Creating the Photograph: Tomasz Kedzierski’s “Tribute to Krzysztof Kieślowski”

Creating the Photograph is an original series where photographers teach you about how they concepted an image, shot it, and edited it. The series has a heavy emphasis on teaching readers how to light. Want to be featured? Email chrisgampat[at]thephoblographer[dot]com.

Photographer Tomasz Kędzierski has been a pretty fantastic and creative analog film photographer for a while. We’ve featured his work a number of times on this website. Besides the Square Lips project, his homemade pinholes and his solarigraphy, he’s done some higher end work too. Most recently, he was working on a shoot where he was shooting with Provia 100, and to ensure that he got the shot right, he used a Leica Sofort first before switching back to his Hasselblad 501C.

Here’s his story.

The Concept

The Inspiration: Blue – Film by Krzysztof Kieślowski starring Juliette Binoche

My project One Camera, One Lens and One Model with @thesquarelips took an interesting turn: we are preparing an exhibition with our photographs and we wanted to underline it with a good story. We are making a Tribute to Krzysztof Kieślowski – a great polish film director who has been a great inspiration for me from the get go. Anyone who is into photography should see his films such as “The double life of Veronique” or his Three Colour Trilogy: Blue, White and Red. I’m serious!


The Gear

  • 1x Leica Sofort
  • 2 x Profoto B1
  • 1 x umbrella deep white M
  • 1x OCF grid 30 degrees
  • 2 x blue rubbish bag as a colour gel for strobes
  • 1 x grey paper background
  • Final image with a Hasselblad 501C on Fuji Provia 100F slide film and Profoto Air Remote.

The Shoot

As we were closing our scenes on this project we were short of one final photograph, a paraphrase of Kieślowski’s film Blue, starring Juliette Binoche. I was left with one single frame on my Hasselblad and I wanted to make no mistakes. I needed to figure out somehow the proper exposure for this one. As you know I don’t own a digital camera, so I had to do with and instant option: Leica Sofort! Here is how I did it:

One strobe with a blue rubbish bag placed over it with an umbrella deep white M placed directly above the model; one strobe with a blue bag under the 30 OCF grid for B1 for background.

I have placed a post-it note with aluminium foil over the flash of Leica Sofort, as a flag – I wanted to avoid direct flash hitting the model, and I wanted to trigger the strobes this way. It is very unprofessional to use rubbish bags instead of real colour gels, but I had to improvise.

Shot with the Leica Sofort

I know the ISO of Leica Sofort film is 800 and the aperture is 12,7, so I have set the B1 strobes to 6.6 because I felt it would do good. Besides it is a nice number. Fuji Provia 100F is ISO 100 and I set the aperture of F/4.0 on Hasselblad with exposure time of 1/125s. I don’t know the exposure time of Leica – it was just a luck that it worked so well!

I set Profoto B1’s to SLAVE mode just to pick up the flash from a Leica, I did my test shot, waited for four minutes and there it was!

It was supposed to be just a test shot with a Leica, but it turned up so good that I am going to make it the poster of my exhibition – Hommage à Kieślowski, which is going to be shown this autumn at Kieślowski festival in Poland.

And this actually sparks a new idea: why not make more photographs with Leica Sofort! Sometimes limitations are your best friends that push you to create something great and meaningful!

Final Images

Shot with the Leica Sofort

Shot with Provia 100 and the Hasselblad

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.