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  • Welcome to my blog

    "I am a Boston-based commercial photographer and short film maker. This blog is a companion to my main website. Instead of simply offering up more photos, it is the place for behind-the-lens glimpses into campaigns, reflections on the photography/marketing industry, and a more expanded view of a shoot - not just the best image. Enjoy!"

David Shopper

 

David Shopper

David’s candid workplace photography puts grey matter front and center.

 

It’s a shame to work hard on a project that barely sees the light of day.  Then again, maybe it’s a testament to how valuable the project really is.

In a previous blog post, I talk about work I’ve done for Boston boutique consulting firm Bulger Vogel.  Great client.  A bunch of intense shoots.  Captivating imagery.  But I’ve never seen the final results until today, when I checked out their ad agency’s website.

Bulger Vogel’s corporate website was gone before I could see it.  The reason?  Behemoth Ernst-Young bought the  firm to incorporate it into their monster offering.  This was probably the hoped-for outcome of our rebrand, and it warms my heart that Bulger Vogel was able to leverage the photography in this way.  A moderate investment for a huge payoff.

The screen grabs above show what the short-lived website looks like.  The graphic design is great.  I love the way the design elements frame and intensify the imagery.

This project is a collaboration with two agencies: Create + Conquer and Xavinci.  Xavinci is showcasing this shoot on their website, which you can see here.  Referring to their role as art directors of the shoots, Xavinci says:

Bulger Vogel wanted to have authenticity to their brand imagery. All the images captured are of employees actively engaged in work, to illustrate how they deliver for their clients and to convey a collaborative culture of the firm.”

When you get right down to it, authenticity, collaboration, and engagement is what every company wants to project.  But you can show these themes in different ways.  The visuals can be complex or simple.  Colorful or monochromatic.  Up-close or removed.  None of these styles is good nor bad – they just have to work with the marketing to define the message convincingly.  Good website photography is consistent, graphic, and adheres to the message.  It’s always the message that should define the photography, not the other way around.

 

Expertise.com has again named David Shopper Photography one of Boston

Thank you to Expertise for again choosing me as one of the best portrait photographers in Boston.

How do they choose?  Expertise.com started with 221 Boston portrait photographers and picked the top 10% for this distinction.  They based their choice on 5 qualities: availability, qualifications, reputation, experience, and professionalism.  All attributes I hold dear.

But wait: if there are 220 local portrait photographers now, imagine how many have come and gone over the years since I opened my studio in the ’80s.  Literally thousands.  How do you stay successful over that amount of time?  Offer the whole package.

Plus, you have to listen.  I try to really understand what my clients want to say with their images.  What the win looks like.  And I try to communicate clearly how I will present their message, both before and during our shoots.  No one likes surprises.  I offer consistency and predictability.

When a science company wants to spark interest in their research or attract discerning career candidates, words don’t always do the trick.  Sometimes still photos don’t either.

A short promotional film is called for.  I use the term “film” because it tells a story with cinematic visuals. A scientific “video,” on the other hand, might show what the labs look like.  What specific instruments they use.  It might have lab techs talking about their methodology.

That’s not the approach I use.  I try to capture the mystery and excitement of the research.  The expertise of the techs.  The engagement of the team and the company as a whole.

Selecta bioscience is a Boston-based life science company.  They asked me to produce a video for them that would introduce the company.  It goes live on their About Us page today.

The video above comes from a single day of shooting.  I tried to distill their R&D down to a handful of proprietary processes and areas of research.  I took advantage of their brand new lab space, which was bright and well-appointed.  I tried to distill the message of the company into a dozen or so iconic clips.  My hope was that these clips would work together to illustrate the many ways Selecta conducts its research.  I also wanted to put a face on the lab teams who form the core of the company.

This was shot during Covid, so the periods where the lab techs were unmasked was very brief.  I also keep considerable distance from the subjects while shooting.

Probably the most unusual shot is the one from inside the mixing container, where the camera is under water.  By positioning the camera at the bottom of the container, we were able to get an immersive clip.  It’s one thing to show what experiments look like, it’s another to show what experiments feel like.

 

Corporate headshot of Advent International team member.

David Shopper is creating engaging executive portraits during the pandemic. Safe, careful, and respectful.

Well, that was one   long   year.

This is a post to remind you that we’re still creating engaging portraits.  We’re masked-up, physically-distanced, and scouting for open and roomy areas.

The portrait above is for Advent International, a global private equity firm headquartered here in the Prudential Tower.

A corporate portrait of an attorney photographed in Boston for Zalkind Law firm.

Boston corporate portrait and headshot photographer David Shopper creating a physically-distanced portrait.

David creating a physically-distanced attorney portrait in downtown Boston.

Almost daily, we get asked if safely creating high quality photos in the midst of this pandemic is possible. This is all we thought about all spring.  As we embrace the “new normal,” we’ve implemented a set of protocols to ensure a safe and harmonious shoot for everyone. So, happily, the answer is “Yes, absolutely!”

So, what’s changed? We still have the same commitment to excellence and professionalism, and our goal is always to create fantastic photography. Only now, our shoots look a bit different. Here’s what precautions you can expect:

  • My eyes are smiling. All members of our crew will be wearing masks at all times. In addition, we ask that you wear a mask unless you’re in front of the camera and the shutter’s clicking.
  • Outdoor shoots whenever possible. We’re great at finding flattering natural light both outdoors and in.  If rain or cold make being outside impractical, we look for large, bright common indoor spaces with room to spread out and good air circulation.
  • Keeping our distance. To keep as much distance between you and the camera as possible; we opt for long lenses that allow you to seem close up when you are 10 – 12 feet back. In addition, to avoid crowding around a capture station/laptop, we post a preview gallery so you can choose your favorite images on your own computer.  Digital assistants are also available who can stream previews to a tablet in real time. We ask that only the minimum necessary people inhabit the immediate shooting space.
  • Being intuitive and efficient. Shooting predominantly with natural light ensures quick sessions without drawn-out technical fussing.
  • Modified group photography. We will work with you to shoot group portraits that allow everyone to be safely distant, using careful placement and/or post-production manipulation to make people appear closer together. We’ll never ask you to pose close to someone in a way that makes you uncomfortable.
  • Super sanitization. We keep high standards of cleanliness for our equipment, which we thoroughly sanitize between assignments.
  • Not feeling so hot? Stay home! If you, or anyone we’ll be shooting, develops symptoms of COVID-19, we can reschedule the shoot without any cancellation fees. We also pledge to reschedule if we are experiencing compromised health.

We’re dedicated to celebrating – and maintaining – your energy, engagement, and vibrancy.