Jeffery Salter
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Als Magazinfotograf erfolgreich sein

Der Fotograf Jeffery Salter begann seine Karriere als Fotojournalist, der mit altmodischem 35mm Film arbeitete. Seine Bandbreite reicht von den schweren sozialen Unruhen in Haiti und dem tragischen Absturz der Pan Am-Maschine in Lockerbie, Schottland bis hin zu glamourösen Modenschauen in New York, Mailand und Paris.

Im Zuge seines Wechsels von Zeitungen zu Magazinen stieg er auf Mittelformat um, begann mit der Portraitfotografie und mit der Perfektionierung seiner einzigartig stilisierten Techniken der Lichtsetzung.

Salters erstes Digitalback war ein Phase One P40+, mit dem er mühelos mehr als 80000 Aufnahmen machte, bevor er sich für ein Upgrade auf das IQ260 Digitalback entschied. Innerhalb von drei Monaten nach dem Upgrade hatte Salter drei Magazincover veröffentlicht.

Der Weg vom mutigen, brandaktuellen Fotojournalismus in die Welt der Hochglanzmagazine —Sports Illustrated, Ebony, Billboard und Cigar Aficionado— verlangte nach einer Neuorientierung. Hier erfahren Sie, in seinen eigenen Worten, wie Salter es gemacht hat.

Einen Gang hochschalten und die Ausrüstung upgraden

Nach Jahren als Zeitungsfotograf — für The Miami Herald und The New York Times — wurde mir klar, dass ich in den Magazinbereich wechseln wollte. Die schnelllebige Welt der Eilmeldungen ist ein belebender Adrenalinkick gewesen, es gab in diesem Berufsfeld aber keinen Platz für die gut ausgeleuchteten, höchst stilisierten Portraitaufnahmen, die ich so sehr machen wollte. Schließlich entschied ich mich für einen Richtungswechsel. Anstatt mich Hals über Kopf ins kalte Wasser zu stürzen, habe ich mich für einen sanften Übergang entschieden. Ich arbeitete erst mal weiterhin für The Miami Herald, investierte in Mittelformatkameras und mehrere Blitze, um für die „Sunday magazine“-Ausgabe der Zeitung Portraits zu schießen. Auf diesem Weg konnte ich mir ein Portrait-Portfolio aufbauen, das ich anschließend den Fotoredakteuren von Magazinen zeigte. It also enabled me to get a photo agent, Marcel Saba, who then opened doors for me to prominent publications around the world. The difference between shooting for newspapers and shooting a magazine cover is vast. For me, a great magazine cover shot is the same as producing fine art. It has to grab the viewer’s attention and compel them to buy it. It has to seduce them into wanted to see more, and it can sometimes tell a story all by itself. It can also become a visual icon that stands the test of time and winds up in the history books. Magazine covers make bold visual statements, not just about the subject, but also about the magazine itself. That’s why it’s the most important page of a magazine and publishers tend to have larger budgets for producing them. And that’s where, in many cases, the refined look from a medium format digital file can really shine.

Good Assistance Leads to Success

When I purchased my IQ260 and 645DF+ camera body via an upgrade (from P40+) Capture Integration (CI) assisted me in my choices. CI understands the challenges a magazine and advertising photographer has in a highly competitive market. They offer real world practical advice on Phase One products and Profoto lighting. And on several occasions, they provided me with on-site advice during the production. In mid-June, I photographed LeBron James for Sports Illustrated, and this became the first ever published magazine cover done with an IQ260, printed on July 1, 2013. As of August 2013, I am very proud to say that I have had a total of three national magazine covers with my IQ260. I decided to upgrade my P40+, quite a battleship that had given me over 80,000 trouble-free exposures, to the IQ260 for a variety of reasons. Chief amongst them was the very liberating ability to review files on an iPad while shooting. The folks I’m commissioned to photograph are often...quite frankly, in a hurry. The time saved from quickly reviewing a large image on an iPad and shooting untethered directly to a CF card in the IQ260 digital back, is time gained to shoot another set-up.

Making it Possible to Invest in Phase One

It’s a big step when you move from DSLR to a Phase One medium format camera system. I made my first Phase One investment in October 2009. It was made possible when I was commissioned to shoot a ten-day editorial assignment for a national magazine. When they asked for an estimate I put a line item in for a 10-day rental fee of a medium format system. When they approved it, my contact at CI allowed me to put that rental fee into ordering a Phase One 645DF with a P40+ digital back. Needless to say on every assignment bid or estimate we put in a line item for medium format camera usage, in addition to a digital capture fee and digital post-production fee. Of course not every client has the budget for this, but in my case I have been fortunate enough to work for clients who appreciate the look of my images and understand my workflow needs, which include Phase One digital backs. I have since upgraded to the IQ260 and the 645DF+. It has been an investment in my creativity and myself as a professional, and I believe it will have a continued positive impact on my magazine, commercial and advertising assignments. Not to mention the added value of being able to put the back on a technical camera for my landscape and architectural adventures.

Jeffery Salter’s most recent cover shoot, and his third with the IQ26, was for Sports Illustrated, featuring international soccer star Mario Balotelli. Get Salter’s verdict on the IQ260’s performance here.

Der Fotograf Jeffery Salter

Kamera: Phase One 645DF+
Digitalback: IQ260
Jefferys bevorzugter Partner: Capture Integration

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ALL IMAGES © Jeffery Salter

Jeffery Salter IQ260
Jeffery Salter IQ260
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