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Commercial Photography

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Founded by Jack Glasser in 2005 with the taking of one senior graduation portrait, Glasser Images has grown and continues to grow into the future. This is driven by Jack’s passion for photography, creativity, and entrepreneurship as well as his vision for the company. To see more of Glasser Images, visit the liveBooks8 website: www.glasserimages.com

The goal of Glasser Images is to provide outstanding, personalized service and create quality and creative images that captures personality.
With a fresh, new, and modern perspective, Glasser Images creates and captures unique images. Whether in need of wedding photography and video, senior graduation pictures, family photos, or commercial photography and video, Glasser Images has a simple style and approach with a common goal – quality work.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

JG: Clean, simple, and smart.

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Q: How often do you typically update your website?

JG: We try to update with fresh images and featured posts every few weeks. If I have an idea to enhance the site, I update the site with the idea right away or write it down to implement at a better time.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

JG: I choose at least one image from each of our photographers. I also wanted images to be eye catching, go together, and have the right colors.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

JG: The customizability which has allowed me to display more information in an organized way in order to showcase our services better and connect services and/or pages together (i.e. wedding photography and engagement photos, links to the contact page, etc.)

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

JG: Don’t wait for it to be perfect or else you will never get it launched. A website should be an organic and changing marketing tool that changes based on your customers and the market.

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Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

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Cameron Karsten is both a photographer and film-maker. His work ranges from portraiture to lifestyle photography. He had worked for clients such as Discovery Channel, Bank of America, Delta Air Lines, and Microsoft. To see more of Cameron’s work, visit his liveBooks8 site: www.cameronkarsten.com.

I began my career as a writer, spending my twenties backpacking around the world in search of stories, characters, and experiences. I began a blog, attained followers, sold travel articles, and by the advice of someone, I was encouraged to post photographs with my written stories. At this time, digital photography was gaining momentum, so I traded in my Nikon film camera for a small point-and-shoot. I kept writing but slowly overtime, I had the desire to tell stories with photos instead of words. This led to a 2-year program in commercial photography, which led to assisting and digital-teching for professional photographers, which has now grown into a career as a commercial photographer. I still write and have a love for the craft, but I now shoot motion alongside my photography. When I step back, they’re all a form of storytelling, so I’m grateful for each trade.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

CK: When I switched platforms to the new liveBooks8 I was seeking something clean, simple, and bold. These would be the three words I’d use, and maybe throw in elegant as well.

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Q: How often do you typically update your website?

CK: Typically I update my website every couple of months, but it also depends if new work I finish fits within my projects and portfolios. Sometimes it’s sooner, sometimes it’s later, but I look at it and analyze the content every few days, seeking a better edit or a new perspective that’ll improve my presentation. But I admit; I am my own worst editor.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

CK: I want the homepage images that represent my projects and portfolios to be striking and to me that carries a sense of emotion with regards to light, shadow, and lines. Most of them are during sunrise or sunset, or are dramatic in the sense of scale and design. Obviously, I’m looking to attract creative directors, art buyers and project managers to dig deeper into my website whether it’s a personal project or commissioned portraiture.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

CK: My favorite new feature of liveBooks8 is the fullscreen homepage allowing the images to be big and bold. I want the first glance at my website to be striking and be utilizing the full screen with scrolling images, this becomes effective.

Bone Fishing in Belize off Ambergris Caye, TripAdvisors top island in the world

Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

CK: If I could offer advice on designing a website, I’d say utilize peers and professionals to help you edit your work. I’ve put my photography in front of many peers and strangers, receiving a whole gamut of feedback. It has shaped how I present my work, as well as helped hone my skills as a storyteller. The liveBooks8 support staff was also diligent throughout the process of transitioning my website to the new platform, which I appreciate and I’m grateful for.

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Puget Sound Restoration Fund CSA volunteer oyster harvest - Port Madison, Bainbridge Island, WA

Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

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Katee McGee is a California-based international award winning editorial and commercial photographer, serving the wine industry! Since 2005, Katee has specialized in wine-related photography and has shot in some of the world’s premier vineyards and estates in California, Italy, and France. See more of her work on her website: www.pendergast-mcgee.com.

How did your career begin as a professional editorial and commercial photographer?

My first paid professional gig was as a unit stills (set) photographer for Universal Pictures on location for the movie The Hitcher II. It was exciting and so fun to be a (albeit small) part of a larger group of creatives. Great energy – I learned a ton on that shoot. Most exciting was that they chose one of my images as the hero image for the poster and DVD cover.

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How did you become interested in the wine industry specifically?

I grew up in the wine industry, running through vineyards and playing hide-and-seek with my brothers on the weekends in the enormous 4-acre barrel room of historic Almadén Vineyards. Back in those days it was still listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as “the World’s Largest Covered Wine Cellar”.

