Tyler Chartier: Emma & Katelyn
Personal projects are a great way for photographers to expand their horizons, add more variety to their portfolios, and to reach a new set of clients. When California-based photographer Tyler Chartier wanted to do just that, he planned out a week-long shoot with two professional ballet dancers, Emma Sherman and Katelyn Conrad.
Tyler is best known for his architecture and home and garden work, but after a workshop, he attended with Henry Leutwyler at the Palm Springs Photo Festival, where he met Emma, Tyler decided he wanted to break out of his comfort zone and create new images he had never shot before. Before diving head first, into this project, Tyler spoke with his network of creatives who he likes to refer to as his “brain trust,” which includes people he has met over the years that are experienced and filled with great ideas and advice. With lots of knowledge and creative inspiration, Tyler's "brain trust" successfully helped him wrap his head around the unknown-unknowns of this project.
Tyler treated this assignment in the same manner as he would any reputable client, since he wanted to make the most out of the week he had with the girls and create beautiful imagery. Having worked on big budget projects in the past, Tyler is no stranger when it comes to putting together the necessary ingredients to build a successful shoot. He did his standard preproduction ramp-up where he scouted hair and makeup stylists, booked locations, scheduled assistants, and so on.
Emma and Katelyn traveled from southern California to star in this production. The dancers learned a bit more about Tyler as they were hosted by him and his wife, two kids, two dogs, two cats, and eight chickens, at Tyler's cozy home. During the week, everyone had a great time being a part of the project, not to mention it was a learning experience for some, especially Tyler.
I knew that I would have to trust Emma and Katelyn to teach me what I needed to know as we worked, so I created an open, safe environment for communication and collaboration. We shot everything in the studio, tethered, and I encouraged Emma and Katelyn to review the images as we worked. I wanted the girls to share their opinions on what photos were successful and which weren't. I always try to create a culture of collaboration with my assistants as well, and this shoot was no exception. I wanted to hear everyone’s ideas and feedback.
Challenges are sometimes the best learning opportunities. Tyler knew he would face many obstacles during this project, but he had the right attitude and approached everything as an opportunity to learn and improve his skills.
Tyler and his team are very pleased with the outcome of the photos, as the images are stunning and applaud-worthy. Tyler enjoys working without a net and learning new ways to improve his skills. He has planned another shoot with the girls which is set to take place again in Spring, 2018.
Assistants: Josh Katz, Laura Schneider
Hair and Makeup: Veronica Passalacqua
See more of Tyler at tylerchartierphotography.com!
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