I’ve put a selection of pictures below from a recent corporate portrait shoot I did. This time of David Barral, the CEO of Aviva, the UK’s largest Insurer. Taken at their headquarters in York on a shoot for Getty. I quickly saw my allocated 30 minute ‘slot’ squeezed tighter as the times overran and, as is normally the case with these shoots, the half hour quickly became 20 minutes or so. Fortunately I had a few minutes to set a light up on a balcony overlooking York Minster which I thought might work and making a nice backdrop for a York based business and then there was scope to squeeze in a couple of interior shots within the building to try to give the client a selection of pictures that would be primarily used for internal publications and brochures.

Whilst they wanted a slightly more relaxed picture rather than the more formal shots I also shot a few of him in his jacket and tie in case they had a need for them in the future and as he was dressed like that initially it offered the chance to get some newer and more recent pictures of him so they had more of a selection should they need it. I also think that many people are a little nervous or self-conscious to start with, CEO’s of big businesses or otherwise, so this helped to break the ice and help build a little trust and helped him relax ready for more informal pictures.

The key, in my opinion, to getting good results and to give the client a variation of different pictures to choose from comes with good planning, thinking quickly to find decent environments or locations to shoot in and to be familiar with all the kit and equipment you’re using so that you can work fast and efficiently and get as much out of the time that you end up having. Because you can guarantee, that when it comes to big businesses with a busy CEO your 30 minutes will quickly become 20…..or 15…..or 10.

They were great to work with and very helpful and hopefully they were happy with the pictures and even though it is a relatively simple shoot there are many considerations to achieving a successful set of photographs.

David Barral CEO of Aviva

David Barral CEO of Aviva

David Barral CEO of Aviva

David Barral CEO of Aviva

David Barral CEO of Aviva

David Barral CEO of Aviva

David Barral CEO of Aviva

David Barral CEO of Aviva


6 thoughts on “Insurance

  1. Great pictures – number three is my favourite. I noticed a few of them have a lot of headroom. Is that a conscious decision and why? Not a criticism or anything, just curious about your thought process. You always seem to come up with some striking compositions!

    • Cheers Olivia. Ordinarily I like to let pictures ‘breath’ a little rather than crop them so tight there is hardly any space. That’s just my preference really but with this shoot in particular I deliberately left a bit of space with some of them so that if there was a requirement to drop in text or logos etc into the picture then they would have the room to do that.

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