Marketing shared and managed office space. How do you entice businesses to your space?
Marketing photography is an absolute must.
When businesses assess potential shared office space for their business, they obviously need the right amount of space. However more important are the facilities available for their staff.
They will need suitable breakout facilities for meetings. Also, areas to prepare food and drink for those all-important breaks.
If you have shared office space on offer you need to show these areas in your marketing material too. So, when you organise that important professional shoot, you need to ensure that all spaces are included in the brief.
I was approached by the owner of shared office space in my hometown. This was from a recommendation by a fellow photographer who had moved away from the area.
A meeting was arranged to discuss the brief, where I discovered the offices had been recently refurbished. This meant that all the existing imagery was outdated.
Allan had plans to expand his business and take on extra space in another building. This meant a further opportunity later on. With the brief agreed a date was set for the shoot on a day when the offices would be empty.
For the marketing photography Allan required bright, airy inviting shots to promote his business. As the offices had been refurbished, all areas needed to be covered.
Especially important were the shared facilities such as breakout spaces and the kitchen. He had also invested in some soundproofed booths for business calls.
Some clients required a more private space, so partioned off spaces were to be covered too.
Profile of the marketing photography shoot
The shoot was scheduled for a Saturday when the offices are normally closed. This gave us a free reign to access all areas without disturbance.
Allan was there to help with setting up the shots. This is very useful to me as shots can be pre-approved and the various angles checked by the client.
As this was a shared space approval was sought for what could or could not be covered especially for the private spaces.
Full advantage was taken to show the shared facilities at their best. Most important would be the shared kitchen.
A good mix of the several styles in the office were captured.
As usual, the method of production is to blend multiple images. This allows the light in the image to be balanced giving a very natural look. This method is time effective at the shooting stage as supplementary light does not need to be set up.
Once blended the images are edited to maintain balance with any distracting features removed. In reality most of the work is at the taking stage. Most postproduction is to deal with the shortcomings of camera technology which can’t yet exactly reproduce what the eye sees.
Allan now has the material to update his website with a set of consistent images that accurately reflect his offering. Allan is pleased that he now has the quality of images that will help to encourage prospective clients to book a viewing.
This should help to fill the space especially as there are plans for expansion of the business.
If you feel that you in need of advice or require similar imagery, then please do give me a call.
Do you need to take on a professional interiors photographer to help market your property?
We have all noticed the trend towards do-it-yourself digital marketing as we are constantly bombarded by tech companies who can sell your widgets to the highest bidder. Here the question is, do you need professional interiors photography help you to market your property?
More people are realising that they can market their property for themselves without using the traditional estate agent. They wish to avoid those marketing fees.
Of course, there are disadvantages to this if you own a well-appointed property as phone images would not really show your property at its best.
This is where hiring a professional interiors photographer can really save the day.
I was recently commissioned by a property developer who wanted to sell her own home. She was very particular about how the house was to be presented. A large investment of time and effort went into making it look exactly right.
She could see the advantage that professional interiors photography would bring the best sale price. It was considered that this was a worthwhile investment.
Things to focus on
Of course, you need to think about dressing the property. The minimum requirement would be to have a good tidy up. There are certain areas where this is a necessity such as the kitchen and bathroom.
If you wish to show that the property is really loved, then you should bring in some fresh flowers and set out some fresh ingredients in the kitchen. Also consider whether there is a need to freshen things up with a little decorating.
Some people go even further by enlisting the help of a professional dresser. They know the way to make the best of any property and will be able to hire in furniture or artwork to make the property look amazing.
It is up to you to decide what would be best for your property, if there is value invested you may wish to take things further. It could make all the difference to the final sale price.
Are you in a position where you would like to do-it-yourself? If you wish to enlist professional help, please contact me to see how I can help.
The world of work has changed forever. Companies are no longer expecting their work force to attend the office every day. The move to working from home is now well established. This means that businesses will need to rethink how they use their office space.
