How I Got the Shot: Alex Workman

Posted by: on May 11, 2020

Alex Workman is a Florida-based photographer, where he and his wife Chelsea deem themselves a husband and wife photography team. In 2016, they started The Workmans, a company focused on commercial photography & creating short films for businesses, organizations, agencies and individuals, equipping them to better tell their story. Visit them via Instagram @covidwear.co and their personal website.

Photo Credit: Alex Workman

What was the concept of the shot?

In this crazy season, we really wanted to do something creative that could put smiles on people’s faces and “poke fun” at the strange times we are living in and the adjustments we’ve had to make without being disrespectful of the severity of this virus. The concept became COVID-Wear. Business on the top. Quarantine on the bottom. 

What setup and lighting did you use to get the shot?

We set up a small, makeshift studio in our garage. We already had a few rolls of Savage Universal Seamless paper so that dictated the colors of the project. The paper was set up from floor to ceiling in the garage with c-stands. We lit the paper with a Profoto A1X with a soft bounce. We used a Profoto B1X with a 5’ Octa as our key light. There were a bunch of random containers in the garage that we used to make a “desk” for my MacBook Pro and an external display. We used Capture One Pro and a Tether Tools 15’ USB-C cable.

How did shooting tethered help you achieve the shot you wanted?

Shooting tethered was a huge help for this project. Because of social distancing, I couldn’t get as close to my subjects like I previously would. Shooting tethered allowed me to give my subjects real time feedback as well as letting them see the images on a large external display so they could understand what I was asking them to do. In our next round of shoots, we will be using the Tether Tools Air Direct to give us a little more flexibility in our confined space and to clear up more space so our kids can safely navigate the space as well.

Photo Credit: Alex Workman

What was your biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge in this project has been the season that we are in, not only with COVID-19 but also the weather. Setting up a studio in our garage in the beginning of Florida’s summer isn’t the most ideal, as there are days when it gets really hot. However, we had to close the door to control the lighting so that made social distancing a bit challenging as well. We had bottles of hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes for participants and for any gear/furniture that they touched, and we tried to work quickly to avoid anyone sweating in blazers and messing up their hair/makeup.

What type of post-processing was involved?

We used Capture One Pro 20 for tethered capture and post processing. Each day we shot, all of the images were on the same color backdrop. This allowed us to dial in color and exposure. Since we were in a controlled environment, once I got the look I wanted, Capture One would apply those settings to every shot captured and I could see the changes immediately. That is why shooting tethered was such a huge help.

Photo Credit: Alex Workman

What was the logistics and/or gear needed to achieve this shot?

• Camera – Canon EOS R
• Lens – Canon RF 28-70 F2L
• Lights – Profoto B1X & Profoto A1X
• Light Modifiers – Profoto RFi Softbox 5” Octa + Soft Bounce
• Trigger – Profoto Air Remote TTL
• Computer – 15” 2016 MacBook Pro
• Display – 27” Apple Thunderbolt Display
• Backdrops – Savage Universal Paper in Flamingo, Turquoise and Teal.
• Stands – Neewer C-Stands.

Who was involved and how did they play a part in the shoot?

Other than myself, my wife Chelsea was the only other person directly involved. She, as always, was a huge help with assisting before we began and between sessions, making sure releases were signed and culling images. We did have a number of friends who championed us and the project once it was released and helped recruit people to participate.

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