Pedestrian Grade Separation Construction Photography

A “pedestrian grade separation” is a wordy term for a footbridge, a crosswalk, a flyover–which over a street like Las Vegas Boulevard, is a very valuable thing. Combine a street with perpetual gridlock with a sea of sometimes sober sightseers and you concoct a cocktail for catastrophe. So one of the most worthwhile city investments on the Strip for safety and efficiency could be to keep walkers away from rollers.

Building a footbridge over one of the busiest and most famous streets in the world is no small task though. There are considerations for safety, traffic, and a need not to disrupt the business of fun on the strip.

Granite Construction recently commissioned us to capture some progress photos of their project to build an elevated crosswalk from the Park MGM to the Hard Rock Café–over the busy, and functioning, Las Vegas Strip. Since the work crews are not allowed by the city to work on the Strip during midday, we starting shooting around 6:00AM and took advantage of the early morning light (and cooler temperatures.) Our task was to capture the progress of the build, the process of the build (to be used in future proposals), and to secure some shots of the crew themselves. Take a look!

Raiders Preview Center

There’s a lot of anticipation surrounding the arrival of the Raider in Las Vegas next year. As the new stadium is being built, the Raiders are getting Las Vegans excited and selling suites at the Raiders Preview Center in nearby Town Square. Downstream, a Portland-based experience designer, created the space, including a mock-up suite, interactive video screens, a detailed miniature of the stadium, and an array of Raiders memorabilia from the stadium. A beautifully designed space in black, white, a silver, it is a great way for locals to preview the team’s arrival and get a sneak peek at what the massive construction project just off the I-15 nearby Mandalay Bay is working to produce.

An incredibly challenging space to shoot, it places black against white indiscriminately and creates incredible challenges of contrast and color with splashes of light from incandescent, video, and colored sources.

Have a look at a few photos we were commissioned to put together to showcase the space:

Hoover Dam Visitor Center Renovation

The Hoover Dam visitor’s center, built in 1995, has welcomed visitors from all over the world for over 20 years. But the much-visited structure had begun to show its age in style and wear–that is until a winter renovation recently concluded. The dark copper and earth-toned interiors have given way to white terrazzo flooring, stainless-steel accents, and a new color palette of azure, orange, grey and white. The once caliginous space now beams with LED and natural light which is bounced about by the building’s bright new color scheme. From the cash registers to the restrooms, the new building feels bright and welcoming. Opening just a few weeks ago on March 10th, the new design makes revisiting the Dam a great springtime activity–especially if it has been a few years (say twenty) since you’ve been.

We had the chance to shoot the newly redesigned facility and it was quite the privilege. Shooting a space which so many have–and will yet–visit from all over the world feels fun. Just being near the massive edifice of concrete and steel that is the Hoover Dam engages explorer mode in a human being and makes you feel awe and wonder at both the achievement of the builders a century ago and at the sheer size and beauty of the jagged canyon in which it was so arduously erected. Even while working, it felt a bit like being on vacation.


While no work was performed on the exterior, we wanted to make sure that the commissioning clients Atherton Construction, TSK Architects, the Bureau of Reclamation and Top End Constructors came away with an image of the exterior to be able to show the dramatic location of their stellar renovation work.

One Stunning Office Building in Summerlin

A six-story office building at twilight with beige and grey exterior, three glass balconies, with palm trees and desert lanscaping in the foreground with rich blue skies and the Las Vegas Strip in the background.

4:30AM must qualify as one of the most horrible and unpopular hours of the day. Great things don’t happen at 4:30. Even for a town like Las Vegas, by 4:30 most of the fun has already happened, and for anyone else awake at that hour, it either means you have a new baby or you have a cruel employer. But on occasion, a very early hour lends itself to some great photos.

VCC, the contractor tasked with building the Two Summerlin office building in Downtown Summerlin, just across from Red Rock Casino, needed some great portfolio images of the brand-new beautiful  building just completed. Since we wanted to shoot the space at a dramatic twilight hour but dusk put the setting sun directly behind the building creating less-than-flattering light. Consequently, we opted to shoot at dawn, putting us at the site at the aforementioned unsavory hour.

A six-story office building at twilight with beige and grey exterior, with palm trees and desert lanscaping and the top of a parking structure in the foreground with rich blue skies and mountains the background.

What’s more, shooting the building from the ground simply didn’t do justice to the stunning new edifice. From the adjacent parking garage, one is too close to shoot the full building–even with a wide-angle lens. So we enlisted the help of a scissor lift atop the parking structure to allow us to both move back and move up to capture a beautiful perspective of the new tower.

