Monthly Archives: July 2013

God Love LA Film Sets

A Job Well Done (more Restasis)

I want to get beyond the shots here to the set and the casting. Let’s play a game. Find the styling missteps (this is an architect’s office) OK, I give up. It is such a pleasure to work in an environment where everyone does their job well. I was working in sets designed and implemented by Andy Rhodes; a freelance art director in LA. I was shooting very loose and making things up as I went along … my art director had moved on to his weekend. These sets were built in a vacant museum; essentially cool, empty space. When Andy and his minions got done with a location, every detail, every dark corner worked to convey the necessary idea. The models, all appropriately architectonic, disappeared into the concept. It was instant universe. I moved nothing. God love Los Angeles.

Andy and his set … check out the details!

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Big Pharma

America’s Favorite Ophthalmologist

I have always thought that my accountant should drive a mercedes, my dentist should have perfect teeth, and my mechanic should drive a 15 year old buick (if you can keep that running you can fix anything). All was right with the world then photographing Dr. Alison Tendler, ophthalmologist and spokesperson for Restasis Eye Drops. As Jack Kerouac said (OK different context) “You got eyes”. She could drift into simple beauty very quickly. I had to keep pulling her back to “doctor” … highly disciplined professional that I am.

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Keeping it Simple … Getting it Right

I am always happier when the idea quotient is higher than the production quotient. Production, to me. is a way to get back to simple. Simple is being in the  right place,  in the right light, with the right crew. Photographing author Bill Landay for Random House was just such an occasion. There wasn’t any art direction, but I gleaned from conversations with the creative director in NY and the author, that we needed  a spectrum of shots, from gritty crime writer (sexy, worldly) , ex lawyer (subject cred), and granular context (this book, these characters). I scouted some with the author, and scoped out  a couple of places I knew might work on my own. We then set up a schedule around the light. All places would have worked under any conditions, but sunny was best. Two great assistants (driver and grip) kept the guerilla nature of the event going smoothly; and we cruised through the whole adventure in 4 hours. Three wardrobe changes, 4 locations;  finishing just when the sun dropped behind the trees. Happy author …  Happy client (there sure are a lot of shots!) … Happy photographer …  Fun.

William Landay Author

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