‘Meet the People Who Shoot You’ was birthed simply out of my own curiosity and desire to learn from those that I admire and also to build a solid network of creative minds and share their humble beginnings, experiences and some advice for those eager to break into the business. When I pick up a copy of Digital Pro Magazine or American Photo, etc. and I see there’s an in depth interview with a personal favorite photographer or someone who built a career starting out with a disposable camera, I’ll pick it up and read it front to back and back to front. So with this new series of interviews, I hope to get some readers out there to become inspired, pick up whatever camera they have with them and go out and shoot. The questions shouldn’t end here. Think of these questions as a friendly way of being introduced to this photographer and their work. I encourage those who read this to compile their own questions and direct them to either this site or, to the photographer you find you have the most in common with and see yourself going in that direction.
Who are you?
Schooled or self-taught?
Sort of both. Started out self-taught. Learned stuff while assisting photographers (Jonathan Bell, Ward LaForme Jr). I went to the School of Visual Arts in New York City for the Photography BFA program, but dropped out after completing my first year. I didn’t learn anything technical that applies to the type of photography I do (fashion, digital), though I did learn more about the politics of fashion photography and how to be more business-like.
When did you first pick up a camera and the moment you just knew?
I first picked up a camera with the intent of taking photographs (not just family photos) around age 14. I was in the 8th grade and in an art class and I wanted to express myself in ways other than through drawing/painting. The moment I “knew” was after watching several episodes of America’s Next Top Model (first or second season) I wanted to create interesting fashion images like I saw on the show.
What type of photography do you specialize in and why?
I specialize in fashion and beauty photography. Ever since I started doing fashion photography I fell in love with it. I find it so appealing on so many different levels. I have no interest in doing any other type of photography.
Favorite lens and why?
I love all of my babies, but for beauty my favourite lens would have to be my Canon EF 135mm F2.0L. It was my first L series lens, and it makes for incredible photographs. Some of my own favourite photos were created using that lens.
Who are your influences? And if you had one question to ask them, it would be ….. ?
My obvious influences are the photographers I assisted. Recently I have been really into Helmut Newton and Guy Bourdin’s work. As far as the living photographers go, I would love to ask Mert & Marcus: What’s it like shooting Lara Stone?
Ideal gig would be ….
A big fashion ad campaign. I have always loved the look of Chloe ads in magazines. Would love to shoot for fashion designers such as Jeremy Laing, Alexander Wang, The Row, Mikhale Kale, Rodarte, and jewelry designers such as The Woodland and Armor Jewelry. Secondarily, a humongous editorial (20+ pages) in Italian or Paris Vogue would be a dream come true.
If there is any advice, whether it be camera or business related, it would be ….
Know your audience. Professionalism is very important, so always be nice to your clients and the people you work with. There’s nothing worse than having a bad reputation.
Jennifer Dickinson | Photographer | 250.516.7419