Spent an evening with Velvela a couple of months back to shoot the press shots for their debut single, 'Prowl'.
Velvela have a great gritty bluesy-rock sound, akin to the likes of BRMC and Black Keys with a bit of a Royal Blood vibe about them. They've been gigging together for a while under a previous moniker, but after a change in lineup and music style they were back under a new name.
We were fairly up against it for time, so had to move quickly to get the shoot nailed. I had a bunch of ideas I wanted to try with the guys, but in the absence of time we cracked on with getting an interim shoot nailed so they could get their single released.
The guys had a contact (Tom's mum) who works at a local theatre, so this seemed as good a place as any to try nail some shots. Having spent 10 minutes scoping the place out for locations, we settled on two - starting on the balcony/circle, before finishing in a quirky prop room.
I got the guys to sit on the edge of the balcony overlooking the stalls and the stage - there was all sorts of lights and rigging behind them together with a couple of chandeliers, which made quite an interesting backdrop. Thankfully the theatre company were in to set up a new production, so I politely asked if they could turn on all the house lights. With the guys positioned, I set up my large softbox with a wireless flash to my right, and fired through a few frames. We were after a very standard shot, but Tom (drummer) leant in a little to ensure the shots weren't overly formulaic. Initially I planned to dial up the flash and reduce the amount of ambient light in the shots, but the golden colours behind the guys seemed to work really well:
Prop Room shoot
Packing up at the balcony it very much felt like we'd nailed the shoot in the first set up, but I wanted to make sure the guys left the shoot with at least other set of shots so they had something for future use.
This was a totally different style of shot. When we arrived at the room, we weren't even convinced we'd be able to fit five of us in there! The guys arranged themselves as best as possible Whilst i set my gear up. I was going to need to shoot with my widest lens, and I didn't have the luxury of room for off camera lighting gear. I jettisoned the softbox and shot with a flashgun on my camera, pointing straight up to light the room up. This gave us a very different look and feel, which contrasted the balcony shots quite nicely:
Had a blast working with Sean, Todd, Tom and Danny, and I look forward to shooting them again sometime. Also a huge thanks to the guys at Keighley Playhouse for being so accommodating.
Head over Velvela's Facebook page and give them a like to keep up to date with gigs and stuff, and check out their video for 'Prowl' below.