If you follow my blog, you know I love bold design. Bold colors, bold shapes, bold ideas. So when I saw the scouting photos of this San Francisco pediatrician’s office, I knew I was in for a treat.
Justin Martinkovic (Martinkovic Milford Architects) used both shapes and colors to define this space, as you can see below. This office is inside a building best described as, ummm…..Soviet-Style. It’s about as non-descript as it gets, on the outside, and on the inside, it gets even more bland. But you open the door to this office, and WHAM!
To make the shot above, the camera was parked directly in the door, and at least 20 people walked by. Not one person failed to say something along the lines of “Whoa….”
To call this a lighting challenge is putting it mildly. For the lighting geeks who read this blog, I’ll just say that in addition to at least a couple of Arri’s, there are 2 strobe heads and 4 speedlights involved. The speedlights really earned their keep, because I don’t know another way to get good light above a suspended valence like this one.
The butterfly motif starts out near the base of the glass panel to the right of the receptionist’s desk, as a cocoon. Colorful decals work their way up the panel until the butterflies morph into beautiful little stamped-metal cutouts, suspended from the ceiling and floating away towards the right side of the waiting room. The effect is quite charming, and I saved the butterfly detail shot for last.
I kind of love this shot. We used continuous lighting to put highlights on the butterflies, so they would pop out from the green ceiling. A (tightly) bounced light from underneath put the shadows above them, which was a last-minute bit of inspiration. Here’s a detail crop:
All in all, I have to say this was one of the most satisfying days of photography I’ve had in a long while!