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October saw us put on a fantastic fashion flash course at a wonderful location in Liverpool. Due to the amazing success of our France courses over the last few years we thought we would mark the anniversary of the last France course with a very special day of training at a very cool yet creepy location. I had been looking as we always are for a location for quite a while and stumbled on this place by chance through a ghost tour web site ! After finding out who now owns this venue I made a short call to the owner and a day was set for me to go and take a look, lets just say I wasn’t disappointed! This now closed down former hospital | orphanage | asylum is now privately owned and offers some great shooting if you look in the right places.

The date was set and the course went out to our facebook group and then onto the site for general release. As the places filled we started to plan the day – these courses take  a lot of planning and meticulous styling. We knew that our resident makeup artist | Stylist & hair dressers Zan Atkinson was to be onboard on this one and we set to work looking for period outfits and pieces that would compliment the shoot. It is a fine line when shooting in a place like this that you want  to do it justice and not just dress people in theatre or bikinis! So when we stumbled across an amazing shop in Coventry in the newly opened Fargo village called Heaven Vintage we knew the owner Angela would understand exactly what we needed and she wasn’t to disappoint. We had some great pieces , a 1920′s wedding dress, original Edwardian hats and clothing from Victorian era aswell as some more modern pieces that we could ad to the mix including a very vogue like underskirt that Zan had made from a wedding underskirt! Models were Jen Brook who I hadn’t worked with for  a few years but we knew that her look would be perfect for a job like this and she didn’t disappoint. Model Milly from Nemesis model agency in Manchester was also onboard with a unique look that would also work great with the environment. So the day crept up on us as fast as the days are getting shorter and we were ready to go…

The kit was sorted a few days before making sure we had ample batteries and lights – with help from The Flash Centre lending us the equipment that we didn’t have we were set to go. After filling up my car & James’s car – my assistant with coffee machine | sandwiches | cookies oh and yes the lighting equipment we headed off to Liverpool to start our epic day. After arriving we had a little time for myself and James to take a look around and make a plan , although plans are there to be broken! Whilst Zan started work on our first look with Jen the photographers started to arrive  and over coffee and cookies & doughnuts ( thanks to neil!! ) we went through the equipment and then went for a walk around so that they could get a feel for the place and we could start to plan our shots out a little.

The first look was ready with Jen looking the part we took our time with the first look showing the photographers how to plan a shoot and to look at layering the lights, to give the lighting purchase and meaning not just on the subject but around the subject too.

 

 

 

Lit with a large 6ft Elinchrom Octa bank and two small beauty dishes, with the help of a little orange gel and a haze machine we had this one licked!

After setting up shot number two in the corridoor we came back into the main hall where our kit was and thanks to haze machine the sunlight was streaming through the window in such a way that you only ever see on huge movie sets! So needless to say we took Milly from her set to this to not waste this opportunity! Using the sunlight as our main light we made sure the shadows of Milly were nicely filled in with the 6ft Octa which is my main weapon of choice for fashion work!

 

Make sure you get down to the end of the post for some great behind the scenes shot by my assistant James and also numerous photogs on the course. With the room buzzing with excitement from this shot and the great start we had made to the day everyone grabbed a coffee and a sandwich , a few of the photographers going for a walk around to other floors to see what they could find!

After a quick lunch our model Jen was ready with her second look and we headed off down to the lower floor of the asylum where the laundry rooms were. Using very feathered lighting we shot Jen against an old ironing station with an old stretch dummy body used to steam shirts over. This made a great background and went with the edwardian – steam punk look we were going after. Using a strip box with Elinchrom Ranger RS Speed AS pack  & one small beauty dish with a shower cap on to diffuse the light.

 

 

After a super quick change we went off track and went into the tiny room next door where they used to dry the clothes with the old hangers still roped to the roof. Jen quickly on set changed into an amazing 1910 | 1920′s wedding dress  - very fragile dress too from Angela’s own collection at Heaven Vintage. Using one Elinchrom Ranger RX pack and one light with a 70cm softbox we put one light next door through the window and one light in the room itself with a beauty dish – gridded to give a little bounce back and edge light to the model. Jen worked this to perfection and in the near pitch black everyone took their turn to shoot how they wished.

