Behind the Scenes: Royal Street Café Summer Photo Shoot

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort, Park City UT

You look at this photo and you see a pretty girl and a handsome guy sipping away on a sunny day. And that’s all you should see.

For me, I see all of the behind the scenes work that goes into producing a photo like this one. Hours of coordination, contemplation and creativity to create a single moment in time. And when it works, and all comes together, it’s magic.

I have years and years of experience producing and art directing photo shoots, more than I’d actually care to admit given I’m just shy of my 29ᵀᴴ birthday for the umpteenth time. I’ve concepted the ideas behind the the shoots, hired photographers and stylists, scouted locations, rented studios, homes, and motorhomes, scouted models and made it all happen while staying within budget. It is probably one of the most exhaustive parts of my job because the brain goes into overload to be sure each detail is attended to for a successful outcome.

But that was then, and this is now.

These days I’ve transitioned from directing the photo shoots to being the one behind the camera making “the magic happen.” For the past three years I’ve been photographing each of Deer Valley’s restaurants, chefs and anything else I’m lucky enough to point my lens toward for use on their website, advertising and yep, even these blog posts.

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

As in every successful mission, it takes a village. For these shoots it always starts with Deer Valley’s tip top marketing team including Emily, Lara and Ryan who work out all of the details of where, when and what will be photographed. Next, the talented chefs at Deer Valley make my job that much easier, creating subjects that are always colorful, seasonal, drool-worthy, and that hardly ever talk—or bite—back.

This summer there are several photo shoots on our to-do list. We kicked the first off at Royal Street Café where we gathered 20 or so real-life friends of Deer Valley, spending the afternoon taking photos. Kudos to all of our real life models who were total pros and beyond patient as I made my way around the patio doing what I do which usually means making people do the same motion over and over until we get it just right.

Patience. It’s a virtue.

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Here’a a sampling of me sneaking into the kiddos lunch, that turned into…

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

This photo of this sweet blondie with a cheesy grin. Literally. A grilled cheese grin.

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

This time around we were fortunate to have Deer Valley’s creative agency represented by Struck’s creative director Scott Sorenson who shared his creative vision. It was great having another creative alongside me to make decisions, create the perfect sprinkle of crumbs and decide when the shot was just right.

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Scott also makes a mean clean-up guy when the beer gets spilled. I have a feeling it wasn’t his first time.

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

I may have snuck a fry. Or two. It’s all in the name of food styling.

A Few More Faves to Savor

Editing photos is one of the hardest parts of my job, but just like going through my wardrobe in my closet, you have to make hard choices and edit, edit, edit. Following are just the smallest sampling of a few favorites from the edits of the day’s 1,700+ photos that will be shared on the website and in upcoming advertising soon.

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

Royal Street Summer Deer Valley Resort , Park City UT

And now, it’s time to get back to going through the rest of those 1,700 photos. Cheers!

Royal Street Café, get more info here.

  • Location: Silver Lake Village – mid-mountain
  • Address: 7600 Royal Street
  • Telephone Number: 435-645-6724
  • Dining Type: Casual Dining
  • Business Hours: 11:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., daily

Heidi Larsen is the creator of foodiecrush.com, the blog and online magazine featuring family friendly recipes and inspiring photography. She also photographs Deer Valley Resort’s food and fine dining when not enjoying quality time on the ski hill with her husband and 11 year old daughter. See more of what she’s crushing on at Facebook and Instagram.

 

Granddaughter’s Ski Lesson

The best ski lesson for your child or grandchild is one where you give them a kiss on the cheek and leave them to the instructor. The problem is you are just as excited about the lesson as they are! You want to be up close and personal to observe and take photos to memorialize the event.

That’s how my friends TJ and Lin felt when they set up a ski lessons for their granddaughter (and my little friend) Stella, age 3. The grandparents felt like it was important for the little one to have a positive experience right from the start. They called in Deer Valley ski instructor, Mark Shepard to teach her on her first day. Mark has a keen ability to really hone in on what a skier needs to make marked improvements. He helped TJ (a lifelong skier) make drastic improvements on the bumps and Stella’s Mom and Dad take on the blues. So why not make it three generations.

Mark was open to splitting a private lesson. The first hour, a private lesson just for little Stella and the rest of the morning went to their daughter and son-in-law (both beginner skiers.)  He started little Stella’s lesson in the lodge practicing “pizza and french fry” on aluminum pie pans (no skis yet – just with boots) until she got the concept down cold. The grandparents were quickly forgotten as Mark got right down to Stella’s eye level. Though TJ and Lin wanted to stick around, they knew better.

Photo Credit: TJ Lenahan

Photo Credit: TJ Lenahan

They also had a secret weapon – a serious telephoto lens! TJ is a wildlife photographer — an expert at quietly watching from a long distance and snapping amazing photos. He put those skills to the test for Stella’s lesson.

Here is what he observed (while in stealth mode) from way over on the other side of the run:

Mark carrying little Stella to the hill.

Photo Credit: TJ Lenahan

Photo Credit: TJ Lenahan

Practicing now with skis on.

Photo Credit: TJ Lenahan

Photo Credit: TJ Lenahan

A typical three-year-old, Stella points out an airplane in the sky during the lesson. Mark simply lies on his back to enjoy the delight of the plane with her.

In about an hour, Stella is skiing!

Ski Lesson 3

Photo Credit: TJ Lenahan

The moral of the story is you can have the best of both worlds. Your child or grandchild can enjoy their lesson and you can have photos to remember the event. All you have to do is walk softly and carry a big telephoto lens.
For more information on ski lessons at Deer Valley Ski Resort, click here