Los Angeles-based architecture and interiors photographer Peter Valli has worked in the industry for over three decades — earning hundreds of awards, contracts, and acknowledgements for his work.
Aside from his 25+ year relationship with Architectural Digest and serving clients such as Hilton Hotels and JennAir, he’s contributed to numerous books on residential interior design, including his own “Hip Hollywood Homes” and “Majestic Metropolitan Living,” published in collaboration with Sue Hostetler.
A recent compilation of Peter’s work appeared in Pasadena Magazine’s March/April issue — where he interviewed and photographed prominent interior designers who have made a name for themselves in the “Crown City.”
After submitting a series of projects that he thought would be a great fit for the magazine, Peter was delighted when the Editor-in Chief Samantha Brooks responded immediately, eager to feature his work. Among Peter’s submissions were images of a home in South Pasadena.
What most likely caught the editor in chief’s eye was the stellar design of one of my all-time favorite houses, which I shot over five days, making it look really, really good. A love affair, more or less…
Pasadena Magazine’s graphic designer Mary Franz requested photos of Rozalynn Woods, the interior designer of the property, for her cover feature, but Peter hadn’t photographed Rozalynn before so he offered to do so.
Samantha then asked if Peter would also be interested in interviewing a few female Pasadena-based designers for the “Women of Pasadena” issue. After Peter gave Samantha compelling descriptions of three designers to choose from, Samantha asked if he’d interview all three. Peter was excited about the opportunity and agreed to photograph and interview the ladies — Emily Hancock, Cynthia Lambakis, and Jeanne Chung.
In light of Peter’s previous work with the designers and knowing them quite well, his interview questions were primarily aimed at filling in any gaps and finding a common thread beyond design that connected them all.
The importance of community involvement ended up being the thread, plus they’re all strong confident individuals.
Since each designer had already worked with Peter in the past, there was a calm energy on set, despite some shyness around the camera. For this reason, Peter conducted major portions of the interviews as discussions in an effort to distract them while creating an inviting and warm environment.
The cover shoot took less than ten minutes once everyone was on location. Peter spent about an hour with Emily, Cynthia and Jeanne, interviewing each designer as he photographed them. There were also multiple follow-up text exchanges. The entirety of the project was completed over a two-day period.
The cover photo of Rozalynn Woods was taken in front of the house referenced above, which in a word is tranquil. I shot Emily Hancock in the front door of her home, which in a word I would describe as stayed. Cynthia Lambakis was shot on the grounds of the Tournament of Roses House, which is steeped in tradition and relates back to her community involvement. Jeanne Chung is in her brand-new showroom, featuring a Monogram Appliance experience center which she partnered with Monogram to create.
Editor-in-Chief: Samantha Brooks
Graphic Designer: Mary Franz
Featured Interior Designers: Emily Hancock, Cynthia Lambakis, Jeanne Chung, Rozalynn Woods
Photo Assistants: Sophia Valli, Tyler Ramirez
See more of Peter’s images on Instagram.