Travel is one of the industries that has suffered the most during the global pandemic. The consequential ripples of placing restrictions on international movement has been far and wide. I photograph for a stable of corporate clients, editorial magazines, and charitable organisations around the world. I supply photography for various architects, designers, and hotel resorts.
Among those industries reacting to the restrictions on travel is the hotel sector. Hotel designers and architects are reworking existing projects and approaching new ones from a different perspective.
It is essential to understand and adapt to consumers’ changing behaviours for the future. Innovation in uncertain times comes down to flexibility and technology. Organisations need to supply environments that can evolve with the changes of our health concerns and that suit the users’ requirements.
Early indications are that business travel will decline and hotels will have to facilitate a wider range of guest that require different amenities. Hotels will need to appeal to everyone with a safe and secure environment which is welcoming. Lobbies are increasingly being transformed from designer furniture showrooms to the “home from home” spaces that attract overnight guests and local people alike. “Hybrid hotels” already offer hospitality services and facilities such as day spars and in-house cinemas in conjunction with their restaurants adapting to daytime coffee to evening meals for local guests.
Interior spaces will evolve to be designed where social distancing is not directed by Perspex screens and floor markings! Architects will need to consider their choice of materials and its viral surface retention qualities. Biophilic design will also have an important place, to purify the air and to create a sense of wellness.
Hotels will have to do more with less which is where Smart technology will reshape the way in which we use hotels. Contactless hospitality will mean the mobile check in and keyless entry to the rooms, as well as remote ordering at the restaurant. Technology amounts to a touchless interface, which is part of social distancing.
Other benefits offered by new technology are density and opt-in temperature monitoring, self-cleaning surfaces, and high-caliber air filtration systems. Hotels are even collaborating with medical organisations to offer hygiene excellence standards.
Maximising hotel roof designs can provide additional space for terraces or sky lounges, while also satisfying functional needs, such as thermal mass and biodiversity.
The hotel industry has always adapted to behavioural changes and embraced new technology. The pandemic has challenged the industry to react and reinvent itself where the resulting benefits will extend beyond hotel guests to local communities and the wider built environment.
When photographing hotels, there are several factors to consider, from capturing the architecture within its location, to the design of the interior space, and the ambience created by the lighting and design features. As with all architecture, interior, and lifestyle photography it is important to work with the design and marketing team to achieve the required photography.
Whether an office’s light source is natural, artificial, bright and blue, or dim and yellow, the type of light that employees are exposed to not only impacts mood and physical health but also affects productivity and creativity.
Lighting that is too dim can strain your eyes and make you feel drowsy and tired. Too-bright lighting, on the other hand, can be harsh on your eyes and make your brain work harder causing fatigue and trigger symptoms of migraines.
The colour and temperature of office lighting should vary based on the function of the space. In general, warmer yellow or orange lights tend to be better for relaxing, whereas cooler blue and white lights are good for working, waking up, and concentrating. If possible, the lighting temperature and colour should vary based on the time of day. In the morning, light should ideally be brighter and cooler, to help employees stay alert and concentrate. As the day goes on, the lighting should be warmer, helping employees to wind down.
As a photographer I pay particular attention to the lighting of any space, appreciating the quality of light in the intensity and temperature. I recently revisited the SAS office project that I photographed for Morgan Lovell which is featuring on Office Snapshots online resource for the global office design community. The space delivers an unparalleled customer experience whilst offering a dynamic and multi-functional environment for their London staff. There is a state-of-the-art reception complete with adaptable mood-lighting, ‘experience corridor’ and Innovation Hub used to showcase their products.
My photography brief included capturing the space in a range of different colour temperatures.
EPR Architects has once again scooped the AJ100 Client’s Choice award. The practice has now won the gong 3 times in the last 4 years, reclaiming the top spot from last year’s winner HTA Design.
EPR emerged as the runaway winner after the AJ polled construction clients and asked them to name both a practice with whom they would like to work again, and one they had not yet worked with but would like to.
The architect beat 6 other shortlisted practices, which included 3D Reid, Allies and Morrison and Assael Architecture. EPR is ranked 16th in the AJ100.
Earlier this year I photographed the new London offices of a leading US Investment firm for them.
EPR’s design has successfully reimagined and reinvigorated the office space, creating a high quality, open plan modern working environment with ample features for their staff and visitors.
The reception area has been redefined as a welcoming area that is more akin to being an art gallery than the reception of an investment firm. One wall is clad in cherry wood panels and the others in subdued fabric panels to compliment the incredible Anthony Gormley sculpture and Rebecca Gouldson wall art.
The front of house guest area also includes various meeting options including the boardroom, housing a custom made Ceasarstone table along with Wilkhahn Solo leather conference chairs.
Between the client meeting area and the back of house working environment is a communal kitchen, dining, and informal meeting space. A bespoke oak bench emerges from the timber floor and continues up the wall before forming a ceiling feature as a contrast to the character of the work environment. Above the table is an Ultra 8 by Le Deun feature pendant light.
The open plan working environment offers staff a variety of spaces where they can work effectively, including dedicated desks to meeting rooms of different sizes and comfortable breakout spaces. This is furnished with Knoll Tone Sit Stand workstations throughout with Herman Miller Aeron task chairs.
Attention to detail was central to the design which replaced the heavily repetitive panel ceiling system for a bespoke ceiling solution to each cellular office, integrating a black framed ventilation grill to clearly define the two open plan offices. Within the front of house areas, the ventilation grill is replaced with a black aluminium channel and lighting which connects the spaces and directs guests to the refurbished meeting rooms. This lighting by Kreon highlights key features such as the flamed textured granite wall in the lift lobby, the cherry wood wall in the reception gallery, and the artwork.
Like photography, design is about beauty and content or form and function. All too often photographers and designers seem to be working hard to produce material that is baying for your attention. Sometimes all that is required is a passion for quality, and a high standard of finish showcasing what you are about. EPR Architects have balanced this perfectly.
I am featured as a profile in the current issue of “Fresh” Magazine, a monthly publication produced by Atrium.
Atrium are the UK’s largest independent specialist lighting supplier founded in 1976. Atrium works closely with architects, designers, and engineers to bring the best lighting solutions to the UK’s best designed buildings. I have been photographing with Atrium for over seven years capturing their projects, products, events and even portraits.
The magazine sets out to inform all creatives about what is happening in the world of lighting, architecture, and interior design.
I have the front cover with a picture of Michael Anastassiade’s “Arrangements” shot at the Atrium studio; a seven double page spread about me, my approach to photography and some of the extraordinary projects I have photographed; and then finally there is a recent project of a Highgate Flat featuring FLOS lighting.
It is always great to see my work in print but even more so when it is for a profile which is alongside the work of designer Vincent Van Duysen.
Fresh wanted to show the variety of sectors that I photograph and the range of my creativity in the imagery that I produce. The final selection ranges from the award-winning BBC Langdon Place by HOK to the new ICON Outlet O2 by CallisonRTKL and Hoare Lea. You will also see a couple of details from different Nando’s restaurants by STAC Architecture, and interior photos from, Made Architect’s “Engine” building for UBS, and the incredible tech company headquarters in London by CallisonRTKL.
I was asked to supply a portrait of myself which also somehow showcased my work. I came up with the concept of a self portrait built from a large mosaic selection of individual interior photos.