 

 

 

We then left the room and headed off for a coridoor where some natural light spilled in and took model Milly with her second look. This was a simple shot with no flash , finding an old mirror work perfectly – shooting wide open on a Canon 50mm 1.2L lens made for a super soft look to a very eerie image!

 

 

Working our way down the coridoor we used another simple background for effect , then giving the modle a breather as I think the haze machine used previously had got to her a little! This time shooting through an old smashed glass doorway , using simple doorway light to one side I used the doorframe to frame the subject.

 

 

We then took Jen outside who was now ready with her 3rd look. Zan was working as fast as she could to get the girls ready for us so we could keep on going. It is a challenge when you are teaching in such a place as you want to teach people what you are doing but you also want people to be able to shoot for themselves. At the end of the day it is a day of teaching, a day to watch, shoot, listen and take inspiration to go away and practice these techniques to do this for yourself in your own way and style.

We headed off outside for Jens look using an old doorway with elaborate ( cobweb) style glass above,keeping this one simple as we could with just one light , a 70cm softbox to override the ambiance.

 

 

 

With the day quickly getting away from us we headed off to probably one of the most eerie places of the whole site. A room where the main oven for the hospital was situated and I’m not talking food either! The main cremation ovens sit in a unit by themselves and were heavily used in there 35 years of service. We used the room next door to them. A place where old gurneys were stacked up and a chapel sat untouched for years. Our model Milly stood motionless and stared straight ahead going for  avery strong look Zan our stylist draped a long piece of black lace over her to give a unique feel to the image with bright red lips completing the look. With time running out we took turns with the light again using just one head with a gridded softbox on it.

 

 

I knew the deadline was coming thick and fast for us to leave so we headed off to the old swimming pool house for our last look. Jen was ready and stood in the middle of the room. With  the floor slightly wet and muddy from an open roof the light offered a little reflection on the ground in front of her which was great. Using the large 6ft Octabank and again a small beauty dish for separation, a little haze from the haze machine which James had managed to wire up with a few extension sockets from the main hospital! I could have stayed in this room forever as the scene was perfect. Zan had crafted a hand made boned underskirt with original vintage corsets from Heaven Vintage completed the look.

 

 

 

A simply amazing day that I would say will go down as one of our best training events ever. On par with France for sure! Everyone chipped in to get all the kit outside of the venue with our 6pm deadline ( strict deadline) approaching. A huge thank you to all that made it down to this event and as well as getting some great images I hope you all learned some different techniques to take away and use for your own work. Although this was a one off course we are currently looking at another venue for a possible Fashion II course that will again push the boundaries of what is achievable on a day of photographic training.

A huge thank you to Angela from Heaven vintage, to Zan Atkinson for the hours she put in before and during the day. To James Davies for assisting on the day and being  a human donkey!  To The Flash Centre for suppling us with some equipment for the days events. A great team up there in Leeds and if you ever need anything talk to Russ or Graham and they will sort out! Thanks to models Jen Brook and Milly from Nemesis model agency in Manchester. Watch out on the training page | courses for our next set of training days that you won’t want to miss.

Join us on our fantastic closed Facebook Training group – a great place to be and be inspired! Join me on Twitter @brettharkness and also on Instagram as Brett Harkness to see what we get up to here at BHP headquarters and on our daily shoots. If you were on this course then leave a comment at the bottom to tell others of your day!

Here are some behind the scenes images from the day and also a little video shot by one of the photographers on the course. Thanks to the photographer on the day that have let us use some BTS images below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks to Neil Proctor for snapping some video throughout the day whilst shooting!

5 comments
  • Glenn (10.07.2014 | 10:48)

    A thrilling, entertaining and most educational experience. One from which I will draw much inspiration. Thank you to all involved!

