I love doing business photography commissions, mainly because they are always something different but also because the clients are usually surprised how quick, painless and (dare I say it) cheap the process is. With photography, like many jobs that you might consider doing yourself, it often pays to get someone who knows what they are doing with the right kit. They will generally complete the task in a fraction of the time and produce much better results too.

When Richard from the new Collingwood Medical Centre in Nelson got in touch to provide some photographs for their new website I was very happy to oblige and provide a very quick and efficient service. Pretty much as soon as he had put the phone down, I was out the door. He wanted an exterior shot of the fabulous new building, preferably at dusk. Well, it was nearly the right time and the weather looked just about right, the kit was ready to go. One hour later and job done, apart from the processing of course! However, another advantage of employing a professional photographer is that they will be able to minimise that element of the shoot and thus cost. There is nothing like getting it right in camera.

Collingwood Centre (Nikon D700, 17-35mm AF-D, remote release, panoramic head)

Having said that, this shot wasn’t going to be that simple, but I knew what was required, had the equipment to do it and how to use it. The above photograph is made up of 30 exposures, 6 shots stitched into the panorama each consisting of 5 exposures. Normally, I would use ND graduated filters to retain detail in both the foreground and sky but I couldn’t do this here because of the different vertical elements. The thing is though, I knew this would be the case and how to deal with it and the elements I would need to capture. 30 minutes of processing back home and my client had the product.

The second part of the commission was to produce an informal yet professional portrait. Richard is a busy man so I was set up and ready to go when he arrived. The shoot was like a photo booth (no particular creativity required here) but with a bit of posing coaching and much, much better results. Also worth mentioning is the illluminated, white background I use. It basically automatically provides an isolated image which means that it requires absolutely no effort to paste it into a website design. Again, this saves time and money.

After 15 minutes, he had a selection of photographs to chose from, provided by e-mail the same day.