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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Blair Bunting: Boy Wonder

Young photographer Blair Bunting is wise beyond his years

This Article Features Photo Zoom

“We’re up there for about a week,” Bunting continues, “but exactly how many days we get to shoot is a whole ’nother story. You’re on the boat for maybe 10 minutes at a time. You can be on there longer, but you want your subject to be comfortable. You’re shooting pictures, but they’re trying to get their boat ready to leave the next day. One of my really strong attributes is that I’m very good at getting the shot and getting done with it. You learn about the person. You learn what they want to talk about if you want them to be in a certain emotion, and you have to know it quick. For that photo of Josh, we probably shot two frames, or maybe three.”

Get The Shot The Client Wants
Working fast and producing great images seems like a surefire recipe for career success, but Bunting says it’s another skill that really keeps the phone ringing: an understanding of his biggest responsibility on any shoot.

“At the end of the day,” he says, “all that matters is the client. It doesn’t matter if you like the shot or don’t, or if you think it’s done. The only thing that matters is the person who hired you, their opinion. You’re there strictly to please them. I think a lot of people will shoot and say it’s done when they have the shot they like, but I never let myself go home without knowing the client is fine. If that means I lose money on the shoot, I still do that just because, who’s important? Your portfolio is always important, but your reputation and how you treat people are more important.”

Adds Bunting, “I shoot what I love, and I get work from it, but at the end of the day, it comes down to treating people well. Don’t worry about the bottom line. If I worry too much about making money, I’m going to start going to cheaper shoots and doing less. Someone may have a shoot for $500 and someone may have a shoot for $80,000. It’s not that you treat them all the same, because those are two different clients, but at the end of the day, you leave the place tired for both of them because that’s what they’ve asked you to do and that’s what will get them the shot.”

Bunting’s Gear
Nikon D3X
AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm
ƒ/2.8 G ED
Profoto D4 packs with bi-tube heads
Apple iPad
A nice watch

To see more of Blair Bunting’s photography, visit


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