Shot at the Garnet Hills Studios in Exeter, New Hampshire Marcus worked with the talented Set Building team led by Matt Carstens to create mini worlds that felt at home with the beautiful product available for us to shoot including some exciting new color ways and fabrications.
Inspired by the DNA of The Eileen Fisher Company, Marcus channeled influences including a homage to the Adobe homes of the South West and a theme true to Eileen, Japan.
Working with the ever talented Photographer Maura McEvoy, Magical Soft Stylist’s Eduardo Vinueza and Christina Watkinson and the amazing Prop Stylist Carin Scheve, Marcus spent the week creating these elegant and understated shots.
Photography: Jonny Valiant, Styling: Marcus Hay for SMH, Inc
What a joy to work on the latest CB2 Catalog in Chicago with Photographer Jonny Valiant once again late last year. Over a few weeks Marcus and his team shot and styled a portion as illustrated above for the latest Spring Catalog working with some exciting new furniture and design pieces which just keep getting better and better each saeson, Congrats to all at CB2 including our amazing AD Jennifer Moore who is always such a pleasure to work with.
Always a bigger then Ben Hur project, we spent almost a whole week just working on designing the sets with the lead set builder Jake, carefully creating authentic sets that resembled South American Social Clubs, Modern Moroccan Villas and West Coast Homes with that Californian vibe all from snowy Chicago, It really is quite amazing the magic that is created.
Growing up as a child one of my favorite movies to watch on a rainy Sunday was High Society.
I was always fascinated by American 1950’s, The interest grew largely from a friend of my mother's who donated her collection of 1950’s LIFE Magazines to me, thinking I would enjoy them. I’d love to idolize the Coke Ad’s in particular emulating the slicked back hair, stovepipe jeans and converse sneakers in my outfits to school, While most kids (and adults) were watching sports on Sunday, I used to watch hours of old movies, loving Jerry Lewis and Fred Astaire movie in particular. Of course High Society captured my attention with it’s design, color and fun musical numbers, performed by all the stars but the standout is Louis Armstrong who belts out some great tunes.
The production value is amazing in High Society, Filmed in Technicolor, the attention to color is just spot on, Famed Art Director and Production Designer, Cedric Gibbons designed the look and costumes were designed by Helen Rose. High Society was released in 1956 American, It’s regarded as a musical comedy film directed by Charles Walters and stars Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly, and Frank Sinatra. Based on the play The Philadelphia Story by Philip Barry, the film is about a successful popular jazz musician who tries to win back the affections of his ex-wife, who is preparing to marry another man. The movie was shot mostly in and around Clarendon Court in Newport, Rhode Island.
I would say this film has hugely influenced my color palette in particular, I have always loved a dusty pastel and this film is full of them, While I feel I am going through a more monochromatic phase currently, the appeal of the pastel still hits me, It's often this combination with contrast hit of bright color or with a metallic crinkly gold that I like best.
This film featured Kelly's final role before she became Princess of Monaco; it was released three months after her marriage to Prince Rainier III. She is simply beautiful in this movie and remains one of my favorite actress's to this day.
It was such a delight for Marcus and his team to have the opportunity to work with Photographer Anders Schonnemann again on Williams Sonoma's Cooks latest catalogs in San Francisco. Shot late last year, these shots are starting to emerge and it's a joy to see them in print.
Marcus's Assistants Aja Coon and Leah Martin both worked hard with me scouring San Francisco plant nurseries for just the perfect trees and botanicals for these series of shots including Meyer Lemons in particular and a cross section of every citrus you could imagine, even finding citrus blossom in the middle of winter.
Marcus's years at Real Simple Magazine have put him in good practice for organizing as he continue's to Style (and Art Direct) such shoots with aprons styled in precise mathematical order and drawer organizers, not to mention the top 7 trash cans available from the home brand.
There comes a certain satisfaction from such precision, something he hopes to roll more into the reality of his own home life ; )
On The Do Not Disturb feature SMH,Inc got to work with Producer Eugenia Santiesteban Soto creating an great news years resolution story on embracing time for yourself, space to unplug and recharge. In the words of the article "We're all about the small indulgences, weather it's making a date with a bubble bath or unwinding with a hot cup of tea"
For the palette Marcus decided to use a rosy pastel world that evoked a sense of a calm and helped to harp on the old saying that you must take time to smell the roses, working with wintry botanicals and creating cozy spaces, the team enjoyed working with product available and credited in the magazine.