My dad has worked in the wine industry in sales and marketing since before I was born – and still does. Through that exposure to the industry, I began noticing the imagery inherent to wine and its culture at a really young age. In addition, my father always brought a lot of enthusiasm to whatever his latest projects were and I think it rubbed off. In a sense I think I was “sold” on wine and the wine country culture long before I was ever able to actually partake.

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Would you say that you are a wine enthusiast?

Of course. I have had the privilege of not only photographing incredible wine locations around the world, but also have had the opportunity to taste the amazing wines at those locations. Wine culture is really all about sharing. Sharing stories, sharing your hospitality and sharing something you’re proud of. Artistry and craftsmanship is appreciated and communal in wine culture – everyone wants to share what they’ve made, so my palate was educated by some of the best “teachers” in the world.

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Which is your favorite type of winery to photograph?

I can’t say I have a favorite. Each place needs something different. Sometimes it’s simple, like just capturing the beauty of the location of the architecture. But sometimes it’s more of a challenge. A lot of times, big producers want to look small and artisan and give off a boutique vibe, while some of their smaller boutique counterparts want to present the image of being bigger players than they are, so that make things interesting. I genuinely like the problem solving involved in delivering what each client wants and needs – each client is different and I think it’s one of the best parts of what I do.

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Is there something you would like our viewers to know about wine photography?

Wine photography really requires you to be multi-disciplined. There are so many aspects to it – you need to be able to do a lot of it well. You need to be able to produce striking landscapes, make interesting images reflecting nature and architecture, work as a photojournalist during harvest and crush and around the winery, connect with owners and winemakers to create compelling portraits, and then have the technical studio and lighting skills to create clean product shots.

Most of all, you need to be a storyteller. I know it’s cliched but it’s still true, because at the end of the day you are hired to tell the unique story of the client and their brand.

In pursuit of that unique story, you can also get some strange requests. Frequently, I am asked to visually represent elements of the terroir (For those who don’t know – “terroir” is the unique natural environment in which a particular wine is produces, this includes factors such as the soil, the topography, and the climate in that area.) I remember one gig where the creative brief requested that I show “wind”. lol

But in the end – this is their life’s work. There is only one harvest a year and each vintage is unrepeatable, so creating images that help tell the story of that brand, that vintage, that location, is paramount, and a good wine photographer needs to really understand that on an innate level. Understanding that and respecting that is critical.

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Your approach to wine photography seems pretty versatile – are there other services you provide to your clients?

I have a creative collective called Garage Industries and I coordinate and art direct multi-disciplined creative marketing projects. For example, for one client I’m currently working on a promotional project that includes photography, letterpress printing, original oil-paintings and comic book art, copywriting, video and digital media and my task is to keep all of that coordinated and aligned with the creative direction of the project. I have a deep network of creatives from my years in the business and it’s been great to be able to assemble dream-teams of professionals and work together on specific projects. It’s a great outlet for my more grand creative concepts.

Do you have a special project or photography you would like to talk about?

Since my daughter was born, I have become slightly obsessed with children’s portraiture. After she was born, I found myself spending a lot of time in the world of kids in addition to the world of wines, and I was always kind of put-off by typical children’s portrait photography. I wanted to have images of my daughter that were cool and contemporary and modern – print large. Not something that would look dated and be embarrassing to either of us in 20 years time. I would look at adverts for Gap Kids or Crewcuts and think, “Why can’t I get pictures like THAT of my daughter?” I didn’t find anyone making them so I decided that I would just make them myself. (Years ago I had worked as a Creative Director for two first-generation skate/streetwear contemporary clothing companies in Southern California so the idea wasn’t a stretch.)

Based on that spark, I started putting together custom children’s portrait shoots that follow more of a fashion editorial trajectory, with all the bells and whistles of a commercial fashion shoot – but for “regular” kids who aren’t professional models. (Although in truth, I think many of them could be if their parents wanted to go that direction.) You’d be amazed at how awesome these kids are! I love creating images that are genuine reflections of their unique personalities – no stiff poses, cheesy props or strained, fake smiles – just capturing their pure, beautiful spirits. It’s magic.

I have found that there are other parents like me out there that want images of their kids that are cool, timeless, and done to the highest professional standard. It’s great to be able to offer this level of production and quality to the parents that “get it”. (I knew I couldn’t be the only one!)

To some it might seem a bit incongruous to do both wine photography and children’s fashion portraiture, but if you know me – it makes perfect sense. And anyone who has kids knows that a glass of wine can often be your very best friend.

Cheers!

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John Johnston is an advertising and editorial photographer based in Denver, Colorado. His client base includes Chipotle, Ford, Forbes, Guiness and Newsweek. To see more of his work and liveBooks8 website, visit: www.johnjohnstonphotography.com.

