David Reid was one of the first photographers I discovered when I started to get interested in shooting models. I can’t tell you how I came across him simply because I can’t remember. Lets cut the chit chat and get straight to it shall we.
Tell us a little about yourself?
My names Dave and im an alcoholic. No unfortunately im not! That’s just it, interviews and all kinds of trick questions get me stumped every time. I really am just that regular guy who grew down the street from you and who has a passion for photography.
But, seeing you asked, im as of now a “late 20 y/o” *grumble under breath* 29 from born and raised in Cronulla, south of Sydney in New South Wales, Australia. I grew up my whole life of my dad taking pictures of my sister as I was the 2nd child. She had that damn black camera pointed at her the whole time. Little did I know that little black camera was a Leica.
Maybe that’s where the passion came from, that or the fireman/postman/milkman…
Im a free and easy kind of person (god this sounds like a dating website) who enjoys walks in the park and holding hands… No im not, although I don’t mind foliage. Im just a relax guy who has a little direction in where he wants to go and is passionate about all things that surround him and means things to him, I mean me. I should stop talking about myself, himself, that guy in 3rd person.
What made you get into photography?
Really, wasn’t expecting this question… Different from all photographers who say “oh I have always loved photography its just in my blood” that wasn’t me. That maybe different now, I have been taking daily vials of photography blood for years now and I swear im riddled with it but that’s a side topic.
I took up photography in the last 2 years of school,
why? because art was an easy subject and photography was an option, but why photography? Well dad had a camera. Im really sorry, but that’s the way it started. What happened next was totally unexpected.
I actually enjoyed it and wanted to do well in it. This isn’t what I signed up for! I signed up for art class, you know, feet on desk, vests, long haired teachers trying to escape their acid relapses from Woodstock.
So I continued to do it, we had our own dark room, free film, free everything! It was great, I found myself more in the darkroom and then scanning negatives than attending my other hard subjects like “drama.”
What happened next was a total blur, I decided girls are interesting, DJ’ing was fun, exercise was boring and the last thing I ever thought of was taking pictures so I didn’t pick up a camera for a good couple of years again…..
How did you get started?
Funnily enough, at a friends wedding, where I was a guest, without a partner (FML), interstate. All of these things lead to not really knowing a lot of people apart from the handful of related friends. He had a brand new Canon EOS 400D Twin Lens Kit so I decided to pick an interest we both had. So I picked up his camera decided to go into “P” for “Professional” (ha! I kill me…) mode, and got snapping. What resulted was actually to be fair, really lovely images.
This is where I started drinking the photography blood vials. Something stewed up inside me and it just went insane. I pestered people to allow me to use their cameras till finally mum and dad shelled out and got me my very own 400D with a Sigma 18-200 f/3.5-5.6. Boy damn did I feel ontop of the world.
I took pictures of all things pretty, like flowers…. And roads… and then I woke up and found that actually they are boring.
Luck had it on my side that I had fallen deeply in love with my old neighbour… The unlucky part of this was that she is a model.
Why unlucky I hear you all say well let me explain…
So finding this out was a revolution in my actual shooting. I turned from taking pictures of stones and flowers to girls who know how to work and love to shoot and work in these fascinating places called studios.
This is the unlucky bit…. When you have never walked into a studio and you do for the first time and you get the privledge to work alongside professional photographers, you get this tickle up your spine “I can do this too!!!!” therefore the wallet opens, a lot, and often.
Constantly striving for results and more impact images that I see can be obtained, I had to get money in every possible situation people would pay me for, unfortunately im not a looker so male prostitution wasn’t an option. Well maybe for drunk girls, but then again, they didn’t have any money.
From that the guys at the studio allowed me to start shooting with them, then shooting for them, then working instead of them!
This was the turning point, when people actually started recommending me! Why me! im just this guy who does this on the side! But god damn! Do I love it!
What sort of photography do you mainly do?
