One of the many things I love about what I do is the periodic challenge that comes up as we attempt to provide for our clients more than they expect. Recently Bob (my assistant) and I were faced with a particularly challenging challenge.
A Baltimore teaching hospital chose me as their exclusive artist for a new medical wing, slated to open in October. The project is massive for us, with approximately 75 of my images, some as large as 29-feet wide (on a wall covering), and others 40” wide (on classic archival photo paper and traditionally framed), plus some other specialized photographic applications. Sure, this is a major undertaking involving image selection, multiple rounds of client approvals, planning, ordering, printing, framing and, eventually, installation. I also had to do custom shooting of local Baltimore scenes. But the client requested one thing more, and therein lay the challenge.
As a non-profit hospital, they depend on generous donors to support their healing arts. Did we have any ideas, they wondered, how we might help them honor their donors to this state-of-the-art medical wing (without spending too much money in the process)?
Bob and I did some research and reached out to colleagues, such as the incredible Andy Biggs (www.andybiggs.com), one of my favorite photographers. Andy suggested that we consider using individually boxed sets of images.
We found a small American business that creates hand-crafted, cloth-covered boxes. These one-of-a-kind boxes are as beautiful as they are functional. Since they are completely custom-made, a photographer (or other end-user) can order them in any size and depth. We knew we wanted to offer the donors about a dozen images, plus some forward materials, such as a title page, a letter from the Chief Executive and a thank you from the doctor who will be heading up the new unit.
Bob and I worked for weeks to develop the styling, color and design of the box. In the end we came up with a respectable mockup.
But we were faced with both the functional, as well as aesthetic issue of how to separate the individual prints within the box to prevent scratching. I also do not like my images to be cluttered with a descriptive title or location information right on the print. So Bob and I came up with what we think is an innovative solution.
We are using sheets of translucent vellum to separate the prints.
Bob masterfully printed the descriptive information on the vellum with a gorgeous screen, so that the information can always be associated with the correct image. We can’t wait to see the reactions of the donors this fall. When the actual final product is ready, we’ll do a separate shoot and share it with you. In the meantime, I’d love to get your feedback.