Photographing and filming in dark conditions is always a challenge for a photographer and his gear. Add movement, lights and fire to the mix and it could be a recipe for disaster. Luckily, Swedish photographer Jonas Borg has dealt with difficult conditions before, and knew exactly what to do to get the images he wanted during a shoot of a Halloween celebration in in Grönalund, one of Sweden’s largest amusement parks. He used the LUMIX / Leica lenses 10-25mm F/1.7 and 25-50mm F/1.7. ‘These lenses are amazing. Thanks to the light sensitivity and the beautiful bokeh, it’s possible to get great images, even when the conditions are really difficult.’
He's used these lenses before, but this was the first time he combined them with the LUMIX GH5M2. ‘Two performing artist friends of mine asked me to photograph them during an evening performance in Grönaland. They host fire pits and dance. For this event they wore costumes decorated with LED lights. They usually do corporate gigs, so performing at a Halloween party in an amusement park was new for them. They asked me to document this special event. I knew photographing and filming in the cold evening, in dark conditions, could be troublesome. The darkness of the night combined with the bright LED lights and fire made it especially demanding.
The contrast between the darkness and light is very big. It’s a matter of making sure your images aren’t over- or underexposed.’ He managed to do overcome this problem by cranking up the ISO. ‘I got the ISO up to 5000. Normally I shoot at a lower ISO, but I trusted my camera to get great images. These lenses really made the difference. They are very light sensitive, giving me the possibility to shoot at F/1.7. They have a beautiful bokeh. Shooting with an aperture of F/1.7 really sets your subject apart from the background.’ The range of these lenses are perfect for his work. ‘As a portrait photographer I like to get close to my subjects.’
Borg uses the lenses for different kinds of assignments. ‘These lenses are so versatile in their use due to their zoom reach and fast aperture. Combine this with the very high image sharpness and resolution and you understand why they are so desired. The one week I can use them in a reportage setting for photography and the next week I’m filming Halloween show in the dark. These lenses are true workhorses, solid build and in my eyes without comprises.’ For a photographer like Jonas Borg, it’s important to be flexible as the working environment change on a day-to-day basis, while his clients always expects great image quality.
‘To be ready for all conditions I can carry lots of equipment, lenses and camera gear to deal with all possible angles or light situations. What makes these two Leica Vario-Summilux F/1.7 lenses so unique is the harnas many qualities in one design like their fast aperture, the prime-level image quality and their construction for both photography and video. With these two lenses I know I can always deliver great results in all conditions.’
Professional photographer Jonas Borg has lived and worked all over the world – including in Singapore, Japan, the UK and USA. Now back in his home nation of Sweden, he has based his business in Stockholm. With more than 10 years’ experience as a full-time freelance photographer, he has worked with major international daily newspapers as well as many organizations and companies, including event and PR agencies.
Because of his background in photojournalism, Jonas’ style is often described as documentary. He says he always strives to find new angles and perspectives in his images. One of his most prestigious assignments was to photograph the wedding of the Swedish Crown Princess in 2010 – the same year Jonas began his collaboration with Panasonic, after which he became the first Ambassador for the LUMIX brand in Europe.