Posts by: Heidi Volpe

The Daily Edit – Runner’s World: Jake Stangel

- - The Daily Edit

Runner’s World

Creative Director: Jesse Southerland
Photography Director: Amy Wolff
Photographer: Jake Stangel

When the direction is “do your thing” how do you approach/prepare for the shoot?
I’ve found my best approach to be a good night’s sleep so I can come in to the shoot with sharp mental/visual acuity, and to have some rough shot concepts/sketches in my back pocket, in case things are situationally different from that I’ve planned on. I’ve attempted to come into past shoots with a specific “plan” and exact images I want to achieve, but it ended up locking me in to a set plan and hindering the types of chance encounters I like to seek. Portraiture/sport work is also so very much about the subject and the rapport we quickly build on the shoot day, which is a beautiful unknown that I’ve learned to embrace and lean on. The best way to prepare is to keep my eyes open and observant, my attention on the subject and her environment—as opposed to my camera’s LCD—and to always have my focus and exposures dialed for every minute of the shoot, so I don’t ever miss a potential shot.

Since there was a new creative direction to the magazine what were you trying to bring that was different?
You know, if anything, it was just to stick to my guns more, make work that felt like personal work. I’d done work for RW before, including a cover, but the shoots were pretty art directed and it was one of those situations where I made images that didn’t really feel like they were mine, even as I was shooting them… I was more executing a concept. Which happens sometimes, and you just gotta move with that river as opposed to causing a ruckus and fighting the current too much. So I wasn’t necessarily trying to make “different” images for this RW cover (even though CD, Jesse Southerland told me to “not shoot for a cover”), but make work that felt intensely personal and really conveyed the story of this amazing woman, Amelia Boone, who has been through a phenomenal level of physical and emotional struggle and growth.

As an active person can you tell when you’ve pushed a subject too far for do overs? What are the cues you look for?
Mostly it’s a check-in with the athlete beforehand, and having really open communication of where she/he will be at on the shoot day. Are they injured? Are they tapering (reducing your training mileage before a major event, like an ultra)? Are they on a rest day? What does their coach say? I literally will have conversations about the mileage they can run on the shoot day, or duration of time. These athletes are often at the pinnacle of their career, and the last thing I want to do is jeopardize that in any way because of a photo shoot. I think it also helps convey to them that I’m serious about their well-being and understand their needs, and in setting clear goals and limits, it drops any apprehension they may have about being asked to physically do more than they can or should on the shoot day.

Was this all shot with natural light, if so why?
All natural light. There was no need to use lights that day. I think sometimes people forget that’s an option. Photo has gotten to be such a gear contest sometimes, and I think people whip out strobes automatically now, because that’s “what you do” on a “photoshoot”. There’s a time and a place for lights, but I was really happy with the atmospherics we had that day. Even though I had strobes in the trunk of my car, there was no need to use them, or even use a reflector. I’m puzzled by the compulsive need to use reflector to falsely open shadows. I’m not a religious person, but I believe in the power of mother nature and the atmospherics she brings out into the world, so I generally love to work with whatever she’s got planned for the day, whether it’s bright golden sun or some mystical fog or pouring rain. I love the range of natural light we see in our life, that’s my inspiration for my own lighting.

The Daily Edit – 7 Hues Beauty: Anthony Rhoades

- - The Daily Edit

7 Hues Beauty

Model: Katherine Schule
Makeup: Becky Rothmaler
Hair: Damian Monzillo
Creative Director: William Mydell
Photographer: Anthony Rhoades

Heidi: Did you pitch them work or was this assigned?
Anthony: I submitted the story as a completed project. When testing, I like to conceptualize a bit beforehand with the team, pitch the idea with a mood board to the modeling agencies and go after publication later in the game—the more eyes on a project the better. I try to create new work as often as possible and editorials allow for more creative control and show my artistic range.

How did the collaboration come about with you and the hair and make up team?
Becky Rothmaler, the makeup artist, had written a kind note to me about my work and inquired about the possibility of collaborating on a project. This happens to me a lot, and generally I take people up on it. I’ve been fortunate enough to work with a variety of talented people. One of the best parts about being in New York City is coming across so many creatives who are all trying really hard to be their best artist selves.

How often do you test, are the projects focused to specific clients?
I’m always testing and open to new ideas and people. Whenever I’m looking to shoot something, it’s either to produce new work focused on a specific client, fill a hole in my portfolio or push the boundaries a bit. Clean beauty is great, but it can be boring. For me, creating imagery that is aspirational to potential clients is key versus trying to produce work that is exactly what they already do; fit the clients’ needs with my signature on it, without straying too much outside of what fits their demographic target or brand.

How has your use of social media expanded your business? 
I’ve stopped with the mass emails. I’ll still send updates occasionally to a select few, but for the most part I’ve ceased the database email blasts. Because, I have heard from several entities that not only many of those emails don’t get opened but they are also an intrusion and often distracting. Their emails are for work and getting what’s often considered photographers’ spam keeps art buyers and producers from doing their jobs. It’s a tough balance of trying to get your work seen, kept, bookmarked and not put in the junk folder.

I don’t maintain a business page on Facebook but I do have a lot of connections to people relevant to my work on my personal profile. My main inspiration and collaboration comes from Instagram and Linkedin. It just sort of happened with Instagram, I didn’t pursue it as a way to grow my business, and in many ways I still don’t, but I’m constantly inspired. It’s also a great way to keep up with the work of those you admire and to find new artists. Similarly, I’ve made many connections on LinkedIn though I don’t know how helpful it is, I’m working on putting more times into that platform.

For this shoot Damian Monzillo and I initially started chatting on Instagram about working on a project awhile back.  Prior to this shoot, he wrote to me about some of my hair advertising work. I mentioned last-minute that I was shooting the next day and asked if he’d like to join us. Becky, the makeup artist, and I were going to do a macro story but the addition of a hair artist opened things up and let the bird of paradise theme shine.

When developing mood boards for your own projects, are the images sourced from your own archive?
Generally no—I do a lot of research, look at artists, photographers and nature for inspiration and then draw upon the team and their vision as well. When I’m working on a personal project or editorial I’m mostly trying to convey an idea that I haven’t expressed yet or seen through this specific lens in other people’s work. For this particular shoot, I made my usual mood board, showed it to the hair and makeup team and started shopping it around to my go-to modeling agencies to see about who might be interested in our concept. Luckily the package from Q Models contained Katherine Schule, who has great features for beauty and is really a consummate pro.

The Daily Edit – Saveur: Andrew Hetherington

- - The Daily Edit


Group Creative Director: Sean Johnston
Creative Director: Pete Sucheski
Photography Director: Thomas Payne
Associate Art Director: Russ Smith
Photographer: Andrew Hetherington

Heidi: What type of direction did you get from the magazine?
Andrew: Thomas Payne, Photo Director of Saveur, sent me an email wondering if I would be interested in shooting the Peeko Oyster farm out on Long Island. To be honest, he had me at oysters, but we had a follow-up phone call where we dove deeper into the nitty gritty of what was involved on a practical level and discussed his vision. He also sent me a mood board referencing food photos of mine that he liked, a shot list and info on the story itself. Peter Stein, the oyster farmer, is relatively new to the business and that was an important angle to incorporate into the visual narrative. The theme was “growing” and the story is about what it takes to grow, scale and establish an oyster farm.

