Healthcare Magazine Washington DC Portrait

Sunday, January 06, 2008 Concept/Objective:

Assignment ConstructThe assignment was to photograph the head of information technology for the government, for a healthcare magazine. The objective was to make an image which showed him confident and we didn’t know where we might be able to make the image going in.


Expecting to be working indoors, we brought in our standard lighting kit, and were planning on doing a straightfoward portrait, but hoped to make something better than a generic image.


Assignment ConstructAssignment ConstructAssignment ConstructAssignment ConstructArriving on site, we had very little to work with, except that I did like the HHS seal in the background. Fortunately, he had a brand new 30” monitor he was using on his desktop. We were able to get some medical imagery on the screen in the background to add something. Yet, there was still something missing. So, I opted to add in a yellow gel behind the desk. The problem that arrived with the first tests was that the gelled light case an angled shadow (as shown). It wasn’t until we repositioned the light directly below the seal that the shadows cast upwards and were much less problematic.

I then made sure that the screen registered well, and didn’t have an reflections. Because of the room layout, we didn’t put up a softbox, and instead used the white reflective capabilities of the room’s blinds in the closed position to turn them into a diffused lighting source.

My assistant sat in for a test image, while our subject was out in meetings. When we were ready for him, we brought him into the scene, and made a series of images both with, and without his jacket.


The final selected image cropped out the doorframe on the right, because I felt that that threw the image off-balance a bit leaving it in. You’re seeing it here in it’s uncropped form.

Final Analysis:

I preferred the image with the subject having his jacket on, rather than off, and with is arms crossed as well.  We did deliver both jacket-on and jacket-off with the doorframe cropped out, to give the client some variety. In the end, I think that the gel made for something more to look at than off-white walls.

Posted by John Harrington on 01/06
PeopleIndoor PortraitsPlacesIndoors
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