Back to School

September 9, 2008

We’ve actually been back to school for a while now.  Yesterday was the 4th week of an 8 week workshop that I am teaching for the commercial photography students at RCC in Asheboro.  Yesterday we visited the studio where I used to work many moons ago.

It’s called Kreber and is located in High Point.  It’s a wonderland of photographic possibilities and with over six acres of studio under one roof, it’s one of the largest commercial photography facilities in the world.  How’s that for cool?

When I say that this studio is in High Point most people immediately think of furniture.  It was once true that most studios in that town were heavily into furniture photography, it’s not really the case any more.  You will see more retailers like Sears, GAP, Office Max and Macy’s.  Also, a lot of the catalogs you get in your mailbox are photographed in High Point now.

I’m sure you’re mom told you this, but it really is true that there is not much at all that you will see in television or advertising that is real.  They have an entire section of the prop room devoted to fake food.  from these eggs sunny side up, to hams, lobsters, pies, and even fake ice cubes and ice cream.  Yummy!

This is just one shelf, but over the years they have collected so much stuff.  Most of this “food” is never really seen up close, but instead incorporated into a scene to add realism.

Daniel tries a plastic cheeseburger deluxe, and he’s going for the turkey next!

It took about three and a half hours to give the full tour of the studio, but I think the students were most impressed with the prop room.  It’s two levels and has more square footage that most 2 story houses.  It’s also stocked with more stuff than you could imagine.

Unfortunately, even though all of the food was fake, this fish was real and was kinda freaky in person.

Good times were had by all.

This section of the studio is appropriately named Wall Street.  Wall Street houses several thousand different walls and windows in every conceivable style of architecture from the log cabin on the right to the more contemporary on the left.  So when they are building a set, they will come here, get the walls, doors and windows they need, clamp them all together, paint, prop and begin photography.

This is one set that was made for a home improvement store’s advertising.  The last time I was here, this set was being built and there was grass and flowers and bushes all around on the floor.  With the right lighting you cannot tell that the images were shot indoors.  The advantages of having this built indoors is that you have complete control.  No weather delays, no clouds, no moving sun, no bugs!  We took the opportunity for a group photo.

This is just one room that houses several thousand pieces of wall art from paintings to prints, from super traditional to contemporary and everything in between.  In the world of commercial and advertising photography so much time and effort is put into making things look real, natural, effortless, while at the same time having the product look perfect in every way.

Kreber not only has a huge studio, but also full ad design, pre-press and commercial printing capabilities.  This is not an ad for them by the way, I just think it’s cool.

at top speed this press can crank out 15,000 full color glossy sheets per hour.

In all, I kinda wished I had taken more photos, but since I was the one giving the tour, I spent most of the time talking.

2 Responses to “Back to School”

  1. Cheryl said

    That is awesome, I really did not think of all the details that go into making a sales ad! Thanks for the tour.

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