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I am often hired by companies to take photos for their image banks, and many times they more or less request a style that is seen often in stock photos. Clean setups in a bright room, one or two persons having some sort of meeting and a relatively simple background. Photos that are easy to use on the web, in financial reports and newsletters, but with their own people, not generic models.

Using ordinary people to act as models can be tricky, but it can also be very simple. In this case, where they would be having an informal meeting around an iPad, I just told them to play meeting. And that is something most people can to, and even find amusing. As soon as they start having their fake meeting, I start shooting, giving them as little directions as I can. Sooner or later it looks almost natural.

Lighting this kind of photo is mostly done by adding light in a fashion that makes the image bright and clean. I try to imagine how the light would be if they where in an office with very large windows.

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This portrait, taken in a loft where a couple of creatives share office was in fact not the reason that I went there. My assignment was to take a couple of publicity portraits of an illustrator working there, but when I asked some of his colleagues if they needed portraits (as I already had my lights set and was in no hurry) this guy said yes, please, why not?

This might be one of the easiest ways of selling a portrait session, I try to ask whenever I have the time and the moment feels right, someone will usually go for it. It could be some sort of business idea somewhere in this, but I haven’t really had the time to take it further, but selling professional portraits the same way they sell ice cream could really work. The problem might just be to find the right spots?

More on the lighting bit here…