Whether you’re a small local restaurant or a large international hotel chain, working with a professional hospitality photographer on an architectural photoshoot can help you capture the unique character of your business and showcase it in the best possible light. A commercial photographer that specializes in the field of architecture and hospitality understands the importance of quality visuals and the power they can have to attract potential customers. They will be able to provide you with stunning images that you can use in traditional advertising, website content, and social media campaigns. Working with a hospitality photographer shouldn’t be a daunting process – with a few helpful hints, you can get the most out of your session and create amazing visuals for your business.
How to Prepare for a Hospitality Photography Shoot
Before you start your hospitality photoshoot, it’s important to get everything organized. Begin with a detailed shotlist of every image that you require. Be specific with your needs and ensure technical requirements are specified, including formatting requirements (horizontal or vertical), space requirements for ad copy, accompanying taglines, etc. Most architectural photographs take, on average, 20 to 60 minutes each to capture depending upon the complexity of the shot and how much staging is required. Working with your photographer on the schedule and planning 15 to 25 shots in a day will keep the shoot manageable with enough time to pay attention to the details without too much unnecessary stress and panic.
You’ll want to make sure that your space is appropriately staged for photography. The key here is to de-clutter. For example, in hotel rooms, remove waste baskets, mini bar items, placards, menus and any other items that add visual clutter without offering an obvious benefit to the guest experience. Anticipate that there will almost certainly be some moving of furniture and accessories. You may also want to have housekeeping one step ahead of your photographer cleaning areas that are to be photographed to ensure that spaces look their best. The last thing you want your photographer doing is spending valuable photography time cleaning windows! Staying one step ahead of your photographer by securing and preparing locations ahead of time is a great way to keep the shoot efficient and moving along with minimal downtime between setups.
Prior to every architecture and hospitality photoshoot, I send a “checklist” to my clients that helps them to identify and mitigate potential hurdles that could slow the shoot down. It also helps to ensure that we are able to capture the best possible quality of images in the least amount of time. As I often say on our hotel photoshoots, a “housekeeping standard” is very different from a “photography standard.” Every detail is critical to a successful photograph and any time spent fixing imperfections is time taken away from perfecting lighting and composition. Some of the big items on that checklist that come up regularly include drapes hanging with even pleats (sometimes they require steaming), bedsheets, bed skirts and pillowcases steamed/ironed to ensure they are wrinkle-free, glass surfaces clean and streak-free, parking at the front of the building blocked off to prevent any Pontiac Azteks from being in the middle of the photo, and ensuring that all lightbulbs are working and that the location of light switches and dimmers is known and accessible.
Tips for Working with a Hospitality Photographer
One of the best ways to get unique and compelling images for your marketing materials is to collaborate with your photographer by letting them know the types of visuals you’d like to see for your business but also giving them the creative freedom to try out different and unexpected compositions. You may be surprised by how much this creative freedom can result in unique perspectives and eye-catching images for your photo library.
One of the best ways to show the personality of your brand is by using lifestyle photography. This type of photography makes your audience feel like they’re inside of your business and interacting with your products and services. One of the best ways to create an emotional connection with your audience is through storytelling. This might include telling the story of your brand’s origin or the story of how your product or service impacts your customers.
Please enjoy this gallery of hospitality images captured by Shawn and his team throughout various countries in North America and Europe.