A couple of weeks ago, I attended a week long workshop in Santa Fe taught by editorial celebrity portrait photographer Chris Buck.  His work is seen in Wired, The New Yorker, GQ, and Esquire, among other places.  Chris has this amazing ability to work with people who are guarded and conscious of their image. He’s able to see inside them and capture the surprising portrait.

I did not realize how hard Chris would push us to grow as photographers. He got under our skin and brought the best out of us.  He rattled us. It felt like a photographic mash-up of “Dead Poets Society” and “Full Metal Jacket”. I keep trying to explain to people what it was like to attend this workshop, and I’m at a loss for words.  It might have been the hardest thing that I’ve done career-wise in a long time.

We shot in the studio and on location in several interesting places, including the former New Mexico State Penitentiary, a movie set used for filming westerns, and a Masonic Temple that is little changed since the 1950s.

He pushed me to create deeper portraits and to add more conceptual narrative, symbolism, and storytelling to my imagery. His parting challenge was to shoot more personal work and set goals.

Thanks for listening and taking a look. Here are some images from the workshop…