The PRO shot at right was for a municipal client who wanted to feature an image of the local transportation options available in the Bradley International Airport area, north of Hartford, Conn., and highlight their accessibility.
To achieve a shot like this, you have to prepare by working out many details ahead of time.
We call this preparation pre-production, and it ensures that all the elements we want to orchestrate line up seamlessly, or appear to, as much as possible! There are no shortcuts in pre-production work. Diligent planning before this shoot involved scouting the location in advance, a review of train schedules and coordinating them with the right time of day for optimal available light.
Having a train in the station was key to telling the client’s story of local transportation with access to New Haven and New York City. Using every component available, my job as an architectural photographer is to bring the client’s story to life. By being very intentional about the shoot, it yielded creative results.
Pre-production keeps photo shoots organized and eliminates unwanted surprises. However, happy surprises do happen, such as the two people who exited the train together. The serendipity of completely unplanned events can take your shot to the next level, as it did here.
The takeaway between the DIY shot and my PRO image is communicating use of local transportation services. What story is being told in the Amtrak bulletin board dotted with lens flare on the left? The sign blocks the station, the details are buried in harsh shadows, and the lens flare shows up when you shoot into the sun at the wrong time of day.
The PRO shot also shows how non-peak seasons are ideal for certain projects. Bare tree branches allowed me to showcase more of the historic train station and bring the focus to the critical element: the storyline.