Wait, Just Photos Of The Model? No Product?

I very rarely shoot models for the model themselves — usually I’m shooting a product, a shoe, or something the model is simply promoting and selling — my client is usually the company, not the model.  So the focus is not on the model, but is on the item.  However, every once in a while, for clients who are persistent and understanding about my schedule while trying to schedule their shoot (which can be extremely hard given my wedding, corporate event, product and news schedule),  I am happy to do a shoot just for the model’s portfolio.

Now, to be honest, the whole modeling industry is a bit odd to me –  there are about a billion people out there on the internet calling themselves photographers who frequent amateur modeling websites in search for models to shoot with…  many tend to be creepily too anxious to take photos of a pretty girl…  so much so that they of course do it for free, or even pay an non experienced model to come and shoot with them.  I tend to think that this path can quickly get into the weird, creepy, scary, and dangerous realm – so most girls I meet that are interested in modeling, I try to guide away from the creeper path.  Now,  that is not to say there are not some really talented photographers out there who come up with some really great photos when working for free… but I tend to be more interested in running a sustainable and profitable business than the opportunity to take photos of a pretty girl.

The way it tends to work in the real modeling world is that girls (and guys) in addition to having some very simple snapshots of themselves, they invest in photos of themselves (not always), approach agencies (not always), sign with agencies (not always), invests in more photos with photographers the agency recommends (not always), and then the agent markets them to their clients (not always).  Client’s end up picking talent, not agencies —  although agencies only show who they want to show to the clients.

But I digress — If you’d like more of my thoughts on that whole industry, I’m obviously very opinionated on it, so feel free to just shoot me an e-mail and you are likely to get a 4 page response back!

This recent shoot with Kelly was her first shoot – as she is just beginning to build a portfolio and then approach agencies.  I was very impressed with her for her first shoot – she was fun, energetic, and very excited about shooting.  — here are a handful of the results.

 

“Another recent model shoot… “

From Kelly, posted by on 3/05/2012 (7 items)

Generated by Facebook Photo Fetcher



 

Aerotek at BEYA

A few weekends ago, I had the pleasure of shooting for Aerotek, as they sponsored and were a major supporter of the Black Engineer of the Year Award Conference –  A series of seminars and awards dinners that was held in Philadelphia.  I love covering business seminars because I enjoy listening (as much as I can) during the sessions I am shooting much more than listening during political events (I’ve given up on all politicians).  Business seminars are usually much more interesting, and unlike in politics (and government in general) – I know there is accountability in business – which gives the speakers much more credibility in my mind over our elected officials!

Most of this conference was full of break-out sessions and award dinners, as well as a career fair going on during the entire event.  I particularly enjoyed listening to Aerotek’s (and former Philadelphia Eagle – which I had no idea up until this conference) Rodney Scaife deliver a great speech detailing the story of his career and inspiring the students at the student award gala.  I also really enjoyed listening to Maurice Kinsey speak in one of the break-out sessions.  There were also a number of performers at the various awards dinners, but by far, I was most impressed with Rashida Jolley, a harpist with a fantastic voice who blew everyone away!  Boris Kodjoe, the MC of the main Gala also seemed blown away by Rashida Jolley!

Here are a few photos from the weekend…

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Iran wants to attack us. . . News?

Congress has regular hearings with top brass of the military, and intelligence agencies to go over world wide threats to US interests.  And shockingly (sarc) – it came out in recent hearings that the US is worried about Iran wanting to fulfill an attack on US soil.  — so no new news.

 

 

CIA Director DAVID PETRAEUS testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee Hearing on "World Wide Threats" (James Berglie/ZUMA Press)

 

Director of National Intelligence JAMES CLAPPER (right) and Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. RONALD BURGESS just prior to testifying before the Senate Armed Forces Committee Hearing on Worldwide Threats. (James Berglie/ZUMA Press)

Director of National Intelligence JAMES CLAPPER testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee Hearing on Worldwide Threats. (James Berglie/ZUMA Press)

Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. RONALD BURGESS greets Sentor JOHN MCCAIN prior to testifying before the Senate Armed Forces Committee Hearing on Worldwide Threats. (James Berglie/ZUMA Press)

The Balancing Act

This week I had the pleasure of shooting a couple events for Aerotek, an operating company within Allegis Group, that provides professional and technical staffing services.  I’m not new to shooting corporate events, as I’ve shot a number of different events for a wide range of companies, and I’ve learned that one thing remains consistent in the corporate world.  The people at the top usually don’t like having their picture taken!  Just as in the wedding industry, “traditional” style photographers who are often “in your face” the entire time, have once again given photographers in general a bad name!  So knowing this was a concern, just as it is in the wedding world, I made sure my subjects knew that I was to try my hardest not to be seen, or heard, the entire time!

It’s a fine line you walk as the type of photographer that I am –  trying to constantly balance between being too involved and noticeable on one hand, while trying to make sure you take the right positions and get the best shots on the other hand.  That’s not something that can be taught very easily.  This is where I think my experience in poker comes in handy (in case you did not know, my wife would say I’m addicted – but sadly, it’s just a hobby).  I’m constantly reading people’s non-verbal cues to judge if I can move in, if I need to move out, if I can go ahead and fire, or if I need to hold tight for a bit.  I also draw on my experience shooting politics, corporate events, weddings, etc. to read various personalities and apply the appropriate technique to each situation.  Many photographers say that having a photographic eye is one thing that cannot be taught.  But, I think the balancing act of knowing where to be, when to be there, when to and when NOT to shoot, is one more thing that cannot be taught.  In many ways, knowing that balancing act is just as important as having a “photographic eye.”

When shooting corporate events, you always wonder what the company’s culture is like.  I tend to automatically think corporate events are more “timid” than the weddings I shoot on a regular basis.  But this could not have been further from the truth with this week’s events – the people at Aerotek were outgoing and friendly while maintaining a great deal of professionalism.  I could not have asked for a better group of people to work for and enjoyed being as “ninja like” as possible in getting my shots while being as discreet as possible.  “Traditional” photographers take note – nobody likes a photographer in their face!

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