Global Fashion Group is the world’s #1 fashion and lifestyle retail group in growth markets, Australia and New Zealand. In the summer of 2022, they wanted to update their executive team profile photos, as it’s so rare for all 13 executives to be in the same place at once, they wanted to take the chance to do it during a team meeting at Soho Farmhouse. The brief was to create relaxed, informal, yet stylish images on a light grey/off white background, with high contrast and with the intention of being used in black and white on the company’s website, but also to be supplied in colour for their other PR uses if needed.
This shoot was logistically quite challenging, and required an assistant and careful planning, for the following reasons:
- We had only 1 hour to photograph 13 individual portraits + 2 Co-CEO duo shots
- We couldn’t get a dedicated area to set up and test beforehand, because there is a no photography policy outside the meeting room at this location (like all Soho Houses, to my knowledge) so we had to use a roughly 8 foot square area in the meeting room which was not designed for this purpose
- 3/4 body photos take longer due to the more complicated posing requirements, to flatter all body types and clothing styles worn by each individual, yet we only had less than 5 minutes per person available
- This being a fashion company, many participants were (rightly) quite specific about how their clothing had to look in the photos, adding more time to the already tight schedule
- We had to shoot tethered and have each person check their shots to make sure we come away with at least one that they were satisfied with, since there was no option to reshoot any time soon
- The area we had available for a backdrop setup was too small to put a flash to evenly light up the background behind the subjects, so there was a fair bit of Photoshop required afterwards, and we had to be very specific with positioning of each person
Here is the final set of images the client chose.
My assistant and I got there early in the morning and had around 20 minutes to rearrange what we could in the room, set everything up, take test shots, mark out the location of our light stands with masking tape, and then take everything down; then re-enter the room around lunchtime to quickly set everything up (with time ticking on our 1 hour slot) and get the shots! We then went back during another short break a couple of hours later to take everything down and pack up again.
Since we completed the shoot, there have been some changes in the leadership team but most of the portraits are still being used of course.
I relish the logistical challenge of shoots like this; where preparation and planning is where the success lies for the most part, as without that we would simply not have had time to finish the assignment seamlessly. With my nearly 10 years of experience as a working photographer, I can guarantee my clients that I am prepared for even difficult logistics like on this shoot.
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