Kerry - @can_to_candle - asked me to meet her, to understand her story. That's basically all she said before our first meeting. So I blindly drove out along windy little country roads to the tiny Scottish town that she lives in, wondering at times whether I'd gotten lost somewhere along the way. When I walked into her kitchen, I understood why she had asked me to come. It was everywhere around her - so clear, so potent. It was candle-making alchemy.
I went home trying to keep that potent feeling of her little business alive. I didn't have description to work off, or an email request like I usually do - just an intuitive feeling. I let it settle and then I went to work collecting images that match that feeling. When my Pinterest board was full, I went back and started to cull images that were slightly off or didn't work with the others. I took my final choice and created a moodboard - our visual guide for the photography session. Kerry's excitement when I sent it to her - told me that we were on the same wavelength and had a clear common goal.
Moodboards have become an essential part of my process. It helps me communicate my expectations of photography to my clients and allows them to redirect me if they disagree - long before I take out the camera. In the end I want my clients to get exactly what they were looking for when they went searching for me. It has a lot to do with patient listening, intuition and clear communication before the photo session.
Visual Storytelling is all about getting the ingredients right. Every object in the photo has a purpose and when you put them together - the story appears. In this case, Kerry provided objects that had personal meaning to her and we mixed those in with objects that tell you more about her process, her business and personality. Subtle messages. It needs to look natural, but everything is intentional.