Somebody who can light, and show up, and make a portrait is of no value anymore. It sounds like just another wild statement to grab your attention, but it’s actually true. I interviewed my incredible rep Maren Levinson of Redeye for our Survival Guide workshop and what she has to say is so powerful, I wanted to share it with everyone. This is such great advice for artists today. The industry is changing rapidly, and it is really important to understand what your value is as an artist, and how you fit into the big picture. I hope you find this exciting and inspirational. If it strikes a chord with you, and you want to learn more about marketing, strategy and business for artists. You can check out one of our Survival Guide workshops on our workshop page. To receive updates on future workshops and opportunities, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Videos
2014 was a big year for me. It was the year I began directing professionally. I intended to start off with a series of self-produced shorts to build up my reel, but just after completing Glory Days, things took off. First I directed a series of commercials for the Sounders 2014 season with Clint Dempsey, Obafemi Martins, and DeAndre Yedlin. Next up was a little music video for Fences + Macklemore called Arrows. Then I was off to Cincinnati for Vita Coco with Giovani Bernard. Which brings me to this video, the final project of the year. It was a labor of love, and well worth it, I might add.
My friends at Hammerquist Studios came to me with the idea of doing a pro bono video project for the 2015 International Children’s Film Festival Seattle put on by Northwest Film Forum. We had a blank slate, and the opportunity to create something great for a good cause could not be passed up. The first thing we did was get writer Jeff Siegel on board. He came up with about 6 really awesome ideas, but there was one that jumped out at all of us right away. Rather than read about it, you should really just watch how it turned out. There were over 50 people who generously gave their time, materials, creativity, and money to this project. I wish there was time to detail and describe the many amazing things each person did to make this happen. The energy on set was amazing because everyone was there because they truly wanted to be. Thank you to my amazing team, and thank you, Hammerquist and Northwest Film Forum, for trusting us to make this awesome video.
Directed by John Keatley
Written by Jeff Siegel
Agency / Hammerquist Studios
Starring Rachael Kevin and Everett Moss
Spencer Norris / DP and Editor
Produced by: Lillian Brunner, Taylor Reed, Nichelle Keatley, John Keatley
Art Direction: John Lavin, Becky Mohrlang
Cast: Sara Coates, Kathleen Boyle, Kunwar Singh, Julie Ellis, Aiden McCoy, Hallee Olsen, Cadence Whittle, Anthony Herrera, Etri Ajbour
Sound Designer: John Buroker
Sound: Sam Martinez
Music: Wesley Slover
Colorist: Kevin Adams
Voice Talent: Dave White
Gaffer: Scott Jonas
Costume Design: Ron Leamon, Gerard Parr
Hair & Makeup: Haley Olsen, Akemi Hart
Wardrobe Stylist: Alexis Steinman
PA: Jonah Kozlowski
Casting Agent: Tami Wakasugi
Set Builders: Becky Mohrlang, Stephen Klineburger, Natalie Hammerquist, Sean Tully, Jeff Aitken, Adam Hunt
Special Thanks To: Vince Klimek, Kaleo Quenzer, Dave Drummond, Fremont Studios.
Here is a little something we cooked up just for fun. I find that is often the best reason to create. Just for fun. Directing has gradually become a huge part of my creative process in addition to photography. When I was in high school, I bought my first video camera. I took it everywhere with me. Video was actually a passion of mine well before photography. Somehow, along the way as my photography career took off, video was something I lost sight of. Thankfully directing has come back to me in the last couple of years. In the past, I would go through my journal of ideas and think, “How do I want to make this a photograph?” Now, as I am thinking about a possible project, I am able to ask myself, “What is best for this idea? A photograph, a video?” Or maybe something else completely. Whatever it is, as long as I am creating, I am happy. Below is a still I also shot on set. I just couldn’t help myself.
A very big shout out and thank you to our amazing crew for making this video come to life. I can’t thank you enough!
Taylor Reed, Sara Coates, Isla Keatley, Andrew Franks, Kort Havens, Spencer Norris, Jonathan Houser, Jon Anderson, Nate Taylor, Alexis Steinman, Jennifer Popochock, Dennise Larson, Mikie Magnusson and Zoe Rain.
Behind the scenes images by Zoe Rain. Thanks Zoe!
Here is the first behind the scenes video of Arrows by Fences featuring Macklemore. This is so fun to watch for me because the last 2 months have been such a blur. As you can see, all of the sets were built in a warehouse and shot on green screen. Ian Hubert, Nate Taylor, and Ian Goode did such an amazing job bringing this to life with stunning imagery and VFX. I hope you enjoy it.