How much research do you do for shoots?
I like to get as much information up front as possible. This helps with my own research on the subject and the logistical and production needs to make it a successful shoot from my perspective. It is also really important to talk to the subject in advance on a shoot like this, after all they have more knowledge about the practicalities than anyone else so I arranged a phone call with Peter after an introductory email. Peter also sent me some photographs and video he had which was incredibly helpful.

I would not consider you a “food” photographer per se?
Ha, well I am a photographer who loves to eat and loves to cook so I think that qualifies me somehow. Food is featured on my website in it’s own gallery and in specific projects and commissions for clients like Bon Appetit, Men’s Health and Travel + Leisure. I also really enjoy photographing chefs and have been fortunate to shoot some heroes; Anthony Bourdain, David Chang, April Bloomfield, Sean Brock, Jean Georges, Wylie Dufresne.

You can’t visually tell a story like this – oyster farming – with a beautiful singular still life. It’s about the people who grow them, where they grow them, how they grow them, etc. It’s less about being a “food photographer” and more about the ability to tell a story. I try to tell that story in my own way; as candidly, authentically, imperfectly and humanly as possible.

Weather is key for a shoot like this, did you have a set of rolling dates on hold?
It was important to the magazine that the photos look “summery” as the story was running in their June issue. But we actually shot this, out on the North Fork, at the end of February.

After speaking with Peter, it turned out that the most important weather factor would be the wind and not sunshine or temperature. If conditions were not calm, we would not be able to take to the water on his oyster barge so we put several back to back dates on hold. Peter made the final call 48 hours before the shoot and irony of ironies we also had “summery” sun all day. As it was February, we were dealing with a short amount of daylight. Even though we had sun all day the bonus was it was low in the sky which only enhanced the quality of the light as it bounced back off water. We all really thought we were in for an early spring as it was so idyllic. Little did we realize at the time there would be still two more months of hard winter ahead.

Was this shot all in one day?
Yes, we drove out and back from NYC in one day. I had mapped out the day with Peter – I went through my shot list with him and we decided on what would make most sense and be most efficient in terms of what do to when. Besides weather, there were a lot of factors to take into consideration. After all we were going to spend part of the shoot on open water photographing on and off La Perla, his boat used to harvest the oysters. We decided that we would do these shots at the end of the day to make the most of the late day light as it was not going to be possible to be on the water for sunrise.

The other thing that was really key was to be able to shoot from another boat. I learned this the hard way from previous experience. It seems obvious but it’s incredibly limiting if you are stuck on the one boat. If you don’t have the second boat you can’t shoot the primary vessel in open water. This was one of my first requests for Peter when we spoke initially and he was able to organize and coordinate it. It really was a massive assist both creatively and logistically.

How did the day unfold? Was it just like hanging out and you just happened to be taking photos?
Apart from scheduling what to do and when we really sort of hung out for the day. Peter and his crew were great to work with and were super accommodating. Thomas was there too and the writer Jamie. For me, the best thing is to let people do what they do and to document it as I see it. I like it to be as real and natural as possible but obviously I stop people, direct a little, compose and finesse the scene for my frame. It’s all based on observation and if it starts to feel too posed I like to shake it out and have them start over.

I love your portrait of the oyster. Tell me about the making of this image.
It was the last shot at the very end of the day. We did it on the boat. Peter supplied the vintage plate, too, which really helped. It wasn’t something that I over thought. It was just one of those shots that happened. It helped doing it last, not just for the evening light but at that stage I was in a groove and the photos were coming easily. It really was a fun day. Of course then we got to eat the delicious oysters before driving back to the city.

The Daily Edit – Runner’s World: Mark Davis

- - The Daily Edit

Runner’s World

Creative Director: 
Jesse Southerland
Director of Photography:
Amy Wolff
Mark Davis

Heidi: How did this story come about?
Mark: When I was a sophomore at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, I was in a photojournalism class taught by Whitney Johnson—who at the time was the Director of Photography at The New Yorker. For that class, we had to come up with half semester long documentary projects. I had no idea what story I wanted to pursue or how exactly to go about finding one. I was a competitive runner in high school in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, and one evening while trying to do research for a story for my class I was browsing a running website I used to look at during my high school days. I saw an article about a young Kenyan runner who was on scholarship running at St. Benedict’s Prep in Newark, New Jersey. I was blown away by the times that he was churning out, so I decided to try to do a photo essay on him. With the encouragement of my professor, I went to one of his cross country races in the Fall of 2012 and approached Cheserek and his coach to see if they would be up for having me around. They both said it would be fine and that I could tag along to the races. Quickly after starting the project, I knew that this story wasn’t going to end anytime soon.

Did you pitch this to the magazine?
A good friend and a fellow photographer, Jonah Rosenberg, connected me with the Director of Photography at Runner’s World, Amy Wolff, who immediately expressed interest in publishing the work.

Why did you choose to shoot this in BW?
If you have ever been to running or sporting events, you know that there are so many colors involved. As I started to shoot this project, it became clear to me that there were frames that just wouldn’t work in color. Neon can be visually overwhelming and really distract the viewer from the subject in the frame. Shooting in black and white gave me the freedom to focus more on form and shapes and not worry about a neon jacket or jersey completely ruining an image.

Who funded this project?
This project was self funded. I had the feeling that Cheserek might become one of the great distance runners of our time and so I felt compelled to make it to as many races as I could over the past six years to see where Cheserek’s career went. I was thinking of other great athlete’s like Muhammed Ali and Steve Prefontaine, and the visual history of their careers. I felt that I was witnessing the rise of another sports icon.

The Daily Edit – Popular Science: Stephen Mallon

- - The Daily Edit

Popular Science

Photo Director: Thomas Payne
Writer: Rob Verger
Photographer: Stephen Mallon

Please read Crushed to Glory here

Heidi: Where did your affinity for shooting big industrial spaces come from?
Stephen: My interest in the  human footprint in the landscape started when I was a teenager.  I was shooting construction sites and runways as early is my junior year in highschool.  Note to self, don’t sit on the end of the runway just because it’s the best angle.
I began working with the human footprint after a trip to Niger, Africa in 2000  when my editors commented on which images were more marketable for licensing. I started concentrating on shooting landscapes that had more of an identifiable impact on the scene.  I began shooting power lines, antennas, parking lots, construction sites, tree farms, whatever I came across during my travels. Around 2007 I was approached by a book agent that I met during a portfolio review that was interested in making a book of the work.  I felt there wasn’t a cohesive enough body of work yet so we came up with the idea to focus on the recycling industry in the United States.  Ten years later I am still exploring recycling projects and the book is going to be published by Glitterati Editions!

What type of direction did you get from the magazine?
I worked closely with Thomas Payne and Rob Verger on the story. Thomas and I met at a portfolio review hosted by ASMPNY and fortunately the next issue  he was working on was this issue on growth and decay which was a great fit for me. We started looking at my existing work and how to expand on it. In the end we didn’t use any of the previous recycling images I had shot which IMHO is a good sign!  Rob (who wrote the story) was also extremely helpful both in the prep and when I was shooting because he was able to keep everyone engaged while I obsessed.

