An Evening with Photographer Joe Buissink

Just returned from seeing a presentation by photographer Joe Buissink. I confess Joe shattered any pre-concieved notions I held about high-paid celebrity photographers. He shared many images and his passion for capturing fleeting moments between people.

He still shoots film and his clientel are people who seek that and appreciate that. He primarily shoots available light at ISO 1600 and 3200. His images tend to be less grainy than most of us associate with high ISO. His film processing lab will visually inspect the film during development, empirically pushing the development until the density is good. This avoids low density low contrast, which requires compensation during printing and thereby incurs enhanced graininess.

Joe seeks emotional moments, not necessarily perfect sharpness or perfect composition. His pitch to prospective clients is more about himself and his passion. He tells the stories behind the images that you would not know from the image alone. Once people are hooked on his passionate approach, they tend to give him less direction and restrictions. He typically does not have to align himself to a required shot list.

Joe does more than just weddings. He recently completed work on a book about autism and the images comminicate a compelling joyful story. He photographed Stephen Spielberg’s birthday party, Christina Aguilara on tour, and the closing episode of the Frasier television show at request of Kelsey Grammer.

The Buissink approach to photographing people is eye opening (to me anyway) and it was a truly enjoyable evening. However, it is no secret that he caters to very wealthy people and the cost for his services is adjusted to their financial means. I personally do not know anyone who can afford him.

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