Pulling Out All the Stops


It’s been a long time since Plymouth Church had a current photograph of their choir. I came one Sunday after a service when the choir was present and still in their robes. I positioned myself in the rear balcony and set my Canon 5D Mark II on a tripod with a 70-200 mm f/2.8 lens pointed directly at the choir loft for a formal portrait. I thought it would be difficult to arrange the choir from so far away, but the acoustics in the church were so good that I didn’t even have to shout. I took about five frames each for the vertical and horizontal shots and swapped a few heads in post processing to fix blinking or unsmiling choir members.

My assignment continued as I made a portrait of the Director of Music and the children’s choir directors. We found a stairwell with beautiful daylight streaming through a stained glass window. I used that as backlight and added a strobe bounced off a white wall behind me. Next I photographed the Tone Chime Choir before their rehearsal, and finally I was asked to shoot some details of the organ to advertise an upcoming recital. The organ shots were done quickly with available light to minimize the budget and not to disturb the Tone Chime Choir’s rehearsal. I wish I had more time and added lighting to do a serious study.










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