We’ve previously covered the excellent work done by unit stills photographer Coco Van Oppens using Fujifilm on the HBO Max TV series Raised by Wolves. With Season 2 recently airing locally on Showmax, it was the perfect time to catch up with Coco about her experiences on set in the Mother City.
Now knowing what to expect after shooting the stills for season one, what were your challenges on the set of Raised by Wolves: Season 2?
Another wonderful series to shoot on but as you say, not without its challenges. Story wise the locations were completely different. This time round, we are in the tropical zone, exciting new sets were built at the Cape Town film studios and we shot in various beautiful and often challenging locations in and around the Western Cape.
Filming during Covid times was the big challenge; we wore masks for 12 hours a day, did PCR tests 3x per week and social distancing made for an interesting and gruelling six months on Raised by Wolves: Season 2.
What equipment did you use on set?
I shot with various Fujifilm cameras and lenses, mainly the X-H1, X-T3 and the relatively new workhorse, the X-T4.
What was your primary lens used, and why that one?
I used a variety of lenses, all based on different shooting scenarios.
The 16-55mm f2.8 is a much loved and used lens since it’s fast and gives me great coverage. Another favourite is the 50-140mm f2.8 lens, this lens is sharp and solid, and I can’t say enough about the images. The 35mm f2 prime I used mainly for tight spaces and low light situations. I also played with the 56mm f1.2, its shallow depth of field is gorgeous. It’s more of a portrait rather than an action lens.
What did you enjoy most about this shoot?
The beautiful locations, set designs, the incredible performances, the stunts and the hundreds and hundreds of crew members all working towards a common goal. I believe we achieved this goal since Raised by Wolves has become one of the most popular science fiction TV series globally on HBO max in 2021-2022.
Did you always have to be on standby for stills, or do you get called in for a set amount of time? How did it work?
The publicity department select the best days for unit stills. The shooting schedule can change sometimes so we have to be flexible. I was on standby, knowing which scenes were important to cover.
Images from the series Raised by Wolves: Season 2 shot by Coco Van Oppens.
Facebook: Coco Van Oppens Photography