I was asked to take some photos of a local bar by my friend, Atsuko, a freelance designer. Each time she goes to a new place for a drink she gets asked to re-design their name cards, their posters or their signs. Everybody wants something doing if they think about it, but most seem not to think about it unless there is a designer in front of them.
Because of the Obon holiday we weren't able to do the photos before I left for the U.K. We arranged to take them the day after I arrived back, before I started school. Friday's meeting was to arrange what and in what way the photos were to be taken. Very simply, 3 drinks and a bar shot, with an 'evening' feel. Sounds easy. Wasn't.
I asked my friend Alex to come and help. My experience in the studio gave us some advantages and Alex came with experience of his tools and a lot of reading behind it. Between us we almost did a great job. Below is the rough version of the poster from Saturday's shoot, forwarded to me by Atsuko.
The beer, which we thought would be difficult because the head settles quickly, was the easiest of the lot. Just kept topping the head until we got the creamy texture we wanted. We used Japanese barley tea as a substitute for the bourbon because it was cheaper to re-fill, but the final shot used real bourbon, which kept its colour better even when the ice melted a little. The wine, which we thought would be the easiest was the the most difficult. We had to dilute it to get the colour of wine and still keep the the glass at the correct exposure. The wine reflected everything infront of it. We wanted to keep the rosey red highlight at the bottom right of the glass but had to balance it with the reflection.
Anybody who does the same style of work might remember their first time trying to take appealing photos of drinks and food and smile. It isn't easy, but we did o.k and kept to the agreed time limit (something that my cameraman is fanatical about). I will show the photos from Saturday to my cameraman and on the basis of those, he may (or may not) feel confident in giving me more freelance work. Fingers crossed.