New work: Martin Sigal shoots “Nurse Jackie”

The new season of the Showtime series Nurse Jackie premieres on Monday, and I cannot wait. Such sharp writing and such a brilliant cast, led by Edie Falco as a pill-popping, hard-boiled nurse with a heart of a gold and fidelity issues.

Even if you don’t have Showtime, you’ve no doubt seen the campaign, which was photographed by our own Martin Sigal:

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“Nurse Jackie” Season 2 ad, photographed by Martin Sigal.

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I asked both Martin and Peter Gatto, senior art director at Showtime, about the making of the campaign. Here’s what they told me:

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Martin Sigal:

“Since it was the second season and the characters had already been telling their own story, my challenge was to provide another point of view. I usually like to push the concept as much as I can with a very subtle mood, lighting, and intention—without, of course, losing the original idea.

In this case, we knew we were facing fixed timing. These very busy actors were available for only a short period of time. It was such a pleasure to work with such a strong actress as Edie Falco and the rest of the cast. They had a great sense of humor and professionalism.

We had two days to shoot, and Edie was both easygoing and intimate, and that really set the mood for the shoot. We had a lot of images to produce, but it really felt like a big family, with all of the cast and the Showtime people and producer Eric Rasmussen.”

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Peter Gatto:

“Once shown Martin’s portfolio, we were immediately drawn to his work for several reasons. We usually have several concepts that need to be shot, and Nurse Jackie was no exception. The team developed three ideas called ‘suspended animation,’ ‘Raphael saintly painting,’ and ‘reflection.’ It just so happens that Martin had wonderful examples that were related to what we where striving for. It’s rare finding a photographer that versatile.

We’re always on the lookout for new talent. Ideally, it’s someone that’s on the cusp of breaking into our world of celebrity advertising, and we want to be the first to work with him or her. Martin fit that bill perfectly. On the flip slide, it’s also a risk using someone new, but only after a few minutes on set, any concerns were long forgotten. His soft voice put the talent at ease and even made a hectic two-day shoot seem calm, manageable, and successful.

Don’t be surprised if you notice Martin’s photography in future Showtime advertising.”

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Thank you, Martin and Peter! Also, a big thank you to Larry Merritt, vice president, creative director, of Showtime for helping me put this post together.

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