For the Home section of the magazine for January, Marcus also styled a Warm Whites page that was inspired by sparkly glass, the inside of sea shells and iridescent undertones. As the issue comes out just before Christmas it evokes the mood of the season.
It's always a big season at Williams Sonoma when the Holiday's are concerned and this year Studio Marcus Hay, Inc played a big part in creating some amazing imagery for the December Catalog's. Working with the ever talented Photographers Anson Smart, Anna Williams and Anders Schonnemann.
Marcus largely Art Directed for the season but also Prop Styled in places, always open to be a part of the bigger picture and helping where he can, With amazing teams and having the opportunity to work in one of his favorite cities, San Francisco, he enjoys the challenge of creating fresh and vibrant Photography that enhances the brand's visual identity.
A Winter Wonderland Christmas in July, In Miami, Could you get anymore ironic? In the world of commercial photography you can almost imagine yourself in any scenario at anytime, it's what keeps you on your toes and in a lot of different places over the course of a year.
It's not the first time Carters have shot in Maimi, but it was Studio Marcus Hay's. Marcus and his team Mykl Cummins and Hanna Olman all met and went to work creating everything from an A Frame cabin in the snow surrounded by real Christmas Tree's to a 4 foot snowman made of foam, paper cones, snowballs made from cotton wool and so much faux snow we had it coming out of our ears.
We love working with Carters and the crew is always super great, the kids a joy to work with and even though we battled stifling heat, flooding and heavy storms, we overcome and produced some really beautiful imagery for the Holiday campaign.
Many Thanks to Creative Director Amy Deering and Photographer Tim Marsella who supported us and whose vision is always a great one to be a part of, We hope you enjoy the images.
It’s always a great experience to head north and work in Exeter / New Hampshire where Garnet Hill is based. Portsmouth, is the most local largest town and full of great places to eat, shop and take in the sights.
For the Fall Season, Marcus was asked to take into account the Fashion section of the Garnet Hill Catalog that was shot in Scotland, weaving in the faintest influence of this in the Home and Linen side of the company. If you look closely you can see this influence especially through the windows of each of the sets.
Working with set builder extraordinaire Matt Carstens and his team, Marcus and the crew worked with beautiful sets that changed for every scheme. Amazing Prop Stylist Carin Scheve and Soft Stylist Eduardo Vinueza sealed the deal for an amazing team.
For Fall this year for Williams Sonoma, Marcus both Art Directed for some spreads and styled for others, crossing over from both Williams Sonoma Cooks to Williams Sonoma Home. Having the opportunity with working with regular and very talented Photographers Anders Schonnemann, Anna Williams, Sharyn Cairns and Anson Smart and with amazing Prop Stylist’s Amy Wilson and Holly Smith and ever wonderful Food Stylist's Nathan Carrabba, George Dolese and Alison Attenborough. Always such a pleasure to work with so many talented folks, many of whom we at SMH, Inc have had great working relationships with for many years.
Fall is the time of year to embrace familiar themes such as Thanksgiving and the impending Holidays and thus these spreads reflect the season that is approaching, We hope you all have an amazing Fall and enjoy this special time of year.
One of my favorite things to do when I’m at home, which is not that often as I am usually on the road working on many exciting projects is to draw inspiration from my own space in which I live and document and photograph the stuff that surrounds me. Often on my travels I pick up items that end up finding a home with me in New York and as they do not always stick around forever, I like to catch them while I can.
Many would say after working all day on photo shoots, don’t you get tired of styling vignettes and my answer to that is never! I get great joy out of photographing these items as my home is an ever revolving evolution of different decorating styles, I get bored quick so I have to shoot it before I change it. Some items also migrate to the black hole of storage or end up on consignment in prop houses in New York.
