Chris Hunt fashion photographer interview

71 Magazine Interviews Chris Hunt

Recently I had the opportunity to be featured in 71 Magazine. Following is the story they did about me, and some of the images they chose to feature in the magazine.

Though 71 often relays the perspectives of actors, musicians and artists for the Light + Sound issue we felt it important to hear from the other side of the camera. We had the change to speak with renowned photographer and filmmaker, Chris Hunt, and to share his work in the largest photo spread we’ve done to date.

In a sense, there are two Chris Hunts. With depth of vision, soulful connection and intuitive natural light choices, Hunt brings art to editorial, capturing truth and com­plex emotion in the balance of visual elements. His own personal art series pair moody, intriguing images that tell unique, intimate, mysterious, dreamlike stories unlike any others. 

As an international fashion/editorial photographer and director, Hunt divides his time between New York, Los Angeles and Mexico City, where he’s shot for Nylon, L’Officiel, Vogue, Maxim, Grazia, Givenchy, BCBG Max Azria, Forever 21, Heritage, Urban Planet and Avon. He has also shot a number of high-profile creatives, includ­ing Emily Ratajkowski, Nargis Fakhri and Talulah Riley. 

Originally from California, Hunt has spent the last 15 years working all around the world. Though Hunt began his career as a model agent and then as a photojour­nalist in LA. he expanded into full-time fashion and editorial work across the globe. He has since expanded into film, directing TV commercials for fashion and lifestyle brands. He believes the future is film. 

71 Magazine: Your mom was a model in the ‘60s, and then you went on to become a model agent. Did that background help as a start to shoot fashion and editorial?  

Chris Hunt: Even though I grew up in sort of a hippy enclave in Marin County, Calif., my mom was always quite into fashion. We had all the latest fashion magazines, and at a really early age, I remember being fascinated by the imagery captured by the photographers. And hearing stories of my mom’s shoots with photographers such as Peter Beard only reinforced this fascination with the people behind the lens. 

But like any normal kid, I still wanted to be a fireman or join the Army, and it wasn’t until much later in life that I actually picked up a camera. After college, I took an internship at a model agency, and it was only then that I started shooting with models.

71: Did you formally study photography, or are you self-taught? 

Hunt: During college, I worked for my school newspaper and took a couple photography art classes, but that was the end of my formal photography education. I really just taught myself by shooting and shooting some more … sometimes with models, sometimes landscapes, sometimes still life. Anything I found in any way interesting would end up in front of my camera. Honestly, that is the best education – just trying things out and seeing what works and what doesn’t. 

71: What were your original influences in photography and art? 

Hunt: Early on, it was just about any photographic imagery that I found interesting. I didn’t even pay attention to who shot what. The beauty of the imagery was what was important. Later, I started to learn about the photographers that were producing the work that I really loved. In the fashion world, that was people like Guy Bourdin, Steven Meisel, Peter Lindbergh, Richard Avedon and Davide Sorrenti and Mario Sorrenti.

71: Would you say you have a philosophy of art, and especially photographic arts?

Hunt: Well, in the beginning, I am sure I was more idealistic about photographic art and fashion … but after some years of actually working in the industry, my view became much more practical. That happens when the reality of actually trying to make a living as an artist comes crashing down. Instead of being a prima don-na and forcing my vision on others, I learned to work with clients to successfully realize their vision. 

Of course, I always try to give a piece of myself to even the most commercial work, but I found that the only time I had complete artistic freedom was when I would shoot things only for myself … no client and not even a thought to who the audience would be. In fact, the best photos I have ever shot have never seen the light of day. I have just kept them for myself.

71: You had some notable experiences as a photojournalist. Why did you leave photojournalism, and what did you learn and take to editorial, commercial and art photography? 

