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About Williams Studio

Bio

Based in Los Angeles, California, photographer and graphic designer David Jordan Williams maintains the original aspect of his work by exploring digital media. His innovative work appears on the covers of albums and music posters as well as in numerous advertisements. David’s extensive image bank represented by Corbis and Getty as well as his art exhibitions throughout the United States makes Williams Studio a force to be reckoned with.

Interview

Where is your home base? (city/state)

Culver City, California

What is your photography genre/specialty?

Commercial, Fine Art, Hospitality Photography + Design

What is your most memorable image and why?

Nature is my touchstone and Yosemite is one of my closest connections. My most memorable image was taken one morning in Yosemite Valley just after an early autumn snow storm. It was early morning, predawn, and light was just beginning to spill over the cliffs and in through the mist created by the sudden change in temperature. It was like heaven, and as I moved through the trees I came upon a prefect grouping of trees. Light was spilling all around the branches and everything fell into place, like I was choreographing the perfect visual experience. The resulting series of images I produced and ultimately the final one I picked out of the group, changed my perception of every image I produced to date, from my abstract works to photographs of people, advertising, architecture, etc.

Why did you become a photographer? What drives you to capture images and has this changed over time?

I photograph because it seems to be built into my DNA. I’m a visual thinker and I explain myself best when using something visual as a guide. I discovered recently that my Grandfather, early in the 20th Century, had been following photography and did a great deal of experimentation with the medium. I also discovered that his visual interests paralleled mine in many ways, so it’s possible that I am carrying on his vision in some way as well. As for my work changing over time, I guess you could say that I have learned to look closer and open my eyes more to what my subjects have to say.

Do you have any personal rituals to help you get ready for a shoot?

I try to gather the equipment and get the organization of all necessary for the shoot together, but I also try to take time to reflect and open myself up to what the assignment wants to say to me… brainstorm with it.

What are the top 5 things you can’t live without while on a shoot?

Proper equipment to work efficiently without too much clutter. Always a properly charged battery system, an extra lens different than the one (s) that I planned to use, protective gear when outside, iPhone for communication and everything else that device can provide, and an assistant with commercial shoots.

How do you regain your inspiration if you hit a creative rut?

I go out into nature, stop, and listen.

Who or what has been the biggest influence on your journey as a photographer?

The biggest influence for me has been the gift of time. Being able to refine my craft over a period of years has been the greatest gift I could ask for. I’ve learned so much by growing with photography as my core experience.

If you could share just one tip with aspiring photographers, what would it be?

Listen to your subject.

What are the top three Zenfolio features essential to helping you run your business?

Zenfolio’s passion for photography and photographers, their community support through blogs and forums, their willingness to push the boundaries with their site and offerings for photographers.

If you could second shoot with any photographer (dead or alive) who would it be and why?

Guy Bourdin would be the one because I love what he did with the Charles Jourdan shoes campaign. His imagination had no limits, and his use of space and unusual juxtaposition of elements caught my imagination early on with my photography.

How has the photography world changed since you turned pro?

The shift from film to digital photography. Things got much more expressive with me once I started using digital cameras and worked with Photoshop and Lightroom.

What one piece of software besides Zenfolio do you consider to be vital in your workflow?

Lightroom