  • Jen Brook (10.07.2014 | 11:04)

    A brilliant day made all the better by exceptional styling in an incredible location with people that would go above and beyond to create a great photograph. Of all the training days I have been a part of, this certainly sits amongst my most favourite ever.

  • Cathy Higgins (10.08.2014 | 12:01)

    What an amazing venue. You can do sooo much with it. Love the styling and the compositions of the images. Very fitting for the location. Great work Brett. Would love to attend the next one. Will bring Brian too.

  • Neil Proctor (10.08.2014 | 06:05)

    Awesome describes everything about this day, from the location to the models, MUA and stylists

    Awesome experience, a day packed with information and techniques from one of the best photographers in the business, set in a location to die for.

    Of the training courses that I have been in, this is right up there at the top. I would love to do the whole day again.

    Nice one Brett and James, you guys are exceptional

  • Matt Selby (12.10.2015 | 03:27)

    Looks amazing! Think I need to get on the next asylum course! :)

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Not too often these days I get the chance to set up a test shoot. Using my new background that took me two days to make I set to it. The look was nice & clean and we were looking for a classy, soft look with the lighting.

Shooting Chloe Bell from Nemesis models. When testing it is very important to try and remember what you are doing. I mean by that,in my real shooting life at weddings and kids shoots I have to shoot very fast. I don’t get too much time to relax into a shot and work my way through it. So for this very reason that is what testing should be about , for me anyway!

Using a mixture of Elinchrom lights, modifiers – 70cm softbox, stripbox, Deep Octa & 6ft Octabank, smoke machine. With some lovely styling by Zan Atkinson & for the firs time I also got the images retouched by a pro, Catherine Day.  Here are a couple of shots from the day shoot.

To see how I made my background CLICK HERE.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Last week saw us at the wonderful venue of The Mansion in Leeds in the amazing setting of Roundhay Park. A huge thank you to all that made it there and for James Davies for writing up this brilliant blog post. So good I thought I would just link to it!!

http://www.jdaviesphotography.co.uk/latest-news/brett-harkness-photography-training-day-mansion-house/

Thanks to Lee for assisting on the day. Huge thank you to Zan Atkinson for her amazing styling and to Novakks Bridal Lounge for our gorgeous dresses. Of course to Emma & Nic for their modelling and for putting up with the cold so well! Also thank you to all the people at The Mansion for making us feel so welcome..

 

Here are some of the images that I shot on the training day but if you want to see what other people shot then take a look at James’s link above to read more about our great day of BHP training.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 comment
  • Adrian Harvey (11.27.2013 | 12:26)

    She's a very beautiful subject and it looked like a good day light-wise to capture these images. Great looking shots!

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Last month saw us visit the zoo for a days documentary photography. This tough day was a test for everyone with only 50mm lenses being allowed as our weapon of choice! Normally you would visit a zoo with a big zoom to get great shots of the animals but not today!

The point of today’s courses was to teach the photographers how to shoot documentary of the animals with only a short focal length lens.Looking at how to see, how to frame, how to use leading lines to take the viewer into the shot. About using extreme framing to draw the eye in and using techniques that allow you to document every day events with a style and look that can become your own. Using amongst other things exposure as a weapon when photographing scenes of very different & extreme exposures. I use all of these techniques in my every day shooting allowing me to use primes in all kind of situations.

Here are a few images from the days course. Our new Autumn courses are coming out on the website this week!

 

 

 

 

 

Looking how to fill a frame with important elements in order to take the viewers eye to the subject.

Using color and timing as an important element to the composition.

 

 

 

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The day after filming for our Creative Flash for Weddings DVD last year the weather was so nice we decide to stop by the beach on the way home and film some extra footage!

