20
Jan

Macklemore Man Of The Year

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under BTS, Celebrity, Editorial Work

Macklemore The Source Man of the Year cover by John Keatley.

Another amazing shoot with Macklemore!  Goes without saying, but The Source Man of the Year cover is a pretty big issue in the hip hop industry.  I’m so happy for Macklemore and all the amazing things that have happened this past year for him and Ryan Lewis.  The first portrait shoot I did with the guys was 2 days before The Heist came out.  This shoot was just two days after The Heist World Tour came to an end, and that really put it in perspective for me just how far these guys have come in such a short period of time.  Although, that’s not really accounting for the years of hard work they put in before the world started paying attention.  Well deserved if you ask me.  Now go get em at the Grammy’s!

Below are some of my favorite images from this shoot as well as some fun behind the scenes pictures.  We have a behind the scenes video in the works as well, so stay tuned for that.  Enjoy!

Macklemore and his brown bear by photographer John Keatley.

Macklemore in a suit by photographer John Keatley.

Macklemore in his Cadillac by John Keatley

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

Macklemore and John Keatley photo shoot.

And that’s a wrap.  Thanks to my great crew for making this big production come together so smoothly.  I think we wrapped around 1:30 am, but everyone hung in there tough.  Behind the scenes pictures by the wonderful Olivia Lazer.  Makeup by Katya Gudaeva.  Styling by Cara Aeschliman.  Production by Taylor Reed and Pat Vong.  Retouching by Gigantic Squid.  Assisting by Gregg White.  And thanks Macklemore for the hat!

01
Apr

2013 GPP Shootout

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under BTS, Workshops

Last month I had the great pleasure of traveling to Dubai to speak and teach at GPP 2013.  It was an incredible experience and I was able to meet some awesome people and photographers.  GPP was an incredibly well planned and exciting week of workshops and seminars by some of the top teachers in the industry.  I tried to pop in on a few different workshops when I had 10 minutes or so to spare, and I learned so much, even in such a short amount of time.

I had many great experiences and interactions on this trip, but perhaps the best part of the whole trip was dinner each night.  Not because the food was incredible (Well, Ravi’s was), but it was the people I sat next to at dinner: David Alan Harvey, Greg Heisler, David Burnett, David Hobby, Zach Arias, Peter Hurley, Joe McNally, and on and on.  Wow.  How fun!  Talk about great conversations and stories.

In addition to being one of the teachers, I was also asked to participate in the shootout on the last night of the week.  The GPP shootout is a fairly new tradition that has caught on like wild fire.  3 photographers competing against each other under less than ideal circumstances.  The rules are explained in the video, but basically you are given an assignment in front of 350 people, and from that moment, you have 20 minutes to think, light, shoot and edit a picture from start to finish.  After all 3 photographers have finished, the crowd votes on who they think won.  My competitors were Zack Arias, and Lindsay Adler.  It was intense, but I have to say, after feeling nervous for about 30 seconds, I really enjoyed it.  Not to mention, I love how my picture turned out!  Now I have Leibovitz and Heisler in my collection.

So what was the assignment?  Create a portrait of one of the greatest portrait photographers of all time, Gregory Heisler.  Fortunately, I had gotten to know Greg over the course of the week, so I knew he was an awesome guy, and that helped a bit.  Before I packed my bags for Dubai, I had anticipated, or at least hoped the assignment  would involve shooting a portrait, or at least photographing a human one way or another.  To be at least somewhat prepared, I brought a few props just in case (turtleneck and wig).  I only needed 2 of them as it turned out, so I’m going to keep the other options a secret for now.

The video above is condensed quite a bit, so there is a lot you aren’t seeing and hearing, but this is a great recap of how it all went down.  Congrats to Zack Arias on winning!  He was talking trash all week, and he backed it up by going for the jugular.  And by that, I mean he put a teabag on my head.  Which I should have been more humiliated by, but I was too shocked at the time to fully know what was going on.

David Hobby (strobist.com) wrote a very flattering blog post about the GPP Shootout from his perspective which is worth a read if you are interested.  He has done the shootout before, so he has a good perspective from all sides of the event.  Thanks David for the kind words, and thank you Mohamed, Hala, and everyone else at GPP for being such wonderful hosts!  I hope you all enjoy watching this, and maybe I’ll see you in Dubai next year.

05
Nov

Jayme Hall of Alligator Performance

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Editorial Work

Chad and Jayme Hall shot for Inc. Photo by John Keatley

Jayme Hall CEO of Alligator Performance. Shot by John Keatley

I shot these images on a sweltering hot day this past summer in beautiful Coeur d’Alene, Idaho for Inc.  Big thanks to Photography Director Travis Ruse for the call on this one.  One of the things I love about editorial photography is the opportunity to talk with a wide range of successful and interesting people.  Some of you may not know this, but I actually majored in Business Administration in college, so dissecting and understanding how different companies work is really fascinating to me.  Alligator Performance Co-founders Chad and Jayme Hall did not disappoint.  Their story was one of the most fascinating success stories I have ever heard, and I left the shoot feeling like I got to see something really special.  I highly recommend reading this article on Alligator in Inc.

