Tony Baker is best known as an entertainment and advertising photographer since the late 1990’s, He has worked with some of the best known entertainers and companies in the world including Taylor Swift, Ewan McGregor, Elvis Costello, Willie Nelson, NIKE, Amazon, Playstation, Rolling Stone and AT&T to name a few. So it was unanticipated by all but his closest friends and family when he shifted his creative focus to furniture and housewares, but Tony makes a pretty good case for the connection to his photography life.
“In most of our photo and video productions, a lot of our energies went toward creating a natural and comfortable environment for our subjects. Our goal was to get everyone involved to a (mental & physical) place of forgetting we are in what can be a stressful place, a production set, and relax into being ourselves and discover one another. We wanted the day’s experience to be akin to a private dinner or gathering of friends.”
In 2012 Tony jumped into the corporate world, running the imaging team at the 40,000 square-foot Amazon Fashion studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. “We’d all leave the studio each day totally wiped-out and dragging, only to return and deliver 100% again the next day. As exhilarating as the job was, saying it was exhausting only begins to describe the experience. During that time, it was important to be able to have a home that was not only relaxing and restorative, but also inspiring. That’s when I really began to design pieces, they were only really meant for our place in Brooklyn.”
Tony speaks to the attractive contrasts of this new creative outlet from his photography career; “It took a while to realize why I was designing larger or more stolid pieces. It was (is) a reaction to so much of my career having been about making images for industries that have hyper-quick turnover cycles. So much imaging having to do with fashion, entertainment and advertising has a very short lifespan. Some aspects those industries make the work completely disposable after a few months, or less. So I to began design and make pieces that were meant to be around for a long time. I really wanted to create and live with legacy pieces, items that get better with age and use. I design pieces that help tell my individual story, even confirm my story at times. But it turns out, other people are drawn to them as well. That’s when the idea of Creating STAY came around.”