Showing set ups including Off Camera High Speed flash, big Elinchrom Ranger flash being used to it’s max against the sun, running with flash and so much more… Watch this footage and share it with your friends. If you have any questions about it please join us on our FB page, twitter @brettharkness or contact us through the site. TAKE A LOOK AT THE VIDEO ON OUR VIDEO PAGE BY CLICKING HERE
Take a look at our Creative Flash for weddings & Real Wedding DVD’s. We also have a NEW DOWNLOAD option so you can watch whilst on the run or easily from a different country.

Take a look at brettharknessphotography.com/store/ for more information.

5 comments
  • Joanne Gower (01.31.2013 | 10:36)

    Thanks Brett the dvd is great and highly recommended! I am about to shoot a seaside wedding so this couldnt be more timely!

  • Neil Proctor (01.31.2013 | 10:37)

    £79.99 for a DVD of this quality, IMO, is a bargain.....the tips, tricks and techniques you can learn from it, are truly amazing. After watching it, there is no way, that you will not want to pick your camera up and want to start shooting flash. Thanks Brett Harkness and co for creating a fantastic product. If you want quality, to help assist you in flash, I strongly urge you to purchase it! Remember, if you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you always got.....

  • Angela Adams (01.31.2013 | 10:38)

    I must complain... I didn't get any sleep last night after watching this at 11pm before I went to bed. My mind was far too busy I even dreamt of Brett Harkness , must be my age and hormones going awry! Here's hoping for a more peaceful night tonight!

  • Mark Revill (01.31.2013 | 10:40)

    Outstanding Film and photoshoot.

  • Jon Mold (01.31.2013 | 10:41)

    Think you can run faster backwards than I can forwards.

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October this year saw us back at the wonderful Chateau Rigaud, outside of Bordeaux, France. A huge thank you to Rob Summer for filming and producing for us this wonderful short film from our training course.

Every year we make our pilgrimage to this wonderful retreat in southern France. This year we had back to back courses such was the demand for this trip. Working with 4 models over two days with wonderful styling from Zan Atkinson with a collection of clothing to even make VOGUE magazine jealous! As I said Rob Summers from Promo Films came with us on the firs course to produce this great fun film for us.
We spent two days working with different lighting from Elinchrom, shooting in the vineyards, in a local town in the streets and down by the river. We also shot in a production vineyard using the house of the owner as a wonderful castle like background, a beautiful chateau of fairytale proportions! To see IMAGES from this course please CLICK HERE.

I have also put in some BTS images for you to see a little of what went on during this great , fun course. Including  few images of our little baby, Makenzie! She very much enjoyed the course & learnt a lot!

Thank you to Lizzie from Panama who was on the course for these BTS images.

The clap of approval from baby Makenzie!

Mmmm, cake!! A huge thank you to Steve, the amazing Chef at Chateau Rigaud.

Kristie & our little baba!…

Paul. setting up for a group shot on the last night!

Look whats in my hand daddy!

One of the amazing looks from our stylist , Zan, shooting with Elinchrom strip box & Ranger RX speed AS.

Getting down with the Phase & Canon kit, inside the chateau.

One of our set ups inside.

 

Finding the light in a small town near the chateau.

 

 

Mmm, more cake!!

Zan, doing her thing!!

 

 

 

1 comment
  • Jabidul Islam (11.30.2012 | 10:41)

    Please can you let me know when you are planning for the next france trip, i will be really interested in joining.

    Jabidul

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It has been a couple of years since Bjorn has visited us at the studio so it was great to see him again. This time he brought his daughter & friend from Norway for their works experience! Not bad ! Over two days we looked at his imagery, ways to make what he does already even better! The use of different light modifiers, using the ambiance and other light sources.

Lighting is a very personal thing and I think everyone should have their own way of doing things. I certainly do and it has taken a while to bring that in and make it my style. Whilst there is a lot of information taught over a 1-1 session it is very important that you take the information back and mold it into your own style, make your imagery synonymous with you. A big thank you to Bjorn for coming over from Norway, it was a pleasure to see you again. Maybe see you in Norway for a wedding course soon!!

If you are interested in our 1-1 sessions then contact the studio for more information or take a look at the 1-1 page on the training site.

