Lasertag on a Quiet Weekend

San Diego –– It had been a quiet holiday weekend for the most part.  I was able to outline and plan a two day lighting seminar/workshop for local educators and others to be run in early Spring semester, got some grading done, some reading, a couple of nice dinners, and some nice thoughts sent my way for Veterans Day.

Mostly I was preparing for the field trip to Yosemite this coming weekend and was beginning to panic because the park has still not sent me the entrance waivers for the students.  And I was anticipating a new experience Monday afternoon.  Cynthia had asked me if I was up for Lasertag.  To be fair I was distracted and did not properly hear her.  So I was thinking it was a bizarre request to go play lazertag but what the heck, I had never done it and it had to be less stress ful with those weapons than with the ones shooting real bullets from my past.  So I said to count me in.

But what she had REALLY asked was was I interested in doing a shoot for a lasertag facilities to be a cover and feature for a local guide book.  To be honest I’m not sure, when she disabused me of my error whether I was relieved or disappointed…

Anyway, off we went.  This was something I would have really prefered to scope out before hand and formulate a plan but as is becoming more common, we walked in cold.  Something told me to go out to my horde of photo goodies and grab a role of colored gels but otherwise we were not specially equipped.

The facility was new and still far better looking than I had imagined.  The owner was helpful and provided one of his kids as a model.  We did a walk through and Cynthia really liked the entrance to the arena (or whatever it is properly called) and it was an excellent choice.

The actual setting was in a well lit hallway next to the entry door but  I thought to try to simulate the sense of being in the action so set up the gels on either side of the subject with the main light a simple cone reflector.  I wanted spot, hard, atmospheric lighting, a real departure from our normal shooting.  So it was fun for me to be faced with a completely new set of problems.  If I had known about it before hand I would have brought a smoke maker or perhaps some dry ice to add some more atmosphere to the ground.

We shot a couple of variations including one with a second adult player but those were not really that exciting.  Cynthia also shot their arcade at the owner’s request while I was striking the set.

For the final I emphasized the “Dutch Tilt” to create a bit more dynamics and added the laser blast to her laser pistol in post.  I confess it was not how I expected to end my long weekend but I think it came out rather well.

A fearson laser warrior advances on the unseen targets in a lasertag arena.  Shot with Canon 5D MkIII, 24-105mm lens at 35mm.

A fearless laser warrior advances on the unseen targets in a lasertag arena. Shot with Canon 5D MkIII, 24-105mm lens at 35mm.  Shot for Sinclair-King Photography as a cover shot for a local entertainment guide.

This coming weekend I’ll be in Yosemite so the next post may have some interesting landscape images.


About ndking

Commercial Photographer and Professor of Photography at San Diego City College
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