03
Mar

New DEDPXL Digital Download

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under BTS, News

Wow, this is so exciting!  Introducing our new digital download from DEDPXL and Zack Arias.  Ta Da!  I spent 3 days with the DEDPXL crew last Fall filming this video.  We put together some great shoots ranging from simple portraits to some conceptual work with a set build.  This video series takes you through my personal life, career, failures and triumphs and also takes you on-set, behind-the-scenes to see some of my methods, gear and techniques as well as a full day of shooting.  It could not have turned out any better, and it’s on sale for just $50 this week only.

This short trailer gives you a good idea of what to expect.  Thanks for taking a look.  Head on over to DEDPXL to download the full video now and enjoy!

Huge thank you to Zack Arias and Bernard Brand for all of their hard work on this.  I am really proud, and happy to be a part of it.

13
Feb

Some Thoughts On Business

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under News

When I first got into photography, I was still in college, desperately trying to figure out what to do with my life.  I wanted some sense of control over whatever it was I was going to do, but that was all I knew.  When I first picked up a camera, it was for no other reason than to take pictures of my friends jumping off swings, and long boarding down the steep 16th fairway at night.  It was something I enjoyed, but I never imagined that it could actually translate into a career.  Thanks to the kind words of a drug store photo lab manager named Kolene Potter, I decided to become a professional photographer.  All I knew is that she said I could be good at it, and that some people make a living taking pictures.  That was all I needed to know, and I never looked back.  The world of photography was completely unknown to me, and from my perspective, there were no limits.  That was what made it so exciting.  The opportunity to explore and experiment.  The thrill of the chase, and trying to figure out just how to make money doing something I enjoyed.

This took place just as digital cameras were coming into existence, and also when I was still finishing up college, so I didn’t have the financial pressures that exist on me today.  Looking back, it was the best possible scenario for me to begin a career in photography.  But not only was the timing right, there were several people who came into my life and gave me amazing advice.  They shared their time and knowledge with me, helped me with my portfolio, and maybe most importantly, taught me how to bid on jobs.  Every one of those lessons and moments has stuck with me, and I will carry that knowledge with me forever.  I never would have had the opportunities I have today if it were not for those generous people.

In 2013, I taught my first workshop.  It was called the Un-Workshop.  We were trying to break the mold and do something a little different.  The first day was filled with marketing and business lessons, numbers, stories, and goals.  It was everything I could think of that has been helpful to me in my career as a freelance artist.  The second day was all about lighting and production, and if I had to guess, I would say a majority of the people who attended were lured by the lighting.  It just sounds way sexier than learning about business.

I have continued to teach the Un-Workshop over the last couple of years, in Dubai and the Bahamas.  It has been a good workshop, but after collecting feedback from over 60 people who have attended, I have come to realize something.  People always comment that they have fun with the shooting and lighting.  But what they really spend time talking about is the business and marketing content.  To hear things like, I keep the workbook on my desk at all times and always refer back to it, and I just landed my biggest client, and I just won a bid on the biggest job of my career, and Business is better than ever...  That feels really good.  There are so many places to learn about lighting these days.  And lighting is really important for a photographer, don’t get me wrong.  But if I can offer information that can change the direction and stability of an artists career, that is what gets me really excited.

I was with a group of professional photographers recently, and I was really struck by the number of times I heard them say things like, “I’m not business-minded”, “I’m a starving artist,” “I just want to create, I don’t want to deal with self promotion…”  I get all that.  Those feelings are totally valid, but it doesn’t have to be like that.  I know artists are not often considered savvy business-people.  It might be a right brain, left brain sort of thing.  But I also happen to know many amazing business people who are also wonderful artists.  I think what seems to be more the case is that artists are never taught about how to run a business.  How to pitch an idea to a potential client.  How to understand the needs of a client or potential client, and what to actually charge for all of the many different services artists provide.  Over time the artist’s creative drive is locked down in trying to understand the nitty gritty, and the excitement begins to fade.

