Airbnb has been expanding their PR efforts internationally and their photo department has also grown accordingly. I had been contacted by Airbnb before – twice -, but things didn’t exactly work out. Their communications and terms were poor and their pay was not competitive at all. So, when their director of photography in London contacted me and asked to assign me for an event photo-shoot in Seoul, I was somewhat skeptical. But this time, they seemed more organized and serious about hiring a qualified photographer. After a Skype chat and a bit of negotiation, I agreed to take on the job. Third time is the charm, right?
The party was carefully planned to expand Airbnb’s presence in Seoul, and it took place at a traditional Korean medicine/tea cafe in Hongdae. The brief asked for bright, fun and diverse images. The atmosphere was light and bustling. The shoot lasted about 8 hours and I had a blast capturing this particular event. There were a lot of warm and friendly people, and the Airbnb Seoul staff were also very nice. Free Bernini, music performances and good food all helped.
I wrapped up the shoot and filed a selection of about 30 images within 2 hours. And I filed the rest of the images next day. I’m a working photojournalist, so I’m used to working around the clock. There was a bit of hiccup in their handling of my invoice and payment, but all in all it worked out well. It was good to see the photos posted on Airbnb Korea’s Naver blog.