Street Studio: Manhattan

An experienced photojournalist can capture an image in the worst of conditions. However, when that same photographer is presented with the best of conditions, the equation isn’t the same.

By best, I mean a studio where everything can be controlled.

The first newspaper that employed me had no studio. Neither did the third one or fourth one. The second newspaper had a studio but got as much use as an umbrella in Death Valley.

After I left journalism, I was forced to learn how to work within a studio’s four walls and ceiling. Luckily, I learned from some of the best and in no time I was proficient.

Eventually, I built my own studio. And then another. These facilities helped me earn some solid money and recognition for my work. I had a good run of about six years before I realized that I needed to be out in the world for all of my work.

That time in the studio turned out to be a great learning experience because it taught me a craft discipline that simply doesn’t exist in photojournalism.

My work for the last twenty-five years has been creating studio portraits on location with almost no studio equipment. If you wonder what that really means, just take a look at this portrait session that I shot on the street near Penn Station.

Hopefully, the next twenty-five years will afford me the same opportunities.

About the author: I am Stephen Kennedy, an experienced photographer with more than 2500 completed sessions in all 50 US states.

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