Image copyright Stacy Pearsall. All rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about photographs and their backstories from some of the most respected artists in contemporary photography. While the series started as a way for you to meet more of the movers and shakers in the industry, each backstory has been from an artist who should be on your radar. With each episode they've shared a little piece of their heart and their passion for photography.
Stacy Pearsall joins me in this new episode. She's a photographer, author, educator, military consultant, veteran and the only woman to earn the NPPA's Military Photographer of the Year Award twice! She shares a lot of great insight into her passion for special projects, especially the Veterans Portrait Project. Click on Stacy's image above to visit her website.
To date she's photographed over 6500 veterans in 27 states. With 23 left to go and thousands more veterans to photograph, finding out how you can help is just a click away.
Image copyright George Lepp. All rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about the favorite images from some of the most respected artists in contemporary photography. Many of the images we've shared have also been gateway images to the start of some of the best known careers in imaging.
George Lepp joins me in this new episode with one of his earliest and most favorite images. He's a photographer, educator, author, and admired by so many of us for his never-ending passion for the outdoor world. As the Field Editor for Outdoor Photographer magazine, his monthly column will keep you in touch with nature photography.
George was one of Canon's first members of their Explorers of Light program. If you're looking for help raising the bar on your skill set in capturing nature photography, check out his six hour seminar, available for streaming.
To see more of George's work click on his image above and visit his website.
Image copyright Michele Celentano. All right reserved.
"Why?" is about introducing you to the movers and shakers in photography, but in the process, since we started in April of 2016, I continue to be amazed at the images and the backstories.
Michele Celentano is best known for her family portraiture, but there's nothing she can't photograph. She's also an educator, author, Mom, wife and a great friend. She's been involved in many of the SCU workshops over the years helping thousands of photographers raise the bar on their portraits.
But best of all is her passion for imaging along with her love for printed images. Michele shared a terrific post a few years back called "I Believe." She gave everyone the right to plagiarize and steal what she shares with her clients about the importance of printed photographs. Just click on the image below to read "I Believe."
To check out more of Michele's work and visit her website, click on the family portrait above. And, stay on top of her workshops and programs by putting her Facebook Group on your radar!
Image copyright Kevin Ames. All rights reserved.
Remember my initial reason for starting "Why?" I wanted to introduce you to some of the most respected artists in our industry through their favorite images. What I completely underestimated was the diversity of their work and the backstories. Approaching one hundred artists in the series, I so appreciate the support and the willingness of these photographers to share their images, stories and insight.
Kevin Ames joins me with a great backstory and a short conversation about the importance of special projects. Kevin is a commercial photographer, but there's nothing he can't photograph. He's an educator, writer, author of several books on digital photography, the Managing Editor of PhotoFocus.com, and we've been friends for a lot of years. He shares some terrific insight about stepping away from what you have to photograph for your business, and just shooting for yourself - no specs, just being guided by your own creativity!
To see more of Kevin's work and enjoy some great content just click on the portrait above.
Image copyright Lindsay Adler. All rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about some of the most respected artists in professional photography today, but with a small twist. I wanted to introduce you to them via one of their favorite images, rather than just the typical "about piece" or podcast. Looking back on the last year and a half of working on this project, I'm continually amazed at the diversity of the backstories, the passion and the creativity of the photographers involved.
Lindsay Adler joins me on this new episode. She's a well-respected fashion photographer, educator, writer, and friend to so many of us in the industry. She's one of the very people I know who knew as a kid what she wanted to do in life. She formally started her business at fifteen, and her passion for the craft, creativity, and business never waivers.
In this new episode Lindsay shares some outstanding insight into her passion for photography as well as solid advice for young photographers just starting out. To see more of Lindsay's images click on her image above. And, while you're on her website check out her blog and workshop schedule. She's got a number of workshops on the calendar, and several for 2018 are already sold out.
Image copyright David Michael Kennedy. All rights reserved.
In April of 2016, I launched "Why?" because there were too many photographers who only knew the artists who spoke at the last convention they attended. Well, we're an industry led by some remarkable photographers who every day set the standard for quality, creativity, and passion for the craft. I simply wanted you to meet more of them!
I'm very excited to have David Michael Kennedy in the "Why?" spotlight today. David and I first met back in the late 80's when I was with Hasselblad. At that time his iconic image of Debbie Harry was used in the corporate ad campaign. In 1986 he left NYC and his commercial photography business heading for New Mexico and a goal to fine-tune his work in fine art. Since then David has become recognized as one of the finest Platinum Palladium printers in the world with prints in private and public collections.
He's a phenomenal artist and human being. In fact, it's his sincerity and passion for the craft and his subjects that makes today's "Why?" one of the most poignant backstories we've ever shared.