The solution for a mental health charity
Directors of a mental health charity were commissioning a review of their office use when the pandemic struck. This gave them a great opportunity to rethink how their office space was used. It could be designed to be ready for future work patterns.
As less staff would be in every day. There can be more emphasis on break out spaces including more private areas for meetings. They also wanted to include soundproofed booths for private conversations with their clients.
With consultation with their preferred supplier they set out plans to make this a reality.
The developers perspective for the rethought office space
Once the work was completed Pi Sq, the developer decided that this prestigious project should feature in their marketing and wished to commission a professional photographer.
Based in the Midlands, Pi Sq found that their normal photographer was unavailable to work in London.
A recommendation was requested for someone they trusted to carry out the work. This is where a network of fellow creatives comes to the fore. Kevin reached out amongst his peer group and as this was my specialist area I responded to the request.
The client was delighted that someone could help and enlisted my services.
Breakdown of the shoot
Acting on the brief I needed to feature every area of the office as the whole area had been refurbished. Special interest was to be placed on the soft furnishings and the two directors offices. Breakout areas were also of importance.
Looking at previous shoots for the company made me realise that my bright and airy style was perfect for their requirements.
As usual my method of working is to use the available light in the office but to make multiple exposures of the scene and blend the images together later. This negates the use of bulky lighting equipment which would lengthen time on site and could produce hotspots in any of the glass present.
I prefer this way of working as I believe it produces a more natural look to the images.
Post production methods
My usual way of working is to import the raw files into Adobe Lightroom for initial blending and exposure tweaks. Particular attention is placed on making everything look natural, ensuring that there is detail in all shadow areas and that highlights are not overexposed.
Contrast is also adjusted and colour balance checked. With interior photography colour is very important as colours are often specified and the client requires them to be correct.
Final adjustments are made in Photoshop which may include removing some objects that should not be there or duplicating and added those that should be. I have in the past added missing heating elements from patio heaters.
For me this was a dream job as it is what I do best. The client was delighted and that is very important to me as I would not wish to let down a fellow photographer who recommended me for the job.
The finished offices look stunning and the charity now has a fantastic space that fits in with modern office life post pandemic. They are so pleased that they had a rethink on their office usage and now have some future proofing built in to the design.
Celebrating Brutalist Architecture in London. A personal creative project.
As a professional photographer I need to develop my creative skills in order to progress my art. Setting myself personal projects helps me to achieve this aim. A great area of interest for me is architectural photography and a project centred around brutalist architecture fulfils that need.
For me it is a very suitable project as many examples of this type of architecture can be found reasonably close to home. A trip along the South Bank and onwards though the City of London can be achieved in one session.
Brutalist Architecture – the answer in austere times?
The style known as brutalist originated during the 1940’s in France, although it did not make an appearance in the UK until the 1950’s. The first proposal for utilising the style was a house in Soho which was never built. The plan was put forward as a property with warehouse aesthetic of bare concrete and wood.
During the 1960’s the style developed with the predominant use of ‘Breton Brut’ or raw concrete. Patterns were created on the concrete giving the impression of wooden shuttering. Scale was important with the emphasis on mass. Large concrete slabs were employed with textured surfaces. Service ducts and ventilation towers were very much in evidence.
The style suited austere times as the materials were cheap, and blocks could be prefabricated. Construction time was minimised which was important as there was a great need for fast reconstruction after the war.
Notable examples in London.
The style was particularly popular in London where there are many fine examples such as the National Theatre and other buildings on the South Bank. These were built on or near the site of the 1951 Festival of Britain which showcased recovery of UK following WW2. The Royal Festival Hall is the only building to survive from the Festival of Britain.
Another fine example is the Barbican Centre built in the City of London. The centre was built in an area that was heavily bombed in WW2. The centre comprises around 2000 flats, a lake and garden. It also houses the Guildhall school of music and drama, a library, a girl’s school and the world-famous Barbican concert hall home to the London Symphony orchestra.
