Commissioning photography: comparing apples..

Comparing apples - copyright 2013 Scott Brooks | Imagennix

Photographs often are commodities…

As a former management consultant, I participated in countless competitive bids over the course of 25 years. The norm in our business was to submit a proposal in response to a detailed RFP (request for proposals) that set out the client’s requirements, timing and expected deliverables. These projects spanned many months and often were at the core of company strategy, so there was a lot of attention paid to every detail.

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The value of a plan: how a detailed photography plan saved my bacon

Wedding promotion photo for W Hotel Hong Kong..Model: Phuong Rouzaire.Makeup Artist: Rhine Wong.Hair Stylist: Tim Wong.Photographer: Imagennix | Scott Brooks.Location: Wet Deck (Scott Brooks)

Fashion wedding promo for W Hong Kong – In mid-February the marketing team at W Hong Kong asked whether I could produce a series of images showcasing the hotel’s facilities, for use in an in-house sales application that would be shown to prospective wedding clients. “Holy crap!,” I said to myself. What an opportunity. Complicating the request was that the only window available for photography was the 4th and 5th of March while the images were needed by the 12th, so they could be used at a wedding expo in the middle of the month. “Sure,” I said out loud, “That won’t be a problem…”

Despite their busy schedules, the hotel’s event and marketing teams worked with me for the next two weeks to select models, book hair and makeup artists, source wardrobe, spec floral arrangements, scout nine locations, approve a shooting plan and reserve rooms and venues, to make “sure” they would be available. The line from Robert Burns’ poem “To a Mouse” provides a fitting description for the two days of photography: “The best laid schemes of mice and men go often awry.”

From emergency hospital visits of key team members in the days leading up to the shoot, to unexpected late-morning swimmers, a wedding party that chose to shoot all of their group portraits in the middle of one of our locations, and a last-minute doubling in the size of an important corporate event, conditions were ripe for a disastrous shoot. If we hadn’t planned down to 30-minute increments, with a detailed shooting plan covering almost 30 scenes across our 9 locations, the project probably would have fallen apart. On the back of a tight plan and the event team’s advance briefing of key hotel staff, we were able to adjust our schedule and complete 85% of the planned shoot within the available shooting window. Disaster averted and a client who was happy to get their finished images in time for the wedding expo. More images are in the gallery Lifestyle.