Click on David's image above to link to his website. And, if you're looking for an incredible one on one workshop, pick up the phone and call David directly. He regularly teaches five-day, one on one workshops, strictly by request.
Image copyright Karen Kuehn. All rights reserved.
We look at hundreds of photographs every day but rarely do we hear the backstories. I started "Why?" to introduce you to some of the most respected artists in photography by way of one of their favorite images. I never anticipated the diversity, insight, and depth of each story.
Karen Kuehn joins me today with one of her most favorite images. Over the years it's also been one of the most popular with her fans as well. I love a quote from Sally Mann about Karen, her work and her book, Maverick Camera:
"She is funny, weirder than water and so damn good with a camera. She can drum a snake into a lawnmower, casting a spell over our hum-drum, quotidian lives...From within that fantasy spell emerge her trademark evocative, vital and honest images."
To see more of Karen's work just click on the image above. And, while you're there check out Maverick Camera. She only printed a thousand books, and in less than a year she's down to ninety or so left. So, this is truly "last call." Each book is signed and numbered. If you're looking for an incredible, inspirational gift this holiday season, this is the book that belongs in every photographer's collection.
Image copyright Rick Gerrity. All rights reserved.
What do you call an artist who never flies; has used his camera gear to meet thousands of people all over the United States and has a truck turning 400,000 miles? You call him Rick Gerrity!
I started this series to introduce you to some of the most respected photographers in our industry, and if you've taken one of Rick's workshops/classes, then you already have experienced his unstoppable passion. What I enjoy the most though is his love for photography combined with relationship building with every subject he meets, literally along life's highway!
I think of Rick as the ultimate street photographer - he's never without a LUMIX camera, and everyone he photographs becomes a part of his family and he a part of theirs.
Check out Rick's website with a click on the image above. And, wander over to the LUMIX Lounge and meet the rest of Panasonic's Luminary team. They're an amazing group of artists and educators all with a common denominator - their love for imaging!
Image copyright Sarah Petty. All rights reserved.
My motivation when I started this series was to introduce you to some of the most respected artists in professional photography. The idea of sharing their favorite images and hearing the backstories seemed the best way to make the introductions. However, I underestimated the diversity and impact of so many of the images and artists. Each artist has shared a different perspective of imaging and taken the concept far beyond expectations.
Sarah Petty joins us on "Why?" today. She's become such a presence wearing her business and marketing hat that some of us forget her first love in business is being a photographer! She's an artist, educator, author, business owner, Mom and a great friend to so many of us in the industry. In this episode of "Why?" she shares some outstanding insight into her philosophy about turning memories and images into art...BIG art!
Click on the image above to link to Sarah's Joy of Marketing blog or her website to see more of her images.
Images copyright Barabara Bordnick. All Rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about some of the industry's most talented artists and educators. Talking about their favorite images started out as a way for me to introduce you to some amazing people, but this series has become so much more. Each episode has become an introduction to the experiences that have often helped shape their creativity, technique and even the direction of their career.
Barbara Bordnick joins me today with two of her favorite images and the role they've played in her career as both an artist and an educator.
"The frame is like a blank canvas and you're responsible for everything you put in it."
Barbara started her career as a portrait and fashion photographer, but along the way stunning flowers and nudes became subjects. But, not just any flowers or nudes. As you look at her images keep in mind she does NOT crop! Her signature is composing everything in the frame and NOT in the computer.
To see more of Barbara's work, follow her workshop schedule and speaking engagements, just click on either of the two images above. And, make sure you wander through her galleries, keeping in mind that each image is composed in the camera!
Images copyright Jerome Brunet. All rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about the backstories of great images shared by some of the most respected artists in photography. While normally each episode only features a single image, sometimes it's hard for an artist to pick just one. One of the artists on "Why?" a year ago felt it was like being asked which of your kids do you love more? Jérôme Brunet joins me today with two images on "Why?" His work is a testimony to quality, passion and so many artists in music each of us considers iconic.
Jérôme and I have never met in person, but I became more familiar with his work when he shared a comment on one of my blog posts. I followed the link to his website and later a Kickstarter campaign he's doing for a new book, with the foreword by Steve Miller.
I called him, and we had one of those conversations where you hang up the phone and feel like you've known the person for years! I enjoyed so many of his images, but appreciate his philosophy about giving back even more. Over the years he's donated work to the non-profit organizations Unicef, T.J. Martell Foundation and the John Varvatos Stuart House Benefit.
Now based in Las Vegas, his award-winning photographs have been published internationally in Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Time, Billboard, Popular Photography, American Photo, Guitar World, Variety and The New York Times. Interested in seeing more of his work? Just click on either image, Tom Petty or B. B. King to link to his website.
Images copyright Chamira Young. All rights reserved.
