Being a photographer can be a glamorous occupation, I thought recently, when I was asked to help document the construction of a giant sign for an exclusive club in the Caribbean. And although it turned out I wouldn’t need to pack my sun cream, as the sign would be created here in lovely Suffolk, and shipped over later, I still had a great time doing this project. And most importantly, I was able to help a well-loved local business expand its brand internationally.
The client: Hudson Signs
Steve Flory, MD of Hudson Group, took on this unique and ambitious project, which involved designing, building and shipping the sign that would be the centrepiece for a billionaire’s hideaway in the Caribbean.
His team, working from a warehouse in Ipswich, would be coating, blasting and assembling panels, before attaching them to a huge steel base, before shipping the finished product off on the long journey to its final destination.
It truly was going to be an epic undertaking. As an idea of scale, the logo alone for this sign was over ten meters tall.
The Simply C solution
Steve wanted to document the entire process, from construction to shipping, and then use the images to promote Hudson’s brand on social media and beyond.
After speaking with Steve Flory, it was clear what he wanted: Dynamic action shots that captured the skill, effort and care involved in creating something of this scope and scale.
Because of the tight deadlines involved with this project, I understood his team’s stress levels would be running high, and the timeframe for getting the right images would have to be carefully planned. In the end, we agreed that for each stage of the process, I would make three site visits, and this would allow me to capture each stage of the project.
I made sure to put the team at ease when I visited, and took plenty of relaxed and candid shots that showed them carrying out the complex and precise work required to create such a huge item.
It was these shots that allowed me to tell the story of the team, by showing their dedication to their clients, at each point in the manufacturing process. And with these images in the bag, Steve had plenty of material to show people what the Hudsons brand was all about.
Smiles all round
As I completed the last shots of the components being loaded into two 40ft high top containers, I couldn’t help but think how epic a project this had been. It was a great opportunity to work on the huge scale of what was being made, yet also still be able to focus on the very human story of the team, and the well-known local brand that was reaching halfway across the world.
Steve was so happy with the images that he plans to blow some of them up to a huge 12ft x 12ft scale and place them around the sides of his unit. Which is fitting for such a huge project, and a great way to humanise and bring to life a brand that is based around the skills of so many craftspeople. And, of course, it’s a great honour for me and my work.
I’ll let Steve have the final say:
“What can I say? How can someone make a proper, dirty working factory look so elegant? Cherry is a master of her craft and a great person to go with it. She relaxes people and makes even the most camera-shy blossom under her guidance. If you need a photographer, look no further. Goes the extra mile and makes it fun!”
Steve Flory – MD Hudsons Group
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