Richard Freeman Tests The Sunbounce Cage On Location
October 8, 2015
Fashion and commercial photographer Richard Freeman travelled to North Sumatra in Indonesia for his recent shoot and used the Sunbounce Cage on the beautiful sunny beachscape. Find out what he had to say about the experience….
'Shooting through the midday sun is a formidable challenge that most photographers will have to face at some point.
Strong top light leaves the subject with heavy black shadows for eyes and photographers wishing they'd started the shoot much earlier in the day when the sun is still low in the sky.
Often it’s difficult to control what time of day the shoot occurs. To ensure you can produce a quality image with a “polished” feel, there are a couple of solutions. Over power the daylight, fill the shadows, or look for open shade.
When commissioned to take portraits of professional surfers for www.stabmag.com, I decided to build a studio on a remote beach. This enabled me to ensure I could sculpt the available ambient light.
As I was travelling without assistants, transporting heavy-duty stands, foldaway frames and 12x12 solids was going to be impossible.
Whilst discussing the job brief with Scott from SUNSTUDIOS Sydney, he suggested the portable Sunbounce Cage as an option. In fact, I had seen the “cage” a few weeks earlier sitting on display in the atrium at SUNSTUDIOS and was very interested.
I had never used the Sunbounce Cage before but was familiar with Sunbounce products, which are all durable and functional. I decided to give it a try. The cage came disassembled in a convenient rolling bag; similar size to a golf bag.
The kit came with a set of clear instructions and with a couple of pointers from Scott, I set off to a remote corner of North Sumatra, Indonesia.
On the day of the shoot, we transported the gear from ship to shore with relative ease. Portability was never a problem.
I would strongly recommend bringing along refillable shot bags - you can fill these with wet sand for extra weight.
Scott had advised building the top half of the cage before attaching the walls and roof then completing the framework. This enabled access to the higher areas of the frame with greater ease.
Once on the beach I followed the instructions provided and very quickly had the basic framework laid out. Once I had the structure half built, I then laid out the fabric walls and ceiling within the square interior.
With the snap bungee provided, the corners easily attached and the studio started to take shape.
One of the great features of the cage was the ability to swap the panels between solids and diffusion.
A simple zipper system in the walls and ceiling enabled this feature by rolling back the fabric and attaching it with ties through the numerous eyelets built in.
Being able to shoot through the cage without the back wall was invaluable.
It was a moderately windy day when I used the product. Using the portable shot bags and burying the flooring framework completely stabilised the whole cage.
If considering shooting on location throughout the day, I would recommend giving the Sunbounce Cage a try.'
In our first in a series of industry conversations during COVID-19, Melbourne Studio and Rental Manager David Leyshon speaks to photographer Tracey Lee Hayes about how she’s navigated the experience of lockdown, the best ways she’s found to use time and opportunities for those in the industry to support each other during and after the pandemic.