Creating the Advantage

Providing a creative advantage

Manchester commercial photographer – Greg Harding was recently commissioned by Salford University to produce a series of images for their ‘Salford Advantage’ campaign.

Salford Advantage

Salford Advantage

The concept behind this was to demonstrate the distinct ‘advantage’ that Salford students and graduates have when studying at Salford University. The project was to use both students and graduates to provide a broad spectrum of success story images.

Although the vast majority of my photography commissions are featured on location, some projects lend themselves to studio photography.

Working as a studio photographer is second nature to me. I’ve spent countless hours perfecting my lighting skills in medical and forensic studio environments. So spending a day inside, warm and dry away from the snowy Manchester exterior was perfectly fine by me.

The essence of the shoot came down to providing images that screamed success for students & graduates whose careers have been enhanced by studying at the University. I wanted to provide the images with a little extra energy, so I introduced a small trampoline that the models would be able to jump and catch some air from. I coached them into making shapes int he air that exuded achievement and showed a joyous elation.

Freezing action in mid-air - the tech bits.

Freezing action or motion using flash comes down to achieving a very short flash duration (anywhere between 1/1000 and 1/6000 of a second typically), this is sometimes referred to as high speed flash. I a nutshell, lower power settings on electronic flash heads will provide the fastest flash duration, this varies from make to make and model to model. Essentially there’s always a compromise between achieving the right amount light required for the shoot and the right depth of field needed to keep the model tack sharp, so whenever possible it’s always important to test the lighting setup prior to the shoot taking place.

Above is a quick time-lapse sequence showing some of the activity in the studio.

The students were great to work with and the client said the images were exceptional. I’d say that was job done.

Here’s a quick look at a few of the images and how they’re being used in the ‘Advantage’ campaign banners.

If you’ve got a project that needs a little extra creative energy, I’d love to hear from you.

Stay tuned for more exciting projects coming up or if you’d like a topic covered in a post, then please let me know.

Don’t forget to share this post with your social networks. Until next time, bye for now.