What was the biggest challenge you had shooting in that environment?
Most of the challenges were in the pre-production, getting  the locations lined up. It took a few weeks of phone and emails to get the access granted.  Once we were in the main pressure for me was time. I always want to cover as much ground as possible.

What drew you to one of your first projects Brace for Impact: The Salvage of Flight 1549?
It was a historic moment because it was (and still is, almost ten years later) the only emergency crash in the water where there were zero casualties. Also while we were celebrating my wife’s birthday a guy at the bar asked “I wonder how they are going to get the plane out of the water.”  I realized I knew who might be involved.”  Weeks has the largest rotating crane on the eastern seaboard and it made sense that they could be involved. I called them and they were like, yea, we got the job, want to come down?

Was it toxic in the dumps?
As far as I know I still have ten fingers and  ten toes.

In your recycling work, was the subway car project self assigned?
YES!  I had begun working on my book American Reclamation  and spotted the barge loaded with the subway cars in New Jersey.  I approached Weeks Marine about including them in the project and they were happy  to have me (as was the MTA) to have me involved capturing the work. I had no idea at the time how the images were going to resonate with such a broad audience.


The Daily Edit – The Drake: Darcy Bacha

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The Drake

Designer: Mark Lesh
Photographer: Darcy Bacha

Heidi: How many years have you been doing this 6 week fishing/photo trip?
Darcy: Eric and I have been going up North for about 6 falls in a row now. I try to make it up during the spring as well, but that trip is usually harder to swing because of working as a snowboarding photographer. I did however get to spend some serious time on the Skeena this spring because of Eric’s Alignment movie project we worked on.

How did you meet Eric?
I randomly met Eric Jackson at a burger spot in Pemberton British Columbia, He’s one of the most influential back country snowboarders in the world.  We were both on snowboarding trips at the time, but naturally didn’t talk about snowboarding for a second. Within an hour of meeting we had already planned our first of many steel heading fly fishing trips to Northern BC.  the second time I met him was in Portland at the beginning of that said trip.

Have you sold many of the images from this trip?
As far as selling images, I always have my camera with me, I spend so much time fishing though it only comes out at very special moments.  Those moments usually end up in a magazine.

How long have you been shooting for The Drake?
I’ve been submitting images to them for probably 7 or 8 years now.  But I haven’t really done any assignment work until this spring for Alignment. Fly-fishing has always been my focus and the photography has really just been in the back ground. It wasn’t until this year I started realizing it could be incorporated into my annual income along with Snowboarding photography.

Have you always fished or did this start when you moved to the Pacific North West?
I’ve been fishing since I can remember. Some of my first memories are of splashing around in a creek with a net trying to catch minnows and crayfish. When I moved to the pacific northwest I discovered fly fishing.

How many photos did you trade for the fish?
HA! I feel like I’ve probably more likely traded fish for the photographs.  Although I like to think that every time I pick up my camera the fish probably weren’t gonna bite my fly then anyways.

Did you scout that opening shot and have that visualized?
That shot just came naturally. Me and my buddy’s go large mouth bass fishing in a local lake.  This just happened to be one of those mornings where I put down my fly rod and picked up the camera because the moment was so special.

Was this shoot part of your annual trip with Eric?
Well, it was more of a fly fishing tournament then a photography shoot, me and my dirtbag friends put on this 3 day bass tournament every year.  The conditions at this specific lake make for some pretty incredible foggy mornings.

The Daily Edit – National Geographic: Vaughn Wallace and Randy Olson

- - The Daily Edit

Cover illustration by Jorge Gamboa/Courtesy National Geographic

Photograph by Randy Olson / National Geographic.

After sheets of clear plastic trash have been washed in the Buriganga River, in Dhaka, Bangladesh, a woman spreads them out to dry, turning them regularly—while also tending to her son. The plastic will eventually be sold to a recycler. Less than a fifth of all plastic gets recycled globally. In the U.S. it’s less than 10 percent.

Photograph by Justin Hofman / National Geographic
To ride currents, seahorses clutch drifting seagrass or other natural debris. In the polluted waters off the Indonesian island of Sumbawa, this seahorse latched onto a plastic cotton swab—“a photo I wish didn’t exist,” says photographer Justin Hofman.


Photograph by Randy Olson / National Geographic
Under a bridge on a branch of the Buriganga River in Bangladesh, a family removes labels from plastic bottles, sorting green from clear ones to sell to a scrap dealer. Waste pickers here average around $100 a month.


Photograph by Randy Olson / National Geographic
Trucks full of plastic bottles pull into a recycling facility in Valenzuela, Philippines. The bottles were plucked from the streets of metropolitan Manila by waste pickers, who sell them to scrap dealers, who bring them here. The plastic bottles and caps will be shredded, sold up the recycling chain, and exported.


Photograph by Randy Olson / National Geographic
Colored chips of plastic—collected, washed and sorted by hand—dry on the banks of the Buriganga. About 120,000 people work in the informal recycling industry in and around Dhaka, where 18 million inhabitants generate some 11,000 tons of waste a day.


Photograph by Randy Olson / National Geographic


National Geographic: Planet or Plastic

Creative Director: Emmet Smith
Photography Director: Sarah Leen
Senior Photo Editor: Vaughn Wallace
Photographers: Randy Olson, Justin Hofman for images listed above

Heidi: How many countries and photographers were involved?
Vaughn: Our feature spans 52 pages and highlights photography from fourteen different photographers. The majority of the feature was photographed by long-time contributor Randy Olson, who shot nearly 50,000 photos across seven countries.

What was the time frame for this assignment as it involved so much travel for the photo team?  
Vaughn: We’ve been discussing the idea of a large feature focused on plastic around the world for years, but it really started coming together in spring 2017. Randy and I began a period of immense research in early summer, looking for locations where we could show the grand scale of plastic pollution. Shooting took place throughout the fall and winter, with Randy carrying a grueling travel itinerary between multiple countries until late January. In early February, Randy returned to NG headquarters in Washington DC, where we spent several days together editing his entire take, presenting his coverage to the magazine staff and beginning work on the print and digital layouts.

How has your daily use of plastic changed after this project?
Vaughn:During my research on the story, one expert recommended practicing what I came to understand as ‘plastic mindfulness’ – being hyper-aware of how the material has permeated every aspect of our individual lives. One morning, I began to count the number of plastic objects I interacted with, from the moment I woke up to when I walked out the front door. I touched 73 plastic objects in about an hour: everything from the buttons on my shirt to the orange juice container in my refrigerator, the shower curtain and the toilet seat to the snaps on my backpack and my phone charger.

Once you become aware of the scale of plastic waste around the world, it’s hard not to think about the impact of your own consumer choices. It isn’t a matter of cutting plastic out of your life completely as much as reducing extraneous plastic day-to-day. When ordering a soda at a restaurant, ask the server to not bring a straw. When buying just a few items at the supermarket, refuse the plastic bag. So much of our consumer plastic waste is born out of small, mindless convenience.

Working on this project also made me more aware of larger lingering questions. If plastic bottle caps will sit for hundreds of years in a landfill, why are we throwing them away after a single use? If certain colored dyes make a plastic less recyclable, why should we dye plastic at all? In what world do we need to wrap a single banana in plastic film? As depressing as the scale of the problem can sometimes be, there’s tons of potential for future change.

