Employee portraits can be a photographers bread and butter. I was recently was asked by a regular client of mine to produce new portraits of their senior staff. My client wanted several portraits of each employee, some casual and some more formal.
I scouted my clients location a couple of days before the actual shoot. We came up with 5 separate locations for the portraits. These 5 locations where close to each other which made is easy to simply walk our subject from set to set. These locations allowed for different looks and feels to each image. Having several settings to photograph these employees in allows my client to combine several photos of their employees without having the same settings.
On the day of the shoot, I arrived about 90 minutes before the first scheduled employee was to be photographed. I took this time to light 5 separate locations where the portraits where to be taken. In the photo below you can see several lit sets for the portraits, actually I was able to squeak out 4 shots here and another just down the hall.
Another wonderful thing my client did was spring for a make-up artist. Each subject had a few minutes in the chair for some make up and general touch up. It's not often I have clients allow for the additional expense for make up, I could get use to this. We had a terrific gal named Alisha. She did a fantastic job and I look forward to working with her again.
Through the course of the day we shot over 15 employees, I also had several important photos of the CEO to do as well. Not only did I photograph him in the same setting as all the other employees, I shot him in the boardroom as well as in his personal office.
The lighting set up photo above should show you that all of the portraits where lit using the bounce technique. By bouncing your lights off of surfaces such as walls and flats or panels, you can create some mighty fine light. I used a total of 5 SB-800's and one SB-24 on a pocket wizard. At each set, I taped a note to the flash with all the camera and flash setting I needed to use for the given shot I was taking. There was only one portrait that required a background or second light, all the rest of the portraits where made using one light.
I have another 12 or so employees to photography later next week. While on a break between portraits, we scouted for additional location on the 12th floor for next weeks portraits. We shot some video of the shoot and I'll be posting that as well as the CEO portrait at a later date. Have a great weekend. DT