How did you manage to get such great results with this photograph? Before flying out to Los Angeles to photograph April Greiman, I researched her design work and career to make sure that my photograph contained the right elements. Two days before the shoot, I scouted her design offices as well as Miracle Manor — a quirky hotel and spa that April designed and owns near Palm Springs. After deciding to photograph her at her design studio in downtown LA, we discussed April’s wardrobe and possible props. The entrance to her studio became the set with little alteration, but plenty of careful lighting. To produce the best work for a client, what is the ideal working relationship between you and an art director or designer? I do not have an art director on these self-assigned shoots, but, when I do, I find that the ideal working relationship between the art director and/or graphic designer and myself involves a mutual respect for each other’s creative strengths. In a good creative relationship, each of us makes important contributions to the photograph that take into account the final use for that image. How do you balance commercial work and personal work? I try to do as much personal work as my free time and financing allow. My self-assigned work is not only personally gratifying in a way that few commercial assignments can be, but also serves to inspire me and encourage my clients to allow me more creative input and freedom to assigned shoots. Art directors and graphic designers can usually understand proposed creative concepts. However, showing examples of my more adventurous self-assigned shoots can be useful to sell clients on ideas that they might normally have trouble imagining.