Posts Tagged ‘Commercial Work’

Shoot Out

This past weekend I had to work. Heaven forbid! I can’t believe these words are about to come out of my mouth, but I really enjoyed it. Sure, I had to wake up at 6:00am on a Saturday, but we were photographing some of the offices I’ve worked on in the past few years and it was pretty freakin’ fantastic. We set up a session with a professional photographer that’s done some shots for us in the past, and my coworker and I came along to approve the shots and to style as needed. Talk about this girl’s day in heaven, Internet! I got to ask the photographer TONS of question (aka bug the piss out of him) and try my hand at some interior decorating.

This is an example of one of the spaces we shot, which resides in a swanky new building/development in Charlotte. The photographer’s depiction of the space is by far more stunning, but this will at least give you a visual. I learned the secret to how his photographs are so amazing on my little photo shoot – they’re not real! Sure, he’s really taking pictures of the space, but the final photo is a combination of tons of different pictures. We would nail down the position and composition of our shot, and then once the camera (a fantastic Canon 5d which I got to hold, thank you very much) was all set up on it’s $1,000 tripod, the photog snapped tons of pictures at different shutter speeds to capture the perfect lighting on each part of the room – one for the flooring, one for the furniture, and so forth. After that, he works his magic in Photoshop and takes pieces from each exposure and composes them into a positively perfect photograph. Pure genius.

As much as I’d like to fancy myself an awesome photographer (in my dreams), I was there for the purpose of styling and profiling. The two spaces we shot were beautiful, architecturally, but needed a bit of sprucing to make the final photo really pop in our portfolio. Enter, Trader Joe’s. We popped down there as soon as the shop opened and purchased some fresh blooms to brighten up our spaces (along with our own vases, books and chotchkies we brought from home). The big perk to this styling gig is that we got the keep the flowers and plants after the shoot.

Like this sweet little succulent, complete with a lovely blue planter for the cool price of $4.99. Can’t beat that! We used these to style some workstation shots while the flowers and an awesome orchid pumped up our reception area shots. We also learned on our trip that Trader Joe’s will let you return anything. Half eaten box of crackers, opened wine or used flowers – they’ll take ’em right back into their generous, hippie lovin’ arms.

And just for good measure, here’s another shot of my work-expensed free-to-me blooms that are brightening up my mantle. I can’t say enough about the power of fresh flowers in a home. It really makes an empty vase sing and put a smile on your face. :) I had such a great time styling a photo shoot that I’m trying to figure out other ways to incorporate that into my life. Maybe I should dress up the abode and take a photo shoot of mister Charlie – good idea or incredibly cheesy? I think I know the answer to that one.

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Yesterday was quite the whirlwind for me, to say the least. I’m not sure how to effectively describe the craziness that ensued on my day o’ Neocon, other than giving a little time line of the days events. If you get tired of reading halfway through, just imagine what it was like experiencing it in real time. EXHAUSTING.

FYI these times aren’t exact. I’m not THAT anal precise with my daily schedule. :) Oh, and all images were taken with my old school point-and-shoot. I haven’t invested in an awesome one yet and cameras were “prohibited” at Neocon, so these pictures aren’t my best work. :)

5:30: Wake up. Yeah.

6:30: Head for airport in my business casual best, with my most comfortable work shoes on. Purse is jammed packed with a great book, snackies (I have to eat every few hours, or I get grumpy. High maintenance much?), makeup, phone charger – the works. I’m pumped and ready to go.

7:30: Flight from Charlotte to Chicago leaves on time. Score! Smooth flight with not much turbulence, despite some nasty clouds. Double score!

8:30(central time): Arrive at O’Hare. Decide to attempt the subway as opposed to a cab. Best idea ever. Enjoy a nice 40 minute jaunt through the low income areas of Chi-town with 20 of my new best friends.

9:20: Emerge from the train station to see that the Merchandise Mart is only 1 glorious block away. Realize how freaking huge the Mart is, and justify my cute but comfortable shoe choice.

