The warmth brings out the reptiles, I often go out bush for a random wander and this time I took a bunch of gear with a certain shot in mind. After shooting some snakes last summer I wanted to light the snake a lot nicer than what the mid day sun can, which is usually not that nice.
Armed with a light stand, some Canon strobes, mini and flex pocket wizards and ac3 zone controller, gels, small softbox and so on... I wandered.
For this idea I wanted a tiger snake but came across this copperhead in the brushes which I've seen several times over the last few weeks. I started shooting some regular shots getting an angle and observing the snakes behaviour. I shot some ambient only and also mixed with a bit of on camera flash with dome diffuser and a 1/2 cto gel to pump some warm fill light in there. Not beautiful light, but dialling the power back for some warm fill helps a bit. It's very important to take your time and not go blasting in there. Two things will happen, snake takes off fast and no chance of a shot, or get bitten. Patience is the key.
This particular day was very Tasmanian - blue sky, warm, then wind and rain, repeat six times. After taking cover a couple of times I decided to setup and work on this shot I had in mind. I put a 580ex2 on the light stand with a pocket wizard, 1/2 cto gel and frosty gel with the head zoomed all the way to 120mm then slowly put the light in place where I thought would make a nice angle hitting the snake.
I sessioned this for a little while and sure enough, rain again. I plan to use this technique throughout the summer and get it spot on. Take a look at some of the shots from the day.