Tumbleweed @ The Gov, July ’11

Sounds After Dark is a series of gigs put on by Coopers, the deal being you buy a Coopers Dark Ale and scratch a card to see if you and a mate win an exclusive ticket to see Tumbleweed play at a secret gig.

Tumbleweed are playing shows again after a hiatus of at least 15 years, the tour prior to this exclusive show being dubbed “Back From The Grave”.

With that in mind I wanted to get a promo shot of the guys before their set tonight, however I didn’t want to cram the 5 of them into the backstage area, so before the show Haley and I scouted locations out the back of the Gov.

We had to keep it close by as the first and foremost rule when shooting a promo shot of any band is to make it as easy and as quick as possible for the band. Get your test shots, composition and lighting totally 100% drilled before you even bring the band to the location.

Haley came up with a rad idea to gell a leafless tree in the front yard of a house on the corner behind the Gov blue. Everything else being dark and the band lit nicely from the front would create a spooky “graveyard” feel.

We set up a test shot, with a single speedlite gelled blue at the base of the tree and two other speedlites – the main light hand held by Haley shot through umbrella to camera left and another to camera right, naked on 1/32 power for fill. (Speedlites are king for this kind of shoot as they are small, portable and quick to set up!) All lights triggered by Pocketwizards.

With the test shot done and in the camera I went to find the guys.

It’s rad to have a shot already taken to showcase your idea when approaching a band. I spoke to Jay first with the idea and showed the test photo – he was into it and rounded up the others.

Within 5 minutes we were out the back of the Gov shooting and within another 2 minutes the shot was done.