My Ultimate Fail For the Day

So last weekend I had photoshoot with my friend and teammate, Nsima. 

We started the day out shooting pictures at a local gym (as I do with most athletes I shoot). After shooting for about an hour or so, we packed up everything and moved to a local track because we wanted to do more commercial-athletic looking pictures out on the field. He has a lot of experience with outdoor sports so it was only fitting.


Anyway, with Nsima, I was given a little more creative freedom...and I wanted to try something new that I've never experimented with before...colored smoke grenades. I've seen many awesome photos with these being utilized, or with a similar substance (holi powder). If you don't know what I'm talking about, imagine those cool color run marathons where everyone is throwing colored powder:

I personally wanted to use colored smoke grenades to avoid the mess of the powder, so the smoke would just dissolve in the air, so I ordered two grenades: one red and one yellow. I figured each lasting 30 seconds would be sufficient to get what I planned...or so I thought. 

The setup of this shot was a direct profile from the side with one Elinchrom 400w strobe placed above camera, pointed down at a 45 degree. I was going to countdown a 3-2-1 and have him lunge forward while I ran around him with the smoke to create the motion of the shot.

Here's the video of what happened:



So as you can see....super fail. I didn't anticipate the slight wind that was happening outdoors. It was about 96 degrees so nothing else was really on my mind besides trying to make this photo work. I didn't have any assistants with me on this shoot due to the fact I didn't need one prior and  I thought this particular shot would work with just me and I could use my remote shutter while I ran the smoke. For some reason, my remote wouldn't fire the camera unless I was within 3 feet (which is not usual for my remotes).

So what did I learn?

 1) Make sure there is no wind at all, or at least utilize the wind to my advantage.

2) Bring more smoke grenades for experiment.

3) Bring an assistant (DEFINITELY).

4) Also look into holi powder.


So all things combined....a complete fail.

I DO want to redeem myself with this one in the near future and pull off something AWESOME though....I am determined. 


Here are a few shots that day on the track that I hope make up for my fail of the day:

Thanks for reading :)