Shooting A Professional Skateboarder

Louie Lopez - Professional Skateboarder

On my job for Volcom Men my subject was professional skateboarder Louie Lopez...and at times also his slobbering bulldog. Louie Lopez could not have been any further from a fashion model and I don't mean to say he was not good looking because he is a handsome kid, but he is a skater and posing for a camera is not something he is used to or wants to do. He wasn't a jerk by any means, on the contrary, he was nicer and more genuine than most in the fashion industry, but again all that was on his mind was skating. I knew I had to catch him in real moments, not "set up" too many shots, and just let the kid skate and hang out with his dog. 

Take The Time To Get To Know Your Subject

No matter your subject...and again take this to whatever industry or job role you may have, be it in fashion when your subject is a model, or you're a COO of a moving company and your subject is your own staff or a client across states...either way we are all dealing with people on a daily basis and each of them is different and require a variable approach to ensure the best possible outcome. If we approached handling relationships with every person, in the same way, we would miss the mark on so many and lose those as leads, clients, employees, even friends. Take a minute to LISTEN to your subject, to observe them, to really understand them and then let your intuition take over. It is when we jump right to the "deal" or whatever it may be and we skip actually getting to know the personality of who is in front of us that everything that follows becomes fake, forced, and likely a disaster.  

Today's Personal Development Call-To-Action: READ

What are you reading right now? And a blog doesn't count. Take 20 minutes for yourself to read a book, be it a sci-fi Harry Potter style book that takes you away from reality and puts you in a fantasy world or a business book such as 10X that get's your ass in high gear and ready for success and being productive, the key is that you are reading, that as you are your mind is free flowing, and you as an individual are growing. I am currently reading The Secret by Rhonda Byrne.

Fashion is a tool... to compete in life outside the home. People like you better, without knowing why, because people always react well to a person they like the looks of.
— Mary Quant

Mom always said, "It's not all about you."

Proud Instructor

I am excited to share two of my most recent photography student's work who have really impressed me. Tyler mostly shoots the beautiful landscapes of Canada where he is from and Christopher is a bad ass car photographer. Both wanted to shoot fashion, I don't blame them, it is what I personally love to shoot most.

It is my opinion that a lot of the photography community outside of our industry struggles with shooting fashion, but to put this in perspective if I wanted to shoot my dream Porsche or the mountains of New Zealand that I would love to visit I can guarantee that Tyler & Christopher would almost certainly be able to do the subjects more justice than me.

Why? Is it because they are better photographers than me? There really is no "better" in photography when we are all professionals who understand the technicals behind taking a photo, there is only perceived value that comes from an image based off of what it makes the viewer feel, which comes from the unique combination of so many factors such as light, depth of field, composition, angle, emotion, but there is no "better." No, it is because that is their passion, it is their wheelhouse, and that shines through in their photography and in the final image...mine just so happens to be fashion and I am really proud of them for jumping face first into the deep end of a new genre of shooting and coming out with a win!

Photography by Tyler model Jorji Zimmatore of Photogenics LA

Get Outside Of Your Comfort Zone...You Don't Have To Be The Best At Everything Right Away!

The point being (and apply this to your own life/craft/industry), that there are so many genres of photography, each having their own attention to detail matters that make them unique and that just by owning a camera this does not make you a master of all of them, and where I am really proud of these two is their ability in one day, to step outside of their normal routine and comfort zone and dive head first into shooting something new to them. And crushing it, in my opinion, given that these are new faces (incredible nonetheless), they only had about 2 hours of shoot time and these images are unretouched film. I give them a lot of credit and I'll be thinking of them next time I am faced with trying something new that intimidates me. 

Photography by Christopher x model Brontë Schleppi of Photogenics LA

Today's Personal Development Call To Action:

Praise someone other than yourself today. Utterly and unselfishly show them love!

Talent With A Smile

Inspirational Artist Newsletter #2

"Sharing Fashion & Pairing it With Motivation & Personal Development"

Talent With A Smile

Brontë is 15yrs old and signed as a model only 6 months ago. Already is she being published in editorials while somehow still attending school...I am so impressed with this young lady. Not only could she move like a well seasoned 25-year-old model, but she also was so pure of heart, smiling the entire time and oh so fun & easy to work with. Little do a lot of models know that it is the latter that gets you repeat booked. Ask me of an LA new face who I believe is going to go far and make it (in whatever it is she pursues) and I'm going to tell you about Brontë Schleppi.


Today's Personal Development Call-To-Action

Take 5 minutes for yourself. Doesn't sound hard, but did you do it today? 

"I think there is beauty in everything.
What 'normal' people perceive as ugly, I can usually see something of beauty in it."
- Alexander McQueen


No Matter How High Profile A Job Don't Forget To Smile

Inspirational Artist Newsletter #1

"Sharing Fashion & Pairing it With Motivation & Personal Development"

Penny Lane of IMG Models by Nick Sabatalo

Find Time To Laugh Today!

No matter how high profile a job, always find time to laugh and put a smile on each other's face. On my shoot with Penny we made up a story that she was a time traveler who played her magic fiddle so her lover would be able to find her no matter where or what time she was now. You'd never believe what was in her suitcase...A ferret! We laughed all day, created, and enjoyed the beautiful poppy fields just before their own time was over.


Today's Personal Development Call-To-Action

Write down in the affirmative everything you want to have, be, do...below are a few from my own list today:

  • I am Generous
  • I am Grateful
  • I am Fulfilled
  • I am a Leader
  • I am an Inspiration

"Today's a great day to get a little bit better."