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Team Portraits: A Historical View

I work with people I like on projects I support.  I don’t engineer it this way.  It just happens.

For example:

One of my lifelong friends sits on the board of the Connecticut Democracy Center.  The Center’s mission is to “inspire people of all ages to engage in civic life and strengthen their communities.”  They host nonpartisan discussions with civic experts, run the Kid Governor program for 5th graders, and curate the historical museum that is the Connecticut Old State House.

It’s really a beautiful state house.  Historically, it is the seat of the CT government during most of the 1800’s.  Now it’s a museum and civic space.

So when the president of the organization approaches me to create portraits for their leadership team, I jump at the chance.

Whenever I take on a new client, one of the first things I ask is “what is your message?”  In other words: what do you want the pictures to say?  For the CT Democracy Center, it’s all about the integration of civic responsibility and history.  Or: embracing history and looking towards the future.

So I naturally gravitated towards photographing the team in the historic State Senate chambers at the Old State House.  This is a beautifully preserved grand hall.  It has giant windows and high ceilings.  And the elaborate furniture is over 200 years old.

It’s always great to have a photogenic environment to shoot in, but it’s even better when that environment has a personality and connection to the subjects.  These aren’t just portraits of the team, they’re portraits of the history that the team celebrates.

The CT Democracy Center has just updated their team leadership page with these new headshots.  When you click on the headshot, you get the environmental portrait.  You can see the new team page here.

And yes, that’s a wooden bow-tie.  Awesome.

 

Portrait of CT Democracy Center team by David Shopper

Portrait of CT Democracy Center team by David Shopper

Having a marketing background, I have been on more than my share of photo shoots, but there are few photographers I’ve enjoyed working with as much as David.  He made a very diverse group of people – many camera-shy by nature – feel comfortable and relaxed, and brought out the best in everyone, while chasing the best light across the room during a long day of shooting.  The finished photos were well done, polished and inspiring to look at: just the touch of “magic” we were looking for to present our leadership team to the world.
                                       -Bill Bevacqua, President and CEO, The Connecticut Democracy Center