This is why I love teaching, and why my team and I have created a new workshop called “Survival Guide”.  I believe I have a responsibility to pass on what has been given to me over the years, as well as lessons I have learned from my own journey.  I also believe that with a solid plan, and some basic guidance, any artist can learn to thrive and create work they are passionate about.  It doesn’t have to be a big struggle between creating and business.

Find out much more and sign up at our new Survival Guide page.  See you soon.
Oh, and this awesome illustration for our poster was created by Derek Sullivan.  Thanks Derek!

12
Aug

ARROWS by Fences featuring Macklemore

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Celebrity, News, Videos

“Arrows” by Fences featuring Macklemore and produced by Ryan Lewis.  Directed by Jason Koenig and John Keatley.  It’s hard really to put into words what I am feeling right now.  We literally just finished working on this video and I haven’t had time to clear my head or process what has just happened.  It has been 2 solid months of hard work for so many talented people, and I am incredibly proud of what we all created.  First and foremost I want to thank Fences, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, my co-director Jason Koenig, and my wife Nichelle and our kids.

It goes without saying, but this has been an amazing opportunity that I am very grateful for.  I also made some wonderful new friends along the way.  It is worth mentioning that the sets for Arrows were all built in Seattle.  Pre-Production, casting, filming, and all post production was done in Seattle.  Seattle pride!  I hope you enjoy the “Arrows” music video as much as I enjoyed working on it. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for lots of behind the scenes pictures and videos.

I have directed a few small film projects in the past few years, but what a project to get thrown into the ring on.  I wouldn’t have had it any other way.  This is just the beginning.  John Keatley – Director / Photographer.  I like the sound of that.

08
Aug

Arrows Music Video Announcement

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under News

Arrows Music Video poster by John Keatley and Jason Koenig.

It’s official!!!  Jason Koenig and I directed a music video for the song “Arrows” by Fences featuring Macklemore and it comes out this Monday!  Holy Smokes I am excited about this.  You will be able to see it on Youtube, so get ready.  More soon.  Thanks for watching!

07
Aug

MTV News

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under BTS, Celebrity, News

Home stretch!  It is almost time, and this MTV News post is a nice little teaser that something amazing is about to drop.  Stay tuned.  This is what making a music video 24/7 looks like.

Self portrait by John Keatley.

Self portrait by Jason Koenig.

Late night sleep dep portrait of Macklemore by Keatley.

 

07
Feb

Workshop In The Bahamas

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Events, News

What!?  That’s right.  We are taking this show on the road to the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas this May 28th through Sunday June 1st.
Can you say lazy river y’all!  I think we are definitely going to be ending each day on the lazy river.  Heck, we may even do a shoot on the lazy river just because we can. It’s going to be amazing. We will be in paradise, taking pictures, relaxing, hanging out with some awesome people and of course learning a ton.

What really makes this so exciting is the unique location. I can’t wait to shoot on location and do some things I have not been able to do at previous workshops. We are definitely going to take advantage of our surroundings.  Take a look…

Above is a video from my workshop in Seattle last February.

Lighting The Keatley Way is going to be a blast.  I am going to do a couple of shoots so you can see how it all comes together.  We will be covering natural and studio lighting.  You will also get a chance to create your own pictures and experience the different lighting modifiers.  I will be sharing everything I have learned throughout the years to help you walk away empowered, excited and confident about moving forward to create work that will match up with your vision. Lighting and production is not as scary as it seems.  Sometimes we just need a little help and nudge in the right direction.

Marketing With The Big Boys is a really important class.  I can’t stress that enough. You can be the best photographer in the world, but without a solid understanding of building your brand and marketing it in the right way, you will never make it.  Marketing is king in business, and admit it or not, if you are a professional photographer, you are a business.  Artists hate to hear that, but it’s true. I majored in Business and have been at this for 13 years.  I am going to share with you everything I know and have learned over my career.  There are no secrets.  Just solid advice and a passion to see others succeed.  I will be covering so many things in this course.  Even things like real world estimates and invoices.  What to charge, self promotion, leverage, building a brand, social media and so much more.  My goal is for you to walk away from this workshop feeling excited about business!  I know, I know, but dream big right.

