The Strength of Community
The Strength of Community
Hello All, I hope you’re all hanging in there and doing your best to stay healthy under these circumstances. I want to share with you some of the ways the photography community is showing resilience during these challenging times as well as share what I have been up to.
Both the commercial photography industry and I have been completely shutdown since the shelter in place went into effect nationwide. Knowing there was only so much I could do around my work I realized there was a great need to support our industry to figure out the difficult road ahead. Although I was greatly going out of my comfort zone I decided to put my ego aside to start a weekly online series titled, Biz Talk, with the help of American Photographic Artists’ Executive Director Juliette Wolf-Robin. It is mostly in response to our current challenges, but it’s overall intention is to discuss business topics related to our industry on an ongoing basis. Each week we have been bringing in anywhere from 1-4 guests to talk about different subjects. We are in our 5th week and have covered topics including navigating govt. financial aid, licensing stock for commercial photographers, and had a discussion last week on set safety and creative ways of working while sheltering in place. This Tuesday at 11:00am PST we will continue the topic of Covid safety on set as it relates to liability and insurance.
If you would like to get notices for future episodes from APA National visit: https://signup.e2ma.net/signup/1835969/7850/
If you would like to watch past episodes, visit the APA YouTube page here:
What Work Looks Like Now and in the Future
I want to go a little more in-depth on the topic of set safety during productions. The photography production community has been thinking up creative ways to make something happen within the circumstances we are under. Everyday people are sharing new ideas about small and large productions and asking questions about how much safety precautions need to be taken. Producers, food stylists, makeup artists, catering, digital techs, etc. are all sharing solutions on how to keep everyone safe. There are also plans by photographer Samantha Isoms of NY who is teaming up with an OSHA trainer to offer a Covid safety compliance training specifically for our industry. If you have ideas of how to keep sets safe please reach out. It is going to be an ongoing conversation and a necessary one if we are going to be able to slowly get back to work.
These are the best safety production guidelines I have seen so far. Info is also being put together relating to individual crew roles:
Art of Freelance
Safety Protocols on “Socially Distanced” Photo / Video Productions
Guidance for Production Relating to COVID-19
AICP (Association of Independent Commercial Producers)
COVID-19 WORKPLACE GUIDELINES AND CONSIDERATIONS
How I Can Help My Clients Right Now
If you are a brand or agency who is hungry to produce some content I'd love to start the conversation with you and see where you're at. It's not too early to begin the conversation about set safety once productions can resume.
If you want to shoot now I have provided a document of what I'm capable of producing during the shelter in place order. I originally started this document after two initiatives were recently formed to connect clients with photographers during SIP. Create in Place was started by photo agent Heather Elder and location scout Jim Baldwin and Produce in Place was started by Workbook. Or view the document here on my site.
A New, Original Way to Buy Stock
Exciting News! I am also now part of a stock photography collective called UnStock. A good colleague of mine, Steve Babuljak, woke up at 3am one morning last month and had an aha moment that the stock photography world could use more original content from photographers like us. He worked his butt off to make this happen and now, eight photographers later, we have some of the finest photographers shooting today licensing imagery on UnStock.
“There’s a reason why stock photography gets such a bad rap: a sea of sameness, a mass of bland, unnecessarily anesthetized, commoditized pixels that wastes your time and devalues ours. It’s a morass of mediocrity we didn’t want to contribute to, and you dread wading through. And that’s why we’re here: because your ad, your brand, and our work deserve better.”
You Have to Love Jillian Knox
My dear friend, stylist Jillian Knox, just started a site referring many of her favorite people to work with. Check it out, it's damn hot!
Important Talk on Immunity
I hosted Dr. Paul Ofili for a casual conversation on my Instagram Live when the shelter in place first started. Dr. Paul talked about all the things we can be doing right now to keep our immune systems strong. Dr. Paul, who I also consider a good friend, is the one who changed the way I think about health and had a significant impact on me. He talks about what inflammation does and how what we put in our bodies is so important.
Go on Jose Andres' Instagram and get a kick out of watch him cook dinner with his three daughters while singing along to songs from Hamilton. His organization, World Central Kitchen, has been getting meals to communities during disasters and just got a $1 million grant from Oprah.
Easy Nut Butter
When you're on a low sugar diet like me you'll do anything for a good, healthy snack. I like to snack in between meals and I stumbled upon a great opportunity to make nut butter out of hazelnuts. Have you made nut butter before? It's extremely easy and takes 10 minutes. Add some vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and/or a few medjool dates. It's such a great alternative that makes for a great snack.
Listening to Eckhart Tolle speak with Oprah on being in the moment.
Wow, so much to share right now! I'm very proud to be part of a community that cares about each other and helps each other out. I feel it's this kind of unity that will help us get through these challenging times. Lastly, I have to share my huge gratitude to all those who are putting their life on the line to take care of those affected by COVID-19 as well as those helping keep society running by providing all the goods and services to all of us who have been sheltering in place. WE WILL GET THROUGH THIS!