Seattle Corporate Event Photography: Tasting In The Dark with Coppola Wines
Last night is a great example of why I love being a corporate event photographer.
Start-up companies sometimes use something called “Blue Sky Thinking.” Shortly, it means that you have no limits. Think as grandiose as you’d like – no time, budget or operational restrictions. When someone is given that ability, it’s amazing what they can come up with – the ideas that they can have. Last night felt like a delve into a ‘blue sky’ situation… in pitch black.
Coppola Wines (yes, that Coppola) visited Seattle to host an event for members of the media. Writers, bloggers, radio hosts and beyond – they were welcomed to the Space Needle for a very intimate tasting. Guests new this wasn’t going to be your average Wednesday night wine tastings the moment they were blindfolded – before entering the tasting room.
By the end, guests had been blindfolded over an hour, tried to guess 4 base aromas, tasted 4 wines and learned about the winery – led through by Hobey Wedler, a graduate student working toward his PhD in Chemistry. What they didn’t know until removing the masks is that Wedler himself has been blind since birth.
When I point my camera at people, I see a natural shift in their presence. They adjust their posture, straighten their hair, ‘suck it in,’ and often pose with a big grin. That’s fun, and makes good photos, but last night was… different. The guests didn’t know what was in front of them, or who they were seated next to, or what wines they would taste, and they definitely didn’t know where I was. They didn’t know what photo I was framing up, or if it was even them in the picture.
Several minutes in I could tell when their other senses took over – they could hear the shutter and knew if I was close but the mystery remained. Is it them in the picture?
Once the masks were removed and they had their A-Ha moment of their surroundings, it was all smiles for the wonderful experience they had all just been a part of. Coppola Wines had done a masterful job of keeping everyone in the dark (pun intended) and really highlighted the drive to not judge a wine by anything except for what’s in the bottle.