With aviation photography or video, whether it is for branding, advertising or editorial use, it brings different challenges to the photographer and/or director. Within aviation imagery, there will be a wide range of needs, for still photos and video:
1-OEM's are looking to sell the hard product, the plane, the parts, the interior etc.
2-Aviation companies providing public or private air services, their needs are about convenience, time savings, exclusivity, privacy and safety.
3-An MRO shop (maintenance, repair and overhaul) is looking to show service, price, depth of experience, the ability to demonstrate specific areas of MRO or the ability to perform a range of "Checks" starting from A Check to D Check, which is also called a "heavy maintenance visit".
In our experience, photography and video wise, most of these will use their own people in the photographs or video to save money on model or actor fees. The exceptions may be the companies providing public or private air travel as these businesses are more geared to the consumer vs B2B or an "on camera" scripted speaking part. These are normally where we would suggest using professional actors.
The greatest challenge when using "Real People" in a photo or video project, is directing the talent in a way so the action does not look like it is forced or look like they are "Posing" for the camera. Fortunately, Steve has a lot of experience working with real people and usually finds a way to get them to relax.
The Photographer and/or The Director:
When we are shooting for a client, either the shot list, the layouts or direction from the client will help shape the imagery and the time of day. Generally speaking the director or the photographer will have a lot of sway, but the number of images that need to be created will dictate a lot of what can be done in the time allowed. If the project is to be shot outside, we always prefer to shoot at sunrise, sunset, predawn, blue hour or during periods of weather whenever possible.
Once the director or photographer tells the crew what they are wanting, the crew will tend to setting the lights, reflectors in place, cameras with memory cards, fresh batteries, lenses ready to be pulled out of the lens case and onto a body at the request of the photographer. Or the photographer may pickup a camera and just say to the person, model or actor, "Stand there and look at the camera" and not need anything.
When shooting most aviation photography, or video, it means some clean make up, simple hair styling, wardrobe styling, and the styling crew will do all of this based on what the client is looking for. This is of course based on what the client needs are.
We are based in New York City, Atlanta, Georgia, USA, Milan, Italy, and serve the nation, travel worldwide for projects, both video and stills. On average we travel 175 days a year from all over the USA, to Singapore to Japan, Europe and the Middle East. We are normally in Europe 2 or 3 times a year, mostly Italy and Germany, shooting for clients there.
If you would like to use this image, or any of the images for mock or comp use, please just ask. There is never a charge for this service. Educational use is permitted without charge, unless published, but please ask first. All commercial use is available only with a limited copyright release prior to use from the copyright holder, Steve Thornton. Thanks for looking!
All images and this entire website is © Steve Thornton
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Steve Thornton & The Team.
All images and this entire website is © Steve Thornton