Advance to GO (via Berlin and Amsterdam)
Working as a Press Photographer January has never been my favourite month. Generally outside, with little “news” coming from PR’s who are generally still considering their budgets and waistlines post Christmas. Thankfully, my workload is changing from long days outside of courtrooms to, in this case, jaunts around Europe staying in some luxury hotels.
In January I shot a commercial project for Park Plaza Hotels. They wanted a set of pictures showing their staff doing various jobs for use in marketing and annual reports. The plan was to shoot in three cities; Berlin, Amsterdam and London; the shot list was massive and I didn’t have budget for an assistant. This meant I needed all my skills as a Press Photographer to organise and make things happen fast.
Park Plaza’s presence in Germany is massive. In fact it took a ten minute conversation with my client to work out that we had been put in separate hotels, owned by the same company, on the same street! It was like monopoly!
Next stop was Holland and a typically relaxed Dutch approach, I think I had more coffee that day than I’d ever had in my life. The marketing staff on the ground were so laid back it made for a really fun day, travelling between venues in a tiny Audi, pumping out European trance. The whole premise of the shoot was to use real staff, which when you are strapped for time can be a nightmare but not in Holland. Literally every person I met, wasn’t just good looking they were really keen to be involved.
The final leg in London was at Park Plaza’s gigantic Westminster Bridge Hotel opposite the Houses of Parliament.
It was a great week and really made me think about the direction I’m taking. An old Snapper at a local paper once said to me “Some people take them, some people make them” I think I’m somewhere between the two, but the need for creativity in the commercial world is calling loud and clear.