Find Your Style is a half day class for photographers who are starting out, or asking questions like, ‘How did you get to where you are?’  ’How did you develop your style?’  ’How do I find my style?’  Finding your style is more about understanding yourself than anything else.  It all starts with you and what makes you uniquely you.  I will be talking about my journey, and how you can begin or continue in your own successful journey as a photographer, shooting what you love and getting paid in the process.  We may even throw in a fun little shoot too, just to keep things interesting.

Signing up and reserving your spot only requires a 20% deposit, so no need to pay it all at once.  Come alone, bring a friend, bring your partner, bring your whole family!  That’s what I’m doing.  F-Stoppers is putting on quite a show.  There will be an awesome meet and greet, as well as talks on Friday by all 10 photographers who are teaching at the event.  Friday is going to be free, so you can get some great input from many different points of view.  The folks at F-Stoppers have also hooked us up with great rates on rooms starting at $160 a night.  Not to mention flights are pretty dang low right now, depending on where you are traveling from.  Sign up soon.  Spots are limited for each workshop.  Also worth noting, the room discounts will be disappearing 1 month before the event.  Let me know if you have any questions.  I hope to see you in the Bahamas!!!  Let’s do this.  Here is a link to sign up.

27
Jan

Professional Photographer Feature

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under News, Personal Work, Press & Interviews

As some of you may know, last year I began a little portrait project with my iPhone and Instagram.  It began almost as an accident, but quickly became a project very close to my heart.  I have met some amazing people and heard some incredible stories along the way.  Like Jordan’s story for example.  Within just a few months, I got a call from KING 5 about going on New Day NW (watch video) as well as several other interviews.  One of those interviews just came out this month in Professional Photographer Magazine as a full feature.  As a photographer, it’s exciting to shoot for a feature, but a feature about my work is a whole new level of excitement.  Thank you so much to Jade Price and everyone at Professional Photographer for your support and interest in my work.  I feel like I am just getting started with my iPhone Portrait project, and I can’t wait to see where it takes me next.

05
Dec

Now Represented by Redeye

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under News

I am very excited to officially announce I am now represented by Redeye.  I spent the better part of six months doing an extensive search, including, meetings, phone calls, interviewing art buyers, etc.  After all that, the stars aligned  and I knew I wanted to be working with the wonderful people at Redeye.  If you haven’t worked with Maren or Stephanie yet, you will love working with them.  They are super lovely!  I feel very blessed to be surrounded by such hard working, fun loving, personable and honest people.  Here is to a great year ahead, and thanks to everyone for your ongoing support and interest in my work.

06
Nov

Hiring A Senior Retoucher

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under News

We are very happy to announce the Keatley team is growing once again.  We are officially opening up a new position in our studio for a Senior Retoucher.  We could not be more excited to find our next team member to collaborate with.  It’s gonna be a lot of fun!  If you are a talented retoucher, or know someone who is, we hope to hear from you.  The full job listing and application process is below.

Looking for a Senior Retoucher to work at Keatley Studio

Location: Our new West Seattle studio near Alki beach.

About us: We are a commercial photography studio that focuses on advertising, celebrity portrait and high end fine art photography, both locally and internationally.  Our business has steadily grown over the past twelve years, and John Keatley’s work has been recognized by multiple national and international contests and awards.  He has photographed International advertising campaigns for multiple major brands, award winning personal work, and many of the most recognizable celebrities in the world.  Editorially his work has appeared in Time, Wired, Forbes, Inc., Rolling Stone, Fast Company, and ESPN to name a few.  We consist of one full-time photographer, a full time creative producer, a part-time bookkeeper, interns, and frequently work with freelance artists on a per-project basis. We highly value creativity and collaboration, and can assure you that working here will not be dull.  Neither will the photography you will be retouching.  See further proof at www.keatleyphoto.com.