National Geographic’s Planet or Plastic? campaign is a multi-year initiative aimed at raising awareness of the global plastic crisis and reducing the amount of single-use plastic that is polluting our world’s oceans.

I know you’ve done extensive work with National Geographic, whats was directive from the magazine for this feature and what did you hope to share with the world as a photographer?
My directives from NG have always been open ended
 stories like the Pygmies are losing their forests
OR the Ogallala Aquifer is being depleted. My friends and family accuse me of being Mr. Gloom and Doom for all the facts I have filed away when I tackle a story with difficult issues. A big factor in survival as a National Geographic photographer has always been the ability to research and resolve your own narrative. It’s the only magazine I know that gives photographers that level of freedom.

So, of course, the catchlines we’ve all been seeing this last year like: “There will be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050” OR only 9 percent of plastic waste is recycled—these were part of my thinking. But the focus of the first @natgeo Instagram posts is my main narrative: There are millions of slum workers around the world involved in an informal plastic waste industry that is “always hiring.” This third-world “gold rush” to process plastic waste is an economy with no end in sight. One big reason this will continue is the shale oil boom – companies that are in the early years of gearing up “cracker plants” that “crack”  frack-gas-molecules into mostly single-use-plastic for food packaging. Plans are in the works for more cracker plants that will push peak plastic production all the way out to the year 2100. Despite growing concern and much discussion in the media this past year, these corporations plan for more and more single-use-plastic in our lives.

With burgeoning populations and ramped up plastic production, the only way to reduce plastic waste is to consume less. The zero-waste movement is more established in Europe, but there is a USA vanguard. I photographed a zero-waste-blogger who managed to accumulate only one jar of landfill trash over the last two years She adheres to the movement’s mantra: Refuse, Reduce, Re-use, Recycle, Rot (Compost). In her world recycling is a last ditch alternative to Refuse, Reduce and Re-use.

Are you editing as you shoot each location? The images have a haunting beauty to them, were they difficult for you to to review due the large human imprint we have on the planet.
Yes, I edit as I go along because ultimately I am story boarding a small movie (the movie never is shot but the still pictures need to relate to each other and move the narrative along). So as I shoot and edit day by day I’m looking for bullet points that are missing from the narrative. When I returned from the field, my editor, Vaughn Wallace reviewed the entire take to weigh in on the strength of the images, and we worked together to select photos that build continuity to the story.

Did you have any challenges photographing your subjects in the more rural areas?
I was mostly in the slums and dumpsites of megacities but everyone couldn’t be friendlier. The only bad street vibe I got was in Freeport TX where I photographed aerials of a cracker plant built in a precarious site at sea level. My heart went out to a plastic worker in Manila who wasgreeting mourners at a funeral on the street. His wife (also a plastic picker) was in a shrink wrapped plastic coffin that sat on a street in the middle of the city’s informal plastic waste industry. And photographing artisanal trash picking at dump sites is very dangerous. Many workers have died as they try to pick scraps of plastic while standing on top of a load as it shifted by a huge track hoe. Walls of trash can collapse and bury people, and I needed to be right next to pickers when they are working.

You’ve been documenting stories for National Geographic for sometime and have founded the The Photo Society, what made this assignment stand out for you?
I am amazed by the magnitude of plastic. It was difficult thing to show size and scale and amounts of trash. I wanted to photograph people in relation to the plastic In hopes that it would not add to compassion fatigue about global problems.

How was your daily use of plastic changed after this project?
We live in a world of too many people with too many needs so many of my stories revolve around how resource extraction screws the little guy or the environment. So the idea of getting rid of plastic waste is fraught with problems. What helped me understand how to do this in my life is the zero waste movement in Europe. This charge is being led primarily by young women who are tired of the abuses of consumerism. They educate anyone who is interested in a very kind way, that, for example, adopting a zero waste lifestyle can save you money, time and reduce the plastic waste in the world. So I bought a tin for toothpaste because tooth paste tubes (like potato chip bags) have so many layers of materials they can never be recycled. We recycle and compost for the last 20 years, but we always wondered if it mattered. I realized I needed to do more. My wife bought beeswax resin cotton cloths that we are using instead of plastic wrap for food storage. I bought a stainless container to take to restaurants for carry out. I bought a really cool red double walled titanium coffee container to take to coffee shops. These items in anyone’s personal life means they aren’t buying one-use-plastic that becomes trash in a matter of minutes. The one hard part of recycling is knowing only 9 percent is ever turned into plastic objects
and now there is more pressure and fewer options since China stopped taking a lot of our plastic waste.

Peloton Magazine: Paolo Ciaberta

- - The Daily Edit

Peloton Magazine

Creative Director/Photo Editor: Tim Schamber
Photographer: Paolo Ciaberta

Heidi: How did the project come about and is this the first time you’ve worked with Peloton?
Paolo: My first collaboration with Peloton was in 2014, I proposed a reportage about the cycling path from Venice to Turin along the Po river. The Morocco trip my friends and I were looking for a ride in an exotic place but not too far from Italy where I’m based so it was a perfect opportunity.

How long did the trip take?
Due to work commitments we decided on 7 days for the entire trip. One day of transportations and six days to ride. Average 80-90km/day, not too much because we don’t want to only pedal but also discover people and places.

Do you often ride, write and shoot?
While I wrote the article, I’m not a proper writer but in this instance I tried to communicate my experiences and sensations, in addition to some technical details. For longer and more articulated articles I prefer to work with professional writers.

How difficult was the photo edit and approx how many images did you take?
More or less 600 images for the entire trip. There are two different aspects that I consider while editing.  First is selection of the images and second the post-production; I don’t like too much elaboration on my pictures.  I make little adjustment of levels, lights, shadows and contrast. I think that photo reportage should be real as possible, too much editing makes images artificial or constructed.  The trick is to find the right balance and choose the photos that best describe your work

Was it difficult to protect your gear from the travel/weather?
After years of experience I’ve achieved a good level of protetcion for my equipment, Olympus Italia provided me an excellent mirrorless camera (Pen F) that is easy to transport due to its small size but also resistant to bad weather. Basically the biggest problems during bike packing trips could be dust, rain, condensation and vibrations. Rain in Morocco is rare but dust and condensation could happen, a good plastic bag with smaller little salt bags solve the problem and you can go everywhere. Furthermore I use little stripes of foam rubber to avoid the vibrations when the camera is in the bags.


The Daily Edit – Rollacoaster: Justin Campbell

- - The Daily Edit

Rollacoaster Magazine

Fashion Stylist: Morgan Pinney
Photographer: Justin Campbell

Heidi: What type of direction did you get from the magazine?

Justin: I love working with Rollacoaster because they give you a lot of creative freedom. The concept we came up with was this idea of “Summer in Suburbia.”

Describe the shoot, it looks like you two were simply hanging out. 
Cameron and I have shot a lot together, (below is an image from a previous shoot) so in a sense it felt like that when we were working, that we were just hanging out.  We wanted the story to feel like it could be Cameron’s parallel life as a 23-year old in the suburbs (If he wasn’t one of the highest followed influencers and world famous). The stylist Morgan and I wanted the clothing to feel like they could be pieces from Cameron’s own wardrobe. The house we rented felt like it could be Cameron’s home.