 

 

Image taken using Elinchrom Ranger RX Speed AS kit & Deep Octa Box

 

Image shot with Elinchrom Ranger RX speed & Large Indirect Octabank 190cm

 

Shot using Octabank, with Emma stood against it in the street

 

Image shot with Ranger Pack & Maxi Spot Reflector 29˚ 40 cm. The same shape as the Maxi Lite Reflector, but produced with brilliant, glossy reflection material for very high efficiency, throws light even over longest distances. A narrow powerful beam creates deep, sharp shadows.

 

Shot using Ranger RX speed pack, 70cm softbox with grid, 1 – 70 cm softbox bounced & Quadra head with Snood for background.

 

Taken just using 2 Fluorescent lights above Emma, with K scale input for WB.

 

Image showing Octabank in use

 

5 comments
  • Kwame Asiaw (05.24.2012 | 02:35)

    loving the seperation on the street shots. the model properly 'pops' off the screen. that the back streets of Manc city centre Brett?

  • rob (05.24.2012 | 04:08)

    Awesome work guys

  • Bjorn H Stuedal (05.25.2012 | 07:35)

    Finally back in Norway. Thanks for the two days of training - and once again thanks for being so generous sharing your knowledge.

  • David (06.01.2012 | 01:55)

    These images really do pop in quite a spectacular fashion. Great stuff!

  • Natallia (07.31.2013 | 12:59)

    Beautiful selection Brett!

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This Monday saw us host a great flash course from the studio and then onto a very funky location in Manchester. A huge thank you to Zan Atkinson for her wonderful make-up & hair skills and for Emma & J’nae for giving us great hair & faces to work with! Also for jumping in very high healed shoes!

We had a great session looking at off camera flash. We started off using speedlights at the studio and then moved onto Elinchrom lights later on out on location. This may have been more of  a “fashion” type of course but the principal of the way we use flash is exactly the same at weddings, commercial & lifestyle. It just has many applications. I hope all the delegates enjoyed themselves and by the feedback we had they certainly did. We try and keep things as simple as we can when shooting with our flash. Usually the clients haven’t go too much time on their hands to wait around so we have to be quick, know what we want and deliver. Fashion is slightly different. We can afford to spend a little more time setting the lights and getting it just right. Which ever way you work it is vital you know your equipment inside/out and most importantly learn what you want to get out of it!

We have some great courses coming up this year with a new set of June-October 2012 courses being released soon.

Here are a few shots from the day:

 

2 comments
  • Jamie Vickerstaff (02.23.2012 | 04:52)

    Beautiful shots Brett, great soft light. I'll keep an eye out for training sessions this year.

  • Tony Bayliss (02.23.2012 | 08:42)

    Great shots, Brett, Loved the course and the location and girls were fantastic!

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It has been a great start to the New Year at BHP Studios. Kristie’s office has seen a revamp, a new addition to the Harkness clan!! We have shot three weddings already and have a very busy year ahead of us. Our training has got off to a great start also with numerous sessions taking place at the studio.

Last week saw us Host Ray Tan Photography on his 1-1 session and the week before with David Foden Photography. Both sessions were initially spent looking at their portfolio and their current methods of shooting. We then looked at weddings and the whole process of what goes into one of their own weddings and also one of mine. We spent the pm session shooting with a model , looking at numerous lighting setups in and out of the studio.Huge thank you to Nicky & Laura for modelling for us .Our bespoke sessions are very relaxed and we make sure that we cover as much as we can what you need to know.

If you are interested in our 1-1 or small group session please CLICK HERE or call the studio on 01706 340792 for more information.

Here are a few images taken on the 1-1 sessions.

 

Shot outside with Elinchrom Ranger, 1 head. 400 ISO 125th sec @f18

 

320 ISO, 250th sec @ f14. Using Quadra. 1/4 power.

 

ISO 400, 25th sec @f22, one head shot with Elinchrom Ranger & 70cm softbox.

