Within the dark rooms and safe spaces of gay Berlin exists a mainstay of queer life: The House Of Presents’ weekly revue show. Facing off every Tuesday night, the city’s premier drag queens and kings would strut their stuff on a stage where originality isn’t just a pre-requisite, it is a way of life.
Since arriving in Berlin, I had been introduced to Berlin’s vibrant gay scene and started photographing and documenting the rich plumage of its exotic menagerie. Having started with just still photographs it was only a question of time until I would include video.
Shot in available light over the course of a single night, this is the quintessential House of Presents. From the smoked cigarettes outside to the flung arms inside, we got both sides of a regular night with both the performers and the crowd who combine to make every Tuesday special.
Record in 4K Black Magic RAW, the tolerance of their pocket camera took the wildly contrasting bright lights and dark shadows to give detail at both ends of the extreme. However, the real key, as always, was the glass. Using 1960s optics we got detail with that tacky over-sharpened that over characterises too many high-resolution videos.
After the editing and grading were completed in Davinci Resolve, a further edit was prepared for social media and in particular Instagram with a cropped 1×1 aspect ratio.