A good photograph is knowing where to stand.
All these years later, this simple advice from Ansel Adams rings as true as the man’s work itself. Outside of large format landscape photographer, “knowing where to stand” can mean that it pays to know your subject matter ahead of a shoot. In the case of Jason Innes, his subject matter for a recent assignment was yoga. Because the Denver-based photographer has collaborated with yoga streaming service Gaiam for a decade, he knows exactly where to stand come shoot day.
I’ve been working with Gaiam for approximately 10 years, and because of this, I have a great understanding of and proficiency in shooting yoga.
I’ve come to learn what posture and angle looks best for each shot.
Jason’s assignment with the Colorado-founded company took place in Boulder and wrapped up in a single day. The two yoga practitioners featured in the shots are modeling Jessica Biel’s new line of apparel for Gaiam (also called Gaia).
I was given quite a bit of creative freedom. I really wanted to use the hard light of the location to highlight the beautiful lines and cut of the apparel.
Some of my favorite shots are the ones where we combined the hard light and movement, giving only a small vignette of the apparel. I feel like these images provide an air of sophistication that matches the clothing. Also, the location lent itself beautifully to match the sleek look of the line.
Since Jason, his colleagues, and the models are all extremely well-versed in the yogic arts, the team spent the day going after more next-level poses. Another aspect of this kind of shoot to consider is the tranquility necessary for success. A relaxed vibe is imperative, Jason notes, lest a hectic day bleed into the imagery itself.
Both of the [models] are incredibly skilled at striking different poses. We really tried to capture a lot of movement on the shoot and a lot of advanced poses to give the work as much energy as possible.
When shooting yoga, there always seems to be a calm crew and a light feeling on set. Everyone needs to gel seamlessly or it will come through in the work that there isn’t a collective peace.
Jason’s work has shown up all over the internet, and the on-going collaboration with Gaiam isn’t stopping anytime soon. Ten years of shooting yoga has made Jason an expert in this niche and is a big reason why the streaming service comes back to him time and again.
The imagery was used in email campaigns and online. Gaiam was incredibly happy with the work, and it was well received in the marketplace. I plan on doing more work with them in the future.
The shoot was definitely a group effort. It takes a very talented team to bring all of this together. Each person on the shoot is as important as the next.
See more of Jason’s work at jasoninnesphotography.com.
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