A huge expanse of stars lights the sky above us, the moon is in slow decent waiting for the sun to take over the day shift. Tall trees cast impenetrably black shadows across the already dark earth and water laps softly in time to the twitter of invisible insects. Jazz music fills the air cranked out of Herman’s ipad as he twirls me about our makeshift camp. My assistant Daniela Zondagh and food assistant Melissa Pecoraro help us set up for the shoot.
We were awake and on the road by 3:30am with sandwiches and a hot flask of coffee to keep us awake. We met up with Herman and Melissa in the clearing, set up camp and waited for the sun to rise so we could shoot the Sarie June food shoot. This took longer than expected and for a while the only light available was from the torches attached to our heads and the headlights of Daniela’s bakkie. Insects kept flying into our faces and causing a nuisance. We really were roughing it with the kitchen at the back of Sarie’s caddy and the bathroom in front of Daniela’s bakkie.
As soon as the sun started rising it was all systems go so as to make the most of the light. It was only when we could all see that Herman noticed everything not in the place he wanted it to be and it was a mad rush to replace everything and still catch the light.
The shoot, however, went well and was all wrapped up by 12:30pm. All the food was cooked over the open flame which added a lovely rustic feel. Herman believes location shoots to be challenges that really bring the creative out in him. I agree, it’s different, there’s excitement and you never know what the light is going to do. A skrim is your best friend when shooting on location as it is easily portable and softens the sunlight.