We catch up with movie stills photographer Jasin Boland prior to his sold-out talk for the Nikon School on June 25th. He shares his insights and wisdom for action shots, plus lots of great anecdotes —Geoff Harris
What’s it like to be a still photographer on blockbuster movies like The Matrix and Mad Max? Jasin Boland, who’s also a Nikon ambassador, shares shares his colourful story, and some tips for better action shots.
There is Furiosa screaming in the desert from Mad Max Fury Road. I love the ferocity and vulnerability of this image and the layering through the sand. It seems to resonate with many people and is a great example of an actor delivering their ‘director’s performance.’ You would never get this with a setup.
The image of Neo and Smith fighting in the rain from The Matrix has always been one of my favourites. Its probably the first of my images to define me as a photographer, and certainly my style.
I also like the Aston Martin DB9 jump from the James Bond Spectre movie. I shot this on one of my remote rigs because it just wasn’t physically possible to be there. I had one of my buddies from the stunt department pull me into a doorway as the car came flying past!
Another shot I like is Mulan in the midst of battle. I love the poetry to this image and our actress Liu Yifei gave me so many amazing images. She’s another fierce female and the images from all the action look like a beautiful dance.
Which was the toughest movie you worked on?
You know they all have tough moments. For Everest we were shooting at 5154 metres – working at that altitude is brutal. Dark City was mentally tough and Mad Max Fury Road was both a physical and mental challenge but as I said before, the challenges give birth to some of the most wonderful images. You haver to funnel the emotion and exhaustion into your photography.
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