Coastal design is typically known for its light, airy tones and blue hues inspired by the ocean. Richmond-based Architectural and interior photographer Quentin Penn-Hollar recently visited a Virginia Beach home designed by Kenneth Byrd that differs from the traditional coastal style of most beach homes and embraces a more modern, luxe aesthetic. The design firm utilized Quentin’s sharp eye for interiors and commercial photography skills to capture the house in a feature for Virginia Living Magazine.
Quentin has previously worked with Kenneth Byrd, and through the years has established a relationship in which they can trust each other to be honest about the quality of the work. This open communication allows for better collaboration between Quentin and the design team as they work together to craft beautiful interior images.
I worked with Kenneth a long time ago and took some photos that, in hindsight, weren’t great. Sometime after I saw Kenneth and offered to reshoot that first project for free. It pays to admit that you weren’t as good when you first started and to offer to make up for it!
On an unseasonably sunny day in the winter, Quentin traveled from his home in Richmond to Virginia Beach to photograph this million-dollar luxury home. As he arrived he noticed the unique quality of the interior and was excited to shoot a home that blended hotel, beach, and modern design.
I love hotel design, and modern residential, so this is exactly the type of space I enjoy shooting!
This beachside home maintains the traditional beige tones that illustrate the soft sand and dunes just outside the window. However, the interior also features an abundance of black trim, fixtures, and doors that provide a stark contrast to the lighter hues. Gold luxe details are present in each room, and the design team played with shapes of all kinds to bring an eclectic edge.
Kenneth had a pretty good idea of the shots he wanted for the shoot. He was extremely proud of the project as it was his largest project to date.
Much of the house is open — the living room, dining room, and kitchen are all connected — so Quentin had to work hard to seemingly separate the spaces for each shot. This also meant that the sunbeams that came from the wall of windows streamed into the open and airy home, making it difficult to keep the lighting consistent from one shot to the next.
The most challenging shots on location, and in editing, were the shots facing the ocean. We wanted to get the ocean view without making the interior too dark and moody.
I spent time in post-production making sure our views were clean and clear, but still realistic.
The only blue tones in the frame were coming from the ocean view so Quentin edited the shots to ensure that water was bright and focused with distinct horizon lines across the way. While most properties with an oceanfront view direct your eye towards the water, Quentin staged the images to present the landscape as another detail of the room, like the art and decor.
While Quentin wasn’t directed to take any exterior shots, he spent extra time at the location to photograph the outside and capture the house as a whole. This quick-thinking decision paid off as he didn’t need to return to the house when the publication requested these images. His willingness to shoot every image possible speaks to his ability to craft a well-rounded series that captures the essence of the client’s creativity.