Jeremy Saffer

Valerie Taylor |

Being a celebrity and music portrait photographer means you are constantly thrown into unknown situations and locations. From shooting in a closet-sized dressing room, a hallway, outdoors in uneven terrain against the elements, to shooting in a studio, you often only know the what, when, why and who, but not the where and how of your photo shoot. Matthews’ stands solve the “how”.

Problem solving is a big part of being an on-location photographer’s job. How to fit lights where you need them to be, how to fit yourself and your camera in with the lighting, and how to get the light at the height and angle you need for your lighting to be successful. The Matthews Runway Base with a 40” C+ Riser and Mini Boom Arm is a problem-solver— the solution to many potential problems.

From one to six lights, my main light is always on a Matthews Runway Base with a 40” C+ Riser and a Mini Boom Arm. Because the Rollway Base has two long and one short leg, the stand can go closely against the wall while I can also stand against the Riser, putting my camera as close to the wall as possible, still utilizing my lighting in tight locations. The versatility of the base, riser, and arm means I can set the light anywhere in the room at any direction even 10+ feet above the subject or lighting them in a balcony above. When that heavy light needs to be moved, I can do so with just a slight push of my finger as the Rollway Base takes on all the weight and moves smoothly in every direction. Plus, because it’s low to the ground and bottom heavy, your stands do not wobble, or falter. They are sturdy and safe whether moving across the room or making micro adjustments. When in place, I lock the wheels, and that stand will not move. It remains safely in place. When I have minimal setup and break down time, every second counts. This combo sets up in seconds (not minutes). When time really matters having a stand you can depend on to be 100% sturdy and quick to set up is incredible.

This combination gives me all the versatility and safety I need on any set, backstage, location, or studio to get my light where I need it for a successful shoot. Most importantly, I have the peace of mind knowing that no matter where I am shooting, or what situation/location I end up with—my lights will fit exactly where I need them to be. During stressful and time-sensitive photo shoots, having one less thing to worry about, one less thing you need to think about, is immeasurably helpful. I no longer need to worry if my lights will fit, if I’ll be able to get them where I need them to be, or to the angle and height I need. No more worries about the safety of the stand, if it will be easy to move and adjust, and how quickly I can set up and break down. I always know the who, what, why, when, and with Matthews… I know the how.