Planet Caviar HK limited Photo shoot
So ya, ya, Monday was the day of the photoshoot for Planet Caviar HK Limited, a bit a tricky event as they never done something like this, and with no PR or no staff with very clear thouhts or instructions what should be shot and how………it was a tough one.
What I kind of expected was to get some sort of brief on the day, like: we want a shot of the caviar, with all the tins in background, blurred, and a black background, but the caviar still has to stand out on it.
No, so how it went was a bit like, erh where you want to start, erh I dont know, lets just try this first….. Ok so very much different then from how I had expected it, but maybe that blame is to lay on me, I should have planned this out myself better, questioning them more from the beginning.
On the other hand it meant almost free hand for me, which was also nice as I could put some of my own ideas in it, but I do realize without a clear set of goals to achieve, I made mistakes which are unforgiveable. I now ended up with images with grey background, instead of a more powerfull all black or all white for example, or I ended up with images for example of the Caviar, where the Caviar itself reflects too much light and gets a bit lost.
Also because I didnt get clear guides, I now have to pay for it and edit 100’s of Images, to ensure I hand over enough so they can pick what they like. With about 800 images shot this should still not be a problem,and the client knew from the beginning that I am not a photoshop wizzard, thus they knew already they would only get basic editing from me, plus all original raw files so they could approach a profesional editor to bring them to close perfection.
Some of my personal favorites of this shoot are the Vodka shots, for which i had cut a hole in the black base to hide a flash with a blue gell shooting through the bottle, also another favourite is the Champagne shots, although totally inconsistent with the backgrounds…..sometimes black, sometimes almost silver, next the shots of the Caviar with shooter glasses in the silver serving set, albeit a bit too heavy highlights or reflections.
The Chocolates were just a pain to shoot, and most efforts we abandoned as for this I really would have needed an assistant, I mean the chocolates are nice, but any damages, scratches etc on it look 10 times magnified on a image, they needed polishing, shining, care and love. Being that I was alone for this series of a lot of products I had to make the decision to drop the chocolates, as it would just take me too much time at the cost of loosing the other shots. So next time bring an assistant with experience in food styling and photography.
Another favorite is the Kamchatka King Crab with Beluga Vodka shooter and Balik Salmon with Caviar on it, if I only didn’t use such small aperture, or instead a white background maybe used a black one, the food would have stood out so nicely! Anyway since photoshop isnt my friend yet I will leave that to the editor to change that b/g to pure black.
The bottles of Vodka, were actually supposed to be buried in Ice in a nice silver punchbowl, but as we lacked a nice punch bowl I had to resort to just shooting it on black. I was thinking to burry my blue gelled flash in Ice, under the bottle, but well……still it came out quite good. I tried to carry the blue shine on the bottles through also in the next shots of the Vodka suitcase etc to get a bit of a continuous theme going on, which I think is nice when they combine images on flyers and website.
How I got this gig is another small nice story, as Sabina, the sales lady approached me and gave me some samples for my review, I decided to also take some hobby pictures of it, styled it etc, ten took some shots. When I was done I thought ah just send a dvd to them with the images and let them know they can use them if they like them. So I was very happily surprised when I met up Monday that they told me, that a famous Chef they supply uses a company called red Dog to do their food pictures for her cookbooks, but despite they come in with a whole team with all the equipment you could dream off, they liked my images much more…….doh! what a compliment was that.
So the question came up if I could do some more shots for them, to cover their products and give them some material for their use on website, flyers and so on. This time it was a barter agreement but for sure next time it will be for money deal, and I will come with at least one assistant for such an amount of products, also I will ensure we have a clear brief, what needs to be shot and how, with what background, with what colors, what props etc.
All in all it was an eye opener, I have now decided to get my arse on a course for photoshop, probably a one on one thing so I can pick it up quickly, because I think what I am lacking to create GREAT images now is the dark room work!
Until next time! Marco