Behind The Camera | Grace Ho
Photoshoot @ Singapore Botanic Gardens | September 2019.
Shooting for Will & Well was quite an interesting experience as the photoshoot at Botanic Gardens was my first time working with the elderly and talents who were physically challenged. I remember feeling really nervous a few days before the shoot because I felt unprepared in many areas. But at the same time, I was excited because I knew that with this unpreparedness, I would be forced to think out of the box. It was quite a challenge throughout the day, but I enjoyed it!
It was a challenge, for sure. We combed through almost the whole of Singapore Botanic Gardens, trying to find good spots for the talents to be photographed, and also had to race against time to catch the remaining sunlight before sunset. Most importantly, I had to keep the talents’ welfare in mind. But I have to say, they were such great sports and I admire their tenacity and willingness to do what I asked of them. They didn’t complain, even though they could have (we had the shoot in the middle of the haze season), and I am humbled by their tenacity and positive outlook throughout the shoot duration.
I learnt how to communicate my ideas clearly and also how to manage my time better. We only had a few hours (approx. 4 hours) to get the shots that we wanted; so we had to prioritise and achieve them in the most efficient manner. I also learnt to compromise and empathise because it was a form of “give-and-take” in my position. In this scenario – the talent’s welfare should be placed first.
I had an idea of how the photos would be edited when I was going through the series. I drew reference to the various indie photographers in the United States as I thought that it was a style that best complements the clothing line in itself. However, while I worked through the photo series, I realised that it doesn’t represent them as a whole. In the end, I scrapped that concept and went for something simpler yet reflects the brand.
I am definitely satisfied with the whole experience as I’ve learnt so much throughout this process. It was a challenging yet humbling and rewarding, and I have Elisa and her team to thank.
Notes from Elisa:
Although it was Grace’s first experience photographing the elderly and people with physical challenges, I always had confidence that she’d capture photographs that would truly reflect Will & Well (and she did!).
Grace quickly warmed up to our models, even cracking my grandparents up along the way. Her eye for emotions and expressions was amazing and she had an uncanny ability to capture our models in their most genuine self, giving us a glimpse of their truths through her photos.
That was exactly what I was hoping for the photoshoot. Photographs that framed my grandparents, Zora and KC not as models, but people with their own quirks and rich inner life!