New Zealand Geographic Magazine had me do another editorial portrait; Bryce Johnson was the subject of their regular feature ‘Profile’.
UPDATE: 23 May 2015: WE DID IT! Photo won it’s category in the 2015 Canon Media Awards! We’re very proud about that! Big thanks to NZ Geographic Magazine, and Canon New Zealand.
UPDATE: May 2015: This photo is 1 of 3 FINALISTs in the prestigous Canon Media Awards for 2015. Cross your fingers!
My job was to communicate Bryce’s varied roles in one image. This was a formidable task as CEO of the NZ Fish and Game Council his is a complex and varied role. Primarily, Fish and Game is a statutory organisation concerned with the rights of anglers and hunters, and advocating for improving habitat.
The portrait needed to capture that variety. I wanted to focus on his advocacy for anglers and freshwater quality for all of us, but also how his day can stretch from political halls of the The Beehive, to the bank of a river. Here’s what I got:
The shot was fairly complex, it required a wide angle underwater photo to catch the habitat around Bryce and called for a balanced mix of underwater strobe, above water flash and ambient natural light. I used a slave trigger that fired the topside flash whenever the underwater camera strobe fired – one underwater strobe lighting Bryce’s legs, one flash pointing upward towards the softbox flash, and natural light toned down to give a sombre background to delineate Bryce’s from.
The biggest problems we had were a suitable…
venue and weather. There aren’t that many clear deep clean waterways with native forest near Wellington anymore, and secondly, being winter, river flows were up and down (and therefore discoloured). Fortunately there’s the Greater Wellington Regional Council’s very useful online river monitoring data to watch river levels and get the shot between rainfalls.
After the shot was finished, Bryce stripped off his waders, stowed his fly rod, and jumped in his car to make an important meeting at Parliament with an MP. An enjoyable morning respite for him I suspect.