 

 

To read more about the Elinchrom lights please read our last post HERE or go to the ELINCHROM SITE HERE.

 

 

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Well we ended 2011 with two fantastic courses at the studio and then onto two locations in Manchester. A huge thank you to everyone involved in the two separate courses. Monday saw us start off at the studio and then onto The Lowry Theatre as our location. After a morning session talking about the technique involved in flash at weddings we shot a little inside the studio before lunch & then into Manchester. This course was more geared to the use of speed lights as our light source. Looking at the technique that I use for all of my flash usage.

No matter what flash situation I am in I still use the same techniques, it means I have full control of my situation and not being controlled by the lights or TTL!  ETTL is great and to be used when the time is short but I love the process of manual flash, I don’t know;  it makes me feel totally in control and on top of what I am doing. It is this process that you will learn if you come on one of our flash courses. After a brief session outside we headed into the Lowry Theatre  and after coffee continued to shoot around the building looking at light, form, posing and getting the most from the simple things! A huge thank you to Zan Atkinson our Stylist who rocks it every time. To Steph & Aaron & also to Alana for being great and for standing in the cold whilst everyone figured out their settings!

Here are some of the images shot on the course:

 

 

WEDDING FLASH II

Wednesday this week saw us put on our last flash course, in fact our last course of 2011! What a year it has been! The course content was the same as Monday so we started off at the studio ironing out the technique that has pushed our own wedding flash to another place. After heading out to Manchester for lunch we started shooting in a very cool location. The shoot started off in the back alleys of Manchester, because of the cold we didn’t last too long and then headed off into the very dark & spooky cellars under Manchester streets. We wanted dark and we go it!

After a while down there we headed off upstairs to the club and continued the shoot. Even using the ladies toilets for one of our backgrounds! It can be done! A huge thank you to the photographers for being such great sports even if we had to squeeze into the worlds oldest & smallest elevator! It was worth it! Also to model Emma for being amazing as ever, to Jnane & Stefan for also being great to work with. To our stylist extra-ordinare! Zan Atkinson.

Here are some images from the day:

 

SHOT TAKEN WITH DAYLIGHT & LASTOLIGHT REFLECTOR

SHOT IN THE BACK STREET OF MANCHESTER WITH A 70CM SOFTBOX

INSIDE THE CLUB, 500 ISO 1/20TH SEC @F16

IN THE STUDIO , 8TH POWER SPEEDLIGHT WITH AN EZYBOX, 250TH SEC @F3.5, 50ISO

 

WE HAVE JUST RELEASED OUR NEW EARLY 2012 COURSES SO JOIN US AT THE STUDIO AND AT SOME STUNNING LOCATIONS THROUGHOUT THE UK IN JAN-MAY 2012. FOR MORE INFO CALL THE STUDIO ON 01706 340792 OR CLICK HERE.

4 comments
  • Guy Levine (12.16.2011 | 01:12)

    The course was fantastic Brett. I got some really great photos and learnt loads about the flow of the wedding, how to mix it up to get a nice variety of shots, and how to get the 'wow' pics. Looking forward to more next year!

  • Helen Rushton (12.16.2011 | 01:14)

    Images are great, I can't wait until I join you in march 2012!! Have a great Christmas and New Year Brett and THANK YOU for your inspiration this year! Helen

  • Kim Shaw (12.16.2011 | 01:46)

    Great images (as usual) Brett. I joined you on two courses this year (Wedding Flash and Winter Weddings) I loved every minute and learnt loads. Thanks for your patience and encouragement. I hope to see you and Kristie again next year!

  • red chilli photography (12.16.2011 | 08:09)

    fantastic stuff again Brett :)

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So what seems like a lifetime ago now since our wonderful France course. I have finally got some time to post about the second day of shooting on our amazing time spent at the wonderful Chateau Rigaud.

Back at the beginning of October we spent a fantastic few days at this wonderful chateau outside of Bergerac/Bordeaux in France. We started the 2nd day having breakfast in the dining room of the chateau whilst our first model of the day , local model Laure Cizeron spent her time in make up and styling whilst we went through equipment with the photographers.