20
Mar

Don’t Talk To The Cops for City Arts

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Editorial Work, Tear Sheets

Don't Talk To The Cops shot for the cover of City Arts by photographer John Keatley.

For those of you who are fellow Seattlites, you may have noticed City Arts has been gaining great momentum as the go-to arts publication around town.  They have been doing a great job covering culture, art, and music, and are not afraid of going out on a creative limb so-to-speak, to bring their audience something fresh and original.  I got to shoot the Seattle based hip hop group Don’t Talk To The Cops for the cover of the March issue.  This was a really fun shoot, and I was excited to get to throw in a slight nod to those amazing laser portrait backgrounds we all coveted back in the 80′s.  I think the hardest part was picking out the right turtleneck and NFL game day jacket.  After that was decided, it was smooth sailing and a lot of laughing.  I can’t say I’ve made it through the article exposing bubble tea, but the cover image is certainly reason enough for picking it up :) (not to mention it’s free).

Big thanks to Art director Dan Paulus, editor in chief Leah Baltus, and Don’t Talk To The Cops.  This shoot was a fun collaboration of talking through ideas and inspirations with Dan and Leah, and I love how it turned out.  I met Dan and Leah for the first time, when I was photographed as part of the City Arts Future List late last year.  Retouching by Gigantic Squid.

19
Sep

Germ Free Traveler

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Editorial Work

I shot this fun, quirky portrait for Condé Nast Traveler to go with an article about the crazy new gadgets people are using to avoid all kinds of germs and illness while traveling.  I couldn’t even tell you what half of this stuff does, but I like how the image turned out.  I’m bummed we didn’t get to shoot the SkyRest Travel Pillow, but there is only so much room for ridiculous travel paraphernalia in one picture.  Enjoy, and remember to always fly safe.

Photo Editor: Nelida Mortensen
Model: Rachel Elizabeth / TCM Models
Stylist: Kristie Gamer

14
Apr

Douglas Coupland

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Celebrity

Writer Douglas Coupland at his Vancouver studio.  Photo by photographer John Keatley.

Douglas Coupland decked out in his Canadian best.  I photographed Douglas in his Vancouver BC studio for The New York Times Magazine just before the 2010 Winter Olympics.  He was kind enough to give me a tour of his studio, and it, along with his art collection, is enough to make anyone jealous.  Really impressive.  New York Times Magazine Q&A with Douglas.

As I parted ways with Douglas, he said to give him a call if I ran into any trouble at the border.  A kind gesture, but probably not necessary.  For those of you who are not familiar with crossing the border between the US and Canada, it usually involves waiting in a short line and getting grilled with questions ranging from “Why are you visiting Canada (or the US)” to “When is the last time you got into a bar fight.”  On occasion the officer will ask a series of questions, and loop back around and ask the same questions again, which I always find interesting.  A good way to catch you if you are lying about something.

When I reached the border this time, I was greeted with a standard question, “What were you doing in Canada?”  ”Taking pictures,”  I responded.

It’s important to understand the questions you are asked at the border are rapid.  It is not a conversation, it’s question, answer, question, answer.

“What were you taking pictures of?”

“Douglas Coupland for New York Times Magazine.”

Up until this point it’s all pretty standard, but this next part threw me off.  The officer turned from his computer screen and looked at me as he said, “Ohhhh, Generation X”.  Douglas popularized the phrase “Generation X” with his best selling novel Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture. I wasn’t sure how to respond at this point.  Was that a question, or was he simply stating a fact?  Now there was a pause.  This isn’t how it’s supposed to work.  He is supposed to ask the questions and I give the answers.  But it seemed he was waiting for some sort of response, so I said, “Oh, yeah, so you know who he is?”  His demeanor instantly changed, and he responded in a harsh tone, “I said Generation X, didn’t I!?”  I nodded my head in agreement, not wanting to get into it with him.

After another pause, the officer began to tell me about an article he had recently read by Douglas Coupland on how border officers are rude and difficult.  He went on for what seemed like several minutes.  His tone was a mix of amusement and disbelief.  To summarize his main points: What!?  Us, rude and difficult!?  How could anyone think that?

Oh, this is bad I thought.  I should have said I was photographing Céline Dion.

Once again, not knowing how to respond, I tried to be real.  ”To be honest, I have pulled up next to some gruff people working here and I can see how he would think that about some of the people who work here.  But you definitely seem to be one of the the nice ones.”

With that, he snapped back into Mr. Man In Charge, and exclaimed.  ”Well, if you think I’m nice, it would interest you to know I have made more arrests at this station than any other officer.”  He paused to let his accomplishments sink in before handed back my passport and I was on my way.  Until next time.

Equipment Used:
Hasselblad H3DII-31 Camera
Hasselblad Wide Angle H 50mm Lens
Profoto Giant 150 Silver Reflector
Profoto White Softlight “Beauty Dish” Reflector
Wescott 45” Umbrellas

Douglas Coupland and John Keatley

Self portrait with Douglas Coupland.

RSS Subscription – Click to subscribe to John Keatley Blog via RSS in a reader.
Twitter Updates – Click to follow John’s Twitter feed.
Facebook Updates – Click to follow John on Facebook.