Lighting, Logistics, and Strategies for a Life in Photography

 

Lesson Info

Shoot Set Up: Corporate Headshots

I'm gonna shoot available light. I'm gonna shoot a quick available light portrait. It'll be lovely. We'll use a couple of fill boards, et cetera, and then we're gonna move into an area where we start to show the dimensions of the room, and when I do that, and I bring Britney, who's our lovely model, who's gonna be our corporate persona in front of the lens here. When I do that and I bring her into this other area, I'm actually gonna be having her face away from the light. So, available light is a beautiful, beautiful thing. As long as you accommodate it, in terms of direction and quality and closeness and strength and all that sorta stuff, and there are times that you wanna go against the flow of the available light. And so, we are going to examine both possibilities here and see, you know, where we go. Okay. And I echo, you know, what Kenna, this may be a first, you know that I'm, you know, absolutely agreeing with you in the last couple of days. (laughs) No, no, we're fine. (off-scre...

en laughing) But, you know, the tether tool stuff is great, and just the gear that' I'm using...there's gonna be a pdf that kinda sorts all this stuff out, and I'll just do a little, kind of personal thing, you know, and it maybe runs counter a lot of popular sentiment. You know, a lot of camera equipment gets bought at the big shops, you know...Amazon and stuff like that. It's all fine and good, but I really am a big, devoted fan of your local camera store, and the people behind the counters are incredibly knowledgeable. I have been business with Adorama Camera for many years, and I'll just give a shout-out to my, my bud, my camera consigliere, Jeff Snyder. jsnyder@adorama.com J-S-N-Y-D-E-R at Adorama dot com. He's a good shooter, a good friend, and if you need any sort of real knowledgeable insight about the kinda stuff you can put together here, Jeff is my go-to guy, so I just do a little, kinda, it's a personal thing for me that I see camera stores, you know, kinda fold in their tents all over the country, and they're just such a wonderful, good, amazing resource for a photographer, and so, when you go over the top and order from Amazon, I get it; I totally get it, but, you know, it's a personal thing for me. I've kinda grown up with a relationship with a camera store. Quick aside. Anyway, okay. Um... Alright, so it's a pretty cool room, let's face it. So, here's where you operate, what is it, the Hippocratic Oath that doctors take? Do no harm. Okay, so that's the first thing I'm gonna try to observe here as a photographer. Try not to screw this up, because it's actually kinda cool just on the face of it, so if I'm presented and I have strategies for, I'm presented with a situation like this, strategies for doing this, and doing it efficiently. If I have wonderful, available light, I'm gonna grab it, because available light is available, right? And I can put Britney right over, sit her in a chair, and rattle off 100 frames of her in less than five minutes. And then I'm like, okay, cool. So if the electricity blows or there's, you know, they come in and say, "We have to cut the shoot short" or she has an emergency conference to go to or something like that, and she's out the door, I know I got something in the bag. Right? And that's when I look and if I have good picture already in the first few minutes of the shoot, I'll sometimes look at Kali and say we're fat. Okay, we are fat. Alright, we've got a good sort of initial set of exposures, take a breath. Now we push, okay, but if something goes wrong, and we have to curtail all of our efforts here, I know I got something in the bag. So I move pretty quickly, especially in a corporate shoot, because, you know, a scenario with a, you know, mister or missus important, you know, one of the, one of the, you know, titans of industry. All these folks are extremely pressurized. They don't have that much time. They want...the pictures to them, generally speaking, generally speaking are a pain in the butt, okay, for them to do. It's kind of an added thing, okay, how long, and what is it gonna take me, all that sort of stuff. They're very insecure a lot of them, you know, they maybe, you know, they're worried about their image and all that sorta stuff. And it makes for an uncomfortable potential relationship for the brief time that you have it. Okay, so, best thing to do is be efficient. Get it done. So, Britney doesn't have the ability to leave right now, I mean she does, basically, but she's committed to us, so that's one worry off the table. I know she's gonna stick with me. So, we can kinda pace our way through this. So, first thing again, always, always, always location assessment. Um, what does this place look like, you know? It's kind of industrial, got some cool windows, and all of the pictures, and that sort of stuff. So, the flow of the light is this way. So, why don't I start and work with the flow of the light. And the reason I'm starting this here... I was originally gonna start over there, immediately work against the light, but I saw Britney over on the set over here, kind of sitting there, in kind of this perfect, sort of, corp-she looks, positively in charge sitting there. And I just kinda picked up on that and maybe she's not feeling that way, but I, visually recognize, from a distance like, she looks great, right there. So, why don't I take a chair similar to the one that she is in; I'm gonna swing it around here. Actually, we can just take a chair from here. We don't have to swing anything around here. Alright. (chair rolling) Britney, can I ask you to come on the set?

“The best picture is your next picture. If you start to believe that you've already shot your best picture or you start patting yourself on the back at any level, you might as well hang it up.”
Joe McNally

Learn from an award-winning, 30-year photography veteran.

Meet Joe McNally, known world-wide as one of the top, technically excellent photographers of his generation. His clients have included FedEx, Sony, ESPN, Adidas, and Land’s End; and his work has been featured in publications such as National Geographic, LIFE, and Sports Illustrated.

The legendary and down-to-earth Joe will show you how to create stories with light and harness the skills every photographer needs for success.

Capture pictures that resonate

Getting clients to trust your creative vision and technical skill takes hard work and time to develop. You need to prove that you're not only passionate but that you've got the skills to pull off an amazing photo, no matter the scenario with your mastery of tools and control of light.

Create a life in photography

You know deep down that you want to work for yourself and grow your client roster. Don’t let the fear of making photography your full time gig stop you from making progress. Joe McNally knows firsthand that you can’t settle for nice pictures to make it in this business. Commit to learning the technical elements as well as the contractual lingo so you can focus on creating images that resonate while growing a business that is built for a career and life in photography.

From this exclusive on-location and in-studio shoot:

  • See how you can work with light to capture the story of your subject and surroundings
  • Learn to use multiple flash units to create various moods and looks
  • Gain confidence by understanding contracts and relationship management with clients
  • Learn posing and communication techniques when working with a model, client or even a large group of people.

What students are saying:
“Joe is an incredible instructor and and even more amazing person. After taking this class, I've shifted my entire perspective on what I want to do with my life in photography and I am ready to advance to the next level. Joe and his team opened the doors to their business to us and answered so many questions about the nuts and bolts of their inner workings. This class is a must have for every photographer.”
Tania

Don’t settle for good enough.
Grow your confidence by gaining the knowledge and skills to create or style photos that resonate. With the technical know-how and professionalism, you CAN shoot in any scenario for any client, and make the leap to becoming a full time photographer.

 
 
 
 

Reviews

  • When I saw the chance to learn from the great Joe McNally I jumped through the screen at the chance to be in the audience. It's one thing to see how a fantastic photographer works, thinks, composes and styles, but to get a behind the curtain view at the way his entire shop operates was truly amazing. By allowing us to see Lynn's processes and Cali's workflow it encouraged me to diversify before taking the plunge into the business side of photography. Truly an amazing team and an unforgettable learning experience.
  • Joe is fantastic! The wealth of information, experience and extraordinary talent he shares is invaluable! He's also a very engaging, humorous instructor who keeps an audience a part of the "discussion." Don't miss a Joe McNally class, seminar or workshop opportunity!
  • Joe is fantastic! The wealth of information, experience and extraordinary talent he shares is invaluable! He's also a very engaging, humorous instructor who keeps an audience a part of the "discussion." Don't miss a Joe McNally class, seminar or workshop opportunity!