A Date with Shillelagh – production photography

A Date with Shillelagh - production stills by Emma Bailey-1906

A Date with Shillelagh – Short Film – Production Photography

I spent a week in Loughborough photographing the cast and crew of the short film ‘A Date with Shillelagh’ written and produced by Keith Large, directed and co-written by Jeff Stewart, staring Eleanor Burke, Lauren Cornelius, Stewart Horobin and Peter McManus. This gritty story is about a rising star trying to break into the insidious music industry and how she copes with being used along the way, in the back drop of the sexist 70’s. Shot over 5 days in Loughborough by DoP Alessandro Oliveri on the Sony FS7 using Samyang Xeen lenses and an Easy Rig.

I had recently bought the Canon 16-35 2.8 mk2 and this was the perfect shoot to try it out on, most of these were shot using it, others were the Canon 85 1.8. This ability to shoot low level afforded me more freedom than my usual f4, as on set the DoP was lighting consistently for T2 much to the annoyance of his poor focus puller. The turnaround was quick so there is not much time to re-light for stills, occasionally I managed it, simply by angling the actors right for the light or using a bounce board. The wide angle 16mm on a full frame was, I can’t light, so much fun and I managed to capture more action in a dynamic still than my previous widest of 24mm – Adding to your lens language makes you so much more adapt at being able to capture the story especially when you are in a confined space. As usual I colour graded the characters fitting the story, this was set in the 70’s so I went for a heavily saturated film look, not worrying about the ISO in camera some were shot over 3200 ISO. I used a VSCO preset as starting inspiration and tweaking each image accordingly. The bts were converted to b/w to separate the action.

Locations: The Paget Arms, thanks to Jo the landlord and Smithie’s Marina Bar

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