Did you direct him at all?
Every image is orchestrated. What is amazing about Cameron is the spontaneity and playfulness he brings to set. I find that the final picture always exists somewhere between what was in your head before the shot and what the subject brings to the table. I’ve always approached my work as a living dialogue between my ideas and the person I’m shooting.

Did you think twice about what to wear?
I wear a uniform everyday. I own 40 of the same black t-shirt and 6 pairs of the same black jeans. I only switch up my shoes and jackets. When I’m working I don’t want to have to think about what I’m putting on in the morning.

Was this your first shoot with Rollacoaster?
This was my first shoot with Rollacoaster. We have a lot more coming out soon!

Where is the magazine based?
The magazine is based in London. My favorite city!

How many covers have you done with Cameron?
This is the third cover Cameron and I have shot together. He is a great friend and collaborator.

Do you skate?
I don’t.


The Daily Edit – Airbnb Magazine: Gabrielle Sirkin

- - The Daily Edit


Airbnb Magazine

Creative Director: Michael Wilson
Director of Photography:
Natasha Lunn
Contributing Photo Editor: Katie Dunn
Senior Photo Editor: Gabrielle Sirkin
Art Director: Mallory Roynon
Designer: Lisa Lok

Heidi: Tell us about the magazine, how often does it come out and where can we find it?

Gabrielle: Community is at the heart of Airbnb and the magazine is a place where readers can feel at home in the world. We cover authentic travel around the globe, with the aim of uncovering hidden gems through our Airbnb host’s insights and inspiring people to travel the way locals live. We try to embody those visceral moments through visual storytelling. The Spring 2018 issue is our third issue with three more this year. Airbnbmag is print and digital, distributed to the Airbnb community globally and can be found on newsstands in North America.

What are you looking for in someone’s work?
Natasha Lunn, our Director of Photography, Katie Dunn, our Contributing Photo Editor and myself (Senior Photo Editor) make up the photo team. We are looking for someone with a unique point of view who can photograph experiences with a sense of spontaneity and authenticity. We want the viewer to feel engaged and inspired. We also bring a diversity to the photography by using photojournalists, documentary, fine art, street and landscape photographers. And whenever possible, we try to use local photographers in the regions we are shooting.

Is the entire magazine shot?
I would say about ninety percent of the magazine is original photography. For us, the magazine is so much about the community and people that we often go deep into these cultures seeking out the undiscovered.

Are you assigning these stories or are photographers coming with pitches?
We’re assigning based on writer’s stories but also approaching photographers who may have ideas for beautiful photo essays with a unique point of view  that can speak nicely to the Airbnbmag reader and community.

Where are you searching for photographers since you’re in the global arena?
That’s a good question! I must say, largely Instagram. So many photographers are using the Instagram Stories feature to inform editors of their whereabouts. We’ll also look at global, regional and online publications, which are always great resources for discovering local talent.

Do you work with satellite photo editors?
The photo team is made up of Natasha Lunn, Director of Photography, Katie Dunn Contributing Photo Editor and myself, Senior Photo Editor. Natasha and Katie work from the New York Hearst office and I work remotely from LA (where I live). When Natasha was brought on to launch the magazine, she asked me if I’d want to join and of course I jumped at the opportunity. Natasha and I used to work together at More Magazine a few years back (which has since folded) and work very well together. It makes the bi-coastal relationship really fluid and strategic especially when dealing with different time zones and global production. Katie has great travel related photo editing experience, so we’ve been able to direct and produce the magazine by collectively pulling all our resources together!

Do you use Instgram to source talent?
I discovered photographer Julia Sellmann on Instagram. We absolutely loved her work and asked her if she was working on any personal projects that would be nice for the Spring 2018 issue. She proposed a continuation of her project on the Mongal Dosha, a somewhat complicated and controversial system of beliefs in India. We sent Julia to Jaipur, Tarapith and West Bengal for ten days to document the Mongal Dosha (a condition where if the planet Mars is in a certain position in a woman’s birth chart, it could have negative impacts on the success or failure of a marriage) and the Indian astrologers who are consulted prior to the marriage. She did an incredible job of capturing a relatively abstract concept of beliefs and myths in a visceral way. The body of work is lyrical and transcendent. 

The Daily Edit – Entreprenuer Magazine: Andy Isaacson

- - The Daily Edit

Entrepreneur Magazine

Creative Director:
 Paul Scirecalabrisotto

Photography Director: Judith Puckett-Rinella
Photographer: Andy Isaacson

Heidi: How many days were on location?
Andy: I was in Puerto Rico for 4 days.

What was the most challenging obstacle during the shoot?
The fact that much of the compelling action in the story (the actual hurricane relief and recovery work that the subject of the story was involved in) had already taken place several weeks before I arrived! So I really didn’t know what I’d be able get on the ground – basically, I was winging it. As it happened, I spent most of the time joining the subject of the story for casual meetings with people in unremarkable locations, so I just had to grab pictures along the way: from the rooftop of an office building in Old San Juan after one meeting, inside an office within the Governor’s mansion on another occasion, etc.

Had you been to Puerto Rico before? Did you have a guide on location?
I’d never been to Puerto Rico before, and I leaned heavily on my guide, who was also the subject of the story– Jesse Levin, an entrepreneur and volunteer disaster relief worker. I shadowed Levin as he bounced around San Juan to different meetings, but he’d also arranged for me, as the author of the story, to meet characters that might be helpful sources. On my last afternoon he drove me through the island’s rural interior, and we poked around the mountains, which still bore plenty of evidence of the storm’s wrath.

What was the direction from the magazine?
None, really. As the reporter and writer on the story, I was also driving the photography on the fly. However, there were two essential shots that I wanted to come home with: a portrait of Levin, and an image that conveyed the hurricane’s devastation (which was not so easy to find in the capital, four months after the storm, where I did all of my reporting). On our drive through the island’s mountains, on that final afternoon, I finally was able to get my portrait of Levin, in the late afternoon (in between rain showers), and also, fortuitously, that picture–from the side of a mashed up road– that conveyed the hurricane’s damages.

You are often a photographer/reporter for projects, what other tasks do you find yourself doing?
Carrying house plants into the Puerto Rican Governors Mansion was different. My subject has been granted permission to redesign a government innovation office in an effort to make it more reflective of SF startup culture.

The Daily Edit – Wired Magazine: Jake Rowland

- - The Daily Edit

Creative Director: David Moretti
Design Director:
Ivy Simones
Photography Director: Anna Alexander
Deputy Design Director:
Frank Augugliaro
Photographer: Jake Rowland

Heidi: The blurred lines between fact/ fiction, fake news are the essence of your work. Tell us how this cover came about.
Jake: The Mark Zuckerberg cover for WIRED came about when the deputy design director of WIRED Frank Augugliaro contacted my colleague David La Spina at Esto, who I’m working with on a new digital imaging studio in New York called Light Manufacturing, and he recommended me for the job. The team at WIRED– David Moretti, Frank, Anna Alexander- wanted a portrait of Zuckerberg looking beat up to reflect the beating he was taking in the media post-Trump’s election. I didn’t know the details of Nicholas Thompson and Fred Vogelstein’s article but was already well aware of Cambridge Analytica’s interference in the election via Facebook through my activism in New York. So it was very exciting to create the piece. I really could not have hoped for a better editorial project since the topic of “fake news” and fact vs. fiction online dovetails perfectly with my digital composite work in portrait photography.

