New hi-rise office upfit for one of the world's largest professional service firms.

Rodgers Builders, Inc.
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There's an App for That

I've been hired by a New York-based developer of smartphone apps of city visitor bar and restaurant recommendations. Soon, these photos will be seen on the phones of visitors and locals searching for places to dine and drink in New Orleans.
So far, I've photographed 40 locations and am enjoying the incomparable hospitality of The Big Easy.

Some of the interesting locations...

International House Hotel and Loa Bar

Bittersweet Confections


Eleven 79

Napoleon House

Clever Wine Bar

K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen

Willie Mae's Scotch House for some of America's Best Fried Chicken - as voted by Food Network.


Ruby Slipper Café

Be Pinteresting for $250 (see below)

Does your stuff photograph well? Do you want to be more cool and interesting to your customers/clients?
If yes, then you might want to be on Pinterest.

Pinterest is the place online where you go to explore, discover, and share cool (pictures of) stuff. You create online pinboards about the things you love just like you do with magazines, scissors, and a scrapbook.
Here's an early version of my Pinterest page,
I joined Pinterest, answered a few questions, and created my pin boards. Then I found cool pictures that I will have when I go shopping for stuff for my new apartment. I also created boards for my other interests:
"Insanely Fascinating People", "Valentine's for Your Guy" and "Valentine's for Your Girl"
It's that easy!

Do you have a blog that feels like a lot of work to maintain or do you wish you could have a simpler way to express what your business is all about but you don’t have the time to update a website or blog? If so, then Pinterest may be great for you and your business.

Here's how easy it is to "Be Pinteresting"
  1. Join - It's quickest to be invited by someone who's already on Pinterest.
  2. Create pin boards - about the things you love (or lust).
  3. Promote others - In addition to being good karma, this works. I will take great hi-res photos of your creations that you OWN and can use anywhere, including on Pinterest and in ads and on your business website. Then, spend just a little time also pinning other stuff and you will Be More Savvy about what people like, and you will promote the essence of your brand.
I want to help you Be Pinteresting

My rates:
$250 Retail photos, New Orleans-area: up to one hour and 1 dozen hi-res professional images that you OWN.
  (product photos in your shop or restaurant, styled by your staff & using store lighting)

Architecture & Interiors photos: $750/half-day or $1,200 per day.
  (see Architecture & Interiors photos here)

Call/Text or email me today to schedule your shoot.
(jstephenyoung at gmail)

American Express’s Open Forum has a great article on “Pinterest for Brands: 5 Hot Tips.”
Read the entire article here.

Subtle Holiday Decorating in a Designer's Own Home

Designer Curtis Herring of New Orleans proves that holiday decorating can be both subtle and distinctive.

CONSTRUCTION / ARCHITECTURE - Rodgers Builders Inc. & Gantt Huberman Architects, PLLC

New education and training facility of Central Piedmont Community College.

Rodgers Builders, Inc.
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Gantt Huberman Architects, PLLC
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INTERIORS - Anita Holland Interiors - Lake James Cabin Retreat

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My friend and client Kent Lineberger called a few weeks ago to plan a shoot at a remote mountain/lake retreat that he had designed for a Charlotte NC family. When Kent said I would want to pack a bag and stay over the weekend, he wasn't kidding. Our host family greeted us in the driveway with an invitation to the homemade lunch they were serving on the enclosed porch. Interior designer Anita Holland and her team were busy inside making last minute preparations. From the enthusiasm of the architect to the hospitality of the homeowners and the true pleasure of working with the designer, I realized this is why I do what I do.
Thank you Kent, Anita, and everyone else for such an enjoyable afternoon. NEXT time, I WILL bring a toothbrush and stow away in the upstairs sleeping porch when no one is looking.

A few days after the shoot, Anita sent the following note:
"Stephen, thank you for the beautiful work that you did on our recent lake home photo shoot... I am thrilled with the results as I think they truly capture the spirit and essence of the house, interior design work, and the architecture.
It was great to finally have the opportunity to work with you." - Anita Holland, ASID

HHDT - (How'd he do that?)
1st & 2nd images - a vertical shot with a wide-angle lens requires special attention is paid to objects in the foreground. Be mindful of chandeliers as they can appear to be much closer to the camera. We moved the ottoman and club chair about a dozen times to find the proper placement. In both shots, supplemental lighting was used to soften the harsh shadows coming from the bright sunlight. A 2nd, much lower exposure was taken to capture the view beyond the kitchen windows. The images were combined in photo editing software to simulate a natural view (what our eyes see).

