Throughout my career so far I have failed over and over again. Although it’s the successes that I'm remembered and known for, it’s the failures that are always the catalyst. At the end of the day, the key to success lies in failure. This improvisational beauty shoot was only a success because I set myself up to fail.
Figuring out a fair rate for providing photography or video services can be a slippery slope, filled with pitfalls if you happen to price yourself incorrectly. But what's more complicated than setting a rate for services is how to approach setting a rate for someone who wants to license a piece of work you've already created. In this post I'll share my insight on the factors I look at, and my rationale for determining a fair fee for video and photo licensing.
The state of California is simply unmatched when it comes to beautiful, picturesque imagery in the United States. As the birthplace and home of timelapse photographer Hal Bergman, it was his goal to compile as much of the visual wonders California has to offer in to a tight four-minutes time. His newest video, aptly titled “California,” combines four years of filming in to a marvelous treat for the eyes that any citizen of the world can appreciate. Beyond the video, Hal also speaks to Fstoppers about the behind-the-scenes work and equipment used in the making.
Annie Leibovitz has been pretty busy lately. Fstoppers recently posted her work as part of the "Live Who You Are" campaign for The Corcoran Group; the BTS video for it can be found here. In this campaign for Moncler, Annie pulls out all the stops - acrobats on ladders, backseat canoodling and even a hiker in the form of a Hindu deity (although to be fair, he could also be Buddhist or Jain). In any case, she brings her personal touch to the images.
Sometimes we have the luxury of being at an entire game or tournament or match to get action shots of athletes performing their best. Yet occasionally, if we're like Brett Wilhelm, we are asked to cover the World of X Games Cam Zink Mammoth Flip that only happens once and lasts all of a few seconds. Under that kind of pressure with no "redos," Wilhelm takes us through a refreshingly in-depth BTS video that covers everything from basic composition to gear and how one man can cover three cameras.
The Corcoran Group specializes in the more exclusive brand of real estate. As such, a more exclusive brand of photography makes perfect sense. In her latest ad campaign, Annie Leibovitz shot numerous well-known talent in the fitting nature of their own homes. Dubbed, "Live who you are," the campaign centers around the idea of finding a home that perfectly complements your lifestyle. The spread between Jimmy Buffett and Tyson Chandler doesn't even begin to cover the variety of personalities in the new campaign that highlights some of the best-suited East Coast properities.
In the last few years, advances in technology have allowed for filmmakers to do some pretty amazing things. With the accessibility of cameras like the Go-Pro, the gap between amateur and pro is narrowing. Enter award-winning wildlife filmmaker John Downer and his quest to push the remarkable. Filmmakers are putting these high-resolution spy cameras in everything from fake rocks to swimming ducks and to motorized piles of snow... and the resulting footage is remarkable.
Photographer Clint Davis recently had the opportunity to visit the Bachman Collection, which houses at least 40 rare Italian ponies, while on his first assignment for Forza Magazine. Lucky bastard. Watch the video above and read below to not only see the how this incredible photoshoot was put together and capture a glimpse of a rarely seen car collection in the process.
Christiaan Welzel and his wife Kseniya have trekked across the world adventuring for the majority of the last eight years. They decided to start exploring places that were extremely hard to get to like Antarctica or various ghost towns, but they finally decided on traveling to Ukraine where Kseniya is from. It was in April of last year, days before the 27th anniversary of the nuclear disaster, when months of preparations finally came to fruition and they headed off to Chernobyl.
Legendary photographer Douglas Kirkland has worked with some of the most influencial celebrities in the world since 1961. Starting his career at the age of twenty-four, he was hired that same year by Look Magazine to photograph Marilyn Monroe for their 25th anniversary issue. His process and gear were simple but what he talks about to capture perfect seductive moments with Marilyn is brilliant.
Turning the work you do on a personal project into something that makes you money isn't a new idea (just ask stock shooters.) However, the forethought required to concept a personally fulfilling shoot or production that will also have the chance to generate some income can be tricky to figure out. This past weekend I had three shoots, and they were all because of one personal project I created a month ago. And I actually planned for this to happen.
Mathieu Maury and Antoine Pai are two photography and filmmaking enthusiast who decided to launch a production and advertising company called Maison Carnot. They are passionate about finding new subjects and ways to explore what surrounds them. Based on this philosophy, they came up with the short film "Paris through Pentax".
Have you ever snuck into a concert before? How about a huge festival? Well, in 2010 James Marcus Haney really wanted to attend Coachella... the only problem was he didn't have the money to get a ticket. So what's the next best thing? He figured out a way to bypass security and get in for free and got to see some of the bands he had admired for years. He continued sneaking into festivals around the world for the next few years, and filmed every minute of it.
My friend and RIDES Magazine's head photographer Andrew Link is no stranger to Fstoppers. He also happens to be one of the kings of shooting cars with the Westcott Ice Light, which is essentially a handheld LED rod (looks like a flourescent tube) used as a constant daylight temperature light source. After about 6 months of me begging Andrew for him to make one, he has finally created a fantastic and to-the-point tutorial on how to create an epic car portrait with nothing but a camera, tripod, and the Ice Light.
Jeremy Cowart is one of the most respected names in commercial and entertainment photography. Earlier this year he had the opportunity to travel to Iceland for the first time to shoot the talented singer Imogen Heap in a new portrait series. The photos that they captured in the remote and ethereal landscape of Iceland are nothing short of stunning.