Blog #169 8/4/2016
Last Spring we were asked to make advertising photographs and a television commercial (included at the end of this note) for the European energy company, Repower.
The client and its ad company, True Company, wanted to depict muscular power; as a long time photographer of athletes, this would have been simple: Find a well-defined, but not over-the-top body builder, create a special lighting to enhance the sense of power and make the pictures. However – and since Repower is an Italian company, I probably shouldn’t have been surprised – the client wanted both a male and a female model.
With advertising assignments, I usually try to carefully deliver creative advice as well as finished images and video footage. Sometimes this works, sometimes not. And since the client is the boss, when I’m up against unchangeable ideas, I do the best with what’s required.
I explained to the account executive in Milan, Andrea Concato, that women’s bodies don’t have the same kind of structural definition and bulk that men
have, unless the women are taking banned substances that make them
fairly freakish. So the power in a woman’s body wouldn’t have the same
dramatic muscularity. But I was told, in no uncertain terms: “We want a woman as well as a man.“
We did a major casting looking for great bodies that were not overly bulked up.
We found a great male model, Jackson Bloore.
and Maggie Powers, a dancer who was in great shape, but not a body builder — lovely, sensual, not muscularly well-defined or bulky.
At the shoot I made many images of each model:
I made some crazy/fun images also
The client, Repower, has a company color, a blend of magenta and maroon, and in the ads the company wanted the bodies toned as such.
I explained that anything close to pink makes skin look sunburned, and not terribly appealing. So I offered a range of toning ideas:
The company made a compromise.
Despite my concerns the shoot went well and the images made the client happy and they asked us to do the post-production.
The company was so pleased with the result that they decided to sponsor an exhibition of my own fine art photographs of the human body, using one of the images I made for them to announce the exhibition at the Milan Triennial.
Howard Schatz with Repower Italia Head of Communications, Angelo D’Ariano, and CEO for Repower Italia, Fabio Bocchiola.
And from the work we did during the three days in the studio, their video spot:
Glitterati Incoprorated, the publisher of the Retrospective, Schatz Images: 25 Years is now offering the two- book boxed set at a discount from the original price. The set comes with an 11″x14” print of the buyer’s choice.