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Paisley Halloween Festival 2022 photoshoot – behind the scenes

Wednesday 12th October, 2022

Have you spotted the fantastic posters and photos for this year’s Paisley Halloween Festival?

The cast of amazing superheroes were captured by photographer Graeme Hewitson of Monument Photos.

Here, Graeme gives you a behind the scenes look at the shoot and his process to create these stunning photos.

Read Graeme’s blog below:

Profile picture of photographer Graeme Hewitson

As a professional photographer with 20 years experience I have worked on many diverse and high profile projects.

However, when Renfrewshire Council hired my services for the Paisley Halloween Festival, I knew this would be one of the most exciting photoshoots I’ve been privileged to be a part of.

The theme of ‘heroes and mystical creatures’ instantly got my attention and I knew there was scope for unlimited creativity. I was shown high end imagery from previous year and was given the brief to create images that looked ‘neon’.

We arranged a day at Paisley Community Circus to capture images of local models that were provided. When I arrived I discovered my friend Nicola Blackstock was on makeup duty.  I’ve worked with her many times and we have won many awards together.

I opted to use a chromakey setup (green screen) which meant all the characters could be ‘cutout’ and placed on a background I would design later.

I used six high speed studio lights carefully positioned to capture dramatic light and shadow. I even brought a wind machine to blow hair and superhero capes!

A behind the scenes photograph of a superhero from the Paisley Halloween Festival 2022 photoshoot

Each of the characters were fantastic to work with and we captured three or four poses of each model to give options during post processing.

Back in the studio, I selected five favourite images and opened them in photoshop where I used digital art to add vibrancy and special effects. I wanted each individual character to stand alone but still look part of the set.

I was very excited to reveal my ideas to the team, and I’m glad to say there were delighted with the results.

As a final touch I photographed a couple of Paisley landmarks to drop in to the background and give a ‘Gotham City’ type feel.

It always brings satisfaction to see your work displayed on magazine covers and printed large format in shop windows. Having lived in Renfrewshire my whole life, this is a project I am really proud of.

I was blessed to win International Master Photographer of the Year 2022, and this project directly helped win that award!

Related Links

Find out more about Paisley Halloween Festival