I’m a huge fan of Annie Leibovitz and the imagery she has captured over the past few decades. Being a self-taught photographer, I looked to her work time and time again for inspiration and motivation. Over the course of a year, I scoured the internet for information on her lighting setups, equipment and methodology. But, the more I dove in, the less concerned I became about equipment and the more I felt the need to simplify my style.
Many people in the editorial and commercial industry still send out promotional mailers. But the truth is, if you are just sending out a flyer with a few photos, you are flat out wasting your money. Clint Davis worked a desk job as an Art Director for multiple national magazines, which gave him a front row seat to photographers and illustrators sending in promotional mailers. He branched out, and decided to defy the odds of being thrown in the trash.
My friend Chris Lavigne is what I like to call the "master of media" over at Wistia, which means he gets to make all their product videos and also spends a lot of time sharing tips and tricks he uses as a cinematographer. He recently released this video which explains how he records audio to his 5D Mark III in a somewhat unconventional, yet still effective, way.
The music business is a brutal, cutthroat, dog-eat-dog world and I lived it for nearly 10 years. Since the age of 16, I struggled as a touring musician, surviving off nothing but cold Spaghettios and sleeping in a decade-old 8-passenger van. I was fortunate enough to explore the nation and see things that most will never see, but by the time I left the business I was completely burnt out.
I've had some pretty amazing experiences in my life. Fstoppers.com has given me incredible opportunities like meeting Bon Jovi, or riding in the first Lamborghini Aventador in America. Our international workshop last week took a year of planning and insane amounts of stress. On top of it all, I had the flu during the entire week. Even still, last week was the most rewarding week of my life.
My friend Richard Thopmson just finished the post work on a shoot in the Southern California desert featuring a very rare Ford GT40 Mark IV using only natural light and a Phase One IQ250. He chose an incredible location in the desert and tried out two Schneider Kreuznach zoom lenses including the new 40-80mm LS f/4.0-5.6.
Ever wanted to read about an innovative commercial production involving bullet time innovation, mobile photography, the use of camera motion in sequenced stills, and a guy called Jesus who is an Evangelist and a literal savior? If so, look no further, your prayers have been answered, because this post covers all of these bases and more.
Edvin Puzinkevich is Senior Retoucher at Vault 49 - a New York design and illustration studio - where his clients have included notable names such as Nike, Intel, Audi, Levi’s, Chevrolet and Oakley. One of his personal projects, Elements, is especially interesting. Edvin explained to me that he wanted to explore the idea of people being able to control their surrounding elements, and how people could change and interact with the elements' physical characteristics.
It all started with a conversation between filmmaker Justin Gustavision and I this past Friday. Justin works for Nadus Films who just released a brilliant award-winning documentary “BBoy For Life” which shows how break dancing has provided teenagers a way out of Guatemalan gang life. The film has been picked up by Starz and Discovery Channel, yet their social media presence could be considered dry, when it should be arousing a well-deserved tornado of hype.
One of the biggest frustrations any new professional photographer has is obtaining clients. I’m going to assume that at this point you have sufficiently nailed down your technique, you’ve built up a decent portfolio, and you have a website that is easy to navigate and shows off your work. So why are you not getting replies from your prospective clients? Well the answer may have NOTHING to do with your photography.
A few weeks ago I released a video featuring my friend and fellow photographer Blair Bunting in the backseat of an F16. The video blew up on Reddit (#1 in r/Videos making it to the top 5 of the front page), was featured on Gizmodo, Jalopnik, Daily Mail, Telegraph, CNN, ABC World News with Dianne Sawyer, hundreds of other blogs and even was officially recognized by YouTube. But for reasons still unexplained to me, it has been removed from YouTube and there is nothing I can do about it.
Vincent Laforet’s Directing Motion workshop has done what every workshop should do – it’s challenged my current way of working and given me clarity on how I can improve my work. Less than 24 hours after the workshop, I was working differently, shooting differently and thinking differently. This might just be the best workshop for those shooting (or with an interest in shooting) motion work, ever.
During an initial meeting with local publication NFocus Magazine, the Editor-In-Chief asked for a unique aesthetic on Louisville's theater and arts community and wanted a massive group shot, but not your traditional group shot. I threw out the idea to shoot actors and their "characters" from directly overhead on a theater floor, as if they were action figures laid out and organized. Two seconds after I uttered the idea, I realized I had no clue how I would pull it all off.
When you combine an amazing landscape photographer, a stunningly beautiful location, the brilliance of a strong team of film makers and a luxury brand that is synonymous with craftsmanship and excellence, magic does indeed happen. Welcome to the ‘Defining Moment’ by Audemars Piguet - and a redefining of what it means to "shoot a “commercial".