I admit that I am embarrassed that it has taken me until the eve of next season's Kingsway Mall campaign photoshoot to share photos and notes from last season's photography. I delayed posting not because I wasn't eager to show you the work we produced and the process through which the images were created but because I was very happy with the images Kingsway Mall and their advertising agency, TAG Advertising of Calgary, AB selected for ads and for the Kingsway Mall website. The shoot felt much like what the reunion of an old band may have felt like; West Edmonton Mall alumnus John Chwyl as Kingsway's marketing director, Nikolas Syhatheb and his team for hair and makeup, and Corey Thompson as photographic assistant/co-photographer/human boom stand. But much had also changed. I looked through TAG Advertising's portfolio and company with a diverse and illustrious past and with enormous potential. Many of the works, while done for mostly small and medium-sized businesses, were very original and brilliant both in concept, execution, and delivery yet also pockmarked with work that I couldn't understand. I often experience this response when looking at the work of many of the ad agencies that I have admired and would appreciate an opportunity to work with again in the future. For weeks we planned this shoot and for weeks I could barely contain my eagerness to work with this new (for me) art director.
I was apprehensive about the concept at first; the concept called for images shot with mostly out of focus/blown out backgrounds that would later be gradient-toned with some blues and integrated with Kingsway Mall branding materials. But I had faith in the concept and art direction and as the two days of shooting unfolded I wasn't just relieved but pleasantly surprised that my initial apprehension was totally unfounded. The two days produced some of the most free-flowing shooting situations that I've had the chance to work with in commercial fashion photography. John insisted that Patricia be one of our models for this shoot and I wouldn't object to another opportunity to shoot with her (even if I dared!). Katherine and Sean are represented by Sabrina Notte and her agency Deja Vu Modeling International out of Red Deer. Vicki is a model you've seen before in my portfolio and my blog and is currently unrepresented. Liv is a new model and Tom Jablonski is a friend and the Shoe Guru. We used Corey's 72x72" Scrim Jim and 1stop black screens or the white/silver reflector fabric as the only light modifier for the two days. Virtually all photos were shot with the Nikon D3 and the 135mm F/2 Defocus Control Nikkor and processed in Adobe Lightroom 3. Katherine is currently modeling in India and Oman under Inega model management. And a huge thank you again to the awesome people at the Alberta Aviation Museum for hosting us at the hangar.
I've worked extensively with Vicki over the past five or six years and created several pieces that I felt were photographic portfolio worthy. However, I feel that this may be the one shoot in which Vicki has looked her best.
A selection from Sean's first set of the day. Scrimjim silver reflector used to fill in some of the shadows on the forklift in the background.
Liv's last look of her first full shoot day ever.
I thought Tom had a cool look from the first time I shot him for his own company's promotional materials.
My favourite shot of Katherine to date.
Some of Patricia's photos that were never used. A small cross section of a 100+ image flow of hotness.
The concept mockups that got me a bit worried at first.
Make the jump for outtakes.
Everyone's still smiling . . . the day must have just started! Just kidding.
We're still tweaking the first look we'd shoot over the two days. In all I believe we shot about about twenty looks and about 1300 photos.
Bridget about to help Katherine out with her pants.
My usual shooting position while Todd and Nikolas show their support for the photographer.
Nice shot, Todd . . . probably the sexiest photo of the day.
I've worked with Vicki in almost the same spot before. Recognize the fuel tanks in the distance behind her?
A casualty of shoot day one. Well, not really . . . we found him or her like this near the end of the day.
A real casualty of the photoshoot: I dropped the Nikon D3 lens first into the pavement, cracking the filter and denting the filter ring. I was unable to remove the ring and still needed this lens so I ended up smashing out the rest of the glass. Once all of the filter glass was removed the lens continued to function flawlessly.
Oh, shoot styling kit, how I missed thee.
John's totally not as grumpy as he looks in this shot. At least I hope that he's not as grumpy as he looks.
Nikolas evaluating the makeup situation to prepare for a close up shot.
I'm glad that I have a Panasonic GH1 (and now Panasonic GH2) to pass around on set for behind the scenes stills. Most of the time I end up shooting my own behind the scenes. Thanks again to Todd, John, and Corey for many of these photos.
Todd's hilarious attempt at being creepy.
Hahah . . . I think this could have been one of the better photos from this set.
Corey Thompson being a lightstand.
Best human light stand EVAR!
Liv gettin' some stuffin'.
I wish I could say that this was the first time I've worn women's clothing at work.
Hahah . . . the hilarious backstory to this photo isn't fit for the public internet.
Last photo before we lose the sun.
John checking the balance of a feather earring.
Bridget - she works in marketing for Kingsway with John. Thank you for all you have done for this shoot.
This photo reminded me to remind Nikolas to return to Edmonton to do hair and makeup on Monday and Tuesday. He totally forgot. HAHAH!