The Mandarin Oriental is located in the heart of Milan, just a few steps away from the La Scala theater. For three days the challenge was to produce a photographic report to capture in images the passion with which all the members of its team work day after day to make the hotel a reality.
When a luxury hotel like the Mandarin Oriental asks you for a photographic commission, the sensation that invades you is equal parts of euphoria and authentic challenge. To be at the same level as a hotel that takes care of all the details, you must do your best not only during the production and post-production of the session, but also during planning.
For us the first meeting with them was crucial. In it we identify their needs and visualise together the results they wanted to achieve. To facilitate this task we share our previous works together with inspiration boards (mood boards) that we curate meticulously from the works of other artists and our own referents. These boards allow us to illustrate the conversations and the exchange of ideas during that meeting.
The goal is always to get out of that meeting with the clearest possible idea of the assignment: the less we deviate from that idea the more possibilities we will have to give our client what they expect.
If the first part of the assignment was about the hotel and its employees, the second part consisted in producing a photographic series showing the atmosphere and the daily life in the surroundings. The aim of this series was to convey in images the exclusivity, design, elegance and dynamism of a city like Milan.
To do this, the first step was to map the most interesting places with the greatest potential in the surrounding area. We study with Google Maps, Location Scout and other applications the orientation of the streets with respect to sunrise and sunset to guess those with better light and trace an exploration itinerary for the following days.
If there is something we love about street photography, it is the spontaneity and freshness of situations that you can not foresee. As a traveler is what you are searching for, places that surprise you beyond everything you know and have seen about them. As a photographer you have to sharpen your senses and focus your attention to be prepared to capture those moments. It is one of the many things we love about our profession: it allows us to enjoy the places more because of that feeling of total awareness, of being there and not somewhere else.