© 2012 Mario Madau

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Anatomy of Hotel and Resort Photography; A Guide

Anatomy of Hotel and Resort Photography;  A guide.

Episode 1;      Why we take pictures.

 Photography.  We all know what photographs are since most of us take pictures  and view pictures every day, but do  we really know what they mean and why we take them?  Images can be very powerful and can move us in so many ways.  Some are though provoking while some make us laugh.  Some images make us cry and some make us question what’s going on in our lives.  We all take lots and lots of pictures and never really sit back and ask ourselves why.  Some of us shoot images for fun, while others take them to stop a moment in time.   There are hundreds of reasons why we take pictures and I’m in the category of preserving moments and feelings and looking for beauty in the ordinary.  I love light in all it’s splendor. There is beauty all around us in the most simple of things.  I think that being aware of your surroundings, looking at life in a different way and capturing it in pictures actually moves our souls.

 Anatomy of Hotel and Resort Photography; A Guide ;  is my new blog intended to help anyone in the industry understand what it really takes to make moving images.  Photography of Hotels and Resorts is an incredible experience since the images are supposed to move people in good ways.  The images have to be powerful and subtle at the same time.  Each episode will not only be about the factual things that are important to getting great images but also about the emotional aspects – how will these images connect with people?  Will they be strictly operation in nature, or will the images evoke a magical response?  Many questions need to be asked before embarking on a shoot.

 Why do photography of your hotel and resort at all?  It’s obvious of course – so that you can entice guests to come and stay at your place.  What kind of story are you going to tell you prospective guests?  Are your shots taken from a luxurious or operations standpoint?  Are they evocative or are they standard?  Is there magic here?  Simply put, photographs are intended to move us.  Do the photographs of your property move people?


Photography, as a powerful medium of expression and communications, offers an infinite variety of perception, interpretation and execution.

 Ansel Adams


Exceptional photography comes from great direction, keen eyes, experience, and last but not least, lots of hard work.  Goals are really important here.  Creating goals for your photography and knowing their final usage is something that has to be spelt out early in the process.  Goals help you choose what to photograph and what not to.

 One aspect I always find interesting is the amount of pride felt by the staff at each hotel and resort I photograph.  There is an immense pride in the grounds keepers, the people who set up tables for functions, the lady that cleans my room,  etc.  So it’s really important to make sure your photographs reflect this pride and ensures the staff who work hard everyday, feel as if they contributed to the effort.  Many times I will use staff in the images and again you can see this pride in their smiles.

 I hope that  every episode will be helpful and informative.  I will delve into the technical aspects of photography as well as the emotional. I will try to show examples of good and not-so-good images and will try to explain complicated photographic techniques in simple ways.  I believe that Anatomy of Hotel and Resort Photography;  A Guide will help you along your photographic endeavours.