I just recently completed my very first hotel photoshoot and would like to share my experiences with you. Suzy and Martin (the hotel owners) contacted me after they saw (and liked ) my work on the internet to make some photos of their hotel for the website and brochure.
We met some days before the actual shoot to talk about what type of photos they wanted. Suzy asked for a lot of details and close-ups plus they also liked my levitation photos and asked me to try some floating too. So basically my job was to shoot photos of their hotel, but not normal hotel images, they wanted the images to be “my style”. This was totally awesome but also a bit frightening for me. On the one hand I was happy to shoot the way I always do, but on the other hand I wasn’t sure if they would like my images at the end of the day.
On the shooting day we met early in the morning to take some photos of their breakfast buffet. This was my chance to try out my new softbox .
After that we moved on to the lounge area. Suzy mixed some cocktails and I did a first levitation. Again I used a Nikon Speedlight through my softbox on the left side (and for the cocktails a silver reflector on the right side to add some more highlights).
For the rooms I also did some close-ups as well as some images showing the beautiful view. I came with a lot of stuff this day including my camera, a tripod, my Nikon Speedlights + softbox + tripod, extra batteries and 20 GB of memory cards, a reflector, several lenses (my kit lens 18-55mm, my 50mm 1.8 plus a borrowed 70-200mm L 2.8 and a borrowed tamron macro 90mm 2.8) that I switched a lot of times during the whole shoot. I mostly used the 18-55mm and 50mm though.
Last but not least I moved on to the spa (it was afternoon already ). I shot in RAW + jpg all the time, that’s the reason I needed two 8 GB memory cards in the end. I prefer having RAW files because I can better adjust basic things like white balance and contrast and then use the same settings for a lot of similar images. It is also absolutely necessary when doing levitations to have the same settings on every image you are blending together in the end. However I do like to have jpg files also to easily and quick have a look at all the images on my computer.
After the shoot I had a quick look at the images with Suzy on my camera to make sure we didn’t miss anything important. Suzy seemed very pleased with the images already and I tried to remember the ones she especially liked so I wouldn’t forget to include them afterwards. Suzy and Martin asked for as many images as possible so after some hours of editing (basically white balance and curves adjustments plus the obvious manipulations and a little “beauty retouching” here and there) I delivered nearly 300 images to them.
Shooting this beautiful hotel was a wonderful experience and a lot of fun. I stepped out of my comfort zone (selfportraits obviously ) and tried something totally new. I am very thankful for Suzy and Martin giving me this opportunity and putting a lot of trust towards me and my skills.