June, 2017

randal ford recreates a vintage field & stream cover

For long-time readers of Field & Stream magazine, the June/July 2017 issue (out now) may look a little familiar. Indeed, it is a photographic recreation of the May 1961 cover featuring a young boy looking out of his tent at a fisherman wrangling in a fish. The idea was to capture both the excitement of the summer months and a sense of nostalgia and Americana.

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To realize the project, F&S turned to Randal Ford. Randal previously shot a series of similar recreations for L.L. Bean, which had actually started as a personal project.

Randal is exactly the man you need for such a job,” F&S photography director John Toolan told Folio. “He’s recreated several vintage images, and the final products truly stand as fresh works of art that you can appreciate on their own, without being aware of the original illustrations they’re mimicking.”

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Randal got to work photographing the dozens of pieces that would be composited into the final photograph. For the foreground, they built the tent in a grassy park and found the right sleeping bag. For the middle ground, Randal photographed a whole series of rocks, several streams, a taxidermy fish, and a bunch of different splashes. They spent hours trying to capture the exact position of the fisherman.

These photographic recreations are really challenging, because a painting is a painting; it’s not real. So when we go into create a photograph, it’s like wait, this doesn’t work like this,” recalled Randal.

Everything down to the position of the kid’s left hand peaking out from the sleeping bag was taken into consideration in order to match the photograph to the original image as closely as possible.

Even the kid in the tent, it had to be done in so many pieces to get it right. The kid’s arm, and the drape, and the fold of the tent. To get his neck up high enough so his shirt didn’t cover up his head—it’s not a pose you can just go out and photograph and have it look like this,” said Randal.

Because of the season, a stock image was used for the trees in the background, as was the mountain, since Randal lives in Texas.

I worked with an incredible retoucher who I’ve collaborated with quite a bit. The name of his company is One White Chair. He helped piece the whole thing together,” said Randal.

The entire process, from concept to prop styling to shooting to post-production, took almost two weeks.

Summer has this timeless appeal, and so much of what we enjoy now, as outdoor enthusiasts, remains unchanged from what we loved in decades past. The June/July issue is a celebration of that. So we wanted our cover to acknowledge this rich connection we have with the past,” said Toolan.

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jamie kripke shoots his own funeral

Inspired by the “profound truth” that “the artist’s best career move is death,” Jamie Kripke decided to stage his own funeral.

The idea was to step up the idea of the traditional mailer to advertise his work, creating a sort of subversive “commercial.”

“At first I thought it would be funny to stage my death as an elaborate hoax, complete with fake news, photos, and a proper obituary—to play with the idea that artists only become famous once they’re dead,” Jamie wrote on his blog, where you can read the entire (entertaining) backstory.

The result is the above video, a collaboration between Jamie and his partner Evan Fry, and produced by Postmodern in Denver. Evan directed while Jamie was lying in the casket.

Jamie premiered the video to a group of 50 or so friends and family, including his parents. “I had been wondering myself what the response might be. And to be honest I expected crickets / awkward silence. But the response at the opening was awesome! Huge cheers all around. Everyone loved it,” he reported.

Let us know how you reacted in the comments. Regardless of the nature of the response, this video is likely to get quite a lot more attention!

Executive Producer — Ben Seymour / Postmodern`
Producer — Krisi Olivero / Postmodern
Director — Evan Fry
Director of Photography — Jon Firestone
1st AC — Carl Otto
Grip — Dylan Rumney / Light Factory
Gaffer — Jason Tahara / Light Factory
Still Photographer — Jon Rose 
Editor — Bandera Cruse / Postmodern
Audio Engineer — Mike Cramp / Postmodern
Colorist — David Baud / Postmodern
Music — Paul Spaeth
Production Assistant — Eva Weinberg
Make-Up — Michael Long / Fairmount Cemetery

shaun fenn’s crew project

It’s not surprising to find Shaun Fenn hanging around down by the water, but his latest personal project, Crew, shot at the Newport Aquatic Center, hits particularly close to home.

Shaun Fenn Crew project

My brother rowed in college, and he and the coach were on the same team, so we’re all old friends. Now my brother’s son is rowing on the [NAC] team. Newport Beach is home for me; it’s where I grew up. It feels so comfortable being around the water so it was a really natural fit,” said Shaun.

Shaun shot an extensive collection of photos—hanging around the dock, on the water, and in the locker room. The goal was to capture imagery that would tell a story of about the challenges and camaraderie of the team, and what it means to be a member.

Shaun Fenn Crew project

Shaun Fenn Crew project

Shaun Fenn Crew project

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The kids were having such a good time. They’re all hams; they love to get their picture taken. They feel like rock stars. Of course, the more time I spent taking their picture the less time they were out on the water getting their butt kicked by the coach,” he laughed.

The images, presented in black and white, a throwback to Shaun’s days shooting with Kodak Tri-X film, are included in his most recent mailer.

I love the whole vintage feel, it really speaks to how long this sport’s been around—its European roots. It’s changed a lot; it’s no longer a handful of guys in a cotton t-shirt out on a wood boat. Now it’s all steel and fiberglass and timing devices. It’s pretty hard core,” Shaun observed.

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The second goal of the project was to take his trademark aesthetic and approach and apply them to different scenarios and treatments, be it sport or business, color or black and white.

As a commercial photographer, I’m always trying to find ways to look outside the box and expand my repertoire, ” Shaun added.