Different clients have different needs and expectations. When photographing places where people eat, the essential task of deciding whether patrons will be included in the shot or not is both a matter of necessity and taste (pun intended).
Every restaurant, café and bar conveys a distinct personality. When that’s not enough for the assignment, bringing people into the shot often spices things up.
Greg has always been fascinated by the environments created by or on behalf of people who cook for other people. Maybe it started that summer before college when he worked behind the counter at his local Arby’s. Or maybe it’s simply because he loves to eat out. But whether or not he includes people in his work is usually decided by the nature of who’s going to be looking at it.
All of the pictures of restaurants, cafes and casual dining spots seen here were taken from the client’s POV—and each tells a unique story or part of one. Greg’s architecture and construction clients prefer the emphasis be placed on the look, design and physicality of the space. This is where Greg is able to exert the greatest degree of control. Like a restaurateur, everything from the angle of the shot to the quality of the lighting to the placement of tables and chairs is under his command.
Greg’s editorial and academic clients typically want to see people enjoying good food, good drink and the company of other people, promoting a sense of community. This is where Greg is able to take a more photojournalistic approach, getting inside the stories that naturally play out among diners and shooting from that vantage point.
Trade secret: Greg’s never been one to hesitate treating students to a meal to get the right shot.