In the 3rd photo, the kitchen blinds were completely closed for a shot that captured the rich grain of the wood floor without the glare of sunlight. Then, we raised the blinds and took a low-exposure shot just for the view of the hill rising beyond the windows. Finally, a 3rd shot was taken, exposed properly for the room (counters, cabinets, etc.) Of course the camera remains stationary on a tripod through all this.
If you bump my tripod, you're automatically obligated to buy the first round of post-shoot adult beverages  :)

The 4th shot was the most challenging. I should have taken a "here's what the room looks like" photo. When the dining room was finally set up for the shot, a casual observer would (did) think we were crazy.  Dining chairs appeared out of place. Plates and glasses were not "in front of" the appropriate chair and the orchid and vase were nowhere near the center of the table. Design magazines often include "before" and "after" shots. I think I'm going to start including "during" and after shots.

But, all of this was fun because everyone enjoyed helping out. Thank you Anita, Kent, Boyd, and our hosts. - Stephen

Kent Lineberger Architecture

Anita Holland, ASID
Anita Holland Interiors
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Stephen Recommends - "Best Ugly - Restaurant Concepts & Architecture by AvroKo"

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Partners Greg Bradshaw, Adam Farmerie, Kristina O'Neal, and William Harris founded AvroKO because of their "collective obsession with meaning. They research every cultural nuance and social context until they reach a thorough understanding of the psychological concept of a project."

"Best Ugly" may be compared to the more familiar term, "Wabi Sabi" which is an Asian reference to the beauty of imperfection. Best Ugly is about something that feels right but for reasons that are not obvious. My favorite example of this is AvroKo's design of The Stanton Social, a restaurant at 99 Stanton Street. While paying homage to the clothiers of the Lower East Side, the team chose to avoid the obvious. They collected period images and samples from vintage shops and flea markets seeking "elements of the feeling" rather than blatant representations. You won't find the space adorned with antique sewing machines or similar kitsch. It is noticeably tactile, evoking the "life of another era, and yet avoiding any outright nostalgia." Upon entering you'll soon notice an impressive wall of wine that seems vaguely familiar. Its design was inspired by herringbone fabric. Patrons are not likely to recognize this while dining but they're almost certain to leave with a subtle, perhaps subliminal connection to the space.
This is creative genius.

Thank you Greg, Adam, Kristina, William, and the rest of your team for the inspiration.

Enjoy over 2 dozen pages of "Best Ugly" here.

The book's been around for a few years and may not be easy to find. Let's plan a shoot and I'll bring along my copy to share. - Stephen

INTERIORS - Mark Phelps Interiors - Elegant Coffee Table Book

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In the introduction to his book, Care of the Soul, Thomas Moore said, "When you look closely at the image of soulfulness, you see that it is tied to life in all its particulars - good food, satisfying conversation, genuine friends, and experiences that stay in the memory and touch the heart. Soul is revealed in attachment, love and community as well as in retreat on behalf of inner communing and intimacy."

It was during a summer weekend retreat in the mountains communing with genuine friends over good food (and great wine) that I realized my enthusiasm for photographing beautiful places and passionate people.

Traveling with only a pocket camera I captured images of soulfulness - spectacular sunsets, a weathered barn, wildlife, meals, interactions - and crafted my first coffee table book as a gesture of gratitude to our host.

Living in a culture that has embraced video - from mobile phones to elaborate home theaters and "reality TV", it's easy to forget the influence of a single still image or collection of images.

Designer Mark Phelps of Mark Phelps Interiors commissioned me to craft a bound book of images of his personal home (24 hours prior to moving day).
Now Mark has an elegant collection of memories and an impressive presentation of his style to share with friends and new clients.

More photos from Mark's (and pup, Maggie's) book -

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Mark Phelps Interiors
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INTERIORS - Cottage Chic - An All-Day Shoot With the Staff of a Retail Lifestyle Store

2 of 102 images

This fun shoot resulted in 102 great images and the following email from the partner/owner of the shop:
"Oh Stephen, The photos are truly beautiful. Thank you so much for capturing the beauty as well as the fun at Cottage Chic. We've had professional pictures taken in the past, but this is the first time I've felt really proud to use the images. Thank you, thank you, thank you." - Mary I. Council

Cottage Chic
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INTERIORS - DCI Home Resource - Full Moon Over Downtown

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During a shoot with DCI Home Resource I captured this not-too-shabby view from the client's balcony. Be on the lookout for some great interiors/restorations images from DCI projects which I will post over the coming weeks.

DCI Home Resource
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