Fueled by Girl Power: Brian Smale’s latest people photography

Photographer Brian Smale has roamed the planet capturing people photography for clients as diverse as Panasonic, USAA and Microsoft. But his latest project kept him right in his own community.

“My daughter’s school is hosting their annual fundraiser and asked if I’d do some portraits of some of the girls and teachers for the event,” explains Brian. “I get creative freedom, they get free,” he laughs. What started out as a small portrait project grew under Brian’s direction to 12 foot high posters of the girls doing what they do best – being themselves.
Brian added the photoshop ‘cutout’ filter to make the portraits more representational of the student body as a whole. “Plus,” he adds, “at 12 feet high with zero budget, going to simplified images with just 3 or 4 tones was a no-brainer.”
Having spent a career shooting portraits of luminaries, gangsters, Nazis and politicians, Brian isn’t phased by much. Still, facing off with a gaggle of teen age girls, “I was terrified, of course!,” he says. “But they were such a nice bunch.”

The focus of the all-girls school is building leadership, independence and confidence, so Brian wanted to make sure those values were reflected in the photos. “And,” he adds, “I wanted the girls to have fun.” Check and check. You can see more of Brian’s wide range of commercial people and places photography here.

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