Unit stills photography for a Meineke TV commercial

During the first week of August I was fortunate enough to be on assignment as the unit stills photographer on set for the filming of several TV commercials for Meineke Car Care Centers. It was a 4-day assignment and the filming was taking place in and around the Boston area. Behind the creation of the campaign and concept was an award winning boutique advertising agency Mythic, based out of Charlotte, NC. The filming and production were being handled by leading Boston based production house, Element. I was hired by Mythic.

This being my first ever gig as a unit stills photographer, I was a little apprehensive. For my research I read up on articles by UK-based unit stills photographer Andrew Young. He has a very informative and well written website - http://www.production-stills.co.uk/tech-talk/. It's a must-read if you're thinking about unit stills photography. My NESOP teacher Shawn Read, who has had several stints as a unit stills photographer under his belt, was kind enough to give me some tips and advice as well. All of this proved very helpful in knowing what to do, and most importantly what not to do, while on set.

It was amazing to see first hand what it takes to make a film/commercial. The entire crew was very friendly and made me feel at home day one. They made it a very fun and enjoyable experience overall. I would do it again.

Meineke's humorous "On With Life" TV ad campaign was launched on Aug 31st. One of the commercials has been airing nationally for the past couple of weeks.

It shows a wife sending her husband off with a backpack and enough supplies to last what looks like a major journey.
He's just about to take their car to get the oil changed, then to the tire store to get the tires replaced and then to the brake shop to get the brakes fixed.
Instead he should've gone to Meineke Car Care Centers and gotten everything done in one stop.

If you haven't seen that commercial yet, here's the link

Below are some of my photographs during the filming of that particular commercial.

 Off goes the clapper for Take #1

Off goes the clapper for Take #1

 Emotional moment before the husband heads off

Emotional moment before the husband heads off

 Yet another emotional moment

Yet another emotional moment

 Time to go

Time to go

 Husband reiterating the 3 things he needs to get done for the car

Husband reiterating the 3 things he needs to get done for the car

 Ready to go

Ready to go

 The Director of Photography framing the shot

The Director of Photography framing the shot

 The film and sound are rolling

The film and sound are rolling

 Crew behind the scenes

Crew behind the scenes