Photography is often perceived as a glamour occupation but most of the time it can be sheer hard work just trying to make a living, but every so often opportunities arise which go a little way to confirm the perception.
Last night I was asked to photograph the opening of a new eponymous restaurant called “Shaun Dickens at the Boathouse in Henley”, this request followed a successful food and product shoot for their launch website which I undertook a few weeks ago.
However, none of this would have happened without social media and specifically Twitter.
The power of social media never ceases to amaze me by producing the most unexpected and exciting results. Knowing that the time spent online talking with people whose interest may never require your service can seem wasteful, but when it works it can produce spectacular results.
I first met Shaun when he was head chef at Fallowfields Country House Hotel, whose owner, Anthony Lloyd was one of my Twitter friends and where he prepared a magnificent array of dishes to be photographed, but I had no idea how the future would develop.
When I discovered on Twitter and Facebook that Shaun was leaving Fallowfields, I really didn’t give it much thought, until a direct message dropped into my Twitter feed from Shaun asking me if I’d shoot some pictures to illustrate his website for Shaun Dickens at the Boathouse in Henley, his new restaurant, which I readily agreed to do.
Opening a new business is always fraught with delays and obstacles and true to form, despite having an opening date set, the legal completion was delayed, so our first scheduled shoot was deferred over a weekend, but even on Monday morning very little was ready for photography and the kitchens were certainly not ready to be pictured, let alone have food prepared in them.
Shaun, Abi Hough the website designer and I were in agreement that the only way we were going to get the website up and running by the opening date was to shoot what we could on that day and arrange a further session the following Friday.
The change was dramatic the kitchens were sparkling and the food spectacular which meant we could get all the remaining shots done for Abi to start working on and despite having a holiday booked she managed to get the site up in plenty of time.
So last night the culmination of everyone’s hard work produced the glamorous moment when special culinary, celebrity guest Raymond Blanc owner of Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons officially opened Shaun’s new venture and began what we all hope will be new and exciting place to eat and be seen in Henley on Thames.
If you have a new product or venture you need photographing, I’d be delighted to help build your glamour moment so call me at firstname.lastname@example.org