The team at WIRED was amazing to work with and the cover took about a month to complete. The final image is a composite made up of four different photographs: two stock photos and two photographs I shot myself. I hired two models and did the “beat up” make-up myself. I used my photos for the sweat, blood, bandage, etc. and the stock was the main image of Zuckerberg with some manipulation to shape his expression.

Tell us how this style developed for you.
When I started to work with photography I experimented with double exposures, darkroom manipulation, collage and finally began working with Photoshop. It was a natural progression in my personal work over many years. I’ve also been a professional retoucher for over a decade in New York and have worked on a wide variety of mainstream commercial and advertising imagery.

Describe the space between photography and technology for you as an artist.
Quick answer: there is no space between technology and photography. Photography is a technology through which we express a vision of our humanity. That said, the combination of photography and digital media is an extremely powerful tool that can shape that vision in subtle and profound ways.

Do all of your portraits involve a casting and a shoot?
No. I mainly work with family and friends in my personal work.

Fact and fiction are blurred with this type of work, how much of what you create is commentary on our media landscape?
I became interested on making a statement about the line between fact and fiction in photography with my family photos starting around 2004. I felt that creating seamless, extremely life-like fictional photographic portraits and making large scale, detailed prints the viewer could walk up to and be convinced what they are seeing is real would be a flash-point for creating a dialog on the subject of fact/fiction in photography, digital media and other technologies as well. Lately, bio-technology is an area that I think about a lot with regards to this work. That’s an area that is obviously going to be rapidly developing in very unpredictable ways in the very near future.

In your eyes, are there any truthful images in the media?
The jury is out on that one.

The Daily Edit – The Red Bulletin: Jim Krantz

- - The Daily Edit

The Red Bulletin

Fritz Schuster: Head of Photography
Creative Director: Erik Turek
Art Director: Kasimir Reiman
Photo Editor: Rudi Uebelhoer
Photographer: Jim Krantz

Heidi: What was the biggest challenge for this type of shoot?
Jim: Finding my lost cards in the desert dust after 2 days of shoot in degree+ temperatures. That’s its own story!

Was weather and issue? Sand isn’t friendly for cameras.
My equipment was trashed, its ok, they are only tools. I love rental equipment

In a few words describe the Wasteland weekend festival and why is was so inspiring to shoot.
The high level of creativity in each persons individuality was spectacular, these alter egos created became the person for the duration of this post apocalyptic festival. This is a very enigmatic situation to experience, the cars and personalities are haunting and intimidating yet the warmth and camaraderie between all involved is all for one, one for all. I just loved being a part of it.

Did you also camp at the festival?
I did not, the process of making a “camp” is also part of the process, I was a transient observer.

What kind of direction did you get from the magazine?
“Jimmy, shoot a story that you love and do what you do”

With so much visual appeal how did you decide what to shoot?
The event is a kaleidoscope  of  visual candy. Every where, in every direction there were shots to consider. The difficult aspect is not simply making a photograph that is “bizarre” because on the surface,  every image that flashes by is as such. Photographing in these overwhelming situations must go deeper, on a more narrative or personal level of the subject. Its simple to shoot a documentation of a person, but what are they feeling and thinking, is this a moment of repose or reflection? Then the images become individualized. A question I ask myself when I work is would the photograph be as good if they were not dressed in what they are wearing? For me it is very important to ease into the situation, strip away the wild surface of the event and see what is happening as if they were not in the regalia – that’s when the photos happen. This is a very important concept I consider whenever I shoot and that allows me to strip away the obvious and see what is really beneath the surface



The Daily Edit – Wired Magazine: Amy Silverman

- - The Daily Edit




Design Director: Ivylise Simones
Photography Director: Anna Goldwater Alexander
Photo Editor: Amy Silverman
Art Director: Ben Bours
Photographer: Nik Mirus

Heidi: Tell us about the sets.
Amy:The sets were made from pieces of plexiglass with colored paper or gels placed on them. We worked with a flat sheet of plexi with various colors of paper under it and then they placed the squares that were upright for each individual shot

What was the evolution of this idea, did it start one way and then evolve?
We started with a few different ideas- and i have to say this is one of the most collaborative issues I’ve ever worked on. We knew we were doing a special “life issue” broken down into various stages of one’s life (but including pre-birth and post-death). So the art department met a lot to talk about various ideas that were photo based and illustration based. We all brought ideas to the meetings with reference photos from different artists and across different styles. Eventually, art directors Ben Bours and Mike Ley put together a beautiful presentation for our editors that went through 3 different possible approaches we had agreed on. We called them Organic, Cellular, and Discovery and Decline. Each treatment had its own fonts and artists and colors associated with it. All focused on progression and stages and metamorphosis. When you are thinking about life and death it’s hard to avoid well worn metaphors so we decided to embrace them. Eventually we decided we wanted to use a photographic approach, our “organic” treatment. Our creative director, David Moretti, who left WIRED right as we were shooting, was excited about using flowers as a way to show the stages.



How long did they take to build?
We shot the cover plus the four chapter openers over two days. the cover taking most of one of those days. So to place the flowers and the evolving structure took only a couple hours for each shot because we had sketched it out and had a very clear idea of how each page would look.

How did you decide on what flowers to use?
Flowers were chosen for each stage of life based on their shape and color and the state of their flowering. We wanted it to feel like it was becoming more lush and complex as it went through the stages and then becoming more pared down in the final stage. The first stage 00-12 was elemental/simple shapes and not a lot of colors- no flowers, just hints of buds. 13-26 we really wanted to be about these simple flowers beginning to bloom- as well as the colors being bright and vibrant. 27-54 we wanted to be the most complex- referencing fullness of life and social networks- we brought in the most flowers here making it more lush, overflowing, bursting forth with more saturated colors. 55-death and beyond we wanted to circle back around to less complex shapes and colors and to bring in the idea of decline. We also grafted an orchid onto a tulip as a nod to science and the extended possibilities afforded to us through science and technology.

The cover was an encapsulation of this idea of progress/evolution/layers. We were trying to contain all of the chapter openers into one idea. The orchid felt like a natural choice here- with it’s intricate/complex shapes and as a reference to vitality. We wanted it to feel very alive and moving its way through different layers.

What direction did you give to the photographer?
As soon as we decided to go the photographic route, we got the photographer on board to bring his ideas into it. Nik had shot for WIRED once before and we loved his approach. He had a previous project that we looked at because it combined materials that felt futuristic with something that is somewhat timeless- maps. We went to him with the idea of the organic (flowers) and the use of the layers of plexi or some material that spoke to structure and technology. There were many discussions back and forth with sketches and reference pictures. We knew we wanted certain elements- transparency, layers, playing with optical illusions. We knew we wanted to use real flowers and build most of the effects in studio so that you see real shadows and reflections. We also knew we wanted the evolution to occur on various levels- so the changes are happening with the plexi structure that becomes more complex throughout, the colors loosely going from light to dark/summer to winter, and the placement of the text on the page moving as well. Nik has a set designer that he works with very closely, Camille Boyer, who was in all the meetings and had great ideas about how we could create shapes with the plexi and what kinds of flowers we might use. Especially for the cover- Camille suggested using a box with a layer of plexi in front of it that we could shoot into creating a really nice depth and the super vibrant colors.


