I was reluctant to get rid of
I set about a plan to marry it up with the firefighters backpack by making them into accessories that would suit
The result was great and as sad as it sounds I was so excited now and, the helmet was now looking the part when I attached a mouthpiece. This I acquired from my day job from an old broken headset and then I added the red star stickers gave it an eastern block feel.
Next was casting the character based on the story I created to accompany this set. At first I very much wanted an elderly thin person to look quite comical with the huge helmet. That was soon put on hold when our stylist Sarah mentioned Dennis her Grandfather. He is 85 years of age and quite the character so we decided that we can roll with that. As soon as I met Dennis we clicked and he was a true character where nothing was too much for him. Even the weight of the backpack now was probably around 20kg!
On to the shoot I decided on a 3 light set up. I used one key light with large softbox and a rear kicker light for the backdrop to give it depth and lastly a stripbox with grid to punch a bit of light on to the jetpack. We also decided to light the jet pack using fireworks so a lot had to come together and caught just right. That and a deadpan look from Dennis who was now playing the character Bryn Hughes from the story. The 3 images show the transformation of Bryn from an unassuming but bitter person into a determined soul with one last shot. He really didn’t care if he literally went out with a bang!
Sarah styled Bryn to show a conservative look through to a dishevelled look complete with black face from the dust of the Aerobie. I thought the goggle marks on his face worked well and I added a tear to his eye later on. The funny part was keeping a straight face when lighting the Aerobie near Bryn’s bottom while he kept a steely look. The studio was in uproar while he remained the true pro.
The story is loosely based on my own life frustrations so my wife says but it’s a mixture of research for dates etc. and my own imagination. I really enjoy working in series and stories and hopefully they sit better with people rather than a single image.
Lastly I would like to thank the Skint Creative team and now we feel we are heading in the right direction.