Hunt: I loved the idea of being a photojournalist. I was attract-ed to the swashbuckling, globetrotting fantasy of what a photo-journalist’s life would be … but the reality was a little different. I started shooting as a stringer for my local newspaper, and taking photos of car accidents or town hall meetings just wasn’t what I wanted to do. And though I did do a lot of traveling, it was all on my own dime, and seeing a long-term future became harder and harder. Plus, I was just better at fashion photography.

But what I learned in the very short time I was trying to be a photojournalist translated well to fashion. It was very immediate. You have one chance to get the shot. You have to move quickly and think on your feet. With fashion, you spend time to plan, but on the day of the shoot, you have to make it work. Maybe it would rain and you planned for sun; maybe the model shows up looking completely differently from what you expected; maybe the ward-robe stylist cancelled at the last minute. None of that stuff matters. It was all up to me to make sure the shoot was successful no matter what obstacles are thrown in your way. It’s stressful, but exhilarating. 

71: How did you break into fashion and film? 

Hunt: I spent a few years trying to find my “voice.” That was probably the hardest part for me. I was always a bit torn. I gravitated toward art and high-fashion photography and spent a year putting together a portfolio of this style of work. This was back in the day of film; I started before digital was even on the horizon, so everything was a lot slower. Spending hours waiting for the film to come out of the lab before even knowing if you got the shots. Then hours in the darkroom printing. 

Anyway, after showing my work around, I realized that the clients who actually could hire me were on the more commercial side of the fashion world. So then I put together a portfolio of softer and prettier style of fashion and realized I loved that just as much. That resulted in my first paid job. It was a rather big shoot for Ba-nana Republic. I was so nervous before that shoot; I don’t think I slept a wink the night before! 

That was followed-up by a few more shoots for Banana Republic and GAP and some other clients in the more commercial side of fashion. But still I revolted against that and continued to push my darker and more artistic fashion aesthetic. But it was a hard road. The scope of clients that are even interested in that style is much smaller, and the pool of photographers pursuing that style is much bigger. 

I spent four years with this internal tug-of-war over style, not re-ally making any traction in the industry. I was living in New York, struggling to get those high-fashion clients to notice me, while at the same time, I would get flown to sunny Los Angeles to do some jobs on the more commercial side of the business with cli-ents like BCBG. 

It’s hard not to fall in love with the weather in Los Angeles when you are trudging through the snow in New York City … and I found myself spending more and more time out there. I finally realized that the more commercial side of fashion was more natural for me and allowed me to live the life that was closer to who I really am: a California boy. Plus, it generally allowed me to work in a much more relaxed and happy environment with like-minded people. And best of all, it paid better! 

When I put 100 percent of my focus into this, my career really took off. The first client that really believed in me and supported me was Forever 21, and they kept me busy for years. They also gave me my first taste of shooting fashion videos. Through my collaboration with them, I won over many other similar clients and my career just built from there.

71: What advice would you offer to photographers aspiring to work in art and editorial? 

Hunt: Well, first, don’t make the same mistake I did: Figure out your style and your specific voice before anything else. Once you know exactly what you want to do, you just have to shoot and shoot and shoot. Build your team – the people you love to work with who share your vision. 

Give yourself room to experiment and evolve, but always stay true to your vision. There are just so many photographers these days with a wide range of styles that confuses clients. Just master one specific style. Oh, and don’t waste money on photography school. Everything you need to know, you can learn in the real world.

71: What is your current gear?

Hunt: It’s a huge mix, and it really de-pends on the job. The equipment are just tools, and each job may require a differ-ent tool. For a lot of my photography, I will use Canon equipment, but if I require a re-ally detailed file that may be getting a lot of post work, I may end up using a Phase One back on a Hasselblad camera. 

For video, I often use Sony mirror-less cameras like the A7Sii, or A6500 if the final product is only going to be shown on-line. Sometimes I will use the Canon C200 in raw format if I plan to do a lot of color work on the final video. And for TV commercials, I generally use an RED camera package.

71: What are your future goals in photography and film?

