Portrait shoot at a craft vodka distillery in Brooklyn, NY

I recently shot a portrait session at a craft vodka distillery in Brooklyn, New York. It was for my agency (Image Source). Having not scouted the location beforehand it was a case of turning up and thinking fast on my feet as time was limited. However, the location itself was excellent. It had lots of natural light and lots of scientific looking instruments that would add interest to the shots.. (as well as the obligatory bottles of vodka).

I shot these with fairly slow exposures and a a wide open aperture giving bright and clean feel (around 1/15 sec and around f2). I shot them on a tripod with some new lenses i just picked up, a 21mm carl zeiss distagon and a 35mm carl zeiss distagon lens, both have proven to be amazingly sharp at even low apertures. i used a small flash head as a front light and two daylight balanced continuous lighting heads (make unknown) for some fill light to soften the harsh flash.

The main string of shots took place in the lab itself but a few were in the workshop. I loved the juxtaposition between a clean, refined final product and a room full of drills, lathes, tools and welding apparatus. I did a few tweaks in post to clean the images up and gave them a desaturated feel but apart from that it was all shot as is, in-camera.

enjoy and please feel free to comment

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

Images Copyright of Jesper Mattias Photography 2015

X-Factor’s Stevie Ritchie for New! magazine

I was asked to shoot Stevie Ritchie  (the guy from the x-Factor) for New! magazine. We were trying to make it fun and festive and keep the lighting clean but with nice highlights and spots to give hair a bit of lift from the background. We found this still of Steve Carell and thought this would work really well..the bright spotlit background, a nice soft light from the side to give a bit of shadow on one side of the face and then a strong hair light…

Steve Carell

Steve Carell

This is what i came up with. The client loved it and it was a really fun shoot to do. There was very minimal post production as it was shot as is. Maybe  few tweaks of saturation and contrast but that was it really.

Please feel free to comment. Enjoy!

Stevie Ritchie from X-Factor for New! magazine

Stevie Ritchie from X-Factor for New! magazine

Group Shot of Board members of Pentair – USA

I was asked to shoot the members of a board of a company called Pentair. They are a very large multinational US firm who deal with many different areas, oil, construction etc. They were in the uk and I had a fifteen minute window in which to shoot them for a group shot. Now, there were eleven of them and this is too many to shoot in one go on a white 9ft colorama (side by side anyway). I decided to break the group up and shoot them in four sections and fit them together in post. In order to do this you have to mock up what the final image will look like in your head so it will look seamless. It’s easy shooting four small groups but sticking them together so it looks like they were all shot in one go is quite tricky. Lighting wise; I had two large boom arms with my elinchrom heads with silver brollies above camera and angled sown slightly with a head on the floor with a softbox attached to act as a fill light to clear away any unwanted shadows etc. The colorama was lit cleanly so they could be cut out at later stage with relative ease. I did my usual tweaks in post and gave them the contrasty and de-saturated look i do to most of my work. The result was great and the client was happy. Pleas feel free to comment!PENTAIR-GROUP-LowRes

Julia Bradbury for Fitbit 2014

I was asked to Shoot Julia Bradbury for Fitbit this year. Fitbit are the worlds leader on fitness tracker bands so Julia fitted the bill as the face of the brand as she is outdoorsy and i think wears one of these bands anyway.. handy! The shoot was in Richmond Park and i had the intention of overcomplicating things by lugging round my profoto and using that but in the end a reflector and available light did the trick. I love the tones to the images, very pastel like and soft which works well and makes julia and the coloured bracelets pop off the page. I have attached a selection of a few of the final ones (screen grabbed for Low Res). Hope you like them, any questions then please feel free to leave a comment. Enjoy!

Julia 1 - Fitbit Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014

Julia 1 – Fitbit Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014


Julia 3 - Fitbit Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014

Julia 3 – Fitbit Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014

Julia 2 - Fitbit Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014

Julia 2 – Fitbit Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014

My Portrait of Helen McGinn, author and wine critic @knackeredmutha

Portrait of Helen McGinn - follow her here @knackeredmutha - all images copyright of jesper mattias 2014

Portrait of Helen McGinn – follow her here @knackeredmutha –
all images copyright of jesper mattias 2014

I was asked to shoot a portrait of Helen McGinn for a wine feature she was running. The shoot happened at her house and we decided to do it outside. The idea for me was to make it as bright and colourful and upbeat as possible, as it was quite a flat day we had too wait patiently for a break in the clouds. I wanted to use flash lighting (profoto) as to clean the face up and help balance the daylight in the background with the scrimmed foreground (Helen). So i set up a scrim camera right which diffused the sunlight and therefore allowed me to put a slight amount of flash in, (about half a stop below the background) as i wanted that brighter and therefore emphasising the little sun we had. I think the mottle light behind works really well, it lifts her off the image and adds great depth and a bit of interest to the background.

Hope you like it. Feel free to leave comments folks. …


Still to advertise BAFTA winning Operation Ouch World War 1 Special for CBBC and Maverick TV

Operation Ouch - Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014

Operation Ouch – Copyright Jesper Mattias 2014

I was commissioned to shoot the stills to advertise this one off special to coincide with the centenary of WW1. The image was shot in a cattle shed and we propped it up to look like a bunker. Three heads were used here, a snoot on the right with a grid insert to highlight the satchel and lantern. Another gridded dish on the left to highlight the maps and a soft box with an egg crate inert for the front light. I was conscious of the light flying everywhere in such a small space and it needed to be controlled hence using grids on all the lights. This also gave a really sharp fall off of flight which is what i wanted as it was going to be quite a contrasty image. Not too much post done to this, pretty much as shot in camera. Had to wait nearly a year to write this blog post as the show has only just come out. Hope you like the image, i think it worked really well. enjoy


Emmerdale’s Barton Brothers for Inside soap Magazine – Jesper Mattias © 2014

A few weeks ago I was commissioned to shoot the four brothers on the British Soap Emmerdale for Inside Soap magazine. The Brief was to get some moody portraits and make them look as good as possible!! The picture editor and myself thought a nice grey background would work and apart form that the only proviso was to keep the lighting constant and get them looking as brooding as possible for the singles and a nice fun group shot of them together. Lighting Wise for the singles I had a play around and initially was going to use a gridded soft boxy at 45 degrees to the side bout the light that was coming out was too harsh and you were losing detail in the shadow areas where you really still wanted some light, so I used a normal soft box and hit them with a Key light (clip light) from behind to just lift the face from the background. A bare head for this rear light was too much so I attached some trace to the front to soften it ever so slightly. The background was lit with a few heads with barn door attachments on them and I tried not to light it too evenly but to have some fall off at the bottom to create mood. I did use a few polyboards which were brought in closer to lighten or darken the face which sometimes is all it takes to get it just right.

The Singles:


Bill Ward - emmerdale

Bill Ward – emmerdale



Michael Parr - Emmerdale

Michael Parr – Emmerdale

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The Group Shot was lit more evenly. I used a large silver umbrella on a large boom above and angles slightly down and a small soft box on the floor a bit further away from them to just keep the fall off of light from the brolly from going too black, again, to have some mood but to still have detail in the shadows. Then it was a case of having some fun, which all four of them did. The post was fairly limited as I got most of it in camera (as you should always try and do!) I tweaked a few things here and there but that’s my technique and I won’t be sharing it here 😉

The Group Shot


The Barton Brothers - Emmerdale

The Barton Brothers – Emmerdale

A really great shoot for a lovely client. Hope you like the images and feel free to comment if you so wish.