BTS-video of an underwater jewelry shoot

What do you do when it is summer during springtime in Belgium ?

yes indeed, you go for an trial  shooting of beautiful jewelry in an indoor swimming pool with a 7 mm wetsuit on.Crazy ? yes  Fun ? O Yea baby

Bert Stephani was the photographer (no, we didn’t make topless pictures and no animal unfriendly jokes).

Some time ago Bert got a question from a beginning jewelry designer to do an underwater photo shoot and so he was looking for assistants for light and safety.

Safety ? yes , it is needed. It only happened once but one of the models got stuck in the dress so she couldn’t stay above water after coming up from the bottom.

Secondly ,someone has to watch Bert isn’t it?  😉

As Bert and I have both the same hobby- diving – we got all the stuff to do it and the needed underwater experience .So had Joris van alphen who was the 1st/2de assistant (what’s in a name)

3 goals :

first goal of the day was to find out what works and what not so we were able to work fast and efficient on the actual shooting day.Trying out several light sources/modifiers as there are normal flash, underwater flash and even an sunbouce, Bert achieved already some really nice results.

Getting the models relaxed in the water by giving them some tips how to relax, avoid water in there nose ,and most important less air is better and other tricks they were able to stay longer under water and so was Bert able to take more then 1 picture in one “dive”.

That was goal 2

Communication was the 3th and last goal.

I can tell you one thing , there are no standard diving signals for : the  model has to start from farther away , swim a little bit on here side , relax the lips a bit more and stretch here neck more towards the light. As Bert stayed on the bottom of the swimming pool we created our own diving-model-instructions-diving-language that I then could translate and tell the models.

With this you get the following funny conversation :

Model : is it oke ?

Me : I will  ask bert (me going under the water and back up)

Me : yes it is oke ,he just asks to start from farther away , go to the surface 1m before bert, relax your lips a bit more and stretch your neck more towards the light.

Model : HEUUUU ?? how did he tell that.

So everything went smooth as hell ? yes on the technical part but then the water/human part is something else.

Think about shooting children with there favourite animal and now ad :  no air , no solid ground, underwater with open eyes , little light and you have a lot of bad shots.

Below the first little BTS compilation. You want more technical details of the shoot ? For that you have to wait on the upcoming “confessions by a photographer episode” by Bert Stephani.

Ooo for the girls reading : waterproof eye-liner really exists :-)

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