A big thank you to make up, Laura Cawte who did  a great job throughout the 2 days shooting with Kristie making sure all the models looked exactly as we wanted them to. A huge thank you also to The Flash Centre for the loaning of some wonderful equipment, very much appreciated and used! If you missed PART 1 & PART 2 please click on the day to view the story so far.

We started off with Laure outside just getting her used to use and more importantly us used to her!! She was great and gelled in with the group straight away. Using only a wall we looked at exposure, framing and interaction when language is a barrier.We then moved onto a few different backgrounds , a tree and also some of the vineyards that surround the chateau before heading back to the chateau. We got a couple of lights out , one as a back light and did a few shots before we ventured back.

 

 

A few shots from behind the scenes at the set ups up to this point. Thanks to Guy Levine & Ross Holkham for sending in some great BTS shots..

 

Paul wearing the models hat! Very fetching!!

 

 

 

We then moved inside for a quick coffee & cake! Before starting the second model for the day, Idoiaa. We had two very different but equally great looks going on this second day but because we had gone through a lot of information on day 1 we could concentrate on ironing out any problems people had with their shooting & flash and letting people shoot more.

Here is a little video from the first AM session:

Brett Harkness Training in France Day 2 am session from brett harkness on Vimeo.

Starting off inside we took Idoiia, into one of the darkest corners of the chateau! Looking at creating a more specific shot to match the surroundings. Teaching people how to match the exposure to the ambient surroundings without “killing it”.

 

 

A few shots from behind the scenes at this shot showing the equipment used:

We then went back inside using the window in the main dining room, starting off without any flash and again looking at exposure. We then set up one head on the right hand side of the Laure and looked at balancing and over riding the ambiance with it whilst Idoiia got changed for her next session.

Starting off in the Dining room we were looking to shoot against the light using a situation that could easily be replicated anywhere else! As long as you are not on the top floor!

 

A few pictures taken at this session…

 

We then headed into the dining room for a great rustic French lunch, chilling out with a few glasses of wine for good measure. A few us got the equipment ready for our next set up in the long room at the chateau.Using a mixture of daylight and our Elinchrom kit everyone got a mini session with Idoiia, un, deaux, trois!

 

 

A quick shot from BTS:

 

Here is a little video from this part of the session:

Brett Harkness Photography Training PM session from brett harkness on Vimeo.

By this time we had had an amazing three days at the chateau, shooting hundreds of images and passing on a lot of information. We had decided to go out on a bang and finish off shooting in a dead sunflower field using the huge Elinchrom Octabank, measuring 190cm across. This amazing light modifier is not for the faint hearted but we knew that the light quality that it would give out would be something very special and different so we couldn’t resist using it. After we managed to erect it we set up our last shot in the field…

The huge Octabank we used for our final image. Invented in 1982, their unique patented construction and design have won these large lightweight softboxes worldwide popularity. A lightweight die cast rigid central mounting for the flash head inside the unit which places the flash tube at the point of focus. The optical result is a light source, which is so even at the diffuser surface, that many famous photographers use the Octa as a single light source for portrait photography.

Me posing with my new best friend!!

 

Paul with a UFO landing on his head…!

 

The image produced with the single light source…

 

A little video clip showing our last set up..

Untitled from brett harkness on Vimeo.

Our last Group shot…

 

Wow, so what a few days we had this year in the amazing surrounding of Chateau Rigaud outside of Bordeaux. A huge thank you to everyone that made it down to the course. It is one to be remembered that’s for sure. A lot of information was passed on, a lot of questions asked, a lot of wine drunk! A lot of images taken, equipment used and a WHOLE lot of fun had! It was great for people to be able to spend some time together after the training, spending quality time with like minded people is something that not everyone gets the chance to do, it is a big part of our training courses that they are great social events also. We encourage all levels on our courses as we think that everyone can learn, whether full time pro’s or part time amateurs. So make 2012 a special year and book your training with BHP studios.

