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Digital Studio Photographer -- West Elm

Date: Nov 22, 2017

Location: Brooklyn, NY, US

Company: Williams-Sonoma Inc.

Requisition Number: WE-11879
Area of Interest: Catalog Sales
Organization: Corporate
Brand/Division: West Elm
Position Type: Full-time


Digital Studio Photographer -- West Elm

Who we are:
Born in Brooklyn. At home in the world. west elm has been helping customers express their personal style at home since the launch of our first catalog in 2002. Our home base is nestled down under the Manhattan Bridge in the DUMBO neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY, right above our flagship store. We are a dynamic, fast-paced brand with an exciting growth strategy. We value imagination, diversity and giving people the opportunity to explore, grow and shape our future. We look for innovative, smart and hard-working individuals who enjoy creative thinking and ingenuity. Help us carry out our mission of being a source of inspiration to our customers, creating a global community and tirelessly seeking ways to evolve our brand.

The west elm Digital Studio and team produces all west elm ecommerce content -- largely photography, and product information videography, and relatable special projects such as PR silos, packaging photography needs. The photo studio is located adjacent to the photo sample warehouse where the teams work closely on a daily basis to execute brand creative initiatives.

Our west elm Makers Studio is also located just above the photo studio, where our Designers create original seasonal products and have various meetings to review assortment. New lines of business and other company big ideas are also created within our spaces in Industry City. Our creative hub is located in the thriving design community in Industry City, Sunset Park, Brooklyn that we have been a part of since 2011.

The Digital Studio Photographer is responsible for producing high quality digital images of our products. They will execute the highest of standards by setting up lighting, composition, color accuracy and exposure to best represent our assortment within our Style Guide. They will have a superb eye for detail and a love for home decor photography. They should have experience with on-set standards, practices and demands.

The Digital Studio Photographer will develop and manage daily workflow for the digital photography studio to deliver the best photographic representation of the company's products and brand identity across multiple digital platforms and channels in accordance with corporate and strategic goals. They will be comfortable executing high volume silo and pip shots, maximizing shots per day. They will have in-depth understanding of key metrics, excellent creative vision, and effective managing skills.

This role will report into our Manager of Digital Photography. This position will have two direct reports: Photo Assistant and Digital Tech to ensure all assets created follow the most updated style guides and overall brand direction. In addition, this role will partner with the Digital Studio Producer and Studio Manager in scheduling shots per day and per set based on sample availability and launch test timelines.

This role will face challenges in sample availability, coordinating shot list with other photo and video shoots. This role will work towards finding better solutions for silo, product information photography and product information video shooting structure. As the Ecommerce merchandise assortment grows and the site changes to meet new shopping trends the Digital Studio team will need to work together to figure out new ways to capture asset requests in a timely budget friendly manner while maintaining highest quality of work. With a focus on best-in-class product experiences for our customer, photographer will lead and deliver videos that provide our customer with additive visual content on products before purchasing. Videos will provide a 360 view for our customer in order to complete online purchases. Photographer would have a clear understanding of video as a medium and be able to lead supporting production assists on lighting and camera work.


Essential Responsibilities:

* Follows brand specific style guides to ensure consistency of image composition and lighting.
* Works proactively with on-site and remote creative teams to understand specific brand art direction.
* Manages and directs team (including digital technician, photo assistant and additional contractors) to assist with lighting, equipment, retouching and provide leadership to other silo/pip team if needed.
* Partners with Digital Studio Producer and Studio Manager on the daily/weekly shot list to group similar type shots together to maximize efficiencies of set, backdrop and lighting setups (i.e. shoot all rugs together, shoot all tabletop together).
* Responsible for maximizing shot per day counts per photo type (silo, simple pip, complex pip, features, catalog) and delivering reports of productivity.
* Maintain and establish new processes to ensure workflow efficiencies, creative flexibility and maintain high volume production of all photography.
* Partners with Photo and Studio Manager to build camera equipment inventory and create studio procedures.
* Research and implement new creative tools and technology advancements in photography to improve online customer experience.
* Ensure consistent photographic brand identity across all digital media channels.
* Direct and mentor photography assistant and interns.
* Direct Digital Tech to partner with Imaging team to assure image quality assurance.
* Partner with Lead Digital Art Director on upcoming seasonal photography needs and scheduling.
* Maintain and execute product videos that follow brand style guides and provide informative decisions to customer purchases.

Requirements and Qualifications:
* Formal photography schooling; a four-year degree is preferable in any of the following concentrations: Communication Arts, Photography, Fine Arts.
* Minimum two years professional studio shooting experience for commercial clients in both artificial and natural lighting; a portfolio of original work is mandatory for finalist candidates.
* Proficiency with all studio tools, lighting, technical software and systems. Experienced professional who stays current with photography trends, lighting, technical advances and changing creative tastes. Masters digital camera system and understands its benefits and limits.
* Familiarity with all aspects of digital image quality and output: File size, light and color balancing, Photoshop. Working knowledge of basic digital print production or prepress file prep is not required but very helpful.
* Demonstrate strong creative eye, sense of design in all applications of the photographic image, especially as it relates to editorial and consumer applications.
* Formal training in the use of digital camera systems.
* Experience with video.
* Strong communication skills.
* Flexible to change and team-focused.
* Ability to lead a team and delegate effectively.
* Strong team player with excellent leadership skills.
* Detail-oriented and self-motivated.
* Collaborative, while able to influence, lead and build productive relationships.
* Understands internal and external customer trends and anticipates needs; assesses industry trends and identifies new solutions, products and/or services.
* Exceptional organizational skills with demonstrated ability to prioritize workload, and concurrently manage multiple projects.
* Embraces change and continues to deliver expected results; helps and motivate others in the face of change, setbacks and constraints.
* Leads others to solve complex problems with the ability to take a broad perspective on existing solutions.
* Recommends best practices and utilizes industry knowledge to improve products, processes and services.
* Ability to guide others through training and development feedback.
* Deep understanding of digital photo technology and how to improve internal processes and customer experience.
* Strong attention to detail and still be able to see "the big picture".
* Supports talent and workforce planning strategies that align with business goals.
* Proficient with MAC/PC, Photoshop and Capture One
* Proficient in natural and artificial lighting.
* Word and Excel proficient preferred.
* Ability to juggle multiple priorities across multiple parties which includes high volume of communication with all levels of associates across all mediums (in person, phone, text, email)
* Must be able to lift over 50 lbs.
* Positive attitude, enthusiastic go-getters a must.

This position is not eligible for visa sponsorship.
Williams-Sonoma Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


Williams-Sonoma, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Williams-Sonoma, Inc. will consider for employment qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, or other applicable state or local laws and ordinances.

Nearest Major Market: Brooklyn
Nearest Secondary Market: New York City

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