From early in my career I have been fascinated with shooting interiors, both residential and commercial. Architects create spaces, but Interior Designers breathe life into them with color, texture and light. Architects and Interior Designers should have a more harmonious relationship. They often do not. That is too bad, because as artful as an architect can be, interior designers can bring a level of expertise to a job that can take a good project and make it a great one. August was a busy month for us. We shot twelve assignments scattered around California and the U.S. with three of them being unique residential interiors by three well-seasoned designers. Here is a quick sample some of the wonderful designers we have been working with this month.
Alison Whittaker: A source of good taste where good taste is sorely needed.
Alison Whittaker has been practicing in Silicon Valley for over 25 years and she has been a client of ours for most of that time. Her work is crisp, understated and harmonious. I have photographed everything from Lake Tahoe ski retreats to Silicon Valley offices for her and all of it has been elegant and appropriate for both the client and the function. She runs one of the South Bay’s stand-out Design Firms.
Sarah Jones: A blend of Modernism and Mountain Home.
Sarah Jones is a recent discovery for us. She runs her shop from both Reno, NV and Whitefish, MT while the bulk of her work is in the Lake Tahoe area. Sarah has both a photography and art background from ULCA, but has lived and practiced for the last ten years in the Lake Tahoe area working with the top residential architects there. When working in the Sierras, it is very easy to slip into a “log cabin” esthetic of animal skin rugs and hand hewn log furniture. She can master that rustic style, but the projects we’ve done together are a smart blend of urban good taste and with a touch of rural whimsy. Even though most of her work is in and around Lake Tahoe, it would fit in just fine in most Bay Area settings. She is a talented young designer to keep an eye on.
Kay Heizman: Nirvana on Monterey Bay.
I have worked with Kay Heizman for many years. Initially, she hired me to shoot a few large commercial projects here and in Los Angeles, but that shifted into residential interiors for Silicon Valley executives who chose to live by the ocean on Monterey Bay. Our most recent project together was the essence of Asian/Modern design. The Craftsman style residence perched atop 50 acres in the Aptos Hills overlooking Monterey Bay, houses a museum quality collection of Asian screen paintings, porcelains, & bronzes, which Heizman helped her client select. While she has always been known for her use of saturated colors and dramatic patterns, Heizman said this project was a departure, as the subtle tones of the Asian Art called for a more monochromatic palette. Her use of bronze tones both in the textiles and McGuire furniture complement the art and architectural finishes, creating a rich and sumptuous quality that glows.