My main style can only be classified as glamour. Id like to think of it as miniature clothing beauty shots, but lets not kid. However this is actually how I treat it. I get to shoot with some absolutely beautiful young ladies who are full of confidence it scares me! I find it absolutely beautiful that they are able to be so strong in their body and pose for powerfully, its just that they are wearing miniature clothes 🙂
I have a deep dark secret for fashion styled shots like what is mainly featured in magazines like Harpers, and I dabble with face beauty shots and some landscape, but my bread and butter is my glamour work.
What gear are you using?
Ha! In which part!?
I quickly progressed from my 400D to a 40D (for about a year), then a 5D for about 2 months, then I wanted the 1DsMk3. This is still what im running around in. Its my baby, I love it but I don’t baby it. This camera is the real deal. I don’t wrap it in cotton wool and it lives upto it everytime!
My bits of glass that I stick on the front are:
Canon 50mm f/1.8, Canon 24-70mm f/2.8, Canon 70-200mm f/2.8IS Mark 1, Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 IS, Canon 17-40mm f/4, Sigma 12-24mm f/3.5-5.6. With the guys at the studio I also have the lucky ability to sometimes get my hands on the Canon 500mm f/4 (I think) IS, and the Canon 800mm f/5.6 IS big boy toys glass.
Lighting is all Elinchrom. I absolutely love that stuff, The Elinchrom Ranger RX AS Speed pack is my main source when out and about, that coupled with 2x A Heads and 1x 1500 Ringflash with an arsenal of softboxes, octaboxes and reflectors.
That with the accessories that run along with like color checkers, triggers ra ra ra the list goes on..
Whats your favourite lens and why?
For stalking, definitely the 800mm. So much more easier to spy on people when you heaps far away than when your 12mm fisheye is mounted.
But, for shoots, how can you go past the 70-200? This is just the flagship in my eyes of the canon glass. Its so beautiful in all areas. I try to use it as much as possible when shooting on location and only ever don’t, when its too tight. However my walk around is my 24-70.
How are you marketing yourself?
No I actually don’t really market myself. As I have a fulltime job also, that’s where my concentration is mainly. I use my website of course and the basic places like forums and image hosting sites but I don’t pay for any advertising. All my work is through word of mouth and the style that I shoot on when with clients. I don’t take myself too seriously, but we shoot to get results, the clients like that and it seems to be working so I will keep this style up. Facestalk… I mean facebook is always good but that’s mainly just for friends and the random guys who add me cause I have my latest girl I shot as my profile pic. Not sure how they see “dave” with a model pic and then say “Hi sxi, your so butiful wanna chat and meet up”.
Whats your favourite photo you have taken?
Theres a couple of them, in the different styles, my favourite glamour shot would have to be:
but favourite land scape would be
Advice for new photographers looking to go pro?
Your not always right, theres people out there better than you and your better than other people. Don’t let the ego of photography cloud what you see. Be helpful, don’t be caged in. Learn from people in a constructive way and don’t try to suck their information from them to just benefit yourselves. Its all common sense guys. If you want to genuinely learn from a mentor, then be genuine with them Sure you will need to probably carry their gear and be a bit of an assistant. You know what, that’s not beneath you! do it, and if the opportunity presents itself then ask direct questions but not in a information sucking way. Look at what they are doing and learn from them.
Its not rocket science. Ha! If it was, I would have crashed SO many rockets 🙂 be prepared to pay for models, be prepared to pay for makeup, be prepare to be paid. Don’t rip people off! Both by charging or underselling them. Be a fair and honest person and you will find that in the end you will have more work, and more respect than the other guy who is trying to just make the money.
Be prepared to goto a shoot and completely stuff it up. Learn why you stuffed it up and fix it for next time. Try different ideas, even if its not in your normal style. You just may find that you will use a little bit of another style and incorporate into yours, and you will make magic.
Be prepared to work for this, every man and his dog is a photographer, stand out. Image quality is one thing, professionalism and people respect is another.
I for1 know I don’t shoot as good as other guys who I am competeing for work against, but my name is of such that I genuinely have the clients interest at heart, I will work back at no pay to make it suit them. I am open and honest with them and for that reason they and the people they refer to me, choose me. but your images still have to back it up 😉 Cant finish on a serious note now can we 😀