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Under The Cover: Your Best You


02-10-2012 10:00

The fabulous photos in Sonya Lennon and Brendan Courtney’s new book Your Best You: How To Work What You’ve Got To Look Great Every Day were taken by Peter Rowen. In the book, Sonya and Brendan help a group of ordinary Irish women to discover their own true style – and Peter was there to capture the excitement. So how did he do it?

 

Tell us a bit about your work on the book - did you work over a series of shoots over a long period, or was it all done in one intense shoot?
The book was shot over a couple of days. It was pretty intensive but lots of fun too!

 

What did you want to convey in your photographs?
I guess more than anything a sense of realism.... I’m not really a huge fan of staged photographs for a book like this so I shot most of the book without setting anything up, literally shooting what was happening in front of me! I also wanted to convey a sense of fun... It was a fun shoot, I think that comes across!

 

What was it like working with Brendan and Sonya?
Brendan & Sonya were great to work with. Very down to earth, total pros!! I had actually worked with Sonya a few times before but they were both cool!

 

You do a lot of wedding photography so this isn’t the first time you’ve worked on a shoot with non-models. What are the differences between working with professional and non-professional models?
Well, weddings are only about 50% of my business. I also shoot for lots of commercial clients so I’m well use to working with both professional and non professional models. The main difference I reckon is that professional models are usually extremely comfortable being photographed, and not all non professional models are, so it can take a little longer to get the shots you want. It’s really all about making people feel relaxed and comfortable!

 

Some of the shots in the book are posed, while others are more documentary in feel. What do you like about both approaches?
Yeah, there’s a bit of a mix in there... obviously when you’re standing someone on a white backdrop and asking them to smile at the camera, it’s going to look pretty posed! Personally, I love shooting the stuff that has a more documentary feel to it. It never feels forced, it’s always more real, rather than asking people to smile, you’re actually capturing their real smiles, real moments in time!



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