Trail Blazing with Rudy Napolitano
World of Whirlcraft

The Great Recession

Clinton has now been in front of my camera 3 times. Previously with a gritty downtown LA theme, and a cowboy/western theme. This time he wanted a fashion theme. I wasn’t sure what he was going to wear until he knocked on my door… Pointed black shoes, grey wool slacks, leather gloves, and a matching grey wool beret? 1920’s here we come! Which would go PERFECT with my loft’s atmosphere since it was built in the 1920’s and well maintained since then.

Most notable about The Chapman building are the beautiful 13 floors of marble stairway. You just don’t see that anymore unless you’re in a 5 star hotel. I was trying to get a lot of depth, so placing Clinton at the very edge of the frame while looking down gave me the look I wanted.

The roof is the main attraction of any downtown building. A quick jump over a neighboring wall and we’ve been transported from The Chapman’s green grass, lawn chairs, and jacuzzis to a tattered and worn down roof… perfect for that old rustic feel.

Clinton survived the “jump” 😉 Of course the above image is a composite. One of him jumping, and another over the edge of the building. Now personally I turn into a spineless puddle of mush when it comes to heights, so crawling over the railing and hanging my camera 5′ beyond the ledge made me just a tad queezy. But I’m very happy how this image turned out.

On to the behind-the-scenes shots.
My trusty assistant Lauren snapped some shots on her iPhone of the stairway. Just goes to show how beautiful and well restored this building has been kept for over 80 years.

The finished shot spans 3 floors. On each floor was an AlienBee strobe. Since the marble is practically white, the power had to be set relatively low, and constantly adjust each light to get the balance I wanted… With each tiny adjustment meaning I had to climb 3 flights of stairs, I got a decent workout in!

Pulling back from a ledge shot you can see what I was working with. Yes I wasn’t lying about shooting on a ledge, that 2nd photo wasn’t a composite folks! Mad props to Clinton risking his neck for a shot! Where I’m taking the picture from is just about how close I like to come to a high ledge! Both feet on solid ground. Also note that in the final pictures, I edited out most modern elements such as cars and new buildings.

I’m very happy with how this shoot came out. So how about getting in the Christmas spirit and give the gift of comments 🙂

  • Lauren

    I still think the stair image is a little too closely cropped around Clinton!

  • TWB

    Shhhhhhh wrong Lauren it is perfection. but i am intoxicated sitting in the vegas airport so im not sure how much my opinion really counts. Good job clintbo, always impress me with your pixars.

  • Awesome stuff Clint. I’m a big fan of your work, and thanks for the BTS.

  • Awesome shots! Love the behinde the scenes stuff as well 🙂