The Daily Edit – AFAR: McNair Evans

- - The Daily Edit


Afar Magazine

Director of Photography: Tara Guertin
Photo Editor: Lyn Horst
Design Director: Jason Seldon
Photographer: McNair Evans


Heidi: How long where you down south?
McNair: When AFAR Magazine’s Director of Photography, Tara Guertin, received a story pitch about a Thelma & Louise style road trip through North and South Carolina, she emailed me immediately. Tara knew that I’m from North Carolina originally and had hired me for a project there four years earlier. AFAR Magazine takes an off-the-beaten-path approach to travel and photography. To provide in-depth glimpses from remote locations, Tara strives to find local photographers who will share a true sense of place rather than an outsider’s perspective. Not only did this story traverse my teenage haunts, it was pitched by British journalist Emma John, with whom I worked in 2012 on a project titled Playing By The Heart. Tara wanted to know how soon I could schedule the shoot. Working with an assistant to help with driving and equipment, I scheduled five days to retrace the story’s route and make pictures that would share the author’s experiences as well as my own sense-of-place as a native Southerner.

Was this a road trip?
The story Two For The Road consists of first-person experiences and revelations along an 800-mile road trip through the American South. Beginning in Charlotte, North Carolina and driving east to Pawleys Island, South Carolina, Emma and her host Genny crossed the Eastern Coastal Plain, a sandy, prehistoric sea floor currently quilted with large-scale commercial farms and dilapidated agricultural towns. From Pawleys Island they traveled south through tidal washes of the Atlantic Ocean and to the colonial cities of Charleston, South Carolina and Savannah, Georgia. Finally they drove northwest into the Appalachian Mountains for a visit to Genny’s home and to conclude their trip in Charlotte, NC.

While road trips have long been the means and subject of American photography, photographers have mostly focused on expansive geography in the American West, notions of Manifest Destiny, and isolation or dislocation of photographers navigating disparate locations. This trip was different. The route circled through places often overlooked or challenged me to find greater significance through a manicured veneer of historic preservation.

How do you string together your narrative arc for these travel stories?
Emma had not yet written her story and would not be able to return to the United States to accompany the shoot. Instead we connected via Skype so I could learn more about her personal experiences and her vision for the finished piece. I needed to know the locations she had visited, where she had stayed, and the people she had met. Emma shared specific encounters with people and places, and I extrapolated the broader significances of these anecdotes. I was interested in the relationship between Genny and Emma and what they had learned while traveling together. What feelings did particular encounters evoke and how did their perspectives change throughout the trip? In addition to photographing their itinerary, Tara provided key restaurants and activities that might accompany the article. I made two lists. One consisted of specific places and activities and the other outlined broader themes, such as complex social remnants of a plantation society, challenging gender roles, race relations, social privilege, and generational expectation. My narrative goal was to find the latter in the former while maintaining a sense of discovery and movement through the landscape.

How many of these are set up shots and how many are you observing?
While trees, mountains, and buildings may not visually acknowledge the presence of a photographer, most people do. The idea that I might photograph people, regardless of how discrete, without influencing their behavior is something I’ve mostly given up. In most cases I prefer an opposite approach that begins with my introduction and explanation. Once a scene or scenario unfolds, I tend to photograph with little, if any direction. Portraits of individuals and still-life images often require complete direction. Otherwise, the instant a person realizes that they are being observed can provide a picture’s punctum. In this last scenario, I then explain my presence and intention in order to receive their permission to publish the image. This project required a variety of image making processes, from completely set up shots to found objects and fleeting moments.

Did the writer wrangle the subjects?
Emma, the writer, was in another time zone and on a different continent, so ‘the subjects’ were subjected only to direct enthusiasm and mutual respect from my assistant and me. I mean, projects like this, when a photo editor provides a loose shot list and then instructs, “just go and do your thing,” are a complete dream. Sure, all the details regarding where, when, who, and how to shoot become my responsibility, but with that comes the creative freedom to explore metaphor, symbolism, and allegory within every shoot scenario.

Tell us about the sharing a ride component, how did you address that photographically?
To photograph six cities and 800 miles in five days is no joke. Luckily Mark Quinnes, the San Francisco-based photographer who assisted me on this project, was a quick study on driving manual transmission. Mark would drive between locations and when the light was good. I’d look for interesting stops along the route or photograph through a sunroof. Each night, while downloading and backing up the shoot, we’d use the internet to search local newspapers and websites for interesting events during the days ahead. Mark would drop these onto a Google map previously loaded with our itenary. We’d always have a destination, even if just finding unexpected photographs along the route was our main objective.

The main character of this story, Genny, Emma’s road trip partner, met us on the last day. I rode shotgun while she drove and told stories connecting landscape to memory. We visited the site where she was born, her school, a favorite diner, and a site-seeing spot she believed Mark and I would enjoy. Using photography to simply illustrate a story has never interested me much, so a literal picture of her driving didn’t really appeal. Instead, I looked for pictures that might feel like shared moments between her and the absent author. I made pictures that might communicate her belonging, abandonment, and perhaps rediscovery of the place she defines as home.

How were you received in these out of the way places?
Born in Daly City, CA, lovingly dubbed Little Manila by its large Filipino population, Mark had never been to the American South. Likewise, most of the people we photographed had never seen a Filipino. As if cued by a teleprompter, approximately thirty-minutes into each shoot the same question arose in a slow Southern drawl, “Excuse me, but where are you from?” If inquirer was female and over the age of 65, they’d quickly justify the question, “You are so handsome.”

Back in the Bay Area and sharing stories from our shoot, a fellow photographer asked how we could spend so much time with ‘those types of people,’ ie. people so different from us. Rarely are people as binary or different as they appear from afar. Photography, like all art, provides a vehicle and voice to cross these divides. The history of slavery and a persistence of plantation ideology certainly clouds the American South, as well as many places across the United States, but collective guilt and shame can unite us in action as much as they separate us in anger. Photography might not be capable of really changing the world, but at least assignments like this one provide an opportunity to describe underlying nuances that define how we see each other.

The Daily Edit – Trupal Pandya: Tribal Portraits

- - The Daily Edit

Trupal Pandya: Tribal Portraits


Heidi: What is your process for gaining trust in these different subcultures?
Trupal: When I am traveling, I make an effort to be accepted and slowly assimilating their ways of life. The first few days that I spend with them I don’t photograph them, but instead wait until they accept and understand why am I there. Sometimes, this would mean I live with them in their houses, sleep where they sleep, eat what they eat and talk to them, show them my work from other parts of the world so they understand what am I there to do. It’s about making a connection. It’s very important to me that they feel comfortable and let their guards down before I start photographing them. I also carry a Polaroid camera which is my only camera for the first few days so I could share my photos with them. I feel if your intentions are right, people can sense it. I am also a big believer of the universal language where one doesn’t need words to communicate.

