Thursday, November 1, 2012

Steve Giralt: Obsessed With Light

By William Sawalich, Photography By Steve Giralt Published in Photographer Profiles
Steve Giralt is a visionary professional photographer and an insightful photography blogger. If you haven't read his blog, you should. As good as the writing is, though, he's a photographer first, as the photos on these pages can attest. Giralt often shoots with a Hasselblad V and a Phase One IQ180 back and Profoto lights.
Steve Giralt is a visionary professional photographer and an insightful photography blogger. If you haven't read his blog, you should. As good as the writing is, though, he's a photographer first, as the photos on these pages can attest. Giralt often shoots with a Hasselblad V and a Phase One IQ180 back and Profoto lights.
"Once you lose touch with them," he says, "it's hard to regain a lost connection. If I had been better about staying in touch, I wouldn't have lost those connections and the work they could have given me. I was pretty good about avoiding lowballing to try to get jobs early in my career, though—and that's a common mistake. What young photographers don't realize is that once you're labeled as the cheap photographer, it's almost impossible to change the industry's perception of you."

Giralt has always helped young photographers within his own circle, but lately he has taken to broadening his reach through blogging. He imagines what would have been most helpful to him when he was starting out and he writes about that. From business issues to technical and philosophical concerns, the blog provides another way for Giralt to help make others successful in his beloved profession.

I always got angry with the photographers I worked for when they would have me retouch the image rather than fix it in-camera. I pride myself in shooting things right in-camera and not needing to do much retouching.
"Writing about photography has helped me better understand what I do and how I differ from others," says Giralt. "I feel the better I understand myself as a photographer, the easier it is to understand what I should be doing differently to improve my craft and my business. Most of what I write about is lessons that I have learned the hard way over the years. The articles I write are written as if I were sending them to a younger version of myself to read so I would figure things out the easy way instead of the hard way. I try not to be negative in my writing and instead share the realities. I guess you can say I just try to keep it real."

Explains Giralt, "For example, because I'm a very technological individual who comes from a family of engineers, it's easy for me to get caught up on the technical aspects of photography. Sometimes I'll find myself concentrating so much on the qualities of light of an image that I lose track of the big picture. It happens to everyone, and that's why I wrote, 'It's not about the ƒ-stop.' Some people took it as if I was saying that the technical aspects of taking pictures aren't important, but for so many the words resonated in the same way they would have resonated in me. The technical is important, but you need to concentrate on the big picture."

To read more about what Steve Giralt has to say to young photographers, visit his blog at stevegiralt.com/news.

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