One that sticks out - Frame Four / by Dawn Webb

During my short stay at Lashkar Gah "Lash", I got friendly with the medical team.
There really isn't much going on at Lash apart from seeing how much you can eat or honing your skills on the Volleyball court.
Lash was the Brigade Headquarters - everything was controlled and commanded from there.

The medics didn't just treat ISAF soldiers, they also treated local civilians.  Often helicopters would come flying in, carrying civilians caught up in crossfire or injured from a result of stepping on IED's.

They were treated exactly the same as any ISAF soldier.

This one particular day I was sat in my tent when a shout came in "Woody we got a Blackhawk coming, might be interesting"
So off I dashed to the med centre - a make shift room in an old, concrete bunker type structure.

I had approx 10 minutes before the Blackhawk - call sign "Pedro" was due to arrive, and thinking of who and what might be coming in.....how can I photograph it, will I get in the way, will it be a child.....More info is coming in over the radio and it's a young male of fighting age, shot in the leg and the back.  I am not there to judge on who or what he is, I simply want to make good images.

I have enough time to set up 2 x SB900's inside the room and out of harms way, remotely triggered with a Pocket Wizard.
I had this shot in mind previous to this casualty being brought in - I knew I wanted to show the intimacy between the ISAF medical team and the casualty, I wanted the doors half open to show a "POV" style of shot but didn't really know how to light it.  I had to be respectful to the casualty regardless of who they are, I could of but didn't want to show any blood and guts - I didn't want it to come across as distasteful in any way.

My biggest dilemma of all was that once the lights were set, I was out of the room I had no chance of going back in - imagine it, me running in and popping off flash lights in the middle of minor surgery!!!!
Working with my instincts and experience I knew that if both lights gave me F4 combined I could work the rest from my camera out of the room, either by dragging the shutter or stopping down my aperture.

Here is the result from that casualty being brought in, I never knew who he was - I just concentrated on the technical aspects to get the shot right.

You can clearly see how I have lit the room with the SB900's, its great because there is more light on the medic to the rear who is the one "doing" and the two medics camera left and camera right are a stop darker.  I think I have allowed enough of the casualty's face yet gave him the dignity he deserves.