Photography & Art Direction // Sol Republic
Both its strong fanbase on social media and its heavy use of lifestyle photography set SOL REPUBLIC apart from other brands of its size. When I joined, the brand’s outgoing creative director Jeff Nebolini had adjusted the brand guideline to a very stark monochromatism. The social and digital teams communicated that engagement was way down from the shift to only dark and moody. During my tenure there, I brought some light — both visual and levity — without losing the essential brand feel.
I set up and directed many product and lifestyle photoshoots, including artists/celebrity talent such as Michael Phelps, ThankYouX and Nervo. Also, I retouched and guided retouching for brand feel and consistency.
To demonstrate Shadow Wireless’ water resistance, one rainy day two co-workers and I went out with our cameras into the Tenderloin and shot closeups and details. This image I shot and treated was used alongside professional photography in launch materials.
This image recombines several shots from a shoot with DJ Tamara Sky to tell the personalization story of Tracks Remix (a modular headphone with interchangeable sections). I directed lead designer Nina Luong to execute it as an early attempt to reconcile a very dark/monochromatic brand guideline with an inherently colorful product story.
Photo management & Content strategy/social curation
One challenge at Sol Republic was keeping a consistently high bar for photography with relatively few budgeted professional photoshoots. I built out the in-house photo studio discipline with the team of three designers, and many of the shots used were shot by me, them, or a student photographer I sourced (the up-and-coming Julio Marcial), while some came from professional photographers and agencies.
Shown here are selections from how I curated photography for Instagram (some made it to point-of-purchase displays, retail packaging, and web ads as well). I made sure there was a careful mix of product, music-love, and lifestyle shots, with a mix of darkness and light/color/energy. I concepted and designed a six-part #hexatych to post one piece at a time on Instagram over the course of a day, building mystery and excitement for the “Punk” portable speaker (revealed in part in frame 2 and fully, along with Miram Nervo’s face, in frame 5).