Browsing Tag

Secret Supper

Black Tie | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet

BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com

– Posted by Mark

Just a quick post today. We photographed Black Tie catering’s recent secret supper – and this time it was held at the Atlanta Ballet. How awesome is that?! Too. Awesome.

Hey. It’s Thursday. Let’s Go.

BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com
BlackTie Barbecue | Secret Supper | Atlanta Ballet | LeahAndMark.com

BlackTie BBQ Secret Supper | Valentines Day

Last Saturday night while I was photographing Deborah & Mark’s wedding, +Laura and Intern Jen were photographing BlackTie BBQ’s latest Secret Supper. I’ve photographed several of their secret suppers in the past and worked with them on other events as well. This was the first time I would send a team to photograph one of their events without actually being there. Now, it sounds simple enough – it’s just event photography.

Except we’ve all seen event photography that just wasn’t… up to par. Someone sticks a flash on their hotshoe, then they stick a tupperware diffuser on top of that and call it a day. Their photos don’t look any different from the ones taken by everyone else with their point-n-shoots. In case you haven’t noticed – lighting is a big deal around here. Whether it’s natural light or off-camera flash, it’s important to us. So when I realized that I wouldn’t be photographing this secret supper… I’ll admit that I was a little worried. So I sent in +Laura.

Because it’s one thing to just photograph food, but it’s completely different when you aim to capture the atmosphere and really do more than just document what went on. This isn’t documentary photography and we’re not just snapping pictures for historical record. The pictures have to be more. Because for a full service catering company such as BlackTie BBQ – it’s honestly more than just about the food – that’s a given. You’re not going to last long as a caterer in Atlanta, nevermind grow as fast as BlackTie BBQ has in the past year – if your food is anything less than excellent.

The secret suppers they put on are also always at interesting locations – On Stage –  The Goat Farm – An Old Garage – so part of the treat is that you’ll also be having dinner someplace that you’ve never been or probably never will be again.

Great job team.

Check out the Full Gallery by +Laura & Intern Jen, HERE.

Black. Tie. BBQ. Secret. Supper. +Laura. Photos. Valentines. Day. Millennium. Arch. LeahAndMark.com

Secret Supper | Theatrical Outfit

We like photographing the Secret Suppers held by our friends BlackTie BBQ. They’re always fun AND we get really, really great food. Not satisfied to hold their secret suppers in normal event spaces – they held their Valentines Day Secret Supper in the unfinished eighth floor of one of the high rises in Atlantic Station. That’s just cool. So when I found out that this time they were serving dinner ON STAGE at Theatrical Outfit – I knew it’d be awesome.

I also suspected that lighting the space for photos would be… like lighting the inside of a black box. Yup. Exactly. Below is a photo of what it looked like with just the available light – except of course in real life it was even more dim, and you know – moody. This shot was taken at f/4.0, ISO 3200 – and a shutter speed of 1/10th. If you don’t know what that means – trust me – you can’t photograph events that way. Everyone will be blurry.

There’s technically enough light in this picture – but like we always ask, ‘Is it the quality of light that you want?’ No. Absolutely not. If we only used the house lights we’d be stuck with far too many badly colored photos with generally flat lighting.

But hey – it’s okay – they hired LeahAndMark.com – and we always bring our own lights.

Now they’re not ‘floating in black space’ like they were before. And you know – now we can do some cool stuff with shadows and where the light hits – stuff you can’t do when you don’t have control and you’re dependent upon the theater tech for lighting. The trick though is to not BLOW OUT the guest with your high powered studio lights. It’s still supposed to be a candle lit dinner ya know? So fully lighting the space isn’t an option – at least if you don’t want to anger the guests. It’s not a wedding and everyone’s not drunk… for most of the dinner!… so you have to be aware of what your lights are doing to the scene and mood.

We had initial difficulties finding the right light setups – and then we were making adjustments all night.

I spent waaaay too much time trying to get this light to go across the curtains like that – and even then, I helped it in Photoshop.

Plus, if you’re having dinner on stage – you want it to look theatrical right? Of course!

What’s cool about BlackTie BBQ is that they’re absolutely great people. In case you haven’t noticed – Leah and I are all about working with great clients that like us, and ones that WE LOVE. Now – we’ve both worked in really rushed and hurried kitchens where when things get crazy, politeness goes out the window and people start snapping at each other. But even at the height of the rush and when attitudes could have easily gone south – all of the BlackTie BBQ staff weren’t just polite to each other – they were genuinely good to each other.

Mistakes happen, plates are dropped, and in other kitchens, we’ve seen attitudes change for the worse – but not with this team. Having worked with BlackTie BBQ several times now and seeing how all of the staff interact with each other, it’s beyond impressive. They’re not a ragtag crew of servers hired for the night. I see the same faces over and over again – and they all do a great job.

You can tell their food is made with the same consideration they give each other.  There’s just something special about it.  Love and goodness and amazing flavors.  We can’t get enough.

BlackTie BBQ | Secret Supper

Check out the Photo Gallery Here.

Last Wednesday I was hired to photograph Black Tie BBQ’s Cinco de Mayo Secret Supper. Secret Location, Secret Menu, and Secret Guest List – basically you purchase a ticket and then you receive an email 24-48 hours before the event with all of the information. I’ve worked with Black Tie BBQ before on two previous occasions and they’ve never disappointed – in fact, as you’ll see from the photos, they do an excellent job of hosting a party, AND providing some really great food.

As with all of our event photography – no matter what – we try to get more than the basic ‘get together and smile’ shots of the attendees. Of course I’ll get those required shots just to make sure I get enough ‘coverage’ – but one of the things that I’m trying to get across to our interns is that they should focus on capturing the atmosphere. Not just the people. Sure they play a central role, but you don’t get atmosphere by photographing people squeezing together, trying to pose for a photo. You get it by photographing people doing things. You get it by putting yourself in a position to get the best shot – not just a good one.

Hey Look – Intern Jenna came along with me to work the event.

One of the noticeable qualities of our photographs has always been the light – or rather, how we handle light. Honestly, part of this is understanding our cameras and a little bit about editing – but the most important part of how we handle light is simply – we’re not afraid to take it on. Granted – this was initially due to the fact that I just didn’t know enough to realize that I shouldn’t be shooting a certain way in certain conditions. So I ended up trying a lot of things and eventually I learned how much leeway I had when it came to certain light conditions.

Speaking about the photo below – it took about 2 exposures and some chimping (looking at the display screen on the back of your camera) before I got to this one – and the subject did her part by looking cool for me. It’s probably one of my favorite among many from that day – because of the light.

Now. We have 9 interns – but obviously they’re more than that to us. Leah and I have really made ourselves accountable and taken on a fair amount of responsibility to teach them a few things. Along with all of the technical stuff ( ha, like using off camera flashes that have two settings – on and off), I especially like bringing them with me on photo shoots. Even better are the shoots where there isn’t much space. Because restrictions force you to be creative, and for us – the more restrictions, the easier it is to be creative – because you have to make up cool stuff OR ELSE. At least that’s how it is in my head.

Of course – sometimes you just need to stop thinking and start shooting. Other times, you need to talk to people so that they feel more comfortable with you and the big camera you’re sticking their face. Other times, you just need to hold your ground and get your shot, even when other people are about to yell at you. Yeah. All of those things.

In the end though – all of this event photography we do is really just practice for the weddings we photograph. It helps to keep our shots fresh from wedding to wedding. Photographers should be photographing – and we photograph everything. Because we’re trying to discover new things with our photos and our own skills – and you don’t discover things by photographing just weddings, or just family portraits, or just models.

Check Out The Photo Gallery HERE.