A few weeks ago I was invited to shoot a library of images of the superstars and divas of the WWE for USA Network. We joined them on the road (where they always are) in Memphis and Nashville and got a pretty interesting look behind the scenes of the organization. Sometimes when you see something up close, the curtain is lifted and you really don’t think that much of it anymore. Other times you come away with a new found respect for whatever it is. In this case for me it was the latter. I didn’t have much of an opinion going in but after seeing how intense a schedule they keep (somewhere between 250-300 shows a year) and how it’s all put together, it really is an impressive operation. Sunday night they were in Memphis, Monday night RAW was in Nashville, and Tuesday they were in Atlanta for another show, and on and on, all with the same set that has to be trucked overnight to the next venue. The dedication and family atmosphere amongst the stars and crew was pretty cool to see too. Here are some of the many shots we did. Thank you to Jason Holzman, Janine Evangelista, Mark Rheault, and Oren Popovsky at NBCU. And a big thank you to Andrews Jenkins for letting me crash the party.
My latest directorial effort. I’m proud it’s for such a great product that you can really believe in. Child stabilization has been a cause I’ve been passionate about for a while and I’m fortunate enough to be able to do my part with this spot. If you or a friend is still using a traditional baby carrier causing unwanted shake and wobble as you walk, don’t worry. Smoother days are ahead. Introducing the SteadiKid Glide Carrier:
A little while back I had the distinct pleasure of being asked to shoot the stills for Rob Lowe’s DIRECTV campaign. If you are not familiar with it, normal Rob has DIRECTV and the various alternate Rob’s have cable. Don’t be like those Robs… Above from left to right there is Paranoid Rob, Peaked in High School Rob, Deadbeat Rob, Meathead Rob, and Poor Decision Making Rob, along with Normal Rob looking on proudly. For the shoot I was attached to the TV production and as Rob would transform into his various selves for the day we would shoot stills during breaks in the TV’s production schedule in a stage next door. Rob took the opportunity to riff on different bits for each character for the stills, since it wasn’t as scripted and there was no sound. So you can probably imagine how hilarious things got, as he would get more and more into the weirdness of each crazy Rob. There were points I was laughing so hard I couldn’t hold the camera steady enough to see through it, a rare problem to have. It was truly a pleasure working on this and being there to capture such a funny campaign. Much respect to the creative team at Grey, Doug Fallon & Steve Fogel for coming up with the whole thing along with Pam Duckworth at DIRECTV and Director Tom Kuntz. Thank you to Rob for being a good sport and a total pro. And of course a big thank you to John Vetter, Max Jerome, and Lauren Abrams at DIRECTV for bringing me on board.
The premiere of Billy & Billie is tonight! It’s a new original series created by Neil Labute for DIRECTV about a couple that falls in love – but so did their parents and they become step brother and sister. It could get awkward. A big thank you to the creative team at DIRECTV for bringing me on board to shoot the key art – Nicole Gunther, Lauren Abrams and John Vetter.
Now that the next BKB fights have been announced – April 4th in Las Vegas, I thought it might be a good time to show some of the post fight portraits I did just outside the locker room at the last BKB fights. I have to thank all the fighters who posed for this series since it can’t be easy to have your pictures taken just seconds after stepping out of the pit. It does seem to be a lot more fun if you just won the fight, but many of them were gracious enough in defeat to still let me take a few shots. It was a night of high drama, for me as well since I was running back and forth between the pit, to shoot the fights, like the image above and then sprinting backstage between fights to do the portraits. You really can be in two places at once if you need to be. Of course a big thank you to the stellar creative team at DIRECTV that makes it all happen and invites me to their party and an ace local crew in Las Vegas that makes me look good.
A few weeks ago I traveled out to Amish country near Lancaster, PA to photograph “Lebanon” Levi Stoltzfus of the Discovery Channel’s hit show Amish Mafia for his new book cover. Having seen a few episodes, I wasn’t sure what to expect. But Levi was as nice as could be and super accommodating of everything we needed for the shoot. Here is the final cover above, but we also shot a a few of him in his natural habitat which you can see below.
A few of my images in the current Men’s Health.
I’m happy to share the cover of Tim Gunn’s new book which we shot back in Oct. It was my 4th time photographing Tim and it’s always a pleasure. He truly is the nicest man in showbiz. Thank you to Lisa Litwack at Simon & Schuster, the Mansfield hotel for being a fantastic location and my great crew for making it work!
