A Christmas Photoshoot Project

A beautiful centre stair case display.

In 2016 I was hired by a local news paper writer to do a photoshoot for a Christmas Decor article in the Winnipeg Free Press. I was teaching photography at Red River College at that time and I decide to bring along two of my students Haley Pischke and Alex Izatt to gain some experience in real world projects. It turned into a long evening, much was learned including meeting tight deadlines, but we had some fun doing the project together.

The home was a century old home in the River Heights area and it was beautiful. The decorations were designed and performed by a local interior design merchant who created a very tasteful classic decor with lots of live botanicals. I recall some amazing aromas as we moved from room to room.

The students received some valuable experience and although the due credits did not appear on the published article they did receive all my fees for their work. My only regret was I wish they had their first published article with their names on it.

As a professional photographer I was so happy to share this experience with my students. I always think back to the days I started out and to have someone share their time early on would have been invaluable to my growth.

One of the details we discussed prior to the day of the shoot was to plan, visualize and coordinate what our shooting style would be and what it might look like. Being beginners I spoke about perspective and to come up with some unique looks based on that. We shot from on top of the tables, to high on a ladder, to reflections in a mirror. I showed them that the simplest of equipment can go a long way. We used a remote triggered speed light with a white plastic milk bottle diffuser and it performed admirably. This diffused flash filled enough of the darker areas but allowed the room lighting or candles to show their character.

It was a great experience, the writer was delighted with the results and the printed article looked amazing.

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