Award Winning Fashion Photography, Atlanta, GA, Milan, Italy
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Fashion Advertising Photography, Atlanta, GA, Milan, Italy

This is what we started with, the plane in the corner of the hanger:


The first test shot:


With the background removed:


With the background removed, model & sunglasses retouched and the garment reshaped:


Personal Work, Steve Thornton

About the image

This Advertising Fashion Photograph was shot in Como, Italy inside an aircraft hanger for Scully Leather, an American fashion house. We shot the first part of this project in Milan, Italy. As I always try to do, I wanted to shoot something extra for my client above and beyond what I was being paid for. My original plan was to shoot all of the garments on the 1st location, a cool farm in Milan, then drive to Como to have lunch at my favorite restaurant in Como, then shoot the "Extra" images. Unfortunately the shoot ran an hour longer than I planed and we could not make it before the restaurant closed. So we loaded up and started to drive to Como and Kassandra, my makeup artist, suggested we stop at the Auto Grill on the way. The Auto Grill is on the Autostrada (Similar to our Interstate system of limited access highways) and they sell gasoline, diesel, oil and also have a bar or a cafe and some have a large restaurant, and this one had a HUGE restaurant. So we stopped and had lunch. After we finished we got back into the van and started to drive to Como, which was 20 minutes away.

This jacket was one of my favorite garments Scully sent and I wanted to do something extra as it was an exceptional garment to me. In looking at the jacket it reminded me of the leather coats the aviators wore in the early days of open cockpit flying. While driving to Como, I thought of a fully restored 1935 Caproni CA100, a 1930's Italian military float plane trainer that I had shot a couple of times before at the Como airport, once for for stills then video. I then got out my phone and looked up Cesare's phone number. Cesare is the head person running the Como Aero Club and had allowed me to shoot the plane before. I then told Emiliano, my lead assistant in Europe, what I wanted to do. Emiliano had met Cesare the previous year when we shot video on the plane.

I wanted to ask if we could shoot a fashion shot using the Caproni. He said yes but we would need to shoot it in the hanger. Unbeknownst to me, that Friday was an Italian national holiday. Como is one place the people from Milan will go to on weekends and holidays. The roads were choked, there was no parking to be had so I just parked on the side of the street in front of the hanger.

While Kassandra, my makeup artist and hair stylist, worked on Kelly, Giuseppe, my wardrobe stylist, got the jacket ready and pulled some sunglasses to go with the shot, a master stroke to me as it worked so very well. This is why I hire top styling talent... they make me look really good as a photographer.

While Emiliano set up the the softbox and strobe on a light stand, I got the camera set up, then Kelly walked in ready to go. I took 2 test shots to fine tuned the exposure. I then I asked Emiliano to grab a RoadRag out of the van that was already assembled to use it to fan some air onto the model's hair to help "finish" the look. Only pausing for hair/makeup or wardrobe issues, I shot 24 photos in 5 minutes. We then packed up, said thank you and left. We were there a total of 20 minutes. Yet another reason to use top talent: Models, styling crew and assistants.


For Photographers

The Gear:
A Canon camera using 200 ISO and 1/200 second shutter speed using a 
Canon 70-200mm lens set to 200mm and f8, attached to a
Sachtler fluid head on a
Gitzo CF tripod.

The Light:
Inside an airplane hanger using a
Lumedyne battery powered strobe and a
Lumedyne head inside a
Lightware FourSquare 30x30 "travel" softbox with a
LightTools 40° grid.

Makeup & Hair by Kassandra Frua de Angeli
Wardrobe Styling by Giuseppe Ceccarelli - Works for Vogue and the author of 2 books on fashion.
Lead assistant: Emiliano Leonardi

The post production:
Dropout the background,
Find and adjust a background set of clouds,
Put the 2 shot together and match both brightness and color levels
I then slimmed Kelly's waist as the garment was a little big and I did not want to take the time to get a clip to pull in the back,
Remove the bright reflection in the sunglasses.

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If you would like to use this image, or any of my images for mock or comp use, please just ask. There is never a charge for this service. Educational use is permitted without charge, unless published, but please ask first. All commercial use is available only with a limited copyright release prior to use from the copyright holder, Steve Thornton. Thanks for looking!

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