Scarlet Street Album Release Show
Location: Southgate House Revival
Camera: Ricoh GRiii
Developed With: Davinci Resolve
Scarlet Street had an album release show to celebrate their self titled debut album. I showed up, Ricoh GRiii and tiny flash in hand (or pocket really) to listen to some punk jams and generally goof around with a camera.
The Look and Development
I shot all of these in black and white in camera – and edited them greyscale as well. I think there’s something to be said for composing in black & white if your final intent is to develop black and white. The monochrome profile feature on the Ricoh is one of my favorites as well, however minor it is. The ability to see a monochrome image for composition, yet still have raw color data, is a quite nice bit of flexibility that lends to the b&w workflow.
For these images I transformed sRGB Linear images into Davinci Wide Gamut Intermediate, where I made all my adjustments. Obviously this look is monochromatic, but with an RGB display (like the screen you are looking at right now), there’s technically no such thing as true “black and white” images – only a balance of red, green, and blue pixels to create a lack of color. For that reason there’s some subtle tricks you can use to create depth.
A trick I picked up from studying the movie Macbeth, is that you can subtly split-tone your images to make them have a bit more contrast and depth, without the eyes immediately noticing the images are anything other than black and white. If you study stills from Macbeth, you’ll notice there’s actually color data in there even though it’s incredibly subtle.
For these images I probably went a bit heavier on the split tone than Macbeth did. If you didn’t notice beforehand I’m sure you can see it now. But like I said, it adds a more interesting feel and some additional depth to the image. I also added a bit of film textures, grain and a glow in the highlights. From there I really just made contrast ratio and exposure adjustments and pulled the shots I felt turned out the best.
Other Musings on Process
There’s something interesting about shooting other creative endeavors. I’ve noticed this when shooting studio sessions with artists as well, but there’s something about the energy in the room that lends itself to further creation. Almost like a compounding effect that lends to new ideas for photos entering my mind with less effort.
I’ve been wanting to shoot different events more. I enjoy trying to find a bit of a unique look, a unique take on capturing shows or other events. I feel like I lean more towards a documentary take, and am trying to lean more towards capturing the overall vibe of the environment, than specific moments. Maybe I need to experiment with shooting things other than the band… But that’s more of a personal musing than anything relevant to you the reader.
I have also really been enjoying developing my photos using my color grading workflow in Davinci Resolve. As wonky and imperfect as the process can be, I’ve gotten it to a point where I’m happy with the process. The extra seat time “coloring” things is always valuable, and quite frankly I just feel like I’m more familiar with the tools at this point. It feels more natural for me to edit an image the same way I color video footage, so I guess why not just do it the same way right?