Today I am asking for your help to support the ones that support me…
I spent almost 3 years as a camera assistant.
It was a great time in my life where I got to learn the craft of photography, experience the ins and outs of advertising shoots and at the same time travel to new countries and have experiences I had only dreamed of.
Parallel to my job as an assistant I was constantly working on my own images, trying to develop a portfolio good enough to be able to take the step from apprentice to photographer.
During these years I was under continuous financial pressure. I barely made enough money as an assistant to live in San Francisco, so all shoots I did to practice my skills and build my body of work was funded by borrowing from family and friends and moving money from one credit card to another. I remember vividly the day I decided to forgo all reason, be late on my rent, and spend the little money I had on a 500 dollar Scottish highland cow. My stylist and I had some inspiration images of a model with a lamb. I ended up with a 500 dollar cow….
One can think of this as irresponsible or crazy, but the cow was the coolest ever and I just felt it was something that had to create.
Later that year the image made it into the PDN Photography Annual, as my first image ever included in a competition. Through this exposure I got some attention which in turn validated the path I was on.
I was however about to give up on my quest to become a photographer many times as the financial uncertainty and stress made it hard to see the reason for continuing on. Eventually I did get there. I slowly started to get hired to create images and have now done so commercially for almost 20 years.
I am sharing this story to give some context to the very dire situation many photo assistants find themselves in today during Covid 19. If our current situation had happened at any time during my 3 year stint as an assistant/apprentice I don’t think I would have made it to where I am today. I would have tipped off on the wrong side of the financial edge I was balancing on and would probably not have made it back up…
About a week ago, fellow photographer and PROEDU instructor, Tim Tadder launched the initiative – Art for Assistants.
The concept is simple; Photographers selling our images in signed, fine art editions to help support our assistants with some bridge funding till we can get back to work.
100 images at 100 dollars, raising 10 000 dollars to support the ones who supports us. The larger goal is to get 100 Photographers to get onboard, raising a collective 1 million usd for out of work Camera assistants.
So today I ask for your help; Please help support my crew by buying a print for 100 usd. You can choose any one of the 4 images on the fundraising page. Or if you feel generous you can buy all of them for a 400 usd donation.
You can donate on gofundme here:
There are many other photographers joining in on this initiative and if you search Art for Assistants on gofundme.com you will see some extraordinary images being offered. Beyond supporting people in great need you also have a chance to start off a photography collection for a very reasonable investment.
My gratitude and thanks goes out to all of you who have donated so far and to Tim Tadder who started this initiative. And please read below for more info on Art for Assistants
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!