Photos from an Asbury Park Firefighter’s Retirement Party

I was invited as a guest and a photographer to the retirement party of one of the Asbury Park Fire Department’s battalion chiefs. It was a good party with lots of laughter, a few tears, great camaraderie, and one big challenge — the lighting.

The party was held in the banquet hall of a neighboring town’s fire department. It was an expansive room with beige walls, a drop ceiling, and no decor except a few artificial plants. At the beginning of the evening, the room was dimly illuminated by tungsten high-hat lights in the ceiling. No problem, I put a CTO gel on my strobe, set my white balance to tungsten, and I achieved a perfect balance between my strobe and the room light.

Speeches and the presentation of gifts to the man of honor began after dinner. Someone flipped a switch and turned on the fluorescent ceiling lights that I hadn’t noticed before. Now there was a mix of tungsten and fluorescent light that I couldn’t compensate for with gels on my strobe. So I kept shooting and hoped that no one would notice the sickly color of the walls in the background.

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