9:30: Hit the floor running. Literally. Neocon is held on about 6 floors of the Mart and I was determined to see it ALL. My eyeballs thank me, but my feet are singing a different tune. Saw some super great showrooms, filled with tons of new and innovative products – and even more “suits” (aka dudes in suits). Most of the eyegasms came from the designs of the showrooms themselves, with the products coming in a close second. Design explosion? You betcha.

12:00: Head across the street to hang with the DIRTT people that sent me on this trip to tour their showroom. Enjoy some passed hors d’oeuvres of crab cakes, felafel, chicken salad – all while trying to figure out how to eat, hold my drink and schmooze simultaneously. Met the CEO of the company and he felt I was worthy enough to receive a coveted DIRTT purse. Sales reps oooed and awed that I was one of the lucky 3 people that day to get a purse from the big man. Stood up a little straighter.

2:00: Head back over to the Mart to meet up with some friends from my old job in Atlanta. Chatted for all of 10 minutes before having to rush out to conquer other things.

2:10: Saw more pretty things. Hello, beautiful furniture and LED wall o’ lights. Won’t you come home with me?

2:20: Leave  the Mart forever and head back to the subway. Realize how much feet are throbbing from marathon I just walked. Take two seconds to soak in the fact that I’m in Chicago, and say hello and goodbye to the one square block I saw while I was there.

2:30: Hop on subway again. Wasn’t I just here? Enjoy my first time sitting in 5 hours, despite the creepy man that stared me down for 12 stops.

3:30: Arrive at airport. Wasn’t I just here? Scurry through super long security lines, sore feet and new purse in tow.

3:45: Walk to the last gate at the airport to visit my best bud and her newly crowned American Idol client who are passing through Chicago as well (you read that right – touch me, I’m famous by association!). Talked, laughed, rested cramped calf muscles and played it cool in the face of a celebrity. I’ve been known to clap profusely around someone famous, so this was a real accomplishment for me.

4:30: Leave best bud and call other best bud who just got back from Antarctica to catch up. Grab some Quiznos and stuff my face, realizing I hadn’t eaten much all day. Remember the snackies I packed for that very reason. D’oh!

5:30: Extremely sore calves (gate was on total opposite side of the airport) do their best to board the plane. Sit on the tarmac for an hour due to stormy weather, but thank sweet baby jesus that I have a direct flight. Grip my armrest during some turbulence and wait for the flight to be over.

10:30: Little boy throws up in the row next to me. Not grossed out because I feel bad for the little guy. Get a slight pang of fear that just witnessed the beginning of a swine flu outbreak. Safely land in Charlotte 10 minutes after the puking event. Thank sweet baby jesus again. Come home to a very sleepy dog and husband, and a hot shower. Live to tell the tale. :)

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I don’t typically share my commercial work on the blog, but when this little tidbit came about, I knew it would be good to share with the rest of you. A “what not to do”, if you will. One of our lovely clients came to us and asked if we could make a finish board of some new lobby finishes that another design firm had selected for them. Sure, we didn’t do the picking, but we’re so obliging that we said “sure, why not!” and ordered the finish samples to see what everything looked like. Well, let me tell you – when those samples came in, we quickly decided to not have our logo on the board because oh. my. goodness. This, people, is what you might call a hot mess.

I know most of you aren’t commercial interior designers, but let this be a lesson to you all for your home decor ventures. No matter how much you love that icy blue mermaid-skin wallcovering, don’t go there. No matter how much you think copper wallcovering goes with gold and navy carpet, don’t go there. No matter how much you love mermaid wallpaper AND sparkly orange paint together, REALLY don’t go there. Most of these elements (well, expect my mermaid friend) would be fine on their own, but the combination of everything is really a travesty. A hot travesty trany mess (if you haven’t seen SNL lately, sorry for the bad joke!). Can anyone top this with something more horrific? I’d love to see! :)

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