Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Safety Poster Campaign for a Corporate Client

For this year's corporate safety campaign, I was asked to photograph groups of workers in factory settings wearing safety gear. Kimberly-Clark considers safety a top priority and their "Who's Counting on You" awareness program is designed to remind workers that they should be safe for their own good, the health of their coworkers and for their families who depend on them.

Due to time and budget constraints, the previously planned on-location factory photos turned into in-studio portraits. It was not feasible to shut down part of a busy factory for up to 4 hours at a time. Time is money and that would have cost the company too much.

Plan B involved taking several photos of different poses and expressions in-studio and them compositing them into existing factory environments. The final composites would be used on large posters that will be displayed in multiple languages in factories around the world.

The workers in this photo were photographed individually and composited into the background.
This was done to give the client multiple options. The reflection on the woman's glasses was purposely
 included in since it did not obscure her eye.
Technically, these seemingly simple photos had some challenges in the studio. The workers were wearing wrap-around safety glasses that reflected light from every angle. I had the models adjust the angle of their faces in small degrees to remove the harsh reflections. Half a degree could make all the difference.

The photo of the 2 men was taken as one exposure and composited into the background
The group photos had to have a great depth of field so that all parts of the models were in sharp focus. This involved working with very powerful flashes on almost full power in our small studio. The final tricky part was that the orange safety vests were made of a semi-reflective material that shifted hue with even the smallest difference in flash power. The vests produce a strong local color reflection on the skin of the models which we decided to keep for realism.