The scene: SLAC’s IT “Network Architect” Antonio Ceseracciu, seen here in one of SLAC’s server rooms. Ceseracciu oversees the design work and much of the implementation associated with SLAC’s network hardware and software, making sure that different plaforms play well together. The racks pictured here contain the “core routers” that handle most of SLAC’s computer network traffic.
The shot: Canon 5D MkII, 17-35 f/2.8L @ 17mm f/6.3. 1/125th sec exposure, ISO 100. This shoot called for “people shots” of the SLAC Computing/Network group for a new website. Server rooms aren’t very photogenic, so when I saw this tangle of network cables I knew I had to take advantage. Antonio was very cooperative with my experimenting and trying to get just the right angle. In this case, following on the principle that a person seen “through” something or over something or behind something is always more eye-catching, I hunkered myself back into one of the open racks and used my widest lens to shoot through the mesh door. As for lights, I used a Pocket-Wizard-triggered Speedlite 580EX at camera left, pointed at the ceiling for some bounce/fill onto the cables; a 600 watt/sec monobloc light in slave mode with a green gel pointed at the floor just behind Antonio; and a Speedlite 580EX with a grid on a tall stand just behind Antonio’s left—you can see the light burst through his eyeglasses where the flash head is barely visible. The real trick was getting Antonio into a position so that his face can be seen within his shadow on the mesh door.