Hunt: I am doing less and less photography these days and a lot more film. That’s where I see things going for me in the future. Even the jobs that we had normally shot as photos only  are now all being shown as animations on social media or online. Last month, almost everything I shot was video on green screen; I do all sorts of special effects on this, and then it is used across clients’ full spectrums of online outlets.

I think that is the future of photography: In five years, no one will shoot photos anymore.  This year, I have set a goal to get into more narrative-type film projects, as well, whether it’s commercials or fashion films or shorts. I just want to focus more on telling stories with actors. 

“Girls on Film” – Fashion in Akari Films

“Girls on Film” – Fashion in Akari Films
Writer and director Gregg Araki’s brand new TV show, Now Apocalypse aired this month. The show is semi-autobiographical and centers around a group of 20-somethings that are trying to figure ‘it’ out, and themselves in the process.

Araki is famed for telling stories of alienated youth, misfits and queer kids who are marginalized by mainstream society, it’s what Gregg does best.

Araki wrote directed and produced some of the best low-key cult teen movies from 1990s. His films focus…

Keep on reading: “Girls on Film” – Fashion in Akari Films
Source: V Magazine

“Girls on Film” – Fashion in Akari Films

Breathing New Life Into Old Civil War Photos Using Animation

Breathing New Life Into Old Civil War Photos Using Animation

My name is Matt Loughrey, and I’m an artist based in Ireland. I occasionally work alongside libraries and museums with projects to develop their visitor experiences. Over time I have become familiar with a handful of photographers.

In 2015, I began to gather and organize glass negatives into groups on the strength after noticing that some libraries had failed to keep a number of glass negatives together. I told myself that some of them may have been dismissed as duplicates. I didn’t inquire as to why — instead, I began to research the anomalies myself and focused on the work of Mathew Brady and his associates.

It fast became a sub-project. I found out that Brady had been inadvertently animating his subjects. I am not referring solely to stereoview cards but instead to an accidental result when using his ‘multiplying’ cameras. Sometimes four or eight images were exposed to a single plate in order to provide a faster service which in turn, I assume, was cost-effective for Mathew Brady’s expanding enterprise.

The images would expose from slightly different angles, and this is where the story develops. I have spent a tremendous amount of my own time between 2015 and now solving the image puzzles in order to bring each subject to life, be they notable civilians of the 1860s, scenes or leaders of the time.

Ordinarily, each finished example takes 1.5 hours to align perfectly, reorder, and cycle in full resolution. All come directly from .tiff format scans and the process is undertaken entirely using my ever faithful Wacom MobileStudio Pro. I do not clean up the negatives themselves because I always felt that degradation at this level is comparable to the lines on our faces, it’s characterful.

The end result is this short 6-minute documentary, narrated by Dane Scott Udenberg, that examples some of what is possible and what details are revealed in these historical images, things that may ordinarily be missed:

In this case, technology bridges a gap between history and art while bringing a new sense of relatability and storytelling.

P.S. The projects mainstay is on Instagram at @my_colorful_past.

Editor’s note: You can find a large gallery of Civil War animations in this article by Patrick Feaster, another person who has worked on animating photos from this era.

About the author: Matt Loughrey is a 40-year-old artist based in Ireland. The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. Loughrey’s work has been featured in National Geographic magazine.

Source: PetaPixel

Breathing New Life Into Old Civil War Photos Using Animation

These Lens Filters Have Prisms Built In for Creative Effects

These Lens Filters Have Prisms Built In for Creative Effects

PrismLensFX has unveiled a set of Variable Prism Filters. These are lens filters with prisms built right into them for capturing creative effects in photos and videos.

Placing prisms in front of your camera lens is a popular way to add a beautiful and unpredictable look to photos. PrismLensFX’s new filter set helps make results a little easier to reproduce.

The three 77mm filters are “variable” in that you can rotate them on your lens to adjust the resulting look and effect. It’s recommended that you use them on more telephoto lenses (50mm and greater) at apertures f/1.4, f/2, or f/2.8.

