How to get a WOW reaction from clients and much more in our interview with photographer & cinemagraph master Giles Christopher
Cinemagraphs are defined as ‘still photographs in which a minor and repeated movement occurs’. Sounds interesting right?! A viewer can have the illusion, that he or she is watching an animation! Meet one of the best photographers in the industry doing those little miracles – Giles Christopher.
Production Paradise: Cinemagraphs are relatively new in the world of photography. Why do you think they have become so popular and why have you decided to make them part of your portfolio?
Giles Christopher: It’s two old tried and tested formats: video and still photography, merging together to create a new concept – a new genre if you like!!! It’s also popular as SEO loves video and these ‘moving stills’ are treated as video files. We have made them part of our portfolio as we come from a feature film and TV advertising background and it combines our skills of video and stills, so an obvious choice for us to offer.
Production Paradise: If you were to choose one characteristic that makes cinemagraphs unique – what would that be?
Giles Christopher: Capturing a moment and being able to have the item you are advertising ‘move’, ‘creating interest’.
Production Paradise: How does the production process of cinemagraphs differ from a ‘classic’ photo production?
Giles Christopher: It needs a bit of pre-planning to decide what moves!! And will it work?? And having to light it and set it up with constant lighting, so more like a video shoot than a stills shoot I guess!! They always get a WOW reaction from clients.
Production Paradise: You have a strong background in film and commercials, and worked on films such as Alien and on music videos for The Spice Girls, Blur or Robbie Williams – how do you think this background has influenced you as a photographer?
Giles Christopher: It’s taught me discipline, following the brief and attention to detail, as well as being able to problem solve on the go, and coming up with quick solutions that don’t hold up the shoots.
Production Paradise: Please share with us one funny anecdote from your life as photographer!
Giles Christopher: Having to re-shoot a high profile portrait – as the client said her Medium could see an evil entity in her photos. After the reshoot it was fine apparently – But we often dine out on that story!! Still haven’t found the Photoshop button for REMOVE EVIL ENTITY.
Production Paradise: What is your favorite and least favorite part of your job?
Giles Christopher: Favourite part of being a commercial photographer is working on different jobs all the time, maybe cocktails today, 5 star hotel rooms next week. It helps to have clients that have yummy food too! Macarons are my favourite and we have a patisserie client that sweetens the photoshoots with a box of them especially for me!! Worst part is shooting for responsive websites and you now have to shoot so many different formats for use across every media.
Production Paradise: How do you create long-lasting relationships with your clients?
Giles Christopher: We like to think they trust us. We love to build that relationship where we can offer up new ideas and integrate new technology into those shoots – cinemagraphs were a typical example a few years back. We also always strive to over deliver for our clients!!