In my last post I included a wonderful image made late last year of the artist Jenna Fredde. Looking again at that photograph made me realize how much I enjoy photographing creative people. Expanding on that theme, I thought it might be interesting to visit a number of artist's portraits I have made over the past few years. Here are a few of my favorites.
I was first introduced to abstract artist Christopher Martin through his wife Stacie. She was a prominent model in the 80's and someone I worked with periodically. Chris' first gallery was in the Uptown area of Dallas. As galleries began to shift into the Design District however, he went with the flow and moved to a larger space on Dragon Street. That gallery flourished and a few years later, he and Stacie decided to open a second gallery in Aspen... and to move there permanently. It was a lifestyle decision, both for themselves and for their children. This photo was shot in Christopher's Aspen studio shortly after he moved in. Placing him on his work table, dressed in paint spattered work clothes with freshly created artwork leaning on the wall behind him spoke directly to the "image" and "brand" he wished to create. All good, and... I got to play in Aspen!!
Singer/Songwriter Jennie Williams lived in my building and regularly performed at the Opening Bell Coffee Shop downstairs. Shortly after we met, she hired me to do a "Branding Session" with her to provide images for an upcoming CD (entitled Save Love) and for P.R. and promotional purposes. I scouted a number of locations in Deep Ellum and then we came together one afternoon and spent about three hours shooting. The above image was shot entirely in natural light and is my favorite from the session. The location, her pose and how she is dressed all combine to perfectly tell her story!
This head shot of photographic artist Kim Robbins is hot off the press! Kim was a successful model in the 80's and the first professional model I ever worked with. She went on to marry fashion photographer Peter Robbins and with his encouragement, eventually became a photographer herself. Was really thrilled when she reached out to me early this year to create a new and modern head shot for P.R. purposes. We talked about how she would use the photograph and based on her description, I decided a simple background was best. She brought a few clothing options and Cindy Gregg did her hair & make-up. The end result truly defines her brand in a simple and yet beautiful way. And... it was so much fun to come full circle with this lovely lady.
Actress, comedian and singer Liz Mikel is one of Dallas' forces of nature. I photographed her during a one month run of 'Second City Does Dallas'. It was a slapstick lampoon of Dallas by the famed Chicago comedy troupe and Liz was the only Dallas cast member. Before that she appeared in 28 episodes of Friday Night Lights as Corrina, the mother of star running back "Smash" Williams. And if all that wasn't enough... she also sang regular jazz gigs at numerous venues throughout the city. The location for this image is an area on the second floor of my building I like to call "Studio B". It has wonderful red brick and concrete walls as well as a number of great industrial doors, etc.
Am wrapping up with one of my personal favorites! A few years ago, the iconic television series "Dallas" was resurrected (complete with a number of the original stars) and ran for three seasons. The man behind the project was producer and director Ken Topolsky. I had the opportunity to photograph him about midway through the shows run. We chatted about how to approach the shot and decided: 1.) to have the Dallas skyline as a background and 2.) to incorporate an "on the set" feeling. The image you see above was the result. He loved it because it fully and completely defined his brand. I loved it for the same reason, but also because it was a technical challenge incorporating the night time skyline and the hot lights all into one photo.
Brand based imagery...that's what I do! Thanks for looking!