GOING BEYOND GUY-IN-TIE – 02.28.19
What's this for? Last month, Cadent Therapeutics asked me to help them launch their budding company's website. The Kendall Square lifescience company creates cutting-edge solutions to treat movement and cognitive disorders.
What's so special about these portraits? Team Page portraits are the face of the company. At the earliest stage in a project like this, I ask: what should the portraits say about the team? Some companies simply want to show what their employees look like. Most want to present polished professionals.
The Win: Not Cadent. They're all about the patient. The goal is to have their empathy, passion, commitment, and hope shine through.
The process: Normally, I photograph people at a comfortable distance. I want to be respectful of personal space, and normally position myself at a typical coffee-conversation distance (see, for instance, my creative portraits for Surface Oncology below, a similar Kendall Square life-science company). For Cadent's portraits, though, I used a shorter prime lens, narrowing the shooting space to give intimacy and closeness. I worked with team members to be in touch with the motivations that drive them, to open up and show both strength and vulnerability.
If you think about it, that's actually a pretty extraordinary thing to ask someone who may not be psyched to have a camera in their face. But Cadent embraced the idea and ran with it.
The results: The simplicity, starkness, emotion, and optimism that shines through these portraits is really satisfying for me. Kudos to my client for asking pictures to work harder.
Blog update: Novartis has recently bought Cadent Therapeutics. This is a win for Cadent, and I hope their strong website helped them secure the acquisition.
In their words: "David was recommended through another colleague in the biotech space and we could not be more pleased! We requested that he take both headshots and team page portraits, and man did he succeed. After a brief discussion of our goal he successfully translated our images into works of art. Cannot express how pleased we are!!" -Amber Trzeciak, Cadent Therapeutics.