The assignment at the bar

Posted: 18th October 2007 by Jacky Yong in Photography
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Last month, I was one of the lucky few who was given a chance to shoot a couple of babes for the Malaysian Babe Icon Search 2007, located in Baze Club, Renaissance Hotel, KL. But let me tell you, this assignment is NOT EASY! This write up is to explain a bit of what went on inside the shoot, and also to showcase some of the pictures that failed miserably, and which I feel is just super!

There was 16 babes, and more than 20 photographers. The photographer’s background are varied, some are from PhotoMalaysia, some are from ShutterAsia, most are from PhotoKaki. Quite a number were site hoppers (I am active in both LensaMalaysia and ShutterAsia) 😛

The babes and the photographers were divided into 5 groups. The group of babes will be based in one location only, while the photographers will move around the pub to the various groups of babes. The rules were strict: No touching the babes, and no asking for contact numbers. We were required to pass the CD with the pictures to the organizers. Post-processing and watermarks are allowed. However so far, I have not received any instructions from the organizer to get the CD. Oh well, guess they have already more than enough of pictures, since the Icon Search has already ended with a clear winner .

I was so not prepared for what we saw in the pub. Have a look at the tight corridor and the harsh downlight:

No space, some pictures even included a fellow photographer! Gosh….

After a few awkward moments and some ice-breaking, we were on our way. Here are some pictures which turned out okay.

On to the next group. By this time, the babes and the photographers were already warmed up, and ready to go. After a few quick rounds of introduction, we were happily firing away.

The next group is beginning to get tougher. The lighting is a real killer! If the previous two groups were considered bad lighting, this lighting is hell! ‘Nuff said, let’s see some pictures:

The 4th group consists of 4 babes instead of the usual 3. Therefore time was a very limiting factor. I couldn’t finish taking pictures of all babes in all the poses that I wanted them to do.

Those lips!

Okay, on to the final group. By now all babes and photographers were having a time of their lives, cracking silly jokes and forgetting about the entire shoot. One of the photographers in my group asked for early dismissal because he has finished off his memory card! =P

The shoot does not end there. After going back home, I had to sift through all the pictures, and do a lot of post-processing. I spent a total of more than 2 weeks to process them, and believe me, that is really very tiring! On one day I skipped sleep just to finish them off!

A post mortem:
The biggest problem I had was the skewed white balance. The interior of the pub is lit with yellowish light, while my flash fires bright blue light. All of full body pictures of the babes show a mix of bright blue-ish face, with their legs washed away in yellow tint. Very bad. Had I used a coloured light diffuser to my flash, I would be able to correct the colour of the face towards yellowish tint, and will thus be able to set a correct white balance to process the pictures, either in camera or using post-processing. Hmmm …. I’ll just add that to my wish list.

A smaller problem would be the flashing, or the lack of it. Sometimes I turned off the flash in order to create a more natural picture, but I sometimes forgot to turn it back on. Therefore some of my pictures turned out dark and blurry. Valarie’s pictures suffered this fate, sorry Valarie… =(

So there, I learnt from this, and I certainly hope you did too. More pictures in my gallery.