As Lockdown recedes and life returns to our streets it is refreshing to see that businesses have been using this year to develop new opportunities and this is the case with Sabatini in Exeter.

Previously I have photographed the interiors of Lloyd’s Lounge, and a wet evening made for a great exterior shot too!

This evening was a ‘soft launch’ for Lloyd’s latest endeavour. Frankly though these jobs are often a challenge for photography; the settings are often fantastic but there is never a massive amount of light (needed for photography). It is also going to be a busy environment, people with fast moving hot food need not to meet a fast moving hot photographer. And impromptu group shots? Well, I recently discussed this with a fellow photographer, he admitted the discussion alone was making him feel tense!

The issue is that the environment and lighting for a great night out is at the edge of what photographers can do without intruding with added lighting. Nowadays the camera tech will dig us part way out of the hole and good lenses will pull a lot of light in. Then it’s down to a steady hand and framing the moment!

Group shots are never easy, even a close family group getting everyone in sync can be a challenge. In an environment such as this I wanted to capture the well lit bar but needed also to light the subjects from a close distance. Behind me was a wall of mirror and above was a low white ceiling which deter the two took a small unflattering speedlight and turned it into a pleasant light!