Late last year, I was contacted by a French cosmetics company to shoot actress and singer, Miram Yeung. After a quick google search, I quickly realized that she is a huge star. Maybe moreso in China, but she's no slouch and has been in the biz for years. The cosmetics company wanted me to shoot a day-in-the-life with Miriam in New York City. We'd start at the corporate offices of Estee Lauder and then hit a few select locations around New York City for me to capture some candid portraits.
I'd never been hired by a French firm and communicating overseas via email with the time difference and language barrier was interesting. I was a tad skeptical at first, but after doing my research, I realized that everything was legit and it sounded like a great assignment. The PR folks sent me a vigorous schedule and shot list with every minute of the day accounted for. I decided to shoot with the Canon 5DMKIII. I knew we'd be going from light to dark environments and I'd want to capture action so my camera had to be versatile and responsive with fast focusing. Even though we were not shooting any posed or lit photos, I brought a speedlite with me. (and never used it). I also brought my Fuji X100s just in case we were in a situation that I need to be stealthy or silent. I shoot a few frames with it, but used the Canon for most everything. In hindsight, the Canon 5DMKIII and 24-70mm f/2.8 would have covered things and considering how much walking around and location changing we did, I would have welcomed less weight in my bag.
I had just recently switched my DSLR rig from Nikon to Canon, so I was excited for a full day shoot with the Canon and can say I am very happy with the results. After Miriam's meetings at Estee Lauder, they headed to the Four Seasons for lunch and I hit up a nearby Starbucks for WiFi. I used that time to get some work done, catch up on emails, and remain close and ready for action. After lunch, we hopped back into the Suburban SUV limo and drove to the Metropolitan Museum. Miriam was wearing Spring fashion (maybe she was endorsing a clothing line), because it was very cold out and her outfit was super thin material. She was a trooper and maintained poise and elegance for the shoot. Beside some shots of her on the Museum steps, I had her cross the street to give a very New York City feel which she was totally game for.
While outside the Museum, Miriam was approached by fans for signatures and iPhone pics. She obliged graciously. We then headed to Central Park and then to Times Square where she was also approached by adoring fans. By the time we got to Times Square, Miriam was ready for some rest.
Cold weather, long day and jet lag didn't help, but she never showed any signs of being tired or wanting to rush. I should also mention that Miriam doesn't speak English, and I don't speak Chinese. This wasn't a problem, because she's a professional and accustomed to this sort of thing, and just went with the flow. We got along great. I had no idea what to expect and can say that it was a fantastic day.
Here's what Miriam posted on her Instagram from the day:
I couldn't resist getting a shot with Miriam!