Archive for May, 2011
Here’s Mike shooting a marketing video for a new listing of his in Gastown. The roof of the unit was unfinished, so we had to go up on the neighbour’s roof and climb over. That’s how hard this guy works to sell a listing.
A couple of months ago I wrote about the virtues of staging. Just the other day I received a call from Keith Roy. I shot a staged condo last week for him. As he told it, this listing had been sitting on MLS for months with no action. After staging it and uploading my photos, he sold it within a few days. So if you find yourself with a languishing listing, staging might be your solution!
Just completed another shoot for Kitchen Art. Despite the challenges of shooting such dark colours, I love doing this kind of work. I’m not confined to a standard 4:3 ratio horizontal image, and can spend as much time setting up the lighting as I need – in this case, up to an hour for each image. But the results are worth every minute, and the workmanship on these cabinets is superb.
Toronto-based Kubik is an award-winning designer of museum and gallery exhibits. They contacted me to provide them with some images of one of their projects at a recent trade show in Vancouver. Never one to turn down an interesting job, I jumped at the chance, even though I had to be there at 8 the morning after my flight from Italy. But somehow I managed to get my pants on, blow the dust off my camera gear and get down there in time, before the show opened so I could get some standalone shots of the booth. I kept shooting after the doors opened, and got some ghostly images of people walking around and through the installation, which the client preferred.
This kind of work is all ambient lighting, of course. So the only way to shoot this is to take several exposures and blend the best parts together. Here is one of the final images.
I shot this office space for Water Street Profile, a boutique shared office space in Gastown. The challenge with this environment was to show the stunning view along with the interior details, which in some cases were dark wood, brick and furnishings. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, cameras just don’t have the dynamic range to pull the details from dark shadows and bright daylight in the same shot. So a little Photoshop trickery was required, but just enough to show all the necessary details without drawing attention to the technique, which can be a problem with a lot of HDR-style images. It’s not hard to make HDR images, but it’s hard to make good ones. My client was ecstatic with the results, and has asked me to come back and shoot some more offices for him.
When I get the opportunity to shoot a well staged home I always take the time to get some closeups and detail shots. I really enjoy the challenge of composition, lighting, and depth of field in these images, and don’t usually get a chance when I’m shooting for realtors. They all want to show as much of the room as possible, and invariably want it as bright as possible. So when I’m shooting for a designer or a developer, I spend as much time on the details as I can. Many of these shots won’t ever see the light of day because they don’t communicate enough information for my clients, so I’m posting a few of my favourites here. Because it’s my blog and I can do what I want.
It’s hard to believe that this beautiful home is inside a 100 year old building that used to be a BC Hydro Substation. But this East Vancouver beauty is one of twelve units in the unique structure, and makes the most of its high ceilings and spacious rooms. Of course, it helps to have great taste in interior design as well. If you’re interested, Lorne Goldman has the details.
Just came back from a two-week trip to Italy. Spent 8 days on a bike and boat tour of the Amalfi Coast, an experience I will never forget. Here’s a sample:
I was recently asked to shoot some more interiors for award winning developer Solterra’s new Sunset Grove community in Surrey, B.C.. Shooting display suites is a nice change of pace from run of the mill real estate photography, since the furnishings and accessories are always photogenic. I also like the challenge of trying to communicate a lifestyle in photographs, rather than showing how big a room is, or what the view looks like out the window. It’s a completely different approach, and each shot has to be carefully orchestrated, since the images can end up the size of a billboard, or printed on high quality, glossy paper. So the chairs have to be lined up perfectly, towels have to be folded just right, and bedspreads have to have just the right amount of wrinkles in them to look great but not hotel room perfect.