Photographing the Making of an Athlete By Bill Frakes

Duration
51 min
Lessons
11
Difficulty Difficulty Difficulty
Expert

Bill has been photographing Cason for over 5 years as part of a long term documentary project. In that time Bill has documented Cason’s growth as a skater and as a person, and all the while refining and developing his own techniques as a photographer in this environment. Engaging with a subject in a long term project can enrich your photography and your life in ways you’ve never imagined.

Video transcripts available with a subscription.

Bill introduces Cason and discusses their history of working together and how they got started on this project.
A benefit of working with someone on a long term project is developing a sense of trust and collaboration that allows you to push the envelope of what each of you can do.
Bringing a strobe into the same setup as the previous lesson allows the shot to transform from a silhouette to a portrait.
The curving lines of the pool coupled with a radical angle allows for a number of graphic elements to come together in the final shot.
The ease and comfort of working together over a long period of time allows for better communication that can facilitate shots that would be otherwise nearly impossible to create.
Working in a portrait session can help track the evolution of the subject over time.
In going back to shoot the subject in the same setting again and again over time you can develop a series of photographs that are useful for comparing and contrasting against shots from other time periods.
It is important to include detail and cutaway shots in your sessions that helps to round out the larger body of work.
Over a long term project you may document various milestones where the subject is able to achieve goals that were previously out of reach.
A lot of the work in a long term project is repetition, where you keep coming back to shots you've done before to show the progression, but also find ways to keep it fresh and move in new directions.
Bill wraps up the class with some reflection on how working on a long term project like this can enrich your life in many unexpected ways.
Profile photo of Bill Frakes

Meet your instructor

Bill Frakes

4 Courses

19 Followers

Bill Frakes is a Sports Illustrated Staff Photographer based in Florida who has worked in all 50 states and in more than 125 countries for a wide variety of editorial and advertising clients. His advertising clients include Apple, Nike, Manfrotto, CocaCola, Champion, Isleworth, Stryker, IBM, Nikon, Canon, Kodak, and Reebok. He directs ...

2 comments

Join the Discussion
  1. Profile photo of Ivan Boden Ivan Boden

    Terrific! —- Yes, please post my feedback

  2. Profile photo of Michael Preston Michael Preston

    A most excellent course! Hats off to all, especially Bill Frakes for being so informative. Well done! —- Yes, please post my feedback

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