That Comfort Zone Thing

One of our challenges as photographers is to try and expand our horizons a bit in order to grow our skills and refine our vision.  Often that involves getting outside of our “Comfort Zone.”  Hopefully is doesn’t take us so far as our “Panic Zone” but that is always a possibility.  Coincidentally one of the topics of our workshop this past weekend dealt with just that – getting outside our comfort zone.

This was already on the schedule before the workshop and ensuing discussion, but the manager of our favorite restaurant told me that he needed new photos for his website, Facebook page and Open Table and wondered if I was interested in giving it a go.  After a big “gulp!” I told him I’d love to do it, we just needed to set up a date.

As it happened, the weather forecast for this past Sunday was perfect, Tim (the manager) was available and the time change the night before made sunrise a much more hospitable hour than it would have been just the previous day.  So off I went at 0-Dark-Thirty to shoot landscape photos in a restaurant.  No problem, right?  Actually it was no problem at all.  Tim had gotten there early and had everything set up, and just like with a landscape shoot we just had to wait for the right light.  Once it got good, I rattled off a series of shots and it was “in the can” as they say in show biz.

It was a great creative exercise for me, and stretched my boundaries just a bit.  Not all of the shots are as great as I (and the client) think these are, but they will be a huge improvement over what they had been using.  I don’t think there’s any danger of me becoming an architectural photographer any time soon, but it has gotten me thinking about looking for a tilt-shift lens!

5 thoughts on “That Comfort Zone Thing”

  1. I can see why the owner liked these. They’re very well done and the compositions are creative. Did you bring lighting or use existing? I would love a challenge like this but all I have for lights are my old 3200K Tungstens.

  2. Thanks, Ken. Everything was done with available light. I could probably have used some lighting in the banquet rooms, because matching the heavily tinted windows and the interior lighting was tricky, especially once the sun came up.

  3. Tom, you did a great job with these. I like available like photos for restaurants and bars, makes things seem a bit more intimate and friendly.

  4. I don’t know how i missed this post, but I did. Anyway, congratulations on a job well done, Tom. These are lovely!

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