“I have no illusions of earning your forgiveness…because all of this is my fault.”
Naegi could feel the thumps of the compactor intensifying as the conveyor belt he was on grinded towards it. Slow, inexorable, and final. Hands gripped under the table, uncontrolled heart rate.
A host of different circumstances had led to this farcical situation: Naegi’s concept of indefatigable justice had been shattered when his peers passed the guilty verdict on him. Why? Who? And how could such an obviously incorrect conclusion have been reached?
His brain started thinking through the possibilities – thinking too much, considering his situation and current state of mind. He was nauseous, and uncontrolled chills ran up and down his spine. He could feel the onrush of air displaced by the compactor right behind him. One more thump…and it would be over for him.
Naegi did not feel the conveyor shudder to a halt, nor was he aware of being pitched forward into the dark chasm.
This Dangan Ronpa cosplay shoot, with Kotani and Fan Yang as the cosplayers for Naegi and Kirigiri respectively, is based on the Chapter 5 ending of the Dangan Ronpa game, when Naegi is dropped into an underground garbage dump, and Kirigiri follows to rescue him.
Working backwards from that concept, I decided to re-use the location I had found and used for Black Rock Shooter in Oct 2011, since it has a big pile of rubble and a suitable look for a dump.
While the building still stands, the method of access had changed a bit, but it didn’t take too long to figure it out.
Lighting-wise, I wanted to reduce as much as possible the spill of light onto the ground, so I mostly used a gridded beauty dish (again, one of my favourite light shapers due to its balance of qualities), as well as gridded flashes. For some shots, I also used a red gel for highlights.
Thanks must go to 草, who assisted at the shoot, and for her professional wrangling of the instant noodle cup as a hair accessory for Kirigiri.
As per usual, it was an absolute pleasure to work with Kotani. Since all three of them are fairly experienced cosplayers in their own right, they have got a real understanding of what photographers do, and I was pleasantly surprised when they called for the use of a fisheye lens for a particular look they wanted (good thing I packed it!).
It was also very interesting that they had “decoded” photographers’ behavioural characteristics very effectively (not the mention the fact that there are actually universally common behaviour traits on the part of photographers).
They knew the subtle cues that photographers like myself give out when a shot isn’t working, and we want to move on. At the same time, they also knew how photographers act when they got the shot the first time round, but continue taking retries in case a better shot comes along.