Jimmy's blog

Happier

June 21st, 2009

I had to take some headshots for an interesting startup company called Happier. Happier is a company built around positive psychology. They provide tests and exercises to measure, track and improve your happiness. It’s kinda buddhist if you ask me. They have even worked with bigger companies like google. Positive psychology has gained a lot of interest since it has been shown that people are more productive when they’re happy. Makes sense to me.

They wanted me to take some head shots of the people in the company. We met up in a room at the Sheraton and I went with a one light source type of shot. Putting the flash close up to the subject and letting it fall directly, undiffused. Hard light has kind of a bad rep in photography. I think it’s because all those point and shoots with on camera flash give of really harsh highlights on people. So when we start of as photographers using flash we often like to put a softbox in front or shoot through an umbrella to create soft diffused light. While harsh light is a little less flexible and unforgiving as small changes in position or other settings can make a big difference, it can also create some cool effects.

In this picture we get sharp lighting on the face. Letting his shadow fall on the background just adds something to the picture. The company is about increasing positive emotions and making oneself happier. This guy looks pretty happy to me.
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