The Prism filter is designed to create “stunning” flare and bokeh.

The Chromatic Flare filter creates “anamorphic”/”streak” flares.

The Split Glass filter creates light leak and fractal effects.

The Variable Prism Filters costs $75 each or $195 as a set (a discount of $30). They’ll begin shipping in mid- to late-April.

(via Prism Lens FX via No Film School)

Source: PetaPixel

These Lens Filters Have Prisms Built In for Creative Effects

A Glimpse At H&M’s Latest Conscious Exclusive Collection

A Glimpse At H&M’s Latest Conscious Exclusive Collection
Just like what we eat, the origin and production process of what we put on our bodies should be transparent. Not only that, but most would be in favor of opting for materials that didn’t damage the environment or eventually end up as landfill. Surprisingly, but not quite, these two are interwoven and rely heavily on each other for the future of sustainable fashion.

One of the leading participants in sustainable high-street and affordable retail is H&M, which recently announced that their …

Keep on reading: A Glimpse At H&M’s Latest Conscious Exclusive Collection
Source: V Magazine

A Glimpse At H&M’s Latest Conscious Exclusive Collection

This Guy Pushed a Piano to the Eiffel Tower for His Wedding Day Photos

This Guy Pushed a Piano to the Eiffel Tower for His Wedding Day Photos

How far would you go to set up the scene of your dreams for the perfect wedding day photo shoot? Photographer Priscila Valentina was recently hired by a guy named Samuel whose grand romantic gesture was to spend a morning pushing a piano through the streets of Paris and up to the Eiffel Tower.

Starting at sunrise, Samuel began pushing the antique piano toward the Eiffel Tower. His goal was to surprise his fiancée Maya by singing his vows as part of their wedding day.

“As Sam pushed the piano up to the Eiffel Tower, the Parisians stopped with questionable eyes, but full smiles, something was kindling, a familiar spirit of romance was in pursuit,” Valentina says.

“The legality was equivalent to that of a street performer down in Paris,” the photographer tells PetaPixel. “We had lots of interaction with the police and they smiled.”

“I felt like my heart was going to pound straight through my chest, and when she saw the piano laying in front of the Eiffel Tower she was totally shocked!” Samuel says.

As Valentina was packing up her gear to head to the next location, snow began lightly falling on them. She quickly called for the couple to return and take advantage of the conditions.

“The idea hit me of putting the couple on top of the piano to capture a ‘lost in Paris’ moment on film,” Valentina says. “As the snow fell, I looked up in the sky and knew there was something special happening, it was a supernatural feeling, like as if God opened up the opportunity with perfect timing to remind the world, that we can do better, that love is what this life is all about and I believe that’s the message behind the photos.”

You can find more of Valentina’s work on her website and blog.

Source: PetaPixel

This Guy Pushed a Piano to the Eiffel Tower for His Wedding Day Photos

Kim Jong-un’s Photographer Fired for Briefly Blocking Neck with Flash

Kim Jong-un’s Photographer Fired for Briefly Blocking Neck with Flash

Kim Jong-un’s personal photographer has reportedly been fired for breaking the dictator’s photography rules. The photographer’s offense? Standing directly between Kim and a crowd for just three seconds and blocking the view of Kim’s neck with a camera flash.

The South Korean news outlet DailyNK reports that the 47-year-old photographer with the surname Ri was part of the Korean Art Film Studio and had previously traveled with Kim to Hanoi for the second summit with U.S. President Donald Trump.

But on March 10th, while photographing Kim at a public appearance, Ri stepped directly in front of Kim for about three seconds in search of a good angle. The photographer’s position momentarily blocked people from seeing Kim, and his camera’s flash covered Kim’s neck in official footage aired by the North Korean media outlet DRPK Today.

Ri was subsequently accused of “adjusting the angle so that the camera’s flash covered the Dear and Respected Supreme Leader Comrade’s neck.” He also broke a rule stating that photographers must stay at least 2 meters (~6.6 feet) away from Kim and never step directly in front of him.

