It doesn't matter how good a design layout is, it must be supported with good imagery. This is the same for any brand projection collateral be it a brochure, advert or website.
We feel that it's very important to invest well in a good photographer who can make all the difference to a presentation of interior design related products, or an interior design portfolio.
It also helps us as a design company to present your business in the best possible way.
We are delighted to have contributed articles written by renowned interior design & architecture specialist photographers, Nick Smith and Thierry Cardineau featured here. Below they discuss the methods used to help them produce magazine quality photography.
Nick Smith Photography
I'm a great believer in using natural light where possible and having artificial lighting in the rooms switched off. Personally I think it gives a much more classical and natural look. It's amazing how much you can manipulate the day light with reflectors and white panels. This is also the preferred method of shooting for magazines, meaning you are more likely to get a feature published.
I always shoot with the camera tethered to a laptop, so you can see everything you are shooting as you go and you can style accordingly.
I have always worked with medium format cameras, starting in film and then progressing onto digital when the industry went that way. The sensor is nearly double that of a standard SLR camera meaning the quality of the image resolution is superior.
Thierry Cardineau Photography
Coming from a long career using medium and large format film cameras I certainly have a good edge over the younger generation of photographers who have only grown up using digital equipment.
Of course the sense of composition remains whatever tools you are using. However I see too many younger shooters not dedicating enough time to think and compose carefully their images. Something that the film era has taught me, mainly due to the long set up involved by putting in place appropriately my lighting equipment and all the testing required at the time.
Despite having ditched my lighting gear years ago and therefore using now almost exclusively natural light, I haven't yield to the temptation to increase dramatically my daily production of images but have kept a sensible approach to it and much prefer to take as much time as possible to produce each shot, hence insuring the highest, most even quality through the entire photoshoot. A good composition relies not only on my skill but also by spending time at moving furniture around and placing props precisely. This can become rather physical by the end of the day!
The biggest change of moving digital has definitely been to only use the available natural lights found at one's location. To determinate the best time of the day to capture one specific room is essential and relies on my experience over the years and has become instinctive. That leads to the post production process which represents a new stage in my workflow since moving digital. I consider the PP to be as important as the photoshoot itself.
I've develop a specific digital workflow which took me many years to master and that I'm still trying to improve. There are no trade secrets there, just willing to take the time to do a very precise RAW conversion of my work. Most of my clients are designers and are extremely demanding in regards to the faithfulness of the colors fabrics, textures, etc. To choose an accurate color temperature, not overdoing the contrast and saturation is the key to make the client happy.
I then give the last touch in Photoshop, to give it a sense of depth and definition, combining various techniques, based on layers and masks. Again the important point is not to over process an image but finding the exact sweet spot where you know when to stop.
All in all, I consider the technical quality of my work to have reached its highest level over the last few years. My images have never looked so good, with a better sense of depth, almost 3D like, that I often try to achieve.
Gone are the days using film and I have no regrets really. Maybe a little nostalgia for the good old Fujichrome Velvia 50 which had a kind of magic when looked on a lighting table. One day I shall take out from the attic my dusty film camera for a little ride, just for fun though…