Often the spaces I shoot are already styled before I arrive - and tend to look great - but there are some spaces that I enter with a stylist and it’s fascinating to watch the stylists transform the space. CJ Dockery did an amazing job styling this space from a barren, fluorescent lit drab studio to something much better.
Often when I shoot a space and become aware that there is a nursery I get nervous. Toys, mats, diapers and anything you can think of are typically strewn everywhere - and not just in the baby’s room but in the living room, bathrooms, and even kitchens. It can be a nightmare to shoot in a space where there are infants. Luckily, this nursery was immaculate and meticulously styled - and it definitely shows in the photos.
The Catskills is a lovely place to get away. I met an interior designer in the city who had me shoot her home in the Upper East Side and she needed some photos of her Catskills house. I don’t often travel out of the city for work but she was a really talented designer, with a great eye, and the space ended up inspiring some fantastic images.
Clients can range from interior designers, to architects and realtors - but often we work with contractors of varying specialties. Geowood Design is a local carpenter who produces some really beautiful millwork we were lucky enough to showcase.
Due to the natural of real estate, the work can sometimes be a little less exciting than interior design shoots; however, once in awhile you’ll be blessed with a wonderfully designed space that is more photogenic than you can expect. Such was the case with this Upper East Side home.
My grandmother went to Pratt and has always had a creative eye. She’s a beautiful painter and a lover of fine art and cinema, and I owe most of my creativity to her. I worked with a Pratt graduate recently (who still lived close to the campus) and she had a wonderful eye for design. Interior design is a luxury and, because of it, most of my clients cater to an older crowd who can afford such a service, so it’s always great to see a younger, modern view on the art form. I think this unit definitely has a unique vibrance that isn’t captured enough.
Something funny happened with this shoot. For some reason, I thought the client was contacting us to help sell her unit. When I arrived, it was beautifully staged - suspiciously so - beyond most staged real estate I had seen. That’s because the client was a designer and she wasn’t selling anything, she just wanted to showcase her work. Luckily I had my not-so-wide lens with me and we were able to pull the shoot off without a problem. It’s interesting how most times the different between a real estate shoot and interior design shoot is about 8mm.
Some photographers think a cloudy day yields better light than a sunny. It’s true that sunny light can be a little difficult to contain but if you can harness it well, the results can be spectacular. This shoot occurred on a pretty dreary day but the light did yield some beautifully soft light that gave some of the objects a rich, buttery feel to them.
Window views are often an element of editing I have oscillating opinions about. With real estate photography, the clients are always concerned about the views, but for interior designers it’s not such a concern - after all, the photos are taken to show off what’s inside the home. But when you have a home with gorgeous, sweeping views of the city, how can you not want to show them off? After all, isn’t it a testament of the designer’s prestige to be able to work in a space that is so high up, and probably comes with a higher price tag because of it? Hypothetical questions aside, this gorgeous home, designed by JL Powers Design, had some stunning views but we didn’t let them overtake the shots - but we were able to let them coexist with some curtain cover.
I photographed this beautiful unit and was amazed with the staging work done. The owner had lived here for almost 30 years but had since moved. Because of that, the apartment needed to be staged and the owner was able to impressively stage this unit in only 3 days.
Photographing a ground floor unit is always tricky because the light isn't usually as good as the units on higher floors; however, the designers of this unit placed as many large windows as they could to maximize the light - they also picked a neighborhood where most buildings don't stretch beyond 3 stories.
I had the pleasure (and luck) of shooting the new American Copper building in Kips Bay. The building is a monumental achievement or architectural feats, and is comprised of two towers that are connected via a skybridge. I've always been fond of the antiquated and unfortunately defunct sky bridges that can be seen in Herald Square and Dumbo and it's so exciting to, not only see an active one, but one so ornately decorated and fitted for recreational use. Not only can you walk between the buildings but you can take a seat and watch the sun rise over the East River or even play a game of billiards!
A more recently acquired client that has been a lot of fun to work with is Home Theater Advisors. Not only do they do clean, great-looking work but the homes in which they've done installs are gorgeous. Here are some picks from one of my favorite shoots with Home Theater Advisors.
One of my favorite designers to work with is Allie Wood. She has such a clean and fresh aesthetic that it's easy to take a good photo of her work. We recently shot a few homes together in Connecticut and I wanted to share some of my favorite picks from each. I'll be showcasing the other home in a separate post.