Thursday, June 14, 2007
David Sacks - Creative Fusion
David Sacks keeps his imagery fresh by seeking a balance between work that pays the bills and work that energizes the soul
David Sacks would like to be doing more work for free. “Advertising photography is a great way to make a living given the budgets, but it's not the most meaningful thing you can do with your time,” he charges. “Being able to use my camera to help people—especially for those who can't help themselves—is very fulfilling and worthwhile.”
Sacks wishes he could do more of the latter, but finds his workload prohibitively taxing. He strives to strike a balance between personally rewarding photography and commercial work that generates revenue.
Sacks' considerable commercial success began in 1995, when he decided to break out on his own. “I had no reps nor did I have any leads,” he says.
He pounded the pavement for four months before he landed his first job shooting for New York Magazine (he spent another two months trying to get paid). The shoot was an eight-page still-life assignment to promote new apparel for Louis Vuitton. Creatively, it was a challenging project.
Recalls Sacks, “The art director from New York Magazine came over to my studio on a Friday afternoon with a Louis Vuitton backpack, which had an umbrella attached to its side. With the backpack on, you then unfurl the umbrella so that it's directly over you.”
Sacks was told to hire a model and shoot it over the weekend. That would prove difficult, naturally, since the modeling agencies were already closed. Forced to improvise, Sacks put the backpack on his dog, Tyler. The A.D. implored him not to do so, but Sacks did it anyway.
“During the shoot, I had my two assistants hold Tyler, and when they released their hands, I took the picture,” he says.