Cool huh? Ok not really, but that was the problem. This company had the issue of the Wow Factor working against them. The Photo above shows the room as it was, and as our eyes saw it. The first word I said when I walked into that room was, WOW... But that's not what the photo above does for anyone. The photo above just is of this large room, but doesn't give you the sense of being there, and how cool that room really is.
It was a monumental challenge of a concept to me, as of course any photographer would/should be worried that they couldn't pull off this WOW factor. I was most certainly worried about it. I had a few ideas though, thanks to inspiration from people like Dave Black, and Joe McNally; whom I read and research frequently in times when I need inspiration. This is what I came up with...
(Nikon D3s, 800ISO, Nikon 14-24mmF2.8N, 1/20th@F8. Nikon SB-900 Speedlight with 1/2cut CTB to camera left set to 1/4 power zoomed to 85mm on a stand fired by Pocket Wizard. Nikon SB-900 Speedlight with Full Cut CTB to camera right set to 1/4th zoomed to 105mm, fired by Pocket Wizard. Single Dynalight Uni400 head on each side of the Mamoth LCD Screen set to full power, each with a full CTO over the reflector. both fired by Pocket Wizards)
The room was plenty dark though too, and I needed to expose my shot for the screen. The D3s can handle 800 or 1,000ISO like it's its job giving me absolutely minimal grain in the worst of conditions so I felt no hesitation in pushing the camera up that high to get a decent depth of field for the shots. (Something I'd never have done with my old D2x, not even when shot correctly). I probably wouldn't have gone much higher than 1000 though, even though the powers that be say the camera can take it, I still prefer the cleanest image possible and I probably would have attempted to find a lower ISO possibility. The coolest thing about this space is definitely the screen, but I felt as though the screen (despite being large and bright) was sort of lost into the black abyss of Sound Proof tiles behind it. The orange lights to separate it from the wall were a MUST in my mind. The lights didn't need to be orange, no; but I felt as though the warm colors really added a lot of contrast between the Blue GPS screen and the background as well as the desks in front. I did add some blue lights on the desks, but those are a lot more evident in the shots with staff involved.
(Nikon D3s, 1000ISO, Nikon 18-35mmF3.5-4.5@26mm, 1/40th@F9. Nikon SB-900 Speedlight with 1/2cut CTB to camera left set to 1/4th zoomed to 70mm on a stand fired by Pocket Wizard, Nikon SB-900 Speedlight with Full Cut CTB to camera right on a stand about 50' away zoomed to 200mm at 1/2 power fired by Pocket Wizard. Single Dynalight Uni400 head on each side of the Mamoth LCD Screen set to full power, each with a full CTO over the reflector. Both Dynalights fired by Pocket Wizards)
Sometimes people aren't as cooperative in groups, especially when it's around their lunchtime. In this case my assistant, Mike Guio, is sitting at the desk in the yellow shirt, to fill in for whomever had to get off the clock. Nothing wrong with it, and it does incorporate their logo into the shot, even though its very small...But it is a little bit of an easter egg for anybody who knows him. The client didn't seem to mind, and Jeff the Liaison from their IT department was off doing his IT'ly duties and we wanted to keep shooting. Sometimes, you've just got to keep shooting.
(Nikon D3s, 640ISO, Nikon 14-24F2.8N@14mm. 1/30th@F7.1. Single SB-800 Speedlight zoomed tro 105mm Fired by Pocket wizard through camera right, shot through a Queen Size bed sheet hanging over the windows to the conference room. Single Dynalight Uni400 head on each side of the Mamoth LCD Screen set to full power, each with a full CTO over the reflector. Both Dynalights fired by Pocket Wizards)
One of the neater elements of this place is that they had a VIP Conference room overlooking the Command Center. It was neat because they had a small cross section of the screen for the VIPs, or meeting attendees to utilize for their presentations. I was still jonesing to put an Xbox or death Race up on one of the big screens, but alas I was still denied. I did however ask what the coolest thing they had ever put up on the screen was though, and that was the World Cup. Not gunna lie, I think thats pretty cool.
Also pretty cool was a message I received from the Director of the Command Center. They were thrilled with the turnout of the photos in achieving the 'Wow' Factor. he even joked about not being able to use the photos because they made the room look cooler than it actually was. It was an awesome compliment, and I thanked him quite a bit. I came a far way through this project, considering I wasn't sure I would be able to deliver when offered the Job. It just goes to show you that if you work towards a vision, anything is possible. With a little perseverance, creativity, and with a good vision, you can accomplish anything. Maybe a little (or a lot of) luck doesn't hurt either... More Soon.