In the last week of March 2017, I dove into a deep opportunity to shoot an editorial photography project at Hydropool Hot Tubs, Swim Spas and Accessories showroom at 345 Superior Blvd in Mississauga, Ontario.
I was interested in this photo assignment for a few different reasons, and not the least of which was that the invitation came with a free tour of the Hydropool Hot Tubs factory which is next door to their showroom and is by all accounts, a truly Forbidden Place. Not many outsiders ever get invited in here let alone encouraged to explore their high technology hot tub manufacturing assembly line. For one because its dangerous and secondly its filled with trade secrets. And not to mention it smells like polyurethane back there – we had to wear metal toe protectors on our shoes and safety glasses and face masks.
During the tour, I was able to capture these shots of the hot tubs being made, insulated, tubed and tested.
Afterwards the marketing directors and middle management of the Hydropools organization extended what I understood to be uncharacteristic creative license to shoot their products as they appear in their modern showroom environment.
The resulting photo series incorporates aquatic portraiture of my good friend Maria Flo, Untitled & Co who agreed, with some conditions, to appear in the hot tub.
Maria is a perfect choice for these pictures because of her uniquely curvy body and curiously beautiful face. Her expressive blue eyes are themselves story-filled pools of light, and her blond hair perfectly complimented the décor of the showroom interior, catching the overhead light and reflecting in the water.
Maria was very accommodating and played along with all ideas, one of which was to imagine that this was her full-time job. Like an aquatic zoo animal, she was to pretend she resented being on display as sales staff with prospective buyers ran the tubs and swim spas through their most active training settings. Hah it was wickedly fun and we all laughed to see her struggle as the water flow can be quite intense!
As the project photographer, I was intrigued and added to the story ideas where possible always trying to capture the best possible interior angles that most favourable detail the showroom and the company’s world class products on display inside.