Did you go to school for photography?
No. I actually went to school to study Biomedical Engineering, but I have found a lot of usefulness in having that engineering background when it comes to doing ratios on the fly. If I were to go back, I might get a business degree and focus on photography a bit more just so I had that entrepreneurial background. BUT, I definitely don't think that a degree in photography is necessary to get into the industry.
How’d you get into photography from engineering?
It was actually because of engineering that I got into photography. My grandfather gave me his old film camera when I was younger. In college, I found it and started messing around with it until I got my first DSLR. From there, it was only a little time before friends asked me to do engagement photos for them and I found that I could help pay for schooling by shooting weddings and engagements after classes. I fell in love with photography and I've never been able to put down a camera since. My passions have driven my interests and subject choices from there.
What kind of camera do you shoot with?
Check out my camera systems and basically everything I use on a day-to-day basis over on the Gear Page for photographers.
How do you get the shots on the bike? Are they composites?
A select few are but most are done in camera. I actually was trying to figure out how to light somebody while moving on the bike a while back and I didn’t want to just have them ride by me slowly, I wanted them going full throttle. So, I rigged up a boom in the back of our F-150, dropped the tailgate, and had my wife run the truck at about 20-25mph so we could get some great action shots. It worked and we’ve been toying with the model ever since. I wouldn’t suggest it to most as there are definitely some safety concerns to take into account, so only try it if you’re a professional and at your own risk. For some video of us shooting bike portraits, check out the Videos Page for more.
Do you do a lot of Photoshop and retouching on your images?
No. Retouching and Photoshop are definitely part of my workflow and are key to putting the finishing touches on the images, but the majority of what we shoot, we get in camera. Nothing can recreate superior lighting and composition in camera. Beyond that, its some fun fine-tuning in Photoshop to produce the look and results you see.
Do you do any workshops or instructional classes?
Yes! I put on workshops when I can, so to be sure you're in the know sign Sign up for our Newsletter and be sure to get all of the most recent and upcoming news from Ruddock Visuals!