A London based PR company had previously called me on behalf of Canon and wanted to arrange for the shoot of the printers. Protect Signs based in Weston Super Mare have two Canon Colorado 1640 printer machines installed and have seen a great advantage in their workflow as a result.
Canon wanted some photos of staff in front of the printers and also some of the printers themselves.
You never really quite know what you will be working with on a commercial photography job like this. You could be working in a pokey room, there could be lots of equipment and clutter in the way, or you may have a very limited timeframe to get the photos, especially if you are likely to stop the staff doing their job whilst you take photographs. You could also find the lighting is terrible.
I guess I was quite fortunate on all those counts. The staff I worked with; Harry, Charlie and Dan were all really helpful and didn’t affect my ability at all to get the staff and product photos I wanted. Just in case the lighting was to be pretty dire, I took my own with me, along with some coloured gels to add a bit of interest to some of the shots.
I like to walk around a bit first and get an idea of the most interesting angles. It’s also important to make sure the most interesting parts are captured in the photos and try to minimise anything that distracts or diminishes from the photos.
The staff photo below; I wanted to show the staff working, but also see enough of the Colorodo Printers. Notice the artwork and staff in the foreground are deliberately not being hit by the blue light.
In the photo above we have:
Harry Walker (left) – Graphic Designer / Estimator : Involved with quoting, designing and proofing artwork to customers – preparing print ready artwork.
Dan Smith (middle) – Printer : Printing artwork and making signs.
Charlie Stanley (right) – Graphic Designer / Printer. : Designing artwork and printing.
The shot below gives a bit more of an idea of the environment the printers are being used in and the safety sign products Protect Signs produce.
I asked Harry “How many times faster is the Canon Colorado printer than your older Roland printer?”
“For printing intended for distant viewing, (Billboards) the Colorado’s are over 3 times faster. Furthermore, there would also be a considerable difference in quality – The quality of the Canon Colorado is always high, regardless of the speed settings used.”
Seen above, there was a very large workbench which was kind of in the way of the angle I wanted, but with a few signs added, it filled a space and gave a very contextual relevant foreground interest.
Protect Signs clients
Keeping in the back of my head Canon might not share my bright idea to add a blue light on their Colorado Printers, I also shot some photos with regular lighting so they had some choice.
Positioning people in the right places gives the photos more interest and context. For most commercial photography, I ask the staff what they would normally do in their job and where they would be and then select the tasks they would normally undertake that best suits the angles I want. It’s just a case or putting all the ingredients together to get the result you want, whilst trying to make things look as natural as possible.
I asked Harry: “How much ink does the Canon printer use compared to the older Roland printer over there?”
“There’s a significant reduction in the amount of ink used, the ink is much more efficient across different media. Ink consumption savings, paired with lower ink costs, will result in us saving in excess of 40% on our annual ink expenditure.”
“The cost of producing signs has reduced whilst also improving the quality and durability of our signs. On our older printers, large orders would involve multiple set ups across several machines to achieve required production times. Now we can print a full 50m roll at a fast output in less than 40 minutes and just over an hour for a very high quality print. Further benefits for production are the UV Gel inks durability – the ink is durable enough for almost all applications without a need for lamination.”
“When printing exhibition quality work, the Canon Colorado’s are more than 5 times faster. The printing speed of the Colorado’s, ensures we can always be confident we can take on more work and fulfil our customers production time requirements. Our customer base often requires signs to be ordered, manufactured and collected or despatched on the same day – The Colorado 1640 makes this possible, the UV Gel ink enables the sign to be manufactured immediately, with no drying time required.”
Some more about Protect Signs
“Protect Signs is an award winning, pioneering designer and manufacturer of a diverse range of temporary and permanent traffic signage. Our UK base supports customers worldwide, offering a wide product range, coupled with the service and support expected as one of the UK’s leading sign manufacturers.
Through continued investment in machinery and staff, Protect Signs not only specialise in traffic safety signage products, but also manufacture and supply commercial graphics and signage across all industry sectors.
Over recent years the company has gained recognition from the UK Highways Agency, Government departments, motoring organisations and Emergency Services, for delivering quality products backed by a sustainable service, whilst reducing costs at every opportunity. We are an ISO accredited company and a trusted industry name. Our staff have many years’ experience, with our founding history dating back to the early sixties. Protect Signs have the experience to undertake all aspects of emergency, commercial and site safety signage.”
My approach to commercial photography for Somerset businesses
The commercial photography I undertake can vary significantly. It is this diversity however that has made me adapt very well to often challenging photographic jobs.
With the above photography job, I really wanted to do more than just some boring vanilla photos of staff standing by a big printer. The brief only required a handful of photos, but I wanted to not only impress my client, but also have something to boast about when negotiating new work. I was booked for an hour for the photos, but I actually did an extra unpaid half hour so I could have time to add the coloured lighting and get some more interesting photos than had I just done the bare minimum. I take pride in what I do and I want people who hire me to to keep hiring me!
If you would like to book me to provide business photography for you of your product or service, get in touch. I always love to meet new people and photograph something different to yesterday.