If you 've been a Rivanna customer for any length of time, then you've probably recognized a few of the beautiful Virginia venues that we've used for our catalog photo shoots: Assateague Island National Seashore, Shenandoah National Park, the Byrd Theatre, and downtown Charlottesville. Choosing a venue for our photo shoot is always one of the highlights of the year.
2020, of course, was a different year. Amid all the early uncertainty last spring, we considered shelving our annual photoshoot and simply photoshopping a new year on our previous catalog. Like most other businesses, we were facing myriad challenges. Since we make our own products, our first priority was getting back to work when it was deemed safe and then ensuring the health and safety of our team moving forward. Our designers and some others could work from home (a relief!), but we needed to be in the woodshop and on the production floor to ship orders and build prototypes for the new products we had designed. For a few months, orchestrating a photo shoot seemed like a bridge too far.
By summer, however, a few of us were back in the building and making awards once again. The new products looked great. We were definitely going to need photos of them for the 2021 launch. The decision about the photo shoot was back on the table, and that's when it hit us.
The table. The mantle. The window ledge. Of course. We could shoot the catalog photos at home.
Our talented and intrepid designer, Kristina Schultz, was all for it. She offered to host the shoot at her place, where she would have ample time to consider the shot list, sketch the product placement, and determine where and when the light would be best. We spent a couple of months preparing all the pieces and finalizing what we would need for the catalog and website. In the meantime, Kristina coordinated timelines and safety protocols with Stacey Evans, our friend and professional photographer for almost two decades.
The results speak for themselves. We hope that you enjoy our 2021 catalog and appreciate this brief glimpse into Kristina's beautiful home. Since most people are working in offices these days, we think it only appropriate that our customers can see how our products look in spaces where they are most likely to land. In a domestic setting, our planet-friendly awards look less like trophies and more like pieces of art. We hope you agree.