Have a Backup for Everything

Megan Costume Designer Theater Chris Gillett Houston Headshot Photographer

I pleaded with the security guard to let me into the studio. My client had traveled forty-five minutes to see me, was leaving the state the next day, and needed one of my headshots. Headshot sessions usually go pretty smoothly and are often a lot of fun. This was a new one for me. Apparently the building was completely shut down for the weekend for some type of maintenance, and the landlord had neglected to inform me.  I’m on good terms with the regular security company, but the people blocking my way had been hired specifically to keep everyone out. Even if I snuck in, it was a thirty-four story walk up to the penthouse to get to my equipment as the electricity was off for the entire building.

I have a backup for every piece of equipment that I use except the studio itself. I can’t use my Kino Flo lights? Fine, I have backup strobes. What if my Mamiya dies? It sometimes does. I have a backup Nikon. But the studio had died. I have to confess that I never saw that as a possibility. Luckily, I live close by.

So we traveled to my home where I entered a timewarp by shooting with old equipment I had on hand. It was basically the stuff I started shooting headshots with. Megan did not seem to be put off by the improvisation at all. She is an award winning costume designer and used to last minute adjustments in theater performances. We got the shots, and she left in plenty of time to pack for her flight. It looks like I now have a last minute backup for my studio as well. While I cannot promise that your corporate or actor headshot session will end up at my home, you never know.