Friday, January 13, 2006

"... The Devil Will Find Work For Idle Hands To Do."

One of the reasons I have been sans camera of late has been due to filing and editing. While I do actually enjoy it, it can get a bit tedious sometimes, especially when I saw the photos while shooting, while putting them through my workflow, and now again... only to have to wait a month or so (mostly) before seeing them in print. But when they do hit the shelves, it's grand.

Like so. The new Session, Issue 19, is on the shelves. My favourite part of it is the Familia ad; #8 in the series, known as "Demo Gods". I have read a lot on the web about photographer's frustrations with clients, when creativity is expected but according to the client's guidelines... not the best environment for creativity to flourish in. Familia certainly rate as some of my favourite clients in that even though they have a lot of input (all are very specific about what they stand for, and where the roots of their aesthetic lies) they respect my style and ideas. As a result, I'm eight ads down the lines with them, and have seen them use documentary images in an advertising capacity that does more credit to the photos than most magazines do... everyone should be so luck as to get client's like this.

Also in the latest Session is a photo feature, with a lot of colleagues' work, from local skate shooters Ben Bergh and Mig Howell, to "Bang Bang Gucci" lensman Warren Van Rensburg. Some of my unused shots from the last few years are in the mag, and they look good, I'm glad to say. The colour shot is of Q & Not U... I'm glad they came here on tour, and I got the chance to see them... they have since broken up, and I consider it a huge loss. Speaking of Warren...

He and I got the chance to be on the other side of the lens for a change. We wound up modelling for Aubrey Jonsson who was doing a shoot for SL. We were 'supposed to be fighting or something, but it seems Warren couldn't keep from cracking up every now and then. Don't think we'll quit our day jobs somehow, but it was fun to do... and it gives one an appreciation for how awkward it can be staring down a camera. Warren's day job, apart from his photography of course, is photo editor of Stage Magazine. The new issue is out, and with it my first assignment for the magazine in it's new format.

Finally, the Fokofpolisiekar article is here. There have been a lot of the band's fans asking me about this one; well, now you can go buy it. I'm quite stoked with how it came out... they went very minimal on the layout, and completely avoided using ANY live shots... only images of the band behind the scenes. Given that many photographer's that know of my association with the band seem to think I'm all about the jump shots, I'm glad Steak (Stage's editor) went with that approach. It feels good to be a "mere" documentary photographer again.

I remember a documentary on National Geographic phototographers, where one of them mentions getting the cover (I think it was Sam Abell). Anyway, he describes it as such an affirming feeling, in terms of being able to see it on a shelf and know that it's "yours". It's true. It's a good feeling. And to top it all off, it's not my usual style... Portraiture is more Warren's domain, but he was clear on what he wanted, and the result (in 07:30am Durbanville light) is that shot... more of an anti-portrait, as I have taken to calling Warren's style. Only worry for me, with the sun being so low, is the shadow in the bottom of the frame. I hoped to dodge it out once they'd selected the final image, but they went to print without letting me have a crack at it. So I'm in the shot too now. Joy.

Indulge me one last bit of punting... the spread from the Joy Of Jazz article. South African Jazz is a whole other story, even when shooting it. As far as the venues go, it's an absolute ball to shoot; the light is like butter, and one can get much sharper shots, sans flash, than one could EVER get in your average club. Props to the designer of the piece in the mag, Johan de Lange. I normally hate when peeps crop or cut my frames, as I always shoot full frame (unless I specifically intend to crop to another format). But Johan actually asked me first (how often does that happen?), explained what he had in mind, and surprised me... I like how his mind works.

Well, that's it for now. Back to hours in front of the laptop. As far as Familia goes, if you are a fan, be sure to check the next issue of Session, as a big article is planned there, concern the Backseat Driving Tour. 'Til then, I'll just keep listening to The Smiths (for those of you who haven't figured out how this post got it's title).



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