Blog post

Jan 2010

Promotion for Aberdeen City and Shire

In 2008 I received an email asking me to submit images of Aberdeen so that I could be considered for an assignment to provide a wide range of photographs to promote Aberdeen City and Shire. I sent these and then was asked to undertake a shoot  of the Petrofac Tower and Riverside Drive. After supplying these images, and providing the quote, I was commissioned to undertake the full assignment over the next six months. I was not aware that the “test shots” were being undertaken by a few selected photographs and being assessed by the partners from local industry funding the project. I was happy to get this assignment but was even more pleased when I discovered how the decision had been made and the calibre of some of the other photographers I had been up against.

The Brief

To keep the momentum of our marketing campaign we need to add to our existing library of brand photographs. The brand photographs are used extensively throughout our promotional material.

The objective of the brand photography is to visually promote Aberdeen City and Shire as a place to Live: Learn: Explore: Achieve. The style of photographs we are looking for should put subjects in the foreground with short depth of field and using real people, not models.

We have a need to add new images from around the region, which communicates the business aspects of the community. We want to portray the wow factor with night scenes, dramatic angles and dynamic movement.

The photography

The project was undertaken over a 6 month period and included a wide and varied range of assignments including the Lonach Gathering, Portsoy Boat Festival, The International Street Market, and The Highland Games. I also created images of the airport, hotels, golf, textile manufacturing, food, leisure, retail, and lots of aspects of life in the City and Shire. One of the main differences from previous images supplied was that instead of being landscapes and nice views of our beautiful area, these images had to include people and tell more of a story and feature industry, oil related activity, manufacturing, food, textiles, fishing, agriculture, and some of our history. some of the people featured were already involved at the events but others included friends and family including my brother (the golfer), Sandra’s daughter (outside Cruise), Sandra and Nina (eating outside at the green), and Ken Gordon of Paull and Williamson (in Starbucks using wifi).

Use of the Images

The photographs taken have been used extensively to promote the Aberdeen City and Shire brand.  They have been used in calendars, hotel guides, magazines, websites, and in lots of large format displays. You can see some of the images here used as large banners on the main dual carriageway at the Bridge of Don.

The images are being used on the hoarding in front of the old E&M’s, on Union Street, and on the windows of a vacant shop on the corner of  Union Street/Huntly Street. The images promote Aberdeen to visitors and locals.

Photography is a universal medium crossing language barriers and strong visual images can have a great influence on how a brand is perceived.

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