James Hetfield performing at Glastonbury

Living Artist: Working Creative

 

One of the most unconfined lives a person can hope to lead is that of an artist. What greater freedom can there be, but to be free to dream and to inspire others in a world so often filled with conflict and with strife.

dover-seafront
Sunrise over Calais, France from my home here in Dover, Kent UK

Artists are protected, if only by their undying will and eternal commitment to creation. And this creative element has always allowed me to see Artists and Creatives in the same light. But it was in drawing a distinction that I was able to change how I approach my photography. It wasn’t until, working on an art installation at Covent Garden in London that I had a pivotal conversation with one of the project’s collaborators. I asked if he felt he’d attained success as an artist by having his project on display at such a premier location, and he graciously replied, substituting the word “artist” for “creative”. He was markedly composed for such an achievement. Success was no great surprise. It was his job, as a Creative.

This distinction helped clear the internal conflict I had early on over profiting from my inspiration. Once I was able to appreciate how that inspiration could translate into a tangible value for my clients, I was able to work out for myself how much my time was worth on any given project, without qualms.

Million Pound Drop portrait of Davina Mccall posing with money in hand
Million Pound Drop portrait of Davina Mccall
London ballroom wedding room decorations
Production room shot from the Savoy hotel in London

Quick backstory, I started my current co-profession working in the production and events industry back in 2001. I began my illustrious career as a climbing steel hand building stages on N-Syncs “PopOdyssey” tour.  Fast forward 16 years and I’ve been working as a production rigger and automation tech, here in the UK for the past eleven years.

Rigging rescue training Londons O2 Arena Production rigger
Production Rigger rescue training at London’s O2 Arena
Rigging rescue training Londons O2 Arena
Riggers undergoing rescue training at Londons O2 Arena

Production rigging has been very good to me. It’s taken me around the world. I’ve had unimaginable access to some of the most amazing events over the past decade and a half, and I realized along the way that it couldn’t last forever. Couple that with a timely case of the shutter bug, and my burgeoning foray into photography would begin.

One of the companies that I sub-contracted for, DLM Rigging had me do photos for and design their website.

Pre production photo from X Factor UK
Production photo emphasizing rigging installation on X Factor Final UK

This would lead to further opportunities. doing corporate photos for BAFTA award winning designers, lighting firms, sound engineers, set designers and so forth.

Million Pound Drop portrait of Davina Mccall posing with money
Million Pound Drop portrait of Davina Mccall
Production Rigging on TV show Tumble UK
Production Rigging on Tumble UK
The Voice UK Set lighting and stage battles
The Voice UK Set design by Julian Healy
Production room photo from TV show Prank Pad
Production room photo from TV show Prank Pad by Bizibot
Sound engineer backstage on Britains Got Talent
Sound engineer on Britains Got Talent
Production room photo from TV show Tumble
Production room photo from TV show Tumble
Production room photo private party
Production room photo private party
Kinesys load cell and technician entering data
Corporate photo of Kinesys load cell and technician for Rigorous Technology Ltd.

Last year, I had the pleasure of working with the production company Muzika doing a series of corporate photos of their lighting and set installations.

London ballroom wedding room decorations
Production room shot from the Savoy ballroom in London.
Elegant decorations and lighting in classy room for wedding
Production room shot Rosewood
Large gothic chamber decorated for high end event
Production room photo decorated by and captured for Muzika Ltd.
Classy production lit ballroom dressed for wedding
Artistic view on production room setting
Grosvenor ballroom production photo lighting and video screen tables
Grosvenor ballroom production photos of lighting video screens and dressed tables for Muzika Ltd.
London ballroom wedding room decorations
Production room setting shot for Muzika Ltd.
Production room photo from Claridges ballroom in London for bah mitzvah
Production room photo from Claridges in London

And here’s a few more of my favourite production photos from the past years.

Stand Up 2 Cancer Nicole Scherzinger singing
Stand Up 2 Cancer Nicole Scherzinger
Stand Up 2 Cancer Nicole Scherzinger and Davina Mccall talking
Stand Up 2 Cancer Nicole Scherzinger and Davina Mccall
Michael Buble performing live on the One Show
Michael Buble performing live on the One Show
The Voice UK Set lighting and stage
The Voice UK Set

 

I’m a commercial photographer, based in Kent and I specialise in creating dynamic, eye-catching images for my clients. My images are created to add value to every message conveyed across the spectrum of digital and offline platforms alike, including websites, brochures, blogs, social media channels, case studies and any other medium as required. My clients range from BAFTA award winners, multi-national building firms, television personalities and heads of state to local businesses, respected artists and ambitious entrepreneurs. I was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas (U.S.A.), and after a stint as a lab technician followed by time out to travel, I began a career as a production rigger, working primarily in television and film. This experience allowed me to become accustomed to pressurised working environments and a demanding clientele! In 2011, I began studying at the London Film Academy, which eventually led to me devoting my time and training to becoming a commercial photographer. Whether you have a specific project in mind or you’re looking for a complete brand identity overhaul, I’d love to hear from you. You can email me at kevan@smithstudios.co.uk or give me a call on +44 77 6666 1253.

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