DPP Home Profiles Ryan Schude: A Novel In Every Frame

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Ryan Schude: A Novel In Every Frame

As his career takes off, Ryan Schude exemplifies the youth movement in photography as a visual storyteller using all of the digital tools at his disposal

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“The majority of those tableau photos were personal projects,” he says. “It has been interesting to see how they relate to the commercial and fine-art worlds, respectively. Many editorial and advertising clients see that type of work and enjoy it, although few times has it been applicable on a commercial level. The problem seems to be, more so now than ever, that to create that type of image with a proper budget is very expensive. I was fortunate to have been able to make those images for next to nothing compared to what it would typically cost.”

That gets back to the heart of Schude’s DIY style—which he carries through from the scouting to the propping and casting, the posing and shooting, and ultimately into the postproduction. Though many long-established photographers may farm out the post, for the moment Schude still prefers to stay on top of the details—except when collaboration can bring fresh insights to the photo.

“I’ve done all the post work myself,” he says, “except for on a few collaborations where we’ve split it up a bit. I’d definitely prefer to step out of many of the responsibilities while still overseeing them. There’s something to be said for doing it all yourself because you don’t have to compromise any decisions, but there have been many instances where having different perspectives contributed great ideas to an image.”

As much as Schude’s photographs are massive technical accomplishments, they certainly provide a wealth of visual fascination for viewers willing to follow through with the “adventure” of the narrative. Ultimately, though, his work is about ideas and the creative freedom that comes from not only telling a story, but from making it up in the first place, and then filling your creation with as many interesting details as you can imagine.

“I still really enjoy shooting everything from street photos to landscapes to snapshots without thinking about how the reality of the content differs from a staged scene,” Schude says. “One of the reasons I’m more drawn to staged scenes now is the freedom to create a narrative from scratch rather than having to find one that already exists. You have total control over every aspect of the image—from location to lighting to your subjects—and unlimited possibilities of what you can do with it.”

To see more of Ryan Schude’s work, visit www.ryanschude.com.

Schude’s Equipment
Cameras & Lenses
Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Canon 35mm, 50mm, 85mm lenses

MacBook Pro

PocketWizard flash controllers
Profoto Pro-7a strobes
Profoto beauty dish
Elinchrom 7-foot Octa light bank
Various grid spots


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