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DOCK (original) - Honolulu, Hawai'i, USA


In January, 2010, I did a commercial shoot for Mobi PCS, a cell/mobile phone coverage provider based in Honolulu. I've included the final versions of the ads, as well as the original images I submitted. The original concepts weren't mine, but the creative team at Mobi was very open to hearing my take on things, which was great. Although we had a short window for the shooting (six locations on different parts of Oahu in three consecutive days), and some bad weather (well, bad by Hawai'i standards anyway), overall I thought it went pretty well. However, there are ALWAYS things you wish you could've changed after the fact.

The plan all along was to rotate the images 90 degrees, and the largest output was going to be 8 by 4 foot prints (2.4m x 1.2m) so I had to shoot these with enough space to crop to a 2:1 aspect ratio yet keep the crucial elements big enough to get enough resolution for the large final output. However, at the last minute, Mobi decided to go with a 45 degree rotation instead, and a re-shoot was not possible, which meant losing most of the original frame to cropping and LOTS of retouching to fill in gaps.

We ended up swapping out the background of two shots: the new "Dock" background was taken from another frame from the same shoot in order to fit the final layout, and the "Swing" background was eventually replaced by a photo I had shot a couple of months earlier in the Philippines, as it was actually raining while the shot was taken and the moody sky present wasn't what they were looking for. In the end, they decided to go with a different shot altogether for "Swing" which they felt fit better with the new background. While I wasn't that big of a fan of the pose and the lighting on the version they chose, I can understand their reasoning, and of course, it's their show:)

Still, I've decided to post what I did myself, with the original backgrounds, before the designers at Mobi did the final rotation, background switches, compositing, additional retouching to fill in blank spots, and added graphics and copy. My side of the post-processing involved color and contrast adjustment, retouching, and a dash of the contrast-masking/hi-pass effect. These shots are essentially what I submitted to Mobi (the replacement backgrounds aren't shown here), although I did add sharpening, a touch of vignetting, and slight crops (in a couple of cases) just before posting.

It was truly a pleasure working with Evan and Noa, who were both the brains and brawn behind this project, as well as all of our lovely models. Special kudos in particular go to Evan, who also happens to be my brother, which I'm sure is totally unrelated to me getting this assignment... hey, you gotta start somewhere, right? ;)