If you haven’t seen the actual music video yet, here it is: Arrows – Fences feat. Macklemore
“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.
A few weeks ago I wrote about my most recent shoot with Macklemore for the cover of The Source. We also thought it would be fun to share a behind the scenes video to show you how the magic happened. Thanks for checking it out. Shout out also to Just 2 Guys for putting this together for us. Cheers.
Posted by John Keatley / Filed under BTS, Press & Interviews, Videos
Thank you to everyone who wrote in and asked the fine folks at FRAMED to do an interview with me. It was very flattering to get the call to do this, and fun to spend the day with Melissa and the whole crew. I am blown away by what a great job they did with this video from top to bottom. They actually made me look somewhat respectable, which is no small feat. In about 15 years, when Isla is an unruly teenager, I am going to make her watch this video, and then I will look her in the eyes, and say, “Respect”.
I know that 36 minute ticker may scare some of you, but I got several comments and emails today from people who said they didn’t plan on watching more than three minutes, and ended up getting sucked in and watched the whole thing. Hopefully that is incentive enough to press play. Even if you only have time for three minutes. There are no axes, or wood carving in this video, but there are a couple of pretty funny moments with a (Spoiler Alert!) karate master. Which reminds me, I am really excited you get to meet some of my creative companions who pop up in the video as well.
As always, thanks so much for your interest and support of my work. It means a lot to me, and thank you again to FRAMED!
Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Videos
Last week, I woke up, checked my email, and received an email from my friend Mo at charity: water with a link to this video. At first I was confused, and thought it was some sort of mistake or general video for a bunch of people. But as it played on, I realized they made this video for me. Wow! That is some kind of amazing thank you. Last year, I gave up my birthday to raise money for clean water through charity: water, and that is what they are thanking me for in this video. I know hand-written thank you notes are all but dead, but when you get a thank you note, it means so much because of the effort that goes into it. After thinking about that, I realized that maybe a video like this could be the new hand-written note. I think a video actually takes more time and effort, and it was a really fun surprise. Thanks for the video, Mo and Josh! And Happy 5th Birthday, charity:water.
If you don’t understand the flannel shirts, axe, or the lumberjack references, they are spoofing my promo video The Woodsman which you should definitely watch. It’s worth 1 minute of your time if I do say so myself.
I feel really good about this video, and I think it presents an honest look at my trip to Liberia with MiiR this past January. Several of my images were recently selected in the 2011 PDN Faces contest, and I thought this would be a good excuse to put together a video that shows a little more of what the experience was like and how the images came together. I cannot say enough about my editor for this video, Andy Maier. He put so much thought and hard work into this, and his efforts made all the difference. I feel blessed to be able to work with wonderfully creative people, such as Andy and everyone else I have been creating with this past year.
The man at the beginning of the video is Pastor Kondoh, and he will be coming to Seattle in just a couple of weeks for a project MiiR CEO Bryan Pape and I are working on. I can’t wait to see him again. This will be a trip of many firsts for him, including his first time out of Africa, and his first time on an airplane. Without sounding like a tease, I do have a little bit of freedom to talk more about the project I referred to above. You can hear about it in greater detail on the podcast interview I did with Faded & Blurred recently. I start talking about it around minute 40.
Posted by John Keatley / Filed under Personal Work, Videos
I was asked to create a bio video several weeks back, and I immediately knew I didn’t want to do another interview-type video. Don’t get me wrong, interviews are great and have their place, but this felt like a great opportunity to do something creative and show people a side of me often only expressed through my images of other people. I think this short film is a good glimpse into my personality and how I think about life and work. Sometimes words just aren’t enough, at least for us visual types. So think of this as a creative bio/promo, rather than a literal account of my work and life. I hope you enjoy it.
I posted several of production stills if you want a behind the scenes look at this video also.
John Keatley and Oliver
John Keatley // Writer, Producer keatleyphoto.com
Eric Becker // Director weareshouting.com
Brandon and Les Hilliard // Director, Editor, Writer, Producer braindancers.com
Rodrigo Valenzuela // Director of Photography weareshouting.com
Ian Goode // Graphics giganticsquid.com
Ryan Dunleavey // Motion
Michelle Chappron // Hair and Makeup michellechappron.com
Music by Björn Olsson bjornolssonmusic.com