You mention “when your intentions are right” what are yours?
I find it more important now than ever to spread awareness of all that is contained in these precious tribes. I believe that man was meant to live on the earth, joyous and free, in harmony with his surroundings. These are qualities I’ve seen in the Konyak, the Huaorani, and the people of the Omo Valley.  Installed in all these tribes that are slowly being dissolved, is a peace of mind and heart that the people of the industrial societies are forever longing for.  It is ironic that the cycles of civilization have us forever coveting the lives of others.  The people of the western world, after centuries-long reliance on technology, are now beginning to look again toward nature. Herbal medicines, organic, sustainable farming and even wild foraging are coming into vogue in the major cities. Meanwhile, for these tribes there are repercussions of invading philosophies, removing from the “primitive” people their methods and magic, and their sacred ways have now been replaced with antibiotics and accusations of ineffectiveness and unsophistication. When the day comes that the developing nations find that modern is not always better, will the knowledge still be there when they return to seek it? I don’t know if it will, so it is with great care that I do my best to fulfill this inherent feeling of duty, this calling, that through my photography I may lend a voice to those who can’t always speak loud enough for others to listen. What I hope to be heard is, that no matter what the opinion may be of certain rituals or ideals, as a whole these communities, closely tied to the earth, closely tied to the wellbeing of their tribes as a whole, embody a greater happiness and wealth than could ever be found in the isolating madness of the material-driven world. 

.How do theses tribes benefit from your work?
I don’t really think I go there to benefit the tribes specifically, nor am I there to change the way they live or stop them from changing. I don’t think I am anyone to decide who changes and who doesn’t. What might seem like a loss of culture to you and me might be a better way of living for them. More facilities and a brighter future. I am not sure if my work benefits a particular tribe. What I am there to do is honor their culture and preserve a record of it so that it can benefit our whole human family. 

How much time do you spend with a group before you pull out the camera?
I usually spend 3-4 days with the tribe before I take out my camera. However, I use my polaroid sooner.
What tools do you use to make sure they don’t feel exploited?
I have a very close bond with every tribe I have photographed. I have made it a point to go back to them and give them back their photographs, do small exhibits for them in their villages. A lot of the people I have photographed have seen themselves on a printed form for the first time. It’s extremely rewarding. Hitting a shutter is only 5% of my job. I feel there’s a lot more than that. I don’t necessarily have any tools. It’s all family for me.
Tell us about the other 95%
A lot of research and planning. Finding the right person who speaks the right languages and understands what I do so they can convey my messages to the people I am photographing and get me access to certain places. There’s a lot which happens after I photograph them. I am very sensitive about where my photos go afterward, how are they printed and how are they presented. Their journey doesn’t end till they reach where they belong. 
If the roles were reversed, would you be open in having someone live with you and document you as well?
Yes, absolutely. My life goal is to have an exhibition in a space which has hundreds of portraits of people from around the world on a white backdrop. I want the distractions of culture and geography to fade into the background. I want to have no name tags, no location, no country name and call the exhibition ‘Human.’ Aren’t we all the same in the end? Of course, I would let someone come to my house and let them document my life.

The Daily Edit – Dan Tobin Smith: Alphabetical

- - The Daily Edit





Alphabetical:  Dan Tobin Smith 

Heidi: Is there a secret message/anagram in the letter forms you’ve photographed thus far?
Dan: No, but its funny being able to spell more words each time you make a new letter, especially rude ones!

Where did your love of type come from?
I think there is something very satisfying about making the form of type but in reality. The form exists already so in a sense you are just filling in, and that can be done in so many ways.

Typographically what inspired you to create the 16 letters thus far?
They are all Helvetica, although they have been distorted somewhat in their photographic interpretation. I wanted to use a simple font that acted as a conduit for the different treatments. Sometimes there is a reason behind the letter and the content and sometimes there’s no reason apart from visually I thought they would work together.



All are stunning though I particularly enjoyed the textural and tactile quality of X. How did that specific idea develop?
We (the set designer Nicola Yeoman and I) liked the idea of marking a spot and we thought marking by cutting open would work with wood really well. Once it was done, it presented lots of visual opportunities by changing light and perspective.

Was there a thrill to the destruction into something beautiful for the X?
It was definitely fun watching it take shape from an outline in masking tape!

For your mesmerizing film T, how big of a space did you need for that?  and what was the genesis of this piece?
The space was a railway arch in Shoreditch, East London. The letter T is symmetrical back to front, ie you can flip it horizontally and it looks the same. Because of this I wanted to use the light very specifically so that two different light treatments could be achieved in one moment . This meant it could be filmed from two sides at the same time.


What exactly is exploding in that lovely form?
I’m pretty sure it was talcum powder! which is very fine, but wont kill you if you breathe a bit in.

Do you have a favorite font?
I think what I love most about typography is the variation, so pinning down one in particular would be impossible.

The Daily Edit – ESPN: Ramona Rosales

- - The Daily Edit


Director of Photography: Karen Frank
Senior Photo Editor:
Kristine LaMana
Creative Director: Chin Wang
Art Director: Eric Paul
Associate Art Director: Linda Root Pouder
Ramona Rosales

Heidi: How did the project develop?
Ramona: Originally I though it was just a shoot with Chloe Kim, the other 2 assignment came later. It was mentioned in the early stages that this was for an Winter Olympics issue and that a female athlete was to be featured, which I believe was a first for the Olympics. I just shot my first Body Issue project with ESPN and was thrilled they considered me for this project since my editors thought it would be a great match.
Tell us about the set design and approach.
I liked the idea was getting her in mid air, so I studied tons of footage of her during competitions and took note of the conditions of the half pipes and environment. There wasn’t very much press or photos out in the world about her (yet), but from what I could find, I wanted to bring her personality and age into the mix and was able to pitch the idea of hoisting her in a harness with this specific body position in mid twist. I was able to present a mock up that ESPN approved and made sure the athlete was comfortable flying with ropes and able to get into the pose. It was risky since she had never done it before but her great attitude and adventurous spirt was into the idea. I collaborated with my set designer to build the top corner section of a halfpipe and chose to create at sunset sky gradation with light on a larger cyc. I didn’t want to go overall girlie with the colors and feel more environmental but also very current in color pallet to tie in her aesthetic.
What were some of the challenges?
Once we got her in the harness, I could see there was going to be challenges since it’s not the most comfortable thing to do and holding a pose can be difficult. I knew we would have little time for this shot, we did it in two 10 minute tries. We got it on the first run luckily, because by the second round you she couldn’t hide the discomfort as easily. We did another 4 set ups, including the halfpipe, cover portraits with variations, trampoline jumps and quick fun loose shots at the end. It was a full day but so rewarding in collaborating with such a fun & amazing athlete with a strong team backing her along with my team & ESPN helping me achieve a great series which forever will be a favorite.
How Important did you think it was for a woman to photograph this?
I don’t think it was necessarily important that a woman photography this project. There was a genuine connection I had with all three of the subjects on our shoots, which I think was the intention  of my editors choosing me for this project along with my style and ability to pull it off. Collaboration and camaraderie with subjects are a high priority in my approach and is a big component that comes through in my work. The collective goal was to present our Olympic Athletes in a strong heroic way without striping away their personalities and only aiming for an authentic point of view, which I believe we successfully delivered.