North Facing - part 3 of 1 2 3


Earlier in his career Danny took over some studio space at the back of a band's rehearsal area on the third floor of a warehouse in Leeds.

"It was a really dusty corner but it was where I could set up my budget Gemini 500s and my barn doors etc.

I chose Bowens because you get such great value for money with this brand. I invested about £700 and got a two strobe kit. They were the creative tools I needed at the time to get me to the next level".

He adds: "And for me to this day Bowens still offers the best value for money. You can achieve high class results for a fraction of what you might pay with competitive lighting kit.

And this equipment is rugged too. These lights have been quite literally dragged through hell and high water.

I've taken them into dense woods in pouring rain - and I've used ASDA supermarket plastic bags as waterproof jackets for the heads.

They've been in muddy fields, up trees and down mine shafts - so my Bowens heads are really an extension of me."

Danny recalls: "A few months ago I had to shoot a band on an isolated Scottish island. I dragged a Bowens Travelpak over swampy fields and round a cliff to the water's edge. Wind lashed a strobe onto a rock but I just stuck in a new bulb and off we went again. They've been through everything with me."

The next big step for Danny North is music video production.

He's just completed a widely-acclaimed 'Zombie-style' video for Chickenhawk - a wild, cutting edge rock band - and is now being courted by a couple of famous bands for possible video work.

He says: "I love shooting stills but this video was a new leap of faith for me.I hate being in a comfort zone so I did this to test myself.I had been aching to produce a music video and this one took two months to write and produce"

He adds: "The challenge and the sheer magnitude of it all was immense. On the first morning I suddenly realised that I hadn't previously even directed traffic, let alone four cameramen, a producer, twelve make-up girls and forty extras.

I was absolutely terrified - and I kept asking myself why I was doing it at all.There were real tears in my eyes but I pulled up, took a deep breath, donned my hat and stepped up to the plate with a sort of a 'Look, I'm in charge here' manner and just blagged my way through it."

And what's North facing next?

"I just need to keep on establishing myself", he concludes. "Every six months I tell myself I need to achieve more. Do something bigger. Move on to the next rung of the ladder. Sometimes it is hard to know just exactly where the next pay cheque is coming from when you are a freelance. I guess I'm doing OK now though.

Of course I'd love to be earning as much as Annie Leibovitz - but coming from Yorkshire I'd probably look after the pennies with a little more care."

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last update 06/11/2019 11:07:23

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