Portraits: Studio, Environmental, Formal, Casual
Every organization is built by people and on people. It has been my good fortune to step into these environments to produce professional photography and capture images of working folks in the companies and organizations where they make their livelihoods.
The people are the real life and substance of every organization. Nothing seems more phony to me than seeing “stock” photos on someone’s website.
Professional photography has taken me into some of the most interesting environments. I’ve seen a surgeon hold a man’s heart in his hand. I’ve learned how things are made, shooting in factories and small manufacturing facilities. Then there are the schools and universities, and the hospitals where the sick people get well. Photographing people, on location and in the studio, showing who they are and what they do, has been one aspect of professional photography I enjoy most.
What I’ve learned doing professional photography of “real people” who work in our country is that there is no visual substitute for who they are. They are the core, the foundation, the substance and the force that makes our businesses and institutions work.
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Custom Business Portraits
Portraits can be rendered on different backgrounds for specific applications. The original portraits are shot on a green screen background. This allows for added flexibility in the final output of the image so the photos can be delivered to customers for multiple uses on man optional backgrounds. Your portraits will be delivered in color and black and white. The black and white versions will be optimized for print and newspaper reproduction. Take a look at these sample portraits and be sure to view our large variety of available backgrounds.
THE STORY OF THIS PHOTOGRAPH illustrates the old saying about how the best laid plans of mice and men often go astray. The image was created for a large insurance company in Baltimore. The four subjects arrived at my studio. I had a handrail set up so the models could steady themselves in a row and maintain their positions. We were ready to shoot as soon as the models got in wardrobe and our makeup artist did a final check and touch up.
The art director and the client had predetermined the order the people would be arranged in based on gender, age and ethnic considerations. We lined the people up and shot a Polaroid test to see how they looked.
I could see the problem in the camera but the first Polaroid proved that we there were issues. The first shot looked awful.
We had arranged the people according to an intellectual concept rather than actual visual appearance. What we got in our first test was a little itty bitty head – then a big giant head – then a small head – capped off by a pretty big head. It was OMG terrible! We didn’t get the impression we wanted of four diverse individuals, looking off into the future. I never realized before this shoot, how different people’s head sizes could be.
The Lesson? Photography is only about appearances. It’s not what you think about what you see, it is only about the surface. In that sense, professional photography is merely superficial.
After some discussion and general agreement that what we had was not good, I suggested that we arrange the people according to their head size – largest to smallest, to create a visual perspective that would organize the image in a graphic way. It worked! The client and the art director liked the results and we finished the shoot, as scheduled, in one hour.