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Introducing Mr. Eric Marshall, he’s a fantastic bloke as too is his wife Jean and a real character. I’m normally too busy to stick around, but after the shoot I was treated to some fantastic cakes and a pot of tea… it doesn’t get much better than that.
To get a little techy, I used Pocket Wizards which allowed me to remotely fire the flashguns, which were balancing precariously on their stands on top of Eric’s numerous step-ladders (I assure you a man with this many lights needs a arsenal of step ladders), held in place with some security cord (i.e. hesian string Eric had in his sheds).
You may be thinking why the scene needs lighting when it’s pretty well lit anyway. Well, herein lies the problem, the light coming off of the festive decorations would set anything I put in front of them in darkness (i.e. Eric), effectively back-lighting him only. Also, despite being pretty bright, decorations have a knack of illuminating very little but themselves, meaning outline of the house & gardens would be in darkness. Overall, the flash adds to the depth of the image, making it ‘pop’.
PHOTO CAPTION: “The Christmas light engulfed home and front garden of Eric Marshall, in Bagby, near Thirsk, North Yorkshire. His Home is transformed yearly into a brilliantly bright Christmas display. Eric, 73, has spent thousands on transforming his front garden over the last 20 years, which takes 3 weeks every year to put up, raising money for the nearby church.
“Featured on a US Discovery Channel documentary (Invasion of the Christmas Lights Europe), Eric’s garden also features a miniature train set complete with two signals, four separate tracks, a number of bridges, a cable car, a windmill and ten water features. His startling display draws a weekly bus trip from nearby Scarborough and bimonthly from Harrogate, as well as numerous passers by and tourists.”
Anyway, enjoy… and most importantly, I wish you all a Merry Christmas!
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