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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!"

NYC_ESBTraveling to Minneapolis and New York City this month (NYC twice for different clients: a biotech company and an investment banking firm) to shoot portraits.  Which city is better?  The one where we shot natural light portraits and got to leave our lighting equipment in the studio.

Oh, and the joke: what’s the difference between Fenway franks and Yankee stadium hot dogs?  You can get Fenway franks in October.  (Please note: there was a time, not so long ago, when this joke didn’t work).

Just finished producing a series of branding images for a prominent real estate hedge fund sponsor.  We shot in their extraordinary offices in Midtown Manhattan and Stamford, Ct.  This is a company that takes tremendous pride in their aesthetics and so I was particularly proud to be chosen as a collaborator.

Advertising portrait photography of Andrée Cordella, Boston design superstar.So there I am, on a flight to Managua.  Not two feet in front of me, attached to the seat ahead, is a TV.  The TV teases me with trailers and 30 second human interest tidbits, and then announced that I can purchase movies or cable for the flight.  I notice that almost no one jumps at this offer.

And then I realize that no one else has turned their TV off. Up and down the aisle, a hundred TVs explode with their paroxism of quickly-edited advertisements and previews.

So what does this tell us?  That it takes more effort to push the “off” button on your armrest than to ignore commercial imagery, even when it stare at us in the face from every angle for 3 hours.

To those of us in the visual communication business, this is sobering.  Art directors, designers, and advertising photographers all make their living putting images in front of consumers.  But which images are seen and which don’t even register?

I believe the images that resonate are ones that get a visceral response, where we recognize a moment of authenticity.  If we can present a moment that is real and that is universal, we make a connection.

This is bad news and good news.  The bad news is that photographers and visual artists need to pay more attention to their subjects and be more empathic.  The good news is that the modern population isn’t visually dead, it just has discretion.

Interior of David ShopperBigger, better, faster – sometimes campaign promises do come true.  Our new studio has double-high ceilings, lots of natural light, and is smack-dab in the middle of downtown Ipswich (still on Route 1A, less than 5 minutes from my previous Hamilton studio of 18 years, but closer to the good restaurants).