Sarah Wilkins, the marketing director at Skyline Transportation, hired me to be her advertising photographer for an upcoming campaign.
Initially, I asked questions to determine the subject matter and purpose of the photos. The company recently invested in a new fleet of trucks and was creating a campaign targeted at potential new drivers. As the labor market has tightened, many companies are doing more recruiting advertising, which I appreciate.
We then discussed where she would be using them. Different types of images should be taken, depending on where they will be used. For example, cell phones and magazine/pamphlet covers should be done in portrait mode, while computer screens should be in landscape mode. We created a shot list of images she would actually use and that would be helpful for the company’s campaign. Afterward, I would be extracting the trucks from their backgrounds for the most flexibility.
Once we knew what we wanted to capture visually, we discussed how to do the actual photography. It was difficult to schedule the trucks as well as the workers, as they are always on the go. This forced us to do the photography in their super muddy parking lot, which also had a lot of distractions. We chose to have the trucks close to one of their washing bays because they got dirty quickly with all the mud. We chose a time when a driver would be available as well as a good time for the light.
It was raining for the last few days before the shoot. As Sarah already knew, we had to delay the job an hour or so because we had initially timed it with a clear sky in mind. The light shifts depending on the weather, and everyone has to understand this ahead of time. The driver showed up and started moving trucks in coordination with our shot list and we were done in no time–allowing the driver and Sarah to get back to work.
Back at the office, I extracted the crazy parking lot with all the distractions to make some very solid advertising images. There are still crazy reflections in the paint. I bet you didn’t notice it and no one would notice them in the ads that we planned either. We could have met different needs, restrictions, and goals for the client. Photography can often be about problem solving and making sure that the end results give value to the client–this is where a lot of fun come in of being an advertising photographer.