Creating photography for the business world, either architectural photography or business portraits, frequently follows constraints imposed by either the client or the industry the client serves. For example, the portrait of an accountant must look in some ways like other accountants. Otherwise, people looking at that person's photos might think they do something else like road construction. Likewise, an architectural photo of a building most commonly includes all of the building, from end to end.
How do you go from common to compelling? From ordinary to remarkable? What prompts someone to look at a photo and describe it as "outside the box?"
I use every photo shoot as an opportunity to artfully interpret what the client wants to create a next level image that makes the viewer stop, question, admire, and think about what they are seeing. This doesn't mean the best way to attract attention to an attorney is to shoot him naked in bed like Annie Leibovitz might. Rather, it involves starting with a series of shots or poses that are more conventional, more scripted, and adjusting them in a new set of images to go further, go beyond what the client imagined.
My interpretive technique to photograph accountants, attorneys, bankers, engineers, and others in professional services, is to open the composition up to include the torso, hands, arms, and, in some cases, the full body. The process involves posing the subject in a very basic way, sitting or standing, and then proceeding to engage her or him a conversation. Not only do people relax, becoming unaware that they are posing for a picture, but they use their hands, move their hips, and adjust their feet in a natural way. In essence, they show me the pose and then I take their picture.
I always strive to get input from the architect, designer, and their client about the best way to see a project. People who design spaces and places see their project from its inception from different angles. These spots frequently are the basis for the project's inspiration. I welcome this input frequently using pre-shooting walk throughs and marked up drawings as guides to photographing a project. I try to be faithful to those suggestions giving the client what they expect. But, I also try to go beyond in the same way I photograph people. Besides just trying a different angle, I also edit the content of the view, narrowing and subtracting less important parts of the view to create sharper focus. Sometimes the best view is an somewhat of an accident. I have found numerous better shots by looking in the opposite direction or simply up or down. One of my favorite client quotes came from the lead designer of a restaurant chain: "Steve makes my projects look better than when I'm standing there looking at them with my own two eyes."
In summary, it's possible to "document" anyone and anything and lots of photographers can do that. But...if you want to be remarkable, get a SILVERMAN.
4445 W. 77th Street, #130
Edina, MN 55435