A few months ago I was asked to shoot the jury of PANDORA’s Hearts of Today program which was created to support and celebrate everyday women who do extraordinary things to make a lasting difference in the lives of women and children, and their communities. The five woman above are all extraordinary in their own right, but were brought together to pick a handful of women who have done some truly inspiring work for charity. Below are the winners (picked from over a thousand nominees) who we photographed in LA a couple weeks ago during a whirlwind weekend for them. You can read more about the program and each of the winners on the PANDORA site. It was truly inspiring to hear them tell their stories and see what they have accomplished. I have to thank, Bianca Nesgaard, Keshia Holland and everyone at PANDORA. Carrie Dudley, Lindsay Petrick and everyone at GKV. Producers extraordinaire Elaine Brown, Nicole Hektner, and Karin Fittante. Great NY and LA crews and ace retouching by Dave Miao and team at House Tribeca.
An interview I shot with one of the judges, Shaun Johnson:
I’m very happy and proud to announce that my short film …And There Was Neon just won the AI-AP International Motion Art Award! Thank you AI-AP. Much appreciated. Thank you also to Jeff Friedman and everyone at Let There Be Neon, for letting me do the project.
Here is the film below.
The Manning brothers and DIRECTV are at it again. This time they are promoting DIRECTV’s new Fantasy Zone Channel for all things fantasy football and with non other than a rap video, of course. I was lucky enough to be there on set while they shot it in New Orleans last month and can report that it was as hilarious in person as the final video. Joe Namath himself “helping Mom make stew” is not something you see every day. Congrats to DIRECTV, Grey and Director X for putting it all together.
The first Las Vegas installment of BKB is in the books. The main event was a great fight with both guys getting knocked down at one point before Gabriel Rosado beat Brian Vera in the 7th Round by TKO. It was the end of a crazy week of shooting for me. I shot all the fighters on the card for their tale of the tape shots for the broadcast as well as tons of key art for the next fight. We photographed the ring card girls, the weigh in, the fights themselves and also post fight portraits after the guys cleared their medical exam. Meanwhile everywhere you turned in Las Vegas last week you would be hit with a BKB ad. It was an impressive media buy and it filled the stadium. Here are a few of the many places the campaign popped up. A big thank you as always to the A-team at DIRECTV, John Vetter, Lauren Abrams and Max Jerome as well as a fantastic crew Mike Taft, Ken Proto, Mikey McNulty and of course Olga Postolachi.
DIRECTV’s new twist on Boxing, BKB (Big Knockout Boxing) is going big time on Saturday with a fight in Las Vegas at Mandalay Bay with Brian Vera and Gabe Rosado facing off in the main event. What’s so new about BKB? Well, they redesigned the ring into a round pit with no ropes. So there is nowhere to hide, no rope-a-dope and no obstructed view for the audience. The rounds are 2 minutes instead of 3 and the gloves are lighter than traditional boxing. It all adds up to more intensity, more action and more knockouts. I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of BKB since the first fight, photographing the campaigns and fights as it’s grown, which has been really cool to see. I shot Gabe and Brian about a month ago for the campaign below and they are both super nice guys and I can honestly say I’ll be pulling for both of them on Saturday night. Tune in on PPV on any cable or Satellite provider to check it out or head out to a bar that will be showing the fights. A big thank you to the team at DIRECTV for bringing me onboard and making me look good with great creative and post – John Vetter, Lauren Abrams and Max Jerome.
PANDORA Jewelry, one of the world’s leading jewelry brands, just launched a new initiative to celebrate the selfless work women do within their communities and around the world to improve the livelihood of women and children. PANDORA Americas began accepting nominations for the 2014 PANDORA Hearts of Today on July 28. To help identify the women with the strongest and most inspiring stories, PANDORA has assembled a board of five inspirational women leaders whose individual resumes also boast an impressive list of philanthropic work: human rights advocate, Penny Abeywardena; Emmy Award-winning journalist, Shaun Robinson; philanthropist, June Sarpong; sociologist and author, Dr. Pepper Schwartz; and Andrea Alvey, member of PANDORA A/S Board of Directors. I was lucky enough to shoot these incredible women of the jury and it’s a pleasure to be a part of this project. Click the image above to go to the PANDORA Hearts of Today site and nominate someone!
My 11 year old nephew, Danu is visiting from Moldova for the summer. It’s his first time in the United States. First time on a plane, in a big city, or really anywhere outside of his town in Moldova (He’s been to neighboring Ukraine a few times). He’s also a big car fanatic and loves anything with a motor. So when I saw there was a Monster Truck event at MetLife Stadium on Saturday night, well it was too good to pass up. What better way to introduce him to America? He’s never been to a stadium or any kind of motor sports event either. I only had a little point and shoot camera with me but I managed to get some shots of the adventure. The last part of the night didn’t go so smoothly when the dark side of eating 2 hotdogs, a pretzel, cotton candy, fries, cookies and a gallon of soda hit home. America should be eased into it a little more slowly next time, at least at the concession stand.