow shutter speed blurred the water and a Nikon Speedlight with a homemade snoot lit his face. The flash is sitting on an old modified tripod (heavily weighted down) and is triggered remotely via infrared.
Late last year I started a new series of projects under the umbrella title of “Inside my sound”. The projects come under my overall research objective of “celebrating, protecting and educating new audiences on on heritage, culture and environment.” One aspect I am particularly interested in is exploring the role of musicians as kaitiakitanga in our collective whakapapa.
To kick this off I have been working with Wellington musicians Warren Maxwell (from Fat Freddy’s Drop, Trinity Roots, Little Bushmen and now at Massey’s new School of Commercial Music), Thomas Oliver and Louis Baker. This is really just an introductory investigation into the world of these fantastic musicians and the interplay between them as they create. Warren and I have had some great conversations about the similarities in the creative process of visual arts and musicians.
The guys generously let me photograph them during a practice session at home and a recent gig as “Pass the gat” at San Fran Bathhouse. I particularly loved one moment in the green room backstage where they grouped together for some voice warm-ups.
By the way you can see all three playing at this years WOMAD