I know today Sunday but Lord forgive me its time to get a little evil
and discuss Cosplay and Color Gels! Not literally of course, just in a
textual kind of way. Side note I did not know textual was an actual
word until this post. Anyways I had the pleasure of shooting some
Boundless images at Momocon with my friend
He did an amazing job at recreating Ash Williams attire and even
had a chainsaw specifically created just for the cosplay, but more
on that later. Side note you can jump straight to the Gels section to
learn about how we incorporated Gels into this cosplay shoot.
I know these movies may be a bit old for some of you so definitely
check them out after this post to understand what I’m talking
about. We decide to start off the shoot in my original location at the
entrance to momocon but quickly realized that this location was
not conducive to an Evil Dead Shoot.
That’s when @the_resident_workhorse mentioned the parking
deck and man o man did it make a difference. Let’s take a look at
exactly how well it went and how we incorporated Color Gels into
this cosplay shoot.
First up, let’s touch on the equipment. I primarily used my 50mm
lens and Nikon d7000 for this shoot. I also used colored gels Of course.
To create the awesome lighting effects, I decided to power up my 3 orlit
Rovelights accompanied by 3 large godox softboxes. One of them broke
mid-shoot though ☹ so I will be replacing that soon.
Now that we got that out of the way, I want to talk a bit about the
poses. To be honest, It has been a while since I’ve seen this movie
so my memory of poses was very limited. So what did I do, I turned
to my friend google for some inspiration. After looking at images
from the movie, we had some great material to create our Evil
Dead Shoot. I tried to replicate the poses as best I could and
@the_resident_workhorse did a phenomenal job at getting into
Aside from the obvious poses which were direct copies of the
movie, we decided to create some of our own. I especially loved the
image where you stare down the barrel of the shotgun. By
dropping my aperture to 2.0, I was able to create the distorted
image you see here. This proved a bit tricky with direct sunlight
and the added Monolights but eventually, we got it to work. Once
we finished with this location we moved to the loading dock.
Note, we had not discovered the parking deck yet so we went
ahead and worked with what we had. I also did not have my Gels
on me at this time so that was my mistake. Nevertheless, we
created some awesome images. By simply shutting down one of the
monolights and focusing on only one concrete section of the dock
we were able to create a much more industrial look. This was
obviously more in line with the dark images seen throughout the
movie and created a cooler and murkier feel to the shoot.
Now we come to the exciting part of the shoot! We decided to
reshoot the Ash Williams cosplay again the next day because now
we had discovered the parking deck. I immediately knew that red
was the color we were going to use for this shoot. Red creates a
sense of danger and has always been used to make the viewer
realize danger is imminent. Side note, all of these images were
created during the day. Simple understanding the way your camera
works allows you to completely darken out the background and
So, by attaching a Red Gel to the Monolight we were able to
illuminate the immediate area in an eerie red. One light was left
blank and simply placed either behind or in front of the subject to
make sure the entire seen was not red in every image. Another
alternative is directing the red light behind the subject to only
illuminate the background in red. This way, your subject will not be
affected by the red light as much but your background will be
engulfed in a blood red.
Following the red gels, we decided to shoot with a few blue gels.
You can immediately see how less menacing blue is than red. Blue
usually portrays a sense of calmness and ease. The blue was meant
to represent not only the completion of the shoot but also a
representation of triumph. As If all of the dead had been
vanquished and only Ash remained.
As mentioned earlier each color portrays a different emotion and
feeling. The psychological effects of colors are well researched and
have been shown to greatly affect one’s outlook on a situation. Reds
oranges and yellows generally invoke warmth, love, and anger.
Whereas black blues and purples can cause feelings of
unhappiness, sadness, and mystery. Make sure you’re shooting
goals and character align. No reason to create anger or mystery
with a character known for being nonchalant and calm.
I cant emphasize enough how much props are needed for a great
shoot. Elements such as posing and attire are equally important of
course but the props are what give some of the images that missing
element. The chainsaw for this shoot was custom made from an
actual chainsaw. All the inner parts were completely gutted, and
the shell of the chainsaw was left.
I will admit this did cost a bit of money to have done. The shotgun,
on the other hand, was an inexpensive one that actually fired nerf
darts. Knowing the elements of your cosplay to fork out more
money for is how you cosplay frugally 😊.
With these images, we decided to envelop the entire cosplayer in
red. This once again created the menacing and dreadful image we
were going for. Next, We also decided to make the cosplayer appear
to be in a worried state as if he heard something. By actually
having him hunch down and turn his back to the camera we
created an illusion of worry. This was of course greatly accented by
the red Gels. Regarding light placement, a red light was placed
behind the subject while I squatted in front of a regular monolight
aimed directly at the cosplayer. This is how we created both red
and white light on the subject.
I hope you enjoyed this look at how we created the images seen in
this post and learned how you can incorporate colored gels into
your next cosplay shoot. Cosplay and colored gels work very well
together and you should definitely investigate the cosplayers series
and characters personality to help you decide the best gel for the
shoot. If you enjoyed this cosplay and colored gels shoot make sure
you leave a comment below, Id love to hear from you! Well that’s
everything for today. Until next time, stay BOUNDLESS!!!