About you: First and foremost, we are looking for a Photoshop master who can hit the ground running.  Someone who is persistent, motivated, organized, creative, and passionate about retouching.  This position offers the opportunity to make your mark on an exciting business and help it grow.  Skills that are required for this job: self-motivated/driven, detail-oriented, organized, relational, flexible, strong retouching skills, looks at the big picture, committed/responsible, an appreciation for creativity, always trying to improve, and a sense of humor.  Your job duties will immediately include: Retouching, compositing, image prepping, color correction, digital asset management, digital tech on shoots, production, organizing and maintaining the photo archive.  This job is a full time position.

Are you the person who can look at an old neglected house and, only see potential?  Then you would be our ideal candidate, someone who is a dreamer, and can make ideas into reality.

Are you the person who always has the urge to create, experiment, and collaborate with others?  Then you are the person we want because that’s exactly what you will be doing.

Are you the first among your friends to get the flu shot when winter approaches?  Then you are the person we are looking for, who is always ahead of the curve and has gotten things done before others even realize it needs to be done.  Organization is important!

Are you the person who brings doughnuts to work every Friday?  Great!  We like Top Pot Old Fashioned’s…

You will be a key contributor and play a pivotal role in the success of this business.  Although we are a small business, we are involved in some really big projects with far reaching impact.  We hope your role in this work will give you great personal satisfaction.  We are looking for someone who will bring their own ideas and vision to the table.  We want you to grab hold of opportunities and find ways to explore and improve upon already existing ideas with your own.

Qualifications:

College degree is preferred, but not required.
Employment or volunteer experience that can demonstrate and highlight your work ethic and ability to get things done.
Must be flexible, dependable, and a hard worker.

How to Apply:

Send an email to john@keatleyphoto.com containing your resume (inline or attached as a PDF) and short cover letter.  A link to your website or a site with your retouching work.  You may also attach jpg images of your work if necessary.  Also, answer four (4) of the following five (5) questions in your response (your pick).  A short paragraph on each should be sufficient.  All inquiries will be replied to and kept in confidence.  In your email, please also provide your desired compensation.

1. We are big believers that details make all the difference.  Tell us a couple details about your car (or the bus if that’s how you roll) that you especially like or dislike.  And then tell us what you would do differently if you ran Ford or Metro King County Transit.

2. Pretend you have 3 hours to complete 5 tasks, but you know there is only enough time to properly complete 3 of the tasks.  What do you do?

3. What is your favorite TV show?  Describe what you like about it, and why it is your favorite.

4. List two statements, rules, or principals that you have found invaluable in your life/work experience, explain why they are so important to you, and list examples of when they have applied.

5. How would you handle a situation at work where one of your co-workers who you work with closely is making you feel frustrated?

  • Location: West Seattle, Washington

  • Compensation: Depends on qualifications

  • This is a full-time job

  • Please, no phone calls about this job!

  • Please do not contact job poster about other services, products or commercial interests

 

15
Jul

I’m On TV

Posted by John Keatley / Filed under News

Click the image above to watch the full interview.

It’s those three words every mother dreams of hearing.  Well, maybe not in all cases, but this time its pretty exciting.  And I’ll admit, I am still pretty giddy about this opportunity.  Thursday of last week, I was featured on New Day NW (King 5), along with Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, and designer Jonathan Adler.  Thank you to Su Ring, Meeghan Black, and Mark Klebeck for your amazing support and interest in what I do!

Thanks for watching everyone!  Hopefully next time I am on TV, I will be talking about my new iPhone Portrait book.  :)


Me and my girl on our way to the King 5 studio.


With Seattle Seahawk Richard Sherman backstage.


Thanks Meeghan for a great interview!