Behind The Shot: Colin Adair.

Anto Chamberland, Miller Flip, Quebec City © Colin Adair.
Anto Chamberland, Miller Flip, Quebec City © Colin Adair.

Colin Adair and his beard have been picturing snowboarding for a good while now, and the American native is considered as one of the main talents in the industry. Colin has been traveling across the planet for clients like DC, Red Bull, Burton, The North Face, Monster, and he’s regularly published in tons of different magazines, including ours. Here’s his first entry to your beloved Behind The Shot feature.

 

Anto Chamberland – Miller Flip – Quebec, Canada.

 

Camera: Canon EOS 1d mark IV

Lens: Canon EF 70-200 f4 shot at 109mm

Speed: 1/125

Aperture: f5.0

Flashes: Mix of Elinchrom Ranger and Canon 580 EX speedlites

If it’s too low at night it’s easy for autofocus to miss your spot and blow the shot. I usually focus with auto and then turn the lens to manual focus before getting the shot.

The Tech

I shoot urban and jibbing probably once or twice a year, 2 weeks total for the whole winter I’d say. I like working with flashes and lighting even though I curse and yell at them because they never work properly when you want them to. The cold temperatures and moist air really messes with the electronics and remote triggering signals. I always like to have one big powerful flash with one or two heads (Elinchrom Ranger kit) to create the ambient light and then use smaller flashes hidden from view closer to the subject to create the highlights. Pretty basic stuff but if you do it properly it looks great. If you don’t do it properly your images will look really flat and unexciting. I chose to shoot at 400 ISO mostly because the smaller flashes aren’t too powerful so I needed more light to come in. I also wanted a bit more of an f/stop even though 5.0 is pretty low. If it’s too low at night it’s easy for autofocus to miss your spot and blow the shot. I usually focus with auto and then turn the lens to manual focus before getting the shot. I also like to add a bit of the light from the video lights into my photos. It adds color and texture. Using a shutter of 1/125 on this one let in some of that light but not too much to overpower the shot.

The Context

In this photo I couldn’t get the big flash exactly where I wanted because cars were driving by and having to run back and forth to move it all the time wasn’t an option. Anto Chamberland hit this thing only a few times and it was really cold (-20C) so I was happy to get the shot and get out of there. This spot is in a very small town in Quebec, Canada. People drive their snowmobiles in the streets when there is enough snow and at our hotel there were snowmobiles parked in the parking lot right outside the rooms. Anto is from that area and he knows a million spots so it’s great to link up with him for a week or so each year and get some shots.

Check Colin’s work on his website and follow him on his blog.

Also check all the previous photo tips on this Tag.

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