Cover shoot


Matthew Long

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Yesterday was all about getting the cover shot for WPP39. And it was my turn again to do the "mogelling". I"ve done a few shoots now, and what amazes me most is the difference between what I actually do with woodworking tools, and how it looks when you photograph it. I don"t think I am giving away too many trade secrets when I write that the body and tool positions I have to take up when posing for the cover bear no resemblance whatsoever to how I look when I actually use them.

And this brings up an interesting question: Is it better to have photographs that are "real", that is showing me exactly how I look when I am actually using a power or hand tool, or to have an image that looks right for the magazine. For it is absolutely true that the positions I take up when using tools look totally wrong on a magazine cover.

In the end, what we try and achieve is an image that represents good, safe woodworking, but which also promotes the magazine and woodworking in the best possible way.

A good example is the eyeline one takes. If I am looking down on the workpiece, which of course I would have to to use a tool, then that hides my face, and produces a less interesting photograph. So we compromise, with my chin being artificially raised and eyeline looking slightly ahead of the workpiece. This gives a good image, but also the impression that the model is looking at the workpiece. I would be interested to know if any of you out there have ever noticed this discrepancy. We try very hard, and it often involves hundreds of images, to get the balance exactly right. Let me know what you think.

If you didn"t know already, then be sure that the camera does lie... but we try and make it just a white lie, as authenticity is very important to us here at WPP. One of the reasons we try and make as many projects as possible ourselves!

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