“The Hotel Room” by Warren Doering

Having just moved to Milan to further my fashion photography career, I landed in a no-frills hotel that gave discounts to clients who would stay for months at a time. As it turned out, it was the place all the aspiring photographers, models, and makeup artists would go to for that discounted price. This made it a rich environment for creating photos for one’s portfolio and late-night discourse about fashion, publications, Photographer’s Reps, best photo Labs, and sharing information. It was a most unusual atmosphere for the fashion industry.

This was an impromptu shoot, as it was one of those nights sitting in the hotel bar looking for something to do without spending what little we had by going out. Then I said I got this new jacket that I thought would be cool for a shot if anyone is game. So, with cocktails in hand we headed up to my room. We styled right out of my closet, with some help from the models and makeup, we utilized the Spartan mood of the hotel room. I wanted to capture this slice of life we were all experiencing together. I was particularly attracted to the single light in the room highlighting her face, jacket, and the shadows it created on the walls in a very empty place.

To keep with mood of the room I had my model just use what was around her, none of those hands-on hips left elbow through the ear pose #27b stuff. I was looking for the gestures, her interactions with the magazine or cigarette like a moment from a movie. We would just talk about her and her career and let her movements flow from the conversation.

What do you think are the TWO most impactful features that make your image a good photograph? Don’t be shy!

I think it is the cinematic story-like feel and the casual movement of the model.

If you could make this photo again, what would be the ONE thing you would like to do better or different?

Nothing. I would move on to the next idea.

Warren Doering shared this photograph in the FRAMES Facebook Group.


Warren Doering, Pennsylvania, USA


Equipment and settings

Hasselblad and Ektachrome film.

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Comments (2):

  1. Diana Nicholette Jeon

    November 24, 2023 at 19:20

    I didn’t read this yet but I saw it go by on Tomasz’ post on FB and I just wanted to stop in say AWESOME image!

    • Warren

      December 19, 2023 at 00:25

      🙏 thank you


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