Recently I shot hockey players for Molson Export. The emphasis was to depict the hard work, determination and sweat that goes into playing hockey. To add drama I wanted to freeze the ice spray while keeping the focus on the player. So we chose Profoto pro 8air 2400 packs for their short flash duration, super fast recycle time and 10 stop range. Being able to dial the packs down was important as all images except 1 setup are shot at f2.8 at 1/800 with a phase one 645 camera with a phase one P30+. I also utilized Profoto bi tubes in the event that I needed more power while maintaining the recycle time and short flash duration. A Nikon d3 was used for the motor 11fps shooting capability for shots of players taking shots on goal. The pro 8's kept up and recycled without a single frame being dark.
The lighting setup was pretty simple. I had a beauty dish with tough spun diffusion boomed overhead for a directional layer of light and then I used 2 or 3 narrow beam reflectors with grids for sharp contrasty light to shape the players. Keeping the narrow beams pretty low was done to attempt to skim the surface of the ice without blowing it out.
The fun part was that we shot this from 11pm-8am to ensure we could get a block of uninterrupted ice time and that Molson sent us a few cases of beer to ensure we were not thirsty.
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