A six-story office building and adjacent three-story parking structure in daytime with streets and landscaping in the foreground.

Start on the third floor of a parking structure and go up another 20 feet in a scissor lift and some great perspectives result.

An office building elevator lobby with shiny tile floors and walls and a green, orange, black, and purple piece of abstract art hanging alongside a stainless steel elevator door.An office building restroom with beige and white tile floor and wall and a beige synthetic countertop with three basins in the foreground and a stainless steel stall door in the background. And elevator interior with shiny silver walls and a grey glass center panel with the words "Two Summerlin" written in white and white LED lighting atop.We also shot the small, but beautiful elevator lobby, the restrooms and the elevator as well, and we thought the photos are certainly worthy of posting.

An off-centered perspective of a six-story office building at twilight with beige and grey exterior, three glass balconies, with palm trees and desert lanscaping in the foreground with rich blue skies and the Las Vegas Strip in the background.

This final shot is a personal favorite; though the building isn’t centered, nor is the whole structure within the frame, it splits the building and distant Vegas lights nicely and distinctly places the tower in its neon-desert environment.

US Bureau of Reclamation

Workers hoping to get a job on the massive Boulder Dam (now called Hoover Dam) began setting up squatters camps near the chosen work site in 1930. These camps of prospective dam workers might be called the first citizens of Boulder City–a town assembled specifically to house the administration and workforce of the largest public works project in American history. Boulder City was built in a triangular shape and at the peak was the Bureau of Reclamation Administration Building, overlooking the town on one side and the subsequent lake which would be formed by the Dam’s construction. The Administration Building oversaw the successful completion of the Dam and continued to house those overseeing both the operation of the dam and the management of the resources it provided. For nearly ninety years the Administration Building operated without a major renovation–until in 2018 when the Bureau of Reclamation finally completed a full and long overdue restoration of the historic Administration building at 1200 Park in Boulder City.

Upon completion of the restoration, the US Bureau of Reclamation gave us the fantastic opportunity this summer to photograph the building in its fully-restored grandeur. From its iconic exterior to the bathrooms inside, nearly everything was redone, and nearly everything was photographed. Over two days we shot the carefully reconditioned structure both inside and out and delivered over 100 images of the beautiful new environment in which the employees of the Bureau of Reclamation now work. Below are a few samplings of the images we captured in this great project.

While in the previous exterior photo we enhanced the building with some supplemental lighting, we also included some much more natural images in the end bundle. The dramatic skies at dusk here are no sky replacement and all the light is ambient, giving a fairly perfect idea of what the building looks like on a long August night.

The conference room acts as both a normal meeting space, but can also double as a command center in times of crisis. We wanted to capture this particular space both in daytime, with all its natural light and at night to showcase its abundant and modern lighting.


In multiple parts of the building the preexisting materials were kept to echo the building’s historic roots. Here we see some exposed brick kept in a Bureau restroom.

On the tastefully restored patio the unique placement of the Administration can be appreciated as one can peer down upon Lake Mead, the child of the Boulder Dam Project, which delivers water and electricity to Las Vegas and numerous western states.

Commercial Real Estate Photography 2018

We’ve had the chance to shoot medical properties for Ensemble Real Estate for years and this summer, we were able to capture images of their the new Henderson Medical Plaza next to Henderson Hospital. A clean and modern space, the new facility posed nicely for some beautiful marketing. Starting at dawn, we were able to capture all the images they requested in less than two hours–with no disruptions to their normal operating schedule. We hope you like the photos!

T-Mobile Store on Las Vegas Boulevard

Working with Seattle-based video production company Element7,we had the opportunity to photograph the brand-new T-mobile store on Las Vegas Boulevard next to MGM Grand. This massive two-story retail store boasts giant LED video screens, interactive VR station, snack bar, and even interactive restroom mirrors.

Producing great photos didn’t come without some real challenges:

  • The space immediately beside T-mobile was torn apart
  • We were not legally allowed to set up on the island on Las Vegas Boulevard right in front of the store which required us to shoot from across the street
  • Power lines were running past the store in layers
  • A horrid street lamp was right in the way of our only opening between the palm trees
  • The brightness of the video marquis above the store was out-of-this-world (and way out of any histogram)
  • We needed to contend with busy street traffic and sidewalk foot traffic

We spent 2 nights and an afternoon working to get comprehensive photography of the space and, in the end, delivered more than 100 finished photos to the client. Here is just a small sampling including a before shot of the exterior straight out of the camera.

(Straight out of camera: Notice the street lamp, power lines, cracked asphalt, damaged building to the right and the blazing video screen up top.)