For some reason, not everyone is comfortable calling themselves an “artist,” but the truth is, we’re all creating the art piece of our life with each passing day. Every human on this Earth is brimming with creative potential, and Italian winemaker Martini & Rossi is going to help you prove it.
In the spirit of friendship, the leading vermouth brand is asking you to take some pictures of your next safe social gathering and submit them on social media for a chance to win a socially-distanced photoshoot with Hollywood photographer extraordinaire Greg Williams.
Williams has taken portraits of Kate Winslet, Daniel Craig, Margot Robbie, Tom Hardy, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, and Robert Downey Jr., and now he may just take pictures of you and your crew.
To win, all you’ve got to do is take some candid pictures of you and your friends having a good time, then tag those photos with the hashtag #MartiniMoments on Instagram. Williams will curate a digital gallery based on these concepts of friendship, vitality and reunion, and he’ll choose four winners for a virtual photoshoot opp, too. He even gets the party started with a series of photographs from he and his wife’s recent get together.
“The past year has been tough, and I’ve certainly missed being able to hang out with my friends, that’s why I’m so pleased to be partnering with such an iconic brand as Martini & Rossi on this project,” Williams says. “I describe myself as a candid photographer, capturing images in-the-moment, and as friends start to meetup there are going to be so many opportunities to take beautiful shots.
“You’re most relaxed when you’re with your closest friends and when you haven’t seen those people for quite some time, the emotion and excitement can come through in an image that can be kept forever,” he continues. “I am excited to be curating a digital gallery of the best images and to see the joy as friends come together.”
Feeling a little unsure of your photography skills? Not to worry. Williams has prepared a mini master class, giving you five steps toward taking the perfect candid shots—even if all you’ve got is a smartphone.
Go ahead, give this your best shot.
Your smartphone is a great camera
Your best camera will always be the one that’s with you! While I of course use professional camera equipment, I also shoot on my smartphone everyday. Get to know the functions you are working with—for example, when taking photos on a sunny day, the auto exposure might overexpose your subject. You can manually control this by using the exposure function, and you will immediately see how your friends truly become the subject of the photo. The important thing is that you expose for the subject, which very often means overriding the auto exposure in either direction.
Tell a story and get involved in the shot
When reconnecting with friends, you don’t need to take a selfie to feel part of the picture. I like to participate in my photography—whether that’s raising a glass in shot or getting friends to chat with me as I shoot. To capture the ambience of the scene you are photographing, try raising your glass of Martini & Rossi Fiero and Tonic in the frame and having a cheers! Not only will it capture the joy of reconnecting with friends, but the vibrant color of the cocktail will shine through. You can also use the moment as a storytelling opportunity. A lot of great photos really showcase people’s personalities, and I like to do this by encouraging reactions directly into the lens.
Start thinking about light
The most crucial part of capturing aperitivo hour with friends is having a good time, but second to that is good lighting. When working with natural light, you essentially have two choices: front light, with the sun behind the camera; or backlight, with the sun behind the subject. Front light is more of a sculpting light, where backlight is a softer, beauty light. In both cases, make sure to expose for your subject rather than the whole scene.
Find better compositions
A great rule of thumb for good composition is simply to think about filling the frame. Another useful guide is the well-established “rule of thirds,” whereby you position your key elements (cocktails in this case!) on the “thirds,” so a third of the way in or up. You can also reframe when you are editing on your smartphone with this rule in mind. Another simple tip is to always be prepared to move. Too often people take a photo without even getting off their chair, when there is almost certainly a better composition to be found if you get up and look for it.
Time for editing
Once you have your set of photos, it’s time to edit. This doesn’t necessarily mean retouching your photos, but selecting the most emotive frames. To handpick the ultimate #MartiniMoment, I encourage you to select photos that feel authentic. Essentially, it is all about listening to your inner voice and going with the frame that creates an emotional response.
Martini & Rossi’s @MartiniMoment content runs now through Oct. 22 at 23:59 BST. Winners will be announced in November. See the full list of terms and conditions. Follow Martini & Rossi on Instagram to learn more.
Photography by: Greg Williams x Martini & Rossi