A good friend of mine Robert Caplin, who also happens to be a very hard working and talented frelance photojournalist in NYC, shot his very first video early this year. He made an amazing music video of his 15-year-old sister singing one of her songs. I want to preface this video by saying that a good photographer will succeed regardless of the tool (video or still camera) in their hands.
Here is a brief question & answer I (GH) had with Robert (RC) recently.
GH: So I’ve always been a fan of your work since I met you in Ohio back in 2005. Many photojournalists seem to be jumping on the video bandwagon these days to try and make themselves more marketable and many of them find it more much more difficult than they expected. What goals did you hope to accomplish upon diving into video for the very first time?
RC: The main goal was to have a bonding experience with my little sister. Being a decade older put us on slightly different mindsets, so this was a time we could both be creative together. Beyond that, it was two-fold….Etana is very talented and I truly believe she has what it takes to make it big. She had just started recording her music and the timing with her NYC visit perfectly coincided with receiving my first video camera (5DII) [Canon 5d MarkII digital SLR]. So it seemed like the perfect time to for me to learn the video all while giving my sister a boost in her little career.
GH: You tell awesome stories with your beautiful photographs and Etana seems like she’s super talented also. There seems to be a lot of talent in the Caplin family. Who is the most creative among your siblings?
RC: Thats a difficult question to answer. We’re all creative in our own ways. Whether it’s via music, photography, writing, computing, etc…I think each of us hold our own. And I have 3 brothers and 3 sisters!
GH: I totally loved how your creativity and personal vision showed up in the music video. As a photographer, what was the best and worst thing about doing video for the first time?
RC: The best thing for me was learning a new craft by making mistakes. I’ve never had any formal (or informal for that matter) video training…so I just made it by the seat of my pants. No story-boarding or pre-planning any shots. The worst part was the post production. I’m used to editing still frames, not 30 frames per second. I was fortunate to have the help of my girlfriend, Laia, to produce and edit. There’s a lot I still need to learn!