What Happens at a Harvey Norman Catalogue Shoot?

catalogue

Our latest interiors catalogue is about to land in all Harvey Norman stores, filled cover to cover with new products and style inspiration for your home. For this latest edition we went behind the scenes of the catalogue’s photo shoot to see just how much work is involved in creating it (turns out, it’s a LOT). Here’s what we learned…

Firstly, this was a far cry from a run-of-the-mill photo shoot. If you’re thinking plain white backdrops in a windowless studio somewhere, you are sadly mistaken. This shoot took place in the fairytale, Downton Abbey-esque setting of Kilruddery House at the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains. Think 19th century Italian marble sculptures, natural sunlight, rustic barns and friendly visits from a chirpy (and surprisingly well-behaved) robin.

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Not too shabby!

It wasn’t all that idyllic, however. A photo shoot of this scale requires multiple shot set-ups per day and a limited time to work with natural light before sunset and darkness creeps in. That means a LOT of organisation and efficiency is needed to keep things running on schedule.

So while one corner of the space has transformed into a beautifully laid out bedroom complete with plumped up pillows and scented candles, the opposite corner probably has a sofa getting wrapped up and transported back to where it came from after its moment in front of the camera. A team of designers may be setting up a kitchen shot in another corner while delivery men load and unload various boxes, tetris-style, into a huge truck for the next day’s shots. The entire process is a well-oiled, hard-working machine.

Then there’s the actual shot set-ups themselves. A sofa, bed or dining table is the focal point of each, with various accessories (including delicious snacks!) added to the mix for a ‘real room’ look. The attention to detail is staggering; every crease is ironed out of a duvet cover, every cushion is puffed up to perfection, and the colour, texture and position of every single item in the frame is debated over. And that’s before a single photo is taken…IMAG0146

The design team already has a clear idea of the style and atmosphere they need to achieve for each shot before setting it up, but the process is still hugely creative.  Makeshift wall panels are painted and hung on the brick walls; old broken bikes are spray-painted and used to add a splash of colour to a bare corner; an endless array of cushions in all colours, shapes and sizes are brought out to liven up a sofa. Random objects like pineapples wearing sunglasses will suddenly appear and somehow make perfect sense once added to the ensemble.

By the time the set-up is camera ready, it’s a real struggle to resist the urge to jump onto the sofa or curl up in the bed (even the friendly robin couldn’t help himself sometimes). But as soon as the final shot has been captured, it’s all swiftly de-constructed and cleaned up, and everyone moves on to the next shot.

Here’s some of our favourites from this season’s catalogue:

Casey Sofa

We love the pastel shade, and the fact that it blends in beautifully with a traditional setting while still boasting a contemporary design.

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Chardonnay Bed Frame

It’s classic, it’s rich, and the oversized clocks give it a style lift. Plus, the brickwork is beautifully rustic.

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Foundation Dining Set

Industrial chic at its most stylish! The dining chairs are super smooth, super soft and super comfortable (yes, we sat on this one – don’t tell anyone).

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Although it’s fast-paced and even slightly chaotic at times, every single team member genuinely seems to love what they do and stays smiling throughout. And when every page in the final catalogue showcases their amazing work for all to see, it’s easy to see why.

Pick up your copy of the latest interiors catalogue in any Harvey Norman store from 11th April!

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