Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Screen time

I'm really going to try to start posting more often. Seriously. There's usually a lot of cool stuff happening that I only really share with my crew. Not that I'm secretive, just that I've enjoyed doing actual work more than writing about it. I'm now in my office listening to the XX (thanks Emily) post-processing multiple projects, including the RED shoot I mentioned (more on that later).

The reality is that my business has changed profoundly in the last year, and I'm all too eager to talk about it with anyone and everyone, as the students in Caren Alpert's class at the Academy of Art can attest. Talking about it is the best way to share the love, even if nobody reads this blog (hi Beth and Jenny!).

I've learned A TON in the last year. Not just about technical stuff and business, but about vision and style and execution. I don't think it's even evident in my work yet, and I'm still getting my feet wet with a lot of new things. Anyone who's followed my photography work over the past couple years will have noticed a subtle shift in style. I even went so far as to discuss this with photo editors on two recent magazine assignments. It's nothing earth-shattering, but it felt like I was being hired to execute old work and lighting. I developed my work by taking risks, especially on magazine assignments. I was no longer doing that because I felt expected to give them what's worked in the past.

Of course, it's on me to take advantage of each opportunity to shoot to push myself to get something amazing out of it. Since they would rarely, if ever, run that work, I started to feel like I was just wasting my time. That's completely stupid.

While my goal is to give the client what they want, I expressed my new approach and how I felt comfortable shooting an assignment. I was willing to walk away as well. I understood if they wanted to hire someone else to shoot it. To their credit, they understood and let me do my thing.

2009 has been by far the best year of business for me, in many ways. I'm very excited about 2010. I haven't even mentioned things on the video side. That's been overwhelming and amazing at the same time, but I have to save something for another post right?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

New work, new site, new project

Here's a new image from a Visa print campaign, as well as a couple of screen grabs from the commercials, with one thrown in from another project, and a shot of the new site. It definitely looks best full screen. All of this is now live on my site, sugrue.com, designed by my friends at D10 Studio in Monterrey, Mexico.

I'm shooting my first commercial project on the RED on Thursday (with a 5D2 second camera), working with a pretty solid production team, brought together by my ace-in-the-hole Emily Miller. I could not recommend her more highly. She seriously does absolutely whatever it takes to get a job done properly. Working with me, Emily has acted in various capacities as den mother, bar tender, psycho-therapist, good cop AND bad cop, animal wrangler, wrangler to the animal wrangler, detective, queen bee, and financial consultant to name a few.

She's a saint for dealing with a certain city employee on this one, ensuring that all the i's are dotted and t's are crossed.

I have a new studio manager named Annie Pautsch. I'll put up a short video of Annie at some point, and she may do a little guest blogging. Right now she's busy greasing the wheels of the latest promotional campaign, rolling out over the next couple of weeks.

© Michael Sugrue

© Michael Sugrue

© Michael Sugrue

© Michael Sugrue

© Michael Sugrue