Recently I was contacted by Randy and Ginny Wilson of Water’s Edge Chocolates. They were in need of updating the images on their website and wanted to know if I could help them. When I met them, I instantly knew this was a job I wanted to do. First of all, it’s chocolates. Me + chocolate = good time! But on top of the obvious appeal of the subject matter, Randy and Ginny turned out to be great people, with a devotion to producing a quality product and to serving their customers. One of the things I love doing is helping creative entrepreneurs showcase their creativity.
The job was ambitious. There were about 100 products they needed images for. And they also had a budget they were trying to stay within. Fortunately their budget was in the ballpark, and there were some things I could cut out of my estimate that would help me help them and still maintain my own bottom line. Nonetheless, it was still an ambitious undertaking. As Ginny said, we were “trying to build Rome in a day.”
Ginny, as the creative chocolatier, would be doing most of the styling herself. She has a great eye and a sense of what she wanted her hand-made chocolates to look like. I knew what it would take to make her vision translate for the camera. So throughout the shoot, we worked collaboratively, which suited me perfectly.
Something else that’s really important on a long shoot day that doesn’t often get talked about is the importance of keeping it fun. I try hard to keep shoots fun and pleasant for all, because I’ve never found the creative process to thrive when there’s tension in the room. Fortunately, Randy and Ginny were great sports, and easy to get along with, and we remained focused on the creation of images we’d all be proud of.
It was a long day, but a very good day. Customers came and went throughout the day, and it was clear to me that Randy and Ginny had built up a clientele of loyal, happy customers. They’re great people, and of course it doesn’t hurt that their chocolates are mouthwateringly good!
If you’re ever in Tullahoma, Tennessee, make sure you stop by Water’s Edge Chocolates. And while you’re there, make sure to try the Gooey Bombs and Crispy Bites. Oh, and the chocolate covered cherries . . . and the chocolate covered popcorn. And the ice cream . . . did I mention their ice cream? Oh, just try everything. You’ll be really glad you did!