Field Trip: James @ Heartbeat NYC

There’s an established path for certain artists who have a fondness or affinity for each other to collaborate. Musicians “sit in” with each other, songwriters customarily work with partners and cinema and theater are completely collaborative mediums.  This is not really the case with photographers and other visual artists. This is why I’m always seeking out other artists for brief meetings, lunch or just coffee.

Recently, I had a great visit in New York with James Talerico at his office near Penn Station. James is the ECD of Heartbeat Ideas which commissioned me for a very memorable project that took place on my St. Louis backlot.

We got together to chat and unsurprisingly, I came away with some great insights to his success. After a tour of the agency we ended up in his office, which perfectly signals how he works. It’s spare, deliberate and completely functional.

There’s no computer and there’s no telephone. It’s a place solely for ideas that emanate from professionals using their mental skills without any distraction. I’ve been in a lot of ad agency offices and I can say with authority that this one is the most memorable. James is pretty memorable too.

After our chat we went out for a quick photography session on Eight Avenue that ended up with great results. Also, I did my friends at B&H Photo (just four blocks away) a favor by unintentionally talking James into buying a Fujifilm camera just like the one that I used to take his portrait.

About the author: I am Stephen Kennedy, an experienced photographer specializing in creating environmental on-location portraits and corporate photo libraries for blue chip companies. 

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