The mountaintop locale of The Swag Inn near Waynesville, NC is studded with the waterfalls and water features you’d expect in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. But now, after a long hike in the adjacent park, you can enjoy your OWN waterfall, in one of their many private en-suite outdoor showers. We’ve just returned from our 6th trip shooting for The Swag, and every time we return they have added ANOTHER outdoor shower. We love the trend! There is something¬† both primeval and very romantic about the whole experience of an outdoor shower. We decided to highlight some of our favorite showers we’ve shot over the years. At the end of this post, we have supplied a little “behind the scenes” information on how we got these shots, i.e. how we lit them. It can be a little tricky!

Want to see more pictures of The Swag? Check our special page on The Swag on our Projects page.

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Ferns and other plants shower with you in this outdoor shower in The Family Room Guest Suite

 

Swag Rooms Ridgeview 01 XL A Different Kind of Waterfall in The Smokies: The Outdoor Showers at The Swag Inn

The Ridgeview Suite’s shower has a killer view over The Smoky Mountains. We stayed in this room and got to “test” this shower.

 

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The Cabin Suite’s outdoor shower has a view of the full-scale stone fireplace, for those chilly Smoky Mountain Nights

 

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In the Hideaway Room you get a different shower view–dense forest

 

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The private porch off Gail’s Room has both a giant copper soaking tub and an outdoor shower…all with fabulous mountain views

 

Swag Rooms Ridgeview 03 X3 A Different Kind of Waterfall in The Smokies: The Outdoor Showers at The Swag Inn

Some of The Swag’s outdoor showers are bathed in sun, while others are ensconced in woodland shade

 

How did we get these shots??

If you’ve ever tried to photograph a shower with the water running, you’ll notice the water usually “disappears” in the actual photo, and with it goes much of the appeal of the photo. In order to SEE that water (hey that’s the point of a shower, right?) we often have to come up with some pretty funky lighting plans, like strapping flashes to trees, affixing portable strobes to ceilings or as you see below, hanging off a balcony. In this shot, it was too high for a light-stand or a ladder to enable lighting the porch, so we had to resort to doing a little Photoshop trick: Matthew held a gridded strobe which was pointed directly at the water while Mark took the photo. Then Matthew was removed in the final image. Also, believe it or not, this was shot in broad daylight, but the porch was so heavily shaded it was pretty dark. Our solution was to give it an early evening effect by lighting the inside of the room using flashes and warm colored gels to evoke an evening mood.

 

Swag Rooms Loft 01 XL A Different Kind of Waterfall in The Smokies: The Outdoor Showers at The Swag Inn

The outdoor shower in The Loft Suite is in deep shade. It was a trick to light this one!


 

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Matthew lighting the water and shower area with a strobe, covered with a grid-spot attachment. Or is he just playing Twister??

One Response to “A Different Kind of Waterfall in The Smokies: The Outdoor Showers at The Swag Inn”

  1. Joan Wells says:

    Fascinating, M&M. Now I really want to go to The Swag!

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