I started "Why?" to introduce you to the movers and shakers in the industry, but underestimated the diversity of each backstory behind the images shared.
This episode is particularly fun for me because Chamira Young is my guest. She's a photographer, writer, and podcaster. She's also my co-host on "Mind Your Own Business," a monthly partnership between SCU and Photofocus. Over the last few months we've shared recording time with some of the most influential people in photography, and now Chamira is switching from host to guest.
Chamira referred to the image above as sort of an "extra" photo, but one of her favorites. While normally "Why?" is only about one image, I wanted to share the second picture she spoke about, because it adds so much to the story.
Check out more of Chamira's work by visiting her website and join us on the "Mind Your Own Business" podcast. Working with Chamira is a kick! Her insight into people and her love for the craft keeps me on my toes, and makes each podcast fun to do - for both us and our guests.
As I've written many times before, the best part of this industry has little to do with photography, but the friendships that come out of everyone's mutual love for the craft!
Image copyright Ian Plant. All rights reserved.
If there's one thing the "Why?" series doesn't lack it's variety. Remember, I started this to introduce you to the movers and shakers in imaging, but each artist has brought so much more to the table!
Ian Plant is in the "Why?" spotlight today with a phenomenal image captured with Tamron's SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di VC USD lens. He's a testimonial to the fun of cyberspace. Ian and I have never met face to face, but thanks to my relationship with Tamron USA, we've got a great "cyber-friendship" going. Plus, we've all been introduced to his images. As a Tamron Image Master many of his images are featured with Tamron's product information.
Ian's diversity in photography is only over-shadowed by his love for the craft. From people to critters, big and small, and on to stunning landscapes, even volcanoes, I'm not sure there's any subject missing from his portfolio!
Here's another point to capturing an image like this...the stare from the lion is pure terror and redefines the meaning of an intense and serious stare. I had some fun finding two of my favorite actors, Samuel L. Jackson and Anthony Hopkins with similar expressions!
To see more of Ian's work, click on the image above before the lion takes your hand!
Image by Kay Eskridge. All rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about the stories behind the favorite images of some of the most respected artists in photography. With each episode of "Why?" I've been amazed at each guest's willingness to share a piece of the passion they have for the craft.
Kay Eskridge joins me on this new episode. She's a photographer, educator and has been a good friend for many years. This is a different kind of back-story today and relates to the legacy of each photographer. Her backstory is about insight into the why photography is so important, not just in the lives of our clients, but our own as well.
Kay's specialty is family portraiture. She never compromises on the quality of an image, customer service or her relationship with each client. She combines her passion for photography with her love for people. Check out more of Kay's work with a visit to her website by clicking on the photograph above.
Image Copyright Greg Gorman. All rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about the favorite images of some of photography's most respected artists. We see hundreds of images every day, but rarely do we hear the stories behind them. Greg Gorman is in the "Why?" spotlight today talking about one of his most iconic images, his portrait of Andy Warhol. Actually, it's one of the most recognized portraits in the world!
I first met Greg back in the 90's when one of his images was featured in Hasselblad's "Hot Stuff" campaign. Back then, working together with Eastman Kodak, we were one of the first companies to set up "Speakers Corner" and bridge the aisle between the two booths. We had a different speaker every hour. Greg was one of our speakers at PhotoWest in San Francisco, then the sister show to PPE in NYC in October. He's an artist, educator, writer and today has added winemaker to his credentials.
From celebrity portraits and advertising campaigns to magazine layouts and fine art, spanning over four decades, he never compromises on the quality of an image or the relationships with his clients. Click on the picture above to visit his website and his galleries - you'll never be disappointed.
For me a photograph is most successful
when it doesn't answer all the questions and it leaves something to be desired.
I like each picture that I take to be a testament to the individual character of my subject.
Image copyright Charleton Churchill. All rights reserved.
"Why?" started out a year ago as a great way to introduce you to the movers and shakers in professional photography. However, I completely underestimated the variety of images, the passion of each artist and the power of the backstories behind each photograph.
Charleton Churchill joins me on this new episode with a remarkable story. I'll let you hear it directly from him, but there is one point I want to share. Social media keeps making the world a much smaller place!
I recently "met" Charleton thanks to the Internet and Profoto USA, an SCU partner. While we probably share many common friends in the industry we had never actually met in person. On August 8 I shared his "Tiny Talks" video in the Profoto Showcase. After watching the video and reading his blog, I was blown away by the niche he's chosen for a part of his expertise in imaging - adventure weddings. One phone call later we had this episode of "Why?" scheduled.
We're part of an industry built on a solid foundation of passion. As I've written and talked about in the past, the best thing about this industry has very little to do with photography, but the friendships that come out of everyone's love for the craft!
