Posts Tagged ‘Styling’

Cross Media – the new trend in stock photography

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Last summer I introduced you to one of my personal experiences with stock photography through my blog “Stock Shoot Kids ‘N’ Balloons”.  As a pro photographer, I find it amazing how much has changed in the industry even from the previous summer.  The latest trend in the stock industry is the sale of cross media packages comprising of a collection of stills with matching footage all produced from the same shoot.  For those of you who are asking, “what is stock footage?” well essentially it’s a short high definition video footage lasting between 10-15 seconds that is not custom shot for a particular use such as in a movie or commercial but rather to be sold to multiple potential clients through stock libraries.   So now you ask, “who buys this footage and why”?   The answer is quite simple:  Everyone in the moving picture business who wants to save money and time.

Now let me elaborate on that a bit.  For example, both television and movie series as well as commercials and news programs frequently use stock footage as a way to keep costs down and save on production time. Footage of city landscapes, famous landmarks, and historical events are frequently used over and over again.  I once met the photographers who shot the areal footage of New York City, which was featured in the beginning of every episode of the series “Sex and the City.” Talk about a great sale!  A movie or television series will also reuse footage from previous installments adding minor modifications as a way to reduce filming time and costs associated with re shooting similar scenes. Many websites are moving towards using stock footage as well as stills in their online marketing and advertisement thus creating websites with rich media content.  Footage is even starting to appear on electronic billboards!

Stock libraries have realized the incredible sales potential that the footage industry has to offer and as a result, they have created cross media packages providing their clients with a large selection of both stills and footage.  I recently photographed a cross media stock shoot for Image Source, a London based stock library.  Working side by side with their art director and videographer, we simultaneously shot stills and footage of each scene/topic on our shoot brief.  Check out some of my stills featured in this blog and to see the full cross media package, follow this link (soon to be published):

It’s a tough job but someone has to do it!

See the finished products at Image Source

Escape to Africa

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

My latest photographic adventure took me on a relatively short trip down to the Dark Continent. I was commissioned to photograph a unique Moroccan-styled townhouse in Tangier, Morocco. As that I live in Southern Spain, getting to Tangier involved a short car ride into the expansive port of Algeciras followed by a one and a half hour ferry ride to the port of Tangier. The townhouse itself was a 10-minute walk from the port and located just outside the Medina. Although the exterior of this property was simple and unobtrusive, the interiors were magnificent featuring traditional U-shaped arches, elaborate use of bright color, and extravagant decorations. Traditional Zellige terra cotta tile work covered much of the floor and walls of almost every room while impressive Moorish plasterwork adorned the vaulted ceilings…and the views were absolutely spectacular! All in all, an amazing property. Enjoy the pics!

Quality Images Sell

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

The old adage “a picture is worth a thousand words” certainly holds true in our fast paced and image conscious world.  Today’s real estate world is largely based on Internet and print publications.  As that virtually every property on the market has been advertised using images, high quality photographs can make a huge impact on its sale ability.  Potential buyers browsing for properties will be drawn to images that stand out above the rest.


One of the two key elements in shooting any property is lighting.   The expensive equipment used to light interior is not enough to get the right light; you must also rely on Mother Nature.  Lets face it, when you see a beautiful interior image with natural soft sunlight shining in and crystal blue skies, the impression is completely different than the same image displaying cold and gray skies.


The soft sunlight captured on an image during the morning and evening illuminates your set with inviting warm tones and detail.  I use lighting equipment to basically balance out the exterior and interior light for exposure purposes thus avoiding burnt out windows.

Equally important to lighting is the actual styling of the interior.  Having a creative stylist on hand is certainly an asset!  It is my stylist’s job to recce the property and decide

what props we need to bring on the day of the shoot.

The right amount of appropriate well-placed props gives any room a realistic lived-in look.  Most interior shots will also benefit from a “little green”.

Both plants and cut flowers add a splash of colour and life.

A key fact to remember is that “less is often more” as far as styling is concerned and there is a big difference between a lived-in look and a chaotic mess.

The final phase in perfecting an interior image is done in post-production.  One cannot control if a crane or lamppost is seen through the window of your image and thanks to Photoshop, these nuisances can quite easily be removed.  Programs such as Lightroom also enable me to perform fine colour balance as well as correct wide-angle lens distortions.

By using quality lighting and styling and the latest in digital camera and post production techniques, even the average property can become a buyer’s dream home.  To get a better idea of what I’m talking about, I’ve included some examples of before and after images featuring what these techniques can do for an interior.