This Is How: ‘Limber Limbo’ by Geeshan Bandara
Brilliant to have the fab Geeshan Bandara on the site today, taking us behind the scenes of how he captured this recent Reportage Award from Collection Four. Great insights into getting in really close on the dance-floor, going for the different angles/viewpoints, lighting, settings, pre-focusing and more…thanks so much, Geeshan!
This was an incredibly tough day! Weddings in Sri Lanka are a grand affair and quite large. We had around 300+ guests on this day and this was a meeting of two faiths – so we had a Church ceremony followed by a traditional Sri Lankan wedding, known as the Poruwa ceremony.
By the end of this day we were running on pure adrenalin, and the energy from the crowd and the band kept us going. The guests were really letting loose on the dance floor. It wasn’t uncommon to see drinks balancing on heads, train-dancing, dance circles and people getting up next to the band, playing some air guitar.
The Dj comes on and the crowd goes into a frenzy! From the corner of my eye I notice one of the most energetic guests whip off his tie and frantically waving at his friend, making some odd gestures that I somehow understood to be ‘limbo’!
By this time the crowd was quite familiar us and quite comfortable in letting us into the thick of the action. I like to get in really close on the dance floor, and once this started happening I knew I wanted that ‘overhead’ shot of the limbo. Literally everyone on the dance floor was doing the limbo, but this guy went the lowest.
I went to the 16mm end of my Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 lens, pre-focused the range I knew I’d be shooting at, stood on my tip-toes (almost falling over the crowd into the subject), raised my one hand as high as I could and fired away!
I was shooting on a Canon 5D Mark4 and my iso was at 1600, aperture at f/4.5 with shutter at 1/200. I also had an assistant firing an off-camera flash to light up my subject. There was a good amount of ambiance from the DJ/dance floor lights as well.
Here is a picture from the moment before:
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