Interested in seeing more of Charleton's work? Visit his website and blog with a click on the image above. And, if you're interested in finding out more about Profoto's Off-Camera Flash System, which Charleton talks about in his backstory, just click on the Profoto banner below.
Image copyright Paul Ernest. All rights reserved.
Since starting this series last year, over and over again I'm surprised at the power of the images and backstories being shared. I started "Why?" to introduce you to some of the movers and shakers in the industry, but it's become so much more.
Paul Ernest is in the spotlight and definitely somebody who should be on your radar. Based in Dallas, Paul's work is all about fine art imaging. Like so many artists on "Why?" there's probably nothing Paul can't photograph, but he's chosen fine art because it's so in line with his passion for storytelling.
"We live through stories... stories that are handed down to us through seasons and generations. We are inspired by stories and live to write our own narrative and our own contribution of life to tell."
Check out more of Paul's work by visiting his website and galleries. Just click on his image above. And, if you're interested in a terrific online educational series to help you further develop your storytelling portrait skills, here's the link. He's launching a six week series later this month.
Image copyright Shiv Verma. All rights reserved.
We see hundreds of images every day, but rarely hear the stories behind them. Often an artist has a photograph with a story that blends together technique and relevance, resulting in a much more unique message.
Shiv Verma is in the spotlight with a great image and back story. Shiv is a photographer, author, educator and regularly involved in various aspects of new imaging technology. He believes in being involved in the industry and is often a speaker and competition judge at various conferences/workshops in photography.
"After a lot of debate I decided to title this image “Refugees Welcome”. In the past 6 months the topic of refugees has been dominant in the news. With Canada as one of the countries that has openly welcomed refugees, I felt this image represented the statement appropriately. The concrete totems can be viewed as either emerging or going into the St. Lawrence river in Northern Quebec."
As a member of the Lumix Luminary team, Shiv is an obvious fan of Panasonic's mirrorless technology. Refugees Welcome was captured with the new Lumix GH5. As stated by Panasonic, the camera's "splash/dustproof construction is thanks to weather sealing on every joint, dial, and button." Shiv shares in this backstory the challenge of shooting in the rain, but in the end, he got the shot!
To see more of Shiv's work and follow his speaking and teaching schedule, just click on his image above.
Image copyright Terry Clark. All rights reserved.
"Why?" is all about some of today's most talented artists and the backstories about their images. Terry Clark joins me with more than just a story about an important image in his career. When I emailed him about being a part of this series and sharing one of his most favorite images, he wrote back:
Favorite photos are like friends. Some come in and out of your life quickly, serving their purpose and poof, they’re gone. Others tend to linger a bit longer. Teaching us a lesson or two then slowly fade. The best ones are forever. Lifetime friends. These are the ones that last. They hit all the right chords and play the sweetest music. They’re also the most difficult to identify because often their strength is in their longevity. They may or may not be part of a specific body of work. In fact, because these are the images that hold their place so long, it’s possible they’re not even part of what you currently photograph. Yet, there they are, holding their place in your heart.
I first met Terry in his studio in Pittsburgh seven years ago. As part of a photo industry fund-raiser for one of the non-profits, I had donated a few hours of my time for marketing support. Terry was the high bidder. I was living in Akron, Ohio at the time and Pittsburgh was a pretty easy drive. So, Molly the Wonder Dog and I headed to spend a day with Terry.
Terry's the perfect example of what I love most about our industry, the friends who come into our lives out of a mutual love for photography. That first visit set the stage for a terrific friendship. And, while we might not see each other very often, when we catch up on the phone it's as if the last thing we talked about ended with a comma - the conversation and the comfort of a great friendship just take over.
Click on the image to visit Terry's website and see more of his work. You might also enjoy a post from a few years back that Terry and I sort of did together.
The bottom line to everything we should be doing as business owners can can be summed up in my favorite quote from Terry:
Smile big, laugh hard, and make people happy!
Image copyright Gareth Rockliffe. All rights reserved.
When I started this series, I underestimated the variety of backstories the artists would share about their favorite images. I also never thought about their wisdom and insight, or their passion for the craft with each click of the shutter.
Gareth Rockliffe is in the "Why?" spotlight today. He's a perfect example of what makes this industry so much fun: the friendships that come along because of our mutual love for everything under the imaging umbrella.
I met Gareth thanks to his submission of a slideshow he put together for a Photodex/SCU contest and won. Later we did a Photodex "Building Your Business" segment and shared Gareth's video trailer for his "Great American Coastline" project. He's a remarkable artist who makes it very clear, with every image he captures, "photography isn't just a job, it's a way of life."
Visit Gareth's website with just a click on the image above. He's an artist who needs to be on your radar!
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.