Tricks of the Trade: Photoshoots
To promote your interior design business you need to show your projects to editors for consideration in either print or online publications. Just like a portrait photo, it is essential to photograph your interiors looking their best. Here are some Tips and Tricks of the Trade to get the most out of your photoshoots.
1. Hire a Professional Photographer
It is tempting to use your iPhone, but editors want to see finished photos. Save your iPhone shots for your social media. If you do not already have a photographer, ask for suggestions from other designers, architects and industry partners like showrooms and vendors. Also, look through your favorite design magazines and see whose work you like. Select three strong candidates to consider, choosing the photographer whose aesthetics, work style, and personality dovetail with yours.
2. Set the Stage
The photos represent an idealized version of how your clients live. Remove visual clutter and organize bookshelves with a painterly eye. Warn the homeowners that because everything looks different from the camera's angle, furniture, art, and accessories may be moved around the room or even from room to room to get the best shot. Here is where an iPhone comes in handy to take a before shot so everything can be put back in place. Also, try to schedule the photo shoot for when the clients are out of town.
3. Beg, Borrow or Steal
If you are missing elements from the house, consider memoing or renting items from showrooms, vintage shops, antique dealers, and art galleries. Good relationships with these businesses come in handy. Approach showrooms and vendors that you do a lot of business with and ask if you can borrow for a photoshoot. If your work gets published, their products will be in the credits. Also, editors pay close attention to vendor lists for ad sales and storylines.
4. Tell a Story
The most engaging photos of interiors evoke the sense that someone was just in the room. Vases of fresh flowers, bowls of ripe fruit, art books, a discarded jacket or pair of shoes give the space life. This prevents rooms from looking stagnant or like a showroom. Tell the story of the whole house in photos, from exterior to interiors, including images of the public rooms such as entry, living, dining, and kitchen to the more private spaces of beds, baths, and studies. Editors want to see it all including artful vignettes and detail shots.
Finally, enjoy the process. During the shoot have beverages and nibbles on hand and a bottle of bubbly to celebrate at the end.