Logistics of the shoot
The beauty of working in a city such as London is that it is easily accessible and can be worked by foot in a relatively compact area.
A return trip into Waterloo and a brisk walk along the South Bank and through to the City of London across the millennium bridge opposite the Tate Modern covered the ground.
The shoot took place on a very sunny day which is very conducive for black and white photography although some of the shots were very contrasty and challenged the ability of a DSLR camera.
All the images were taken on a DSLR camera in raw mode and initially processed in Adobe Lightroom as black and white versions. The tonality was adjusted using the black and white mixer sliders.
The photos were then exported to Photoshop as colour versions and converted to black and white using the DXO Silver Effects Pro plug in. This is perhaps the best piece of software to produce excellent black and white images.
You have the option to mimic some of the classic black and white films of old. You can add texture to the image and use their excellent U point technology for local adjustments.
Observation is part of the creative process.
Of course, thinking in black and white is quite different to thinking in colour. You need to think about shape, form and texture within the image.
Observation is a very important creative process and here I find the juxtaposition of the concrete stairwell and metal fire escape interesting. They complement each other by introducing a similar curve into the composition. There is also added interest as they are constructed of different materials.
How can you be creative.
My inspiration for this shoot came from knowing that some photographic tuition providers advertise this as a day’s training. I thought that I would just go out and do it.
The secret is that there is no secret, and you just need to find something that interests you and plan the shoot. Then just pencil in a day and carry it out. It can be very rewarding, and you can share the results on Instagram or other social media platforms.
I just love working with new interior design clients. Perhaps it is down to how much I can help them with their marketing images. My latest project is for Alessandra Garcia of Orsetto Interiors. She hails from El Salvador and now has established a practice in SW London.
Background to the interiors shoot
I met Alessandra through the power of business networking. This was a chance meeting. All because a networking colleague persuaded me to visit another group. I just happened to be in the right place at the right time and she just happened to be searching for a specialist interiors photographer.
Alessandra has been developing her website for a while. Her problem was that not having completed a project meant that she had nothing to show the world.
Now that she has a finished project, it was full steam ahead for the photography. The day was set and Alessandra arrived early to dress the property. This is so important for the designer as they wish to show the interior as it was intended. You do not want so much everyday clutter on display.
Of course, the property needs to look lived in too.
Fortunately, Alessandra loved my style of interior design photography and the brief reflected this. Alessandra wanted the look of the property to be bright and airy. This was easy to achieve here because there were skylights installed, bringing an abundance of natural light into the space.
The interiors shoot
Arriving at the location, the first thing to do is to gain an overview of the property. It is important to be clear about what is required and which rooms to shoot.
This forms the basis of the shot list and gives the order of shooting. Alessandra also wanted some shots of herself in the property too.
As the light levels were so good in the property the photography was easier for this shoot. I still went through my usual routine of taking a number of exposures with the aim of blending in post-production.
This gives the opportunity to fine-tune the ambience for the property, just as the designer intended. As usual, I bring some emphasis to the details so that the client has plenty of choice of images.
It is really important to provide a whole set of images for the client. Some wider shots to be used as hero images, some closeup for detail and others with space for the copy too.
am always aware of the multifunctional nature of the images as they may be used for social media as well as the website. Some even wish to produce brochures as well.
Thoughts about post-production
While on-site you need to think about post-production later. You need a good range of images with varying exposures so that everything is captured. The skill is then to form a perfect blend to give the effect required. This has to look natural too as there are many images around that look completely false, often with garish colours.
Of course, post-production is completely necessary as you need to compensate for the limitations of the camera to capture everything. Our brains are remarkable in how they process information. This is something that even in these technological times still remains elusive for the camera manufacturers.
Alessandra was so excited about this shoot as this was to key to unlocking her interior design business. She was delighted with the results. So much so, She has already recommended me to another designer who will require a similar shoot too.