Teri Campbell, who is based in Cincinnati, has been a food photographer for longer than he’d like to say (hey, let’s not date ourselves here). He first began shooting while working in-house for Procter & Gamble, where he fell in love with working within a creative team. He missed that camaraderie as a solo photographer but soon found fellowship and his niche as a food shooter—where he works with a team to execute assignments—and it’s been his passion ever since.
Teri moved his business into a new space in 2001: a giant studio with just about everything you need for a food shoot… and then some. Teri believed that having his own unique space would not only set him apart but would help control the experience of his clients.
[With the studio] I can make sure the design reflects my creativity and style. It comes down to being able to control how my clients experience my brand and do it consistently.
So what went into making Teri’s perfect food studio? He explains,
We spent lots and lots of time planning, and about $250,000 renovating the space. Taking it all the way back to cinder blocks and then starting over with all new electric, plumbing, and even a new facade. Deanna Heil of Brashear Bolton Architects designed the space and I worked out the colors and interior finishes myself. We created an incredible working environment for our stylists to enjoy. Lots of windows, any appliance they might need, and a fully stocked pantry. We have spaces to relax, work or play to keep our clients happy, and also have room for tons of props and even a small garden where we grow herbs.
All that hard work paid off with clients loving the space. They don’t even need to set foot inside to be impressed as Teri had a friend illustrate a map that can also be used as a promo (one that I’ve personally seen excite clients at portfolio reviews),
I had a friend of mine who’s a toy designer do that for us. I wanted it to feel like an amusement park map, and I think he captured that perfectly. We love to give the maps to clients when they first get here and say, “if you ever get lost…” It’s a real conversation piece, lots of art directors will take it back to their office so they can show their co-workers.
Now Teri’s only issue is getting people to eventually leave the studio. He says, “Clients are really comfortable here. The biggest problem is getting them to leave—most of our clients are from out of town and will say things like, Why should we go back to the hotel when dinner is at 8? We’ll just stay here till 7:30.” Or, “Traffic will be backed up if we leave now, so do you mind if we finish up a few things here before we leave?”
Teri’s very pleased with this studio and the effect it has on clients,
I think it says that we’re successful, creative, fun and committed to being THE destination for food-related businesses anywhere in the country looking for exceptional food photography.
View more of Teri’s work on his Instagram.