I’m originally from Southern California, but now live in Denver with my wife and two girls. I went to art school to be a painter/printmaker, but decided to go into photography. I fell in love with it and found a way to do both photography and my artwork. I shlepped bags for photographers out of school and decided that I was ready to go out on my own. I called everyone I worked with and told them that I was done working with them to pursue my own career. I have been shooting now for 16 years.  I shoot advertising and editorial work. I love meeting people, I love going places, I love that I get to live in a creative world. I am really fortunate to do so many fun things every day.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

JJ: Clean, honest, storied

Q: How often do you typically update your website?

JJ: With the new site it is a lot more often. I like to update with at least a group of 6-8 images. If there is something I am super excited about, I will update it right away.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

JJ: There is definitely a connection to the photos. They can be brand new or something that is a little older. There is always a story about the location or maybe the person I met. I add the photos that make me happy.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

JJ: Overall it’s pretty easy to get around. Its simple enough that you could change the entire look of the site in just a few minutes.

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

JJ: Keep things simple. Try and make it easy for people to navigate through your site. They probably won’t stay long, don’t confuse them with lots of buttons or menus.

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Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

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Dorit Thies specializes in beauty, hair, fashion and celebrity photography and is known for creating powerful imagery ranging from international magazine covers to compelling photos captured in exotic destinations around the world. To see more of her work, visit her liveBooks8 website: www.doritthies.com

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When I moved to the US from Europe, I had established myself as a professional hair and make-up artist, working in the commercial world. I was always intrigued with the art form of photography and I started shooting my personal fine art work for a few years when establishing my life in the US.

I am completely self-taught.

My work at the time was driven by my personal connections such as dancers, actors, musicians, and my inspiration came from photographers and painters like Georgia O’Keefe, Tina Modotti, Leonora Carrington, Irvin Penn, and Helmut Newton. I was all about developing my personal style.

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Over a period of four years, I created a large body of fine art work, shooting only black and white film. I had success quickly and my work was shown in several galleries in Los Angeles, in Santa Fe, New Mexico and The Katonah Museum of Art, Upstate New York.

When I began to shoot commercially, I decided to specialize in health and fitness photography. My very first commercial client was Men’s Health Magazine in Germany. I was lucky and shot their covers for several years. In the last six years I started to specialize in Beauty/Fashion & Celebrity Photography. I am now balancing the art of shooting conceptual beauty and fashion layouts for magazines such as Marie Claire, Modeliste, L’Officiel with some of my favorite artists while focusing on commercial campaigns.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

DT: Bold, Intriguing, Layered

Q: How often do you typically update your website?

DT: Every 2 weeks or whenever I have new work, which is usually a few times a month.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

DT: I love colorful images, technically flawless, artistically strong, surprising, unexpected and I try to mix it up, showing my clients my versatility.

Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

DT: I can post unlimited images to the home page and link them to a particular portfolio, move them into a particular order within seconds. I love the fact that you can choose 3 different template layouts for each portfolio and view it in one click. It is super easy to understand.

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

DT: Keep it simple.

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Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

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Phillip Bekker is a commercial photographer whose photography offers a distinctive color-saturated, graphic and often abstract style. Perhaps his most widely recognized for his Polaroid work, some of which is in The Polaroid Collection and included in the global exhibition ‘Polaroid 50; Art and Technology’ which premiered at Photokina in Germany. To see more of Philip’s work, visit his liveBooks8 website: www.bekker.com.

 

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I studied commercial photography at a four-year program in South Africa and studied in London in between this time period. Once I moved to the United States, I completed an MFA program in Visual Arts.

Our class is South Africa was the first group of commercial photo students to graduate in South Africa and probably in the whole of Africa. We were the threat to established photographers and you could not get assisting jobs once you graduated. There were no equipment rental houses at all, anywhere. You literally has to invest in a 4×5 Sinar (no other large format brand available – thankfully) and a Rollei or a Hasselblad (Mimaya’s came later) and some basic lighting. I started off with Bowens monolights and quickly progressed to Broncolor. I has assisted in Longo, which made a huge difference. With luck, someone from college you knew had become and art director and then it became word of mouth to build up clients.

I’ve always been involved in commercial photography, commercial photography education and fine art through gallery representation. One feeds off the other – a fine art exhibition led to a commission by Pierre Cardin after he visited my exhibition and other fine art has led to further commercial assignments since then.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

PB: Simplicity, design, color (with B&W providing some relief here and there)

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Q: How often do you typically update your website?

PB: I’ll replace individual images as needed. I’ll rearrange for flow, interest, and impact on a regular basis. I think its important to keep current and preferably ahead of current, if possible. Keep an eye on Europe.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

PB: I wanted to use something that has the simplicity, design and color that is evident in a lot of my work and would work well as a lead and introduction into the first and subsequent portfolios.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

PB: The size choice for the images.

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

PB: Plan the flow carefully, don’t be tempted to show too much and let it show your personal signature. Stand out. Get other opinions.

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Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.



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