I encourage you all to try it at home, Until I finally get around to a serious camera, All these images are simply shot on my I Phone, I do admit I have a few floating surfaces I use to be the backdrop for my compositions but what Stylist wouldn’t? You can use any surface really, a coffee table, your floor, A large tray. Documenting your belongings and space is really fun and so interesting when you look back at the progression of a space over the years, It really is amazing how over time a space shifts in it’s look and feel.
Coming up with 3 different flavors around the world, 1. Moroccan 2. Costa Rican 3. Nepalese, Marcus and his Assistant Aja Boon found a variety of props that matched the look and feel of these regions. Here at SMH, Inc we thought it would be fun to highlight elements of these props with the type that inspired us.
For the Moroccan tiles, Marcus used some tiles from his own collection fusing it with great ceramics from Elephant Ceramics Gold flatware played a big part. For Costa Rica, A shutter seemed like a great way to create a resort bar like feel using contemporary silhouettes in glassware and some fun paper straws with tropical foliage. For Nepalese we used gold bowls from Tom Dixon and hand made pottery with Mud Cloth fabric in earthy tones.
It was fun prop wise to visit these 3 places in one shoot, we hope you enjoy the results.
Many people would say there is nothing more therapeutic than a day at the beach, for land lovers, it seems we almost love the sea more, Humans were not born in the sea and yet we are mystified and engaged by it’s magical pull. Often the sea is nostalgic of our childhoods and the smells and taste of the ocean we would all agree is like no other.
As with many of us fortunate enough to live by a coastline, the sea has spoken to me my whole life. It started with my Grandmother Kit in who lived in Mentone, Melbourne, Australia near the beach and every summer as a small child we would go with her on the weekend and the best bit for me was she would shout us an Eskimo Pie on the way home. For those who did not grow up in Australia, An Eskimo Pie was a very cold Ice cream covered in Chocolate with mint flavoring. An Australian classic from another era.
As I grew older, My Parents moved from Melbourne to the Northern Beaches of Sydney where my younger sisters took to the beach like bees to honey but I didn’t have the same reaction. Maybe it was because it seemed like beach overload in overly sunny Sydney, I was used to short spurts and a quick dip now and then but in Sydney it was full time beach all the time. While others toyed with lemon juice in the hair and sunflower oil on the skin to create the ultimate surfie look, I could never keep up with my burnt to a crisp beach loving schoolmates.
Still, Sea life is a favorite theme at SMH, Inc, We love Art Directing and styling a sea themed story, it’s reflected in our Pinterest board called The Sea. See highlights from this board above and check us out on Pinterest.
For all Photographic credits, check the images on Pinterest for links.
For Carters, Marcus and the team including Assistants Mykl Cummins and Zarah Riley loved working on the latest Little Baby Basics campaign, Zarah in particular was excited as she was actually pregnant on this shoot and has since welcomed into the world a baby girl Noa Raye Riley, Congrats to Zarah and her husband Matt!
This campaign was all about embracing textures, We loved working with Photographer Tim Marsella on creating a graphic approach to shooting babies, often multiple at a time using the textures of linens and knits to create a soft comfortable world.
Working with Creative Director, The wonderful Amy Deering, with whom SMH, Inc has had a long working relationship with we spent one week in New York shooting in a home studio and a week in Montauk in a wonderful mid century inspired home.
Working with babies is so much fun but does require a lot of patience and understanding, we were happy to work with such a professional team on this project!
Here at SMH, Inc we have more images to share from our recent project with West Elm. Shot in their new Brooklyn Studio, we converted an empty space into a multi room brownstone complete with high ceilings, prewar moldings and giant window's.
With pre productions meetings in place, Lead Art Director, Michelle Meick and Marcus carefully chose the palette and it was really great to work with so many interesting color options, from a dusty lilac bedroom to an dusty emerald dining room, with a nod to modern Italian design we created the space that looks like it was straight out of a European publication.
On the side Marcus was asked to create moodboards that complemented the rooms using paint chips, fabric swatches and materials from West Elm fused with botanicals and fashion forward props sourced by Marcus and his team. It was a great way to work as Marcus himself uses this method when working on Interior schemes for his clients and to tie in with West Elm's Style and Service Program.
It was a great project to work on and we hope you like seeing more of what was involved.
You can also watch the video here to get a behind the scenes look at the project, Click here