Here are some video testimonials from the photographers on the course…

The Last supper… Brett Harkness Training from brett harkness on Vimeo.

We are about to release some very exciting new dates for our courses for next year. So if these last few posts have inspired you and you want to take part in some great training next year then watch this space!

 

Read what people said about this course:

 

“un, dos, tres!! Fromage!!  Just got back from a wedding (nice sunset but not like France) to find this great email, can’t wait till the next adventure, the only problem you will have is that in the words of Joyce “nobody else can book unless one of us dies” lol.   Think we could make a book of quotes from the trip and the banter was nearly as good as the photography.”

Ross Holkham

“I just wanted to drop you both a quick note to say a huge thank you for the most fantastic few days in France…
I had the time of my life – so much fun with great friends, the most beautiful cool location, fantastic food, wine & great training as always…
Some very special memories & the image of man’s attempts to fly in a sunflower field with an octobox is one I’ll remember for quite some time!
Thanks again so much & I’ll get some photos over to you asap – see you very soon!”
Joyce

Sharon (11.07.2011 | 11:50)

Hello! I’ve really enjoyed watching all the clips !
I must do something with my hair next time! Ha. Thanks again for the best course EVER ! I learnt SO much and am enjoying putting it all into practise. Put me down for next year and i hope to see the same people again… It was great spending three days with everyone. Sharon x

3 comments
  • Paul mannion (11.25.2011 | 01:43)

    Well i'm going to booking on the next course learn't so much on this wonderful course great location models and inspiration from the Harknesses Thank you so much!!

  • Ross (11.25.2011 | 10:40)

    lol....I had forgot about the "hear no evil, speak no evil,see no evil" shot...classic. Great round up of a fantastic time mate, heres to the next adventure!!

  • Katherine Ashdown (12.01.2011 | 03:16)

    Yay! LOVE the last post such an awesome course brought it all back... cannot wait to do it again! Ross's. My video is SO embarassing!!

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brettharknesstraining

Last week saw us return to my home town of Newcastle for a great funky, street flash course. Despite the weather we had great fun. This course was our first north of York and may I thank both models,Frankie & Jodi and also to Josephine Birkett for offering us her make-up skills. Thanks for carting that very large suitcase all over the place!

We started off the day talking about flash guns and how to use them, manually & ETTL; then after coffee we took to the streets using first 580EX II flash guns in Lastolite Ezy boxes, we then moved onto Elinchrom’s Quadra kit and then finished off with the bug guns, Elinchrom’s Ranger RX Speed kit. So much info was shared on the day not just about flash but about our business, working with models, clients and so much more. A big thank you to Henry Aarvold for his assisting skills and for the little bit of video he managed to take whilst multi tasking! Much appreciated! Here are some images from the course.

Our new SEP-DEC 2011 courses will be released next week. Watch this space as places are limited.

 

 

 

Henry holding an Elinchrom Quadra A head with a 70cm softbox.

A little bit of grabbed video:

4 comments
  • Samantah Jones (08.11.2011 | 03:42)

    Wow, the weather couldn't have been different from the course at Fanhams Hall! Great images achieved despite the elements.

  • Craig Marshall (08.11.2011 | 03:43)

    Craig Marshall yay done, good shots brett and some recognisable places too, especially the blue door with the model against the nude colour plaster, many years ago i helped build those apartment! Did you see much change in the city since you were last in the toon brett?

  • Brett Harkness (08.11.2011 | 03:45)

    yeh big time Craig, its a great place.. Ive been back a couple of times but a lot of money has gone into the place, would love to shoot their again! cheers

  • Richard Woodside (08.11.2011 | 09:09)

    Just a quick line or two to say what a great day I had on the course, Brett! I came away with some great images and an invaluable insight into the way you work. I'm looking forward to the next one already! Thanks again.

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A true photographic phenonemon.Brett Harkness is a man in demand— Dan Lezano. Digital SLR Photography