Shooting Orange Swan

Last weekend I had the opportunity to shoot a band called Orange Swan at their gig at the 55mm2 Festival in the AZ Mülheim.

The location

The AZ Mülheim is a very cool location for taking pictures. You probably get some really nice shots there, even without anything else going on. Old and gritty, with graffiti all over the brick walls, it provides a nice and interesting background.

The Setup

I had my 5D Mark III with me, but I opted for using the X100S instead. I put a Pocket Wizard MiniTT1 on the X100S and used one Canon Speedlite 430EX with a FlexTT5.

The Setup: Fujifilm X100S & Canon Speedlite 430EX & Pocket Wizards
The Setup: Fujifilm X100S & Canon Speedlite 430EX & Pocket Wizards


During the performance I changed the position of the flash and tried different angles.

Seb of Orange Swan at the guitar
Seb (in the foreground) and Christian (back) of Orange Swan

I could get next to the stage on one side to position the flash behind the band.

I think, I liked the resulting images the most: The bricks are nicely illuminated and the guys in front are silhuetted and sharp.

In the next image you actually see the flash going off in the background:

Off-camera flash via Pocket Wizard & Fujifilm X100S
Off-camera flash via Pocket Wizard & Fujifilm X100S

I also tried manual focusing. Something I have never really done before. Even though the autofocus did a great job in these low-light conditions, I wanted to try the excellent tools the X100S provides. Unfortunately I can’t tell, which images are shot using auto- or manual focus, as the meta-data does not show this information (at least in Lightroom 4).

If anyone knows how to get this information, please let me know. (If it ever was in the file, it probably got lost, when converting to .dng files in Lightroom anyway…?)


You can absolutely use the X100S for a photo shoot like this.

I should probably add the flash and the Pocket Wizards to my go-bag. 🙂

You can find some more pictures of Orange Swan at the 55mm2 Festival on Flickr.