Two days later, the Korean Art Film Studio ruled that Ri was guilty of “anti-Party act of damaging the Supreme Dignity of our Party.” Ri was kicked out of the Workers’ Party of Korea, “effectively rendering him a second-class citizen,” the Daily Mail reports.

Source: PetaPixel

Kim Jong-un’s Photographer Fired for Briefly Blocking Neck with Flash

Quad Pixel AF May Be the Followup to Canon’s Dual Pixel AF

Quad Pixel AF May Be the Followup to Canon’s Dual Pixel AF

Canon may be developing a Quad Pixel Autofocus sensor as the followup to its highly-regarding Dual Pixel AF. A newly-surfaced patent shows a sensor in which each pixel is split into not two, but four areas.

First launched in the 70D APS-C DSLR back in 2013, Dual Pixel AF spits each pixel on a sensor into two light-sensitive photodiodes. Since each half independently detects light through separate microlenses, the signals can be analyzed to glean focus information. The result of this is a phase-detection AF system that provides fast and accurate autofocus for both still photos and video.

Canon News discovered a Canon patent in Japan (2019041178) that describes the design of a quad pixel autofocus sensor.

“Right now Canon is using dual pixel autofocus sensors,” Canon News writes, “but if you ever tried to use an EOS R or an EOS M in landscape orientation to focus on a horizontal line you’ll quickly realize that the phase detect sensors just go in one direction, and have little sensitivity in the other 90 degrees offset direction.”

The new design would address this issue. The patent appears to describe a 20.7-megapixel sensor that contains a whopping 83 million focus detection points.

“The pixel size seems to be 4 micrometers, which would make that approximately 22mm on the width (5575×3725) or in other words an APS-C sized sensor,” Canon News says.

Canon may be looking into decreasing pixel density on sensors in favor of providing an even better autofocus system.

“Canon uses 180nm tech for its APS-C sensors that can incorporate copper wiring,” Canon Rumors writes. “This is probably fine for a 20mp image sensor. There would be a loss of efficiency splitting the pixels further and may lead to Canon dropping the pixel count on APS-C sensors.

“This would only matter if we actually do see QPAF sensors in the future.”

Source: PetaPixel

Quad Pixel AF May Be the Followup to Canon’s Dual Pixel AF

Witness a “Kiss of the Rabbit God”

Witness a “Kiss of the Rabbit God”
In a newly released 38-second trailer, Chinese American filmmaker Andrew Thomas Huang effectively showcases the seductive vision for his upcoming short “Kiss of the Rabbit God.” The film follows a young Chinese restaurant worker’s journey of sexual awakening and self-discovery after falling in love with an 18th century Qing dynasty god named the Tu’er Shen (兔兒神).

The short film was created in support by Cinereach and commissioned by NOWNESS, a digital video channel owned by Chines…

Keep on reading: Witness a “Kiss of the Rabbit God”
Source: V Magazine

Witness a “Kiss of the Rabbit God”

Ep. 317: AI Is Coming To Getcha! Or Help. – and more

Ep. 317: AI Is Coming To Getcha! Or Help. – and more

Episode 317 of the PetaPixel Photography Podcast.
Download MP3 –  Subscribe via iTunesGoogle Playemail or RSS!

Featured: Street and portrait photographer, Jaleel King

In This Episode

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Show Opener:
Street and portrait photographer, Jaleel King, opens the show.  Thanks Jaleel!

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This AI may improve your photography. (#)

LEE makes improvements on filter systems. (#)

Here’s how to get your FTZ…for FREE. (#)

Samyang drops an 85mm f/1.4 on us. (#)

A judge’s ruling could spell trouble for photographers . (#)

A photographer wins a massive prize and raises questions. (#)

Meike’s 85 may (or may not) be worth consideration. (#)


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Source: PetaPixel

Ep. 317: AI Is Coming To Getcha! Or Help. – and more