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Shanon-Leigh Litt Shoot

Shooting Shannon-Leigh Litt Endurance Athlete

Shannon Leigh Litt running along the Tarawera Trail

Shannon Leigh Litt running along the Tarawera Trail

This shoot was one that was supposed to happen a few weeks ago, but since it is Winter here in Rotorua, the weather does not always cooperate. The day we were supposed to shoot, it was really cold and rainy and though we probably could have gone ahead with the shoot if absolutely necessary, it would have been miserable for all involved.

It is one of the things about being an outdoor lifestyle photographer versus a studio photographer. As a primarily outdoor photographer, my schedule has to be quite flexible when it comes to planning shots. Vary rarely does everything workout perfectly the first time around with most of my shoots. Either the weather does not cooperate like with this shoot the first time around, or the athlete that I am planning on shooting goes out and gets injured a few days before the shoot (that happens quite regularly).

For this shoot, Shannon wanted a few shots for her website and also to use in her press kit when she approaches sponsors. The idea was to showcase the fact that she is now based in Rotorua and since she is transitioning from being solely a road runner to a trail and road runner, feature her on some of the local trails around Rotorua. This is one of the newest trails in the region and was just finished earlier this year and not many people know about it, but it offers some great views really close to the start as seen above and then goes into typical New Zealand bush which is why I suggested it as the location for the shoot. I actually just discovered it myself a few weeks ago when out exploring with my family and as soon as I saw it, I knew that I wanted to get some shots along the trail.

New Zealand bush is like no other place, a mixture of jungle and forest.

New Zealand bush is like no other place, a mixture of jungle and forest.

The thing that made this shoot a success, was that I already had a plan in place before we arrived and had an idea of the kinds of shots I wanted to get. There is nothing worse than showing up on location with a model/client and spending a lot of time trying to figure out exactly what you are going to shoot. When ever I am going into a shoot with an athlete, I always try to have a plan in place and usually have at least 2 plans in place so that if plan A is not working, then at least I already have a backup plan to turn to. (like scouting the trail and knowing there was both an open and a covered area close by to get two different looks easily or one look if the weather took a turn for the worse once we were out there.)


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