Outside Inside

If you have a look at my galleries (and I’m assuming you have), you’ll notice that my two favoured subjects for photography are cars and landscapes. Over the years, I have endeavoured to hone my photography skills in those particular areas. Sometimes though it is good to be pushed in a different direction…

I was very excited to see an email drop in to my inbox from Rebecca Campbell who had been working on an amazing mural in a Regency house in Cheltenham. She had been passed my details by Jamie Williams, who had been providing some very high-end cabinetry to the same client. Rebecca wanted some images of this massive project for her website. These were to be documentary (to give a sense of the scale of the mural) and also more intimate (to highlight he detail and skill of her work).

After a meeting to get a sense of the project and whether it was something I could tackle, I came away and mulled. Could I do it justice? How could I get it all in? What should I charge? I mulled, and mulled again.

After some mulling, I emailed Rebecca with a quote, and we agreed that I should take the photos the following Tuesday, as she should have finally finished this two month project on the Monday before.

It was a challenging shoot! Being a staircase it was hard/impossible to step back very far in order to capture the size of the work. Using a very wide angle lens caused some distortion, but with a bit of creative positioning and a little bit of the Lens Correction tool in Adobe Lightroom CC hopefully I have managed to capture a sense of just how impressive this mural is. Lighting was also a little difficult, a huge north facing window on the staircase had to be compensated for. Some exposure bracketing and blending in Photoshop again helped here.

Once the shoot was over, there were still some hours to be spent selecting, editing and tweaking the resulting images. Then time to send them off, with a contact sheet and a personalised CD sleeve.

After a nervous wait, as the Royal Mail took five days to deliver First Class post, I was relieved when Rebecca messaged to say that the package had been delivered. There was another nervous wait while I waited to hear her verdict on the images. Which was happily a positive one!

From a personal point of view this was an interesting project. I was a little out of my comfort zone for a couple of reasons: this was not the sort of project that I would normally shoot, and also this was my first paid commission, so I had to suppress my desire to do what I wanted and rather produce images that suited the client’s brief. Were the opportunity to shoot something like this to arise again, I would be keen to do it. I have learnt some interesting lessons and there are some techniques that I would like to refine further.

If you are interested in having me shoot your project, whatever it may be, please get in touch here.

by Ken Long

Category: Commissions