with a broadcast producer and/or business
affairs. Even making GIFs is getting trickier.
If there’s talent involved, and you make the
subject move, even if you’re just shooting
stills—then you’re getting into SAG [Screen
Actors Guild] jurisdiction.
We’re also putting energy into more efficient
and consolidated productions to make sure
we’re not duplicating efforts. For Honda,
which prints brochures for every vehicle as
well as print ads and out-of-home, we might be
creating a beauty shot of a car to be used in the
brochure that may also be used on the website,
in social and in a sales training video. We have
to think in a 360-degree way about how the
image and content will be used and leveraged
elsewhere, so we’re thinking about everyone’s
delivery formats, crop marks and specs.
PDN: You’re assigning image libraries. Do you
have advice on how to shoot those well?
JL: When we’re doing a social library shoot
depicting, for example, a day in the life of a
car owner, we’ll put together an overarching
story line and a shot “wish list” to show some
specific features of the car. Then it’s up to
the photographer to capture the in-between
moments that tell the story without having
the art director tell them how to execute the
job. On our end, we’ve learned that we have to
set parameters to net the best result: no more
than one or two locations a day, minimal talent
and not too many wardrobe changes. We need
to give the talent time to act out the different
scenarios and for the photographer to look for
those storytelling moments to capture.
PDN: Has the way you evaluate photographers,
or the skills you look for, changed?
JL: Of course you consider the caliber of the
work. I think now you also have to think
about what production value they bring to the
table, how collaborative they are, how flexible
they can be, and how willing they are to think
outside the box in order to make a challenging
budget or schedule work.
You can learn that by looking at the
content they’ve created as well as by talking
to them or to their reps about their process
and how they work.
PDN: How important is the impression a
photographer makes during the creative call?
JL: Creative calls are still really important.
This is your first opportunity to have face
time with the creatives.
Multiple times I’ve seen creatives go
into creative calls thinking that a certain
photographer will be at the top of the list of
who they want to work with. Then the call
doesn’t go well. [The photographers] were
nonchalant or didn’t bring ideas to the table.
And because of that, creatives will change
their mind about the photographer—even
photographers they’ve worked with before—
just like that.
On the flipside, a photographer we’ve
never worked with before can rise to the top
if they offer good ideas and are enthusiastic.
PDN: Are you looking for new talent?
JL: As a department director, I’m always
looking for new talent to recommend to the art
producers and creatives for certain projects
or clients. It’s our job to stay on top of who’s
out there, or who might be good to shoot
certain kinds of projects. We save promos.
We check out social media. We take meetings
with artists and reps. We also use traditional
directories, such as Workbook and Le Book.
Sometimes I’ll even go to the bookstore and
look at magazines to see who’s shooting
editorial work that might be applicable.
PDN: Has your experience working at
a rep agency influenced your work as
an art producer?
JL: I think it’s been invaluable. It’s helped me
see things from different perspectives. I’m
blown away by the amount of work that reps
and photographers need to do in order to
be successful, and hope I can take what I’ve
learned and make the process on this side
a bit more collaborative. It’s helped me to
realize what can and should be expected from
photographers and reps, but also from us.
I’m also not afraid to approach a photographer
just because the job might seem beneath them
or low budget. You just never know. You might
get them at a slow time or when they may
be trying different things. I think most
photographers would agree that it’s always
good to be considered.
PDN: You’ve told me you like to see a
photographer’s personal work. Why?
JL: I think it’s where you see the photographer’s
true passion—what they create when there are
no limitations. We get inspired by it, too.
That’s why I started the ART TALKS series
at RPA. We want to see what inspires creative
people, whether it’s a hobby or a passion
project that may or may not translate to their
professional work. We’ve had one illustrator
and one paper cutting artist come in to talk for
an hour with the creatives, and have a third
artist scheduled. We try to do them every
other month. There’s a visual presentation
each time, and lunch. Lunch always helps.
When the creatives see [the presentation]
and meet with the artists on a deeper level,
we hope it gives them a little inspiration to
inject that passion into their work here. At the
end of the day, we always want the commercial
work to be as artful as possible.
OPPOSI TE PAGE: At TBWA\Chiat\Day, Jennifer Lamping
worked on a campaign for Pepsi with Sofia Vergara
and photographer Raymond Meier. BELOW: Also at
TBWA\Chiat\Day, she worked on VISA’s Go World
campaign featuring Michael Phelps and photographed
by Tyler Gourley. A broadcast spot was also made
from the stills.
ABOVE: Ed Anderson photographed workers at the
Stacy’s Pita Chip factory for a TBWA\Chiat\Day
campaign, which included broadcast. Art producers
today are involved at the start of a project, says
Lamping. “We’re part of the conversation when
creatives are coming up with concepts and
discussing what they’re able to do.”
Director of Art Production
2525 Colorado Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90404
IN TERVIE W BY HOLLY STUART HUGHES