Hunter Douglas

Blackout the Glass House – Hunter Douglas

If you’re a fan of architecture, you’ve probably heard of Philip Johnson’s Glass House in New Canaan, CT. This famous modern architectural home has been photographed repeatedly over the past 50 years by the best photographers in the world. And just recently, it was my turn!

About five months ago, Hunter Douglas’ Creative Director Don Montgomery reached out to me with a uniquely challenging project. Hunter Douglas was releasing a new total-blackout shade system, which their creative team decided to promote by installing in the least likely of places: a famous all-glass house.

Because we only had 7 hours to document this entire project, I decided to shoot it on my Canon 5D Mk IV. It’s a very nimble camera with a lot of dynamic range. I also used Canon’s architectural lenses for their excellent sharpness and shift capabilities, both of which are necessary to properly shoot architecture. As for the lighting, it consisted of a mix of natural light, available lamps, and a set of Arri tungsten fresnels.

So how do you shoot something intended to eliminate light? Very carefully and thoughtfully! I employed every lighting technique I could think of to capture shots that favorably exhibit the product and its effect while still respecting the historical architecture. After all, this product really is amazing; when it’s entirely down, no light comes in whatsoever. Even when we opened certain shades, the room remained incredibly dark.

Alongside me were my digital tech Esteban Aladro and 1st assistant Mike Grippi. These guys worked extra hard due to some heavy late-morning rain and a lack of electricity in the house. We rented a gas-powered generator which Mike rigged up so it could function outside and be protected from the rain. Right before we’d shoot, Mike would run out and squeegee the windows clean. Overall, we had to work extremely diligently to get through each shot while proofing everything to art director Anna Yumul in Adobe Lightroom.

The final shots are some of my absolute favorites, and I feel tremendously honored that Hunter Douglas entrusted me to capture them. I don’t think we’ll ever see the Glass House look quite like this ever again. As such, it truly was a special shoot for me.

Hunter Douglas “Beauty Awakens” Ad Campaign

Okay, I’ve been excited to share things before, but this takes the cake. It’s the feather in my cap. It’s the bees knees to Nth degree. It’s the biggest ad campaign my work has been featured in… ever… or least in my 16 year career so far.

I’ve loved this shot ever since I took it for Hunter Douglas. It’s really me all summed up in one picture: architectural, great styling, people naturally placed, beautiful light, and technically superb. It’s flawless, yet relaxed… timeless, yet real.

And now, Hunter Douglas is using it as an iconic hero photograph in a massive fall print ad campaign. Over the next three months, you will see this double-page ad featured in the following magazines:

That’s a lot of ink! I just picked up some of the September issues. Guess what’s in all these magazines?




Now, that’s how you do a brand awareness campaign.

When asked why they decided to go with this shot for the campaign, Hunter Douglas’ VP Creative Director, Donald Montgomery, simply said, “It’s the best shot we have.”

And I’m done. Drop the mic, exit stage left. Thank you to everyone helped me out on this shoot. I couldn’t have done it without you. Big hugs and high fives all around.

Stylist: Bergren Rameson
Photography Art Direction: Nicole Stowe – Ramey
Producer: Heather Smith – Smith X Union
Model: Nicole Herold
Location Scout: Lisa Rothmuller – San Diego Locations
Camera: Alpa XY with PhaseOne Digital Back from Capture Integration

Are you ready to make an iconic photograph for your brand?

Contact me today about your vision and I will make it happen for you.