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The Queen's Gambit Session

The Queen’s Gambit Remake

Recently, we tried our hand at recreating¬†The Queen’s Gambit Netflix Title, and it was not easy! Today, we are going to walk you through our operations that day, and you will see that not everything is as simple as it seems! So here we go!

The Setup

The first part of our gambit adventure was the setup. We spent weeks researching and purchasing the right stuff to make this happen. Wigs, chess boards, tables, backdrops, and even mini bottles of scotch and whiskey! We set up early that morning so we could have Lauren come in and get right after it. We got ourselves a magnetic chessboard to make life a little easier when we inevitably moved everything all over the place. Of course, one of the pieces we needed had a magnet that was crooked, so a slight operation had to take place so we could level it out. After that, the setup was perfect. On to the shooting portion.

Shooting

Once our setup was dialed in, we moved into some test shots. Getting the lighting correct was a rather simple task, and dialing in the power is easy with a trusty light meter. We started shooting and realized that no matter what we did, the wig just was not going to cut it. At this point, I had already felt pretty defeated and not confident in this panning out. We tried again and again, and finally decided to shoot without it and add it in post. 

Anya Taylor Remake of The Queen's Gambit
Anya Taylor Remake of The Queen's Gambit

Post-Process

This is where the real work came into play. I spent roughly 1.5 hours in photoshop perfecting every aspect possible. We ended up with over 30 photoshop layers to nail the color grade, noise level, frequency separation, dodge and burn, and so on and so forth. We even had to make Lauren’s eyes a bit bigger to fit the look, and warp the digital wig to get it to fit her head correctly! It was a process, but having my trusty Wacom Intuos Pro tablet made it a lifetime easier to handle.

Final Image Critiques

Generally, I think we pretty well nailed the look. I do wish we found a better wig and got the shot in-camera instead of in post, but who doesn’t like a little compositing practice every now and again! As prepared as we were, I think we should have spent a little more time selecting the outfit, as we did end up cutting up some of Lauren’s shirts to make them short-sleeved! Outside of that, we all worked well together, and nailed the look, just as expected. We all look forward to doing another TV Title soon! Let us know which series you think we should target next!

Anya Taylor The Queen's Gambit Lauren Biazzo The Queen's Gambit
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