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Behind the Scenes: Dwell Reports

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As the photo editor at Dwell, one of best things I get to do is go on set and art direct shoots. It’s always an exciting process of creating, tweaking, and finalizing an idea or concept and a chance to collaborate with some great photographers and colleagues. When possible, I'll be posting some behind-the-scenes shots, so you can see the work that goes into making the images you see in the pages of Dwell.

This first sneak peak is of the Dwell Reports shoot for the April 2010 issue, featuring planters. Kyle Blue, Dwell's design director, and I worked with an amazing paper artist, Benjamin Laramie, and photographer Peter Belanger to create some paper plants that bring the feel of a relief cutout piece of art to our three-dimensional planters. We met with Ben a week before the shoot to talk about what we were looking for in the paper plants, and after a few reviews, he was off and running. We met him on set with all of his options for us, and got “planting." It was great fun to play with depth and color on set, and bring a bit of a coloring-book feel to life.

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  First camera assistant, Michael, at Peter Belanger’s studio painting the backdrop wall for the next’s day’s shoot.
    First camera assistant, Michael, at Peter Belanger’s studio painting the backdrop wall for the next’s day’s shoot.
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  Ben prepped a bunch of different flora options for us to “plant” on set.
    Ben prepped a bunch of different flora options for us to “plant” on set.
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  Pictured here are some of the cutouts created on set.
    Pictured here are some of the cutouts created on set.
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  Un-potted paper trees waiting to be placed.
    Un-potted paper trees waiting to be placed.
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  Paper artist Benjamin Laramie prepped the pots with internal supports for the flat trees.
    Paper artist Benjamin Laramie prepped the pots with internal supports for the flat trees.
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  Here Ben takes a bit of time to straighten out some trees.
    Here Ben takes a bit of time to straighten out some trees.
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  Kyle, Ben, and I sit down to go over plant-and-planter options.
    Kyle, Ben, and I sit down to go over plant-and-planter options.
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  A handful of the almost-finished planters from our prep day.
    A handful of the almost-finished planters from our prep day.
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  The set getting filled in on shoot day.
    The set getting filled in on shoot day.
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  A corner of the set and the view from Peter Belanger's San Francisco studio.
    A corner of the set and the view from Peter Belanger's San Francisco studio.
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  No shoes on set keeps the green seamless, nice and clean.
    No shoes on set keeps the green seamless, nice and clean.
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  Kyle and I getting some work done. Click here to read the finished article that appeared in the April 2010 issue.
    Kyle and I getting some work done. Click here to read the finished article that appeared in the April 2010 issue.

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