Fashion Photographer Stevieroy
Stevieroy is a successful Fashion and advertising photographer; his clients include Addidas, All American Vintage, BBC Leeds, Dunlop Heywood and many more. His studios in Leeds and London, offer the very best in digital capture and lighting, for both studio shoots and location shoots nationally and internationally, working with a team of professional stylists, makeup artists and hair stylists to cover all the photographic requirements.
We had the opportunity to speak with him and discover how this story started, and who he is as a photographer.
When did you first get interested in photography? What sparked it, and when did you decide that it was what you were going to do?
I always remember having a camera in my teens, but never really sure how to work it, it had always been of interest to me as I spent a lot of years in men’s fashion and looking at great imagery in FHM, GQ and Esquire but it wasn’t until a long time after this that it became my profession, strangely it started with furniture! I used to have customers contact me to ask how I captured accurate color and detail? This led to shooting products for other companies and moved into fashion and beauty photography around 2002, this was the moment I realized it was all worth getting out of bed for, if you’re really passionate about what you do, it doesn’t feel like work!
Were you educated in photography, or are you self taught?
I’m a totally self-taught photographer.
What camera do you use the majority of the time?
Do I shoot with two different cameras, primarily for my fashion work I use a Phase One medium format digital camera with different digital backs depending on what the client needs? The detail captured by a large sensor allows images to be printed in huge sizes for billboards and banners on buildings, incredible stuff! My other camera is a Canon 1Ds Mark 3 which is a super fast full frame 35mm, a little easier to handle than the Phase One and would shoot PR and fashion events on the Canon! My answer would be Phase One
You mostly focus on fashion photography. Once you’ve mastered this, is there any other types of photography you’re looking to move into?
I don’t think I’ll ever stop shooting fashion, every shoot is different, always more to learn, I’m my own worst critic, I want to be better and better all the time! I do however like to shoot Cityscapes, I’ve spent a lot of time in New York and have a lot of images of the City, some have been bought by bars and restaurants in large format for their walls and entrance receptions, I’d definitely like to do more of this in my spare time!
Which photo are you currently most proud of?
I like a lot of my work, there’s so many reasons why and the image comes out the way it does, connection with the subject, timing, direction, they all mean a lot of different ways.
Comparing where you are now with where you are when you first started, what could you have done differently to get to where you are sooner?
I’ve really enjoyed the journey to get where I am now and think time is what makes it a reality, I’ve taught many photographers in the past and within a couple of years they’ve given up, I always stress to people looking to go into the industry that it’s hard and super competitive, be prepared to get a lot of rejection, It’s not an overnight industry, patience and time to develop your own style is paramount!
You’ve clearly worked with a wide range of models, what tips can you recommend to people looking to expand their portfolio?
If I have down time in my schedule, I’ll call the agencies and ask them to send me models that I can test shoot with, this is an excellent way to try new techniques and be creative with lighting in the studio and on location, my advice would be test, test and test some more, keep shooting!
Describe a typical shoot.
I think the beauty of a shoot is that it’s never typical! There’s the usual organisation, of your team, assistants, transport, hair, make-up and styling should you provide this to the client, this would be the typical part of any shoot, the rest, well, this is where the fun begins!
How much time do you spend taking photos, versus retouching photos?
I don’t do much retouching on my images; I spend more time on the lighting to create the result! Apart from removing spots, blemishes, the usual issues, but most of my work is straight out of the camera.
I have a lot of accessories, but one of my favorites is a small reflector panel called a Sun-mover by California Sunbounce in Germany, it’s a great product that I use in the studio and on location.
Who would you like to work with most?
I’d like to work with a few models, for fashion I’d like to shoot Natasha Poly and Cara Delavigne, and for swimwear and lingerie Miranda Kerr and Michaela Kocianova.
Favorite photography book?
I don’t have a favorite book, is it bad that I don’t read much; I do like my books on Albert Watson and Guy Bourdin though!