Behold – Shot with broncolor

An interview with photography duo, Herring & Herring, discussing their new issue, Behold.

What is Behold?

Behold is the latest issue of our self-titled photography magazine.

We publish and exclusively photograph every issue in between the work we do for clients. Each of our biannual issues are guided by a singular theme and are built around unique creative collaborations with our subjects. The publication is as much akin to a highly curated art exhibition as it is to a lifestyle magazine and can be found on newsstands worldwide.

Behold, shines a bright light on beauty. Each person we photographed represents what beauty means to us; not only by their physical appearance, but equally by their kind humanitarian actions, and their spirit.

After each portrait session we spoke with our subjects about the idea of beauty and asked them to reflect their own personal stories, experiences and thoughts by putting pen to paper, in hopes of inspiring all of us to look deeper both at their portraits, and at ourselves, in our own quiet for self-acceptance and the journey towards realizing our best selves.

What inspired you to create Behold?

We were inspired by British actor, Adam Pearson. Adam is affected by type I neurofibromatosis. NF-1 causes tumors along the nervous system which can grow anywhere on the body. Once you see Adam you can never forget him. We were really amazed by the beauty that emerged either because of or in spite of his affliction and could not wait to trace light around his features and capture it in pictures. Adam also happens to be an incredibly outgoing, funny, intelligent and insightful collaborator, a true dream for us to work with. He set the tone for the kind of people we wanted to feature in this issue; a real exploration of beauty archetypes, inside and out.

How is this issue different from your previous issues? How have the issues evolved?

This issue is probably the most diverse, in terms of who we photographed. It features an array of body types, races, sexualities, genders, and age ranges. We shot 22 people, which is the most we have ever featured, and it is the largest issue featuring 189 photographs spanning 200 pages. This is also the first time we interviewed our subjects, asking everyone the same four questions, themed around beauty. We took their hand-written responses and placed them within the layout of the magazine. In addition, we produced 22 editorial videos, one per person, featuring audio clips from our interviews layered on top of the visuals. We then redesigned the entire magazine. It really feels like the next chapter of the publication. Having the interview text over the images gives a very powerful combination. It lets the viewer in so much more. We have gotten incredible feedback from our readers, everything from smiles to laughter, to goosebumps, to tears.

You asked all of your subjects what beauty means to them. What does beauty mean to each of you?

There is a reason we shoot people. Everyone comes with their own story, their own experience, their own lessons learned. It’s a thrill for us to get to know our subjects and to try to capture some of that journey. Whether we are capturing the honesty of a person or building a character we are always chasing the inner truth of the human spirit, which to us is where true beauty lies.

How did broncolor play a role in your shoots?

Our studio setting is very important to each issue and is highly considered. We wanted to have a range of settings in the studio to play with and needed to keep them consistent in the various studios we used in NY, LA, and London. We try to be economical about how much equipment we use, and because of timing and our small crew, we come up with ways to keep the same light setup but change the look of the lighting by moving our subjects, using reflectors, and changing light output.

For this issue we used a mix of natural light and flash in the studio. It was extremely important for us to match the light quality of the broncolor flash with natural light. For natural light, we used windows, skylights, garage doors, and finally shooting outside of the studio. Sometimes we would combine natural light with the broncolor heads on modeling mode – this would give us a great combo of subtle warm and cold tones.

What equipment did you use, and why did you choose it?

We always try to stay as portable as possible but also keep in mind the needs and requirements of the shoot. Because we travel when shooting each issue of the magazine, we don’t always have time to recharge batteries, so this time around we decided on the Move 1200 power packs. This gave us the flexibility of charging when we had time or just plugging straight in to the wall if we didn’t. We used 2 broncolor MobiLED heads with softboxes on either side of the set to light the backdrop and another MobiLED head with a broncolor Para 133 as our main light source for our subjects.

The Para 133 is super fast and easy to set up which to us is a great advantage. The softness of light and sweep is exactly what we need because of the changing parameters of shooting full body and closeup portraits, without loosing the focus of the light. So, we get great directional light at the center of the image with a nice soft diffusion around the subject.

Ultimately, everything fit into 3 medium sized cases which was perfect to travel with.

How did the lighting make the shoot successful?

Photographers are of course at the mercy of light. Being able to have total control of our lighting, stress-free and quick setup, combined with portability and ease of travel makes broncolor our go to lighting equipment not only for Herring & Herring Magazine but for all of our photo productions. Broncolor equipment is always dependable and built to last. It sets our minds at ease knowing that we will always get beautiful results and a stress-free environment.

HERRING & HERRING is the collaboration between renowned international photographers Dimitri Scheblanov and Jesper Carlsen. The team’s photographic approach is based upon conceptual and aesthetic exploration; continuously pushing the boundaries of story telling through an ever-expanding visual vernacular for their editorial, commercial and celebrity clients. Follow their work @herringandherring.

Pick up a copy of Behold here; use BRONCOLOR10 to save 10%.