I shot these images on a sweltering hot day this past summer in beautiful Coeur d’Alene, Idaho for Inc. Big thanks to Photography Director Travis Ruse for the call on this one. One of the things I love about editorial photography is the opportunity to talk with a wide range of successful and interesting people. Some of you may not know this, but I actually majored in Business Administration in college, so dissecting and understanding how different companies work is really fascinating to me. Alligator Performance Co-founders Chad and Jayme Hall did not disappoint. Their story was one of the most fascinating success stories I have ever heard, and I left the shoot feeling like I got to see something really special. I highly recommend reading this article on Alligator in Inc.
I photographed Nicholas Kaiser of Saturna Capital for SmartMoney and this is the picture that ran in the January issue. It also happens to be my favorite picture from the shoot. How often does that happen!? Nick is the fund manager for Amana Funds (AMANX). The management of Amana is based on Islamic principals which means no pork, no alcohol and no financials, eliminating companies like Costco due to sales of wine and beer. While these principals are limiting, Nick has managed to bring in a five-year average annual return of 8.3%. Not bad in this economy.
The assets of Amana are $920 million and the expenses are $132 per $10,000. That’s insane! How can I keep my expenses that low? Seriously. I’m asking…
Anyway. No big story about the shoot, but I just really like this picture.
* If you are using a blog reader, you may need to visit my actual blog to see the slide show of outtakes, and just for fun shots.
If I were starting a multi-million dollar company, I would do everything in my power to recruite Jeremy Lewis to run the show. He was a thrill to work with, and a great guy to boot. Jeremy is the CEO of Big Fish Games, and I recently photographed him for the May 09 cover of Seattle Business Monthly.
He seems to have found a good balance of taking business very seriously, but at the same time enjoying life with a good sense of humor. And I think that shows in these pictures. As further proof, I was intrigued by the fact that he is reading a biography on Charlie Chaplin, and drawing inspiration from Chaplin’s business savvy. “In both good and bad times, he did the same thing: He made enjoyable, safe, mass-market entertainment at a great value. He was a true business leader for his times.”
It takes a lot of creativity to find business inspiration from such an unlikely source as Charlie Chaplin, but I like that kind of “outside the box” thinking. Maybe we could send some of that kind of thinking to the Auto and Financial industries.
Big Fish Games is now the leader in “casual games” and they are quickly growing, despite the slumping economy.
“After netting $85 million in revenue and growing by about 70 percent last year, Big Fish doesn’t appear to be slowing down. This January, Lewis says the company’s subscription base grew 111 percent faster than it did in September 2008, when the stock market crashed.” – Randy Woods and Julie H. Case for Seattle Business Monthly
Click here to read the entire article in Seattle Business about Big Fish Games, and other companies who are thriving despite the economic downturn.
Schnitzer West CEO, Dan Ivanoff, on the roof of one of his newest office towers at 818 Stewart in Seattle. Schnitzer West is a commercial real estate company operating in the Pacific Northwest, and they are currently working on the new Amazon.com campus, and The Bravern in Bellevue. On the right side of the frame is yet another Schnitzer West tower being constructed. This is the cover photo for the April 2009 issue of Seattle Business Monthly. The Real Estate issue.
I was amazed to see blue sky when I got to the roof, because it had been snowing earlier that morning. I was thinking we were going to have to shoot inside. My assignment was to photograph Dan for cover and a full page opener. I was told I had an hour with him, which often means about 15 minutes, and that proved to be true. Turns out that Dan was doing all of the welding himself on the tower behind him, so he had to get back before the lunch whistle. I guess the economy is effecting everyone. Even CEO’s. But isn’t Dan the one who blows the lunch whistle? I can’t believe I fell for that.
This image was not in the plans, but I reacted to the location and the sky when the clouds began to develop. I had to work fast to get all of the shots that I needed and save time for this one. It was the last shot of the day, and once again, the last shot wins.
My portrait of Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com founder and CEO, recently came out in Smart Money Magazine. Although Jeff is well known for his healthy laugh, this is not the reaction that I expected to get when I chucked his personal Kindle over the edge of the balcony.
The Amazon people were pretty antsy to get a Kindle into the pictures. I had not been instructed to shoot the Kindle by Smart Money, but just to be safe, I did take several frames with it in. Then, Jeff handed his Kindle to me, and hoping to get a more serious expression, I let it fly. To my surprise, he just laughed (pictured) and said, “I’ve got a thousand more where that came from.”
Okay, so most of that is not true, including the quote. But Jeff is a super classy guy, and he probably would have just laughed if I had actually done something that stupid.
I photographed Jones Soda CEO Stephen Jones for the November 2008 cover of Seattle Business. I was surprised to hear that Stephen’s last name is just a coincidence, and he just recently joined the company. We were scheduled to shoot early in the morning, but some bad news about the US economy and banking industry meant that Stephen had conference calls scheduled all day and we had to be quick. How many soda’s does a CEO of a soda company drink in a day? If I remember correctly, it’s about 10.