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LET’S TALK ABOUT PHOTOGRAPHY

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TIM WALLACE INDEPENDENT PHOTOGRAPHY MAGAZINE

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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH TIM WALLACE


EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH TIM WALLACE ANETTA G. HELLER

EXECUTIVE EDITOR

Welcome to exclusive interview issue, where you will not only get to meet a very talented photographer but also see his amazing photography which has been published globally and has been showcased in the infamous ‘Victor’ Book, an industry Worldwide and highly acclaimed industry leading magazine. Tim was recently named by as one of the UK’s most creative photographers whilst in the US, Scott Kelby described Tim recently as one of the Ten most influential photographers in the World today. Tim Wallace is an award winning photographer who is best known for his commercial car and advertising work and

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he is well respected within the photographic industry not only for his 'working knowledge' of the industry but also for being very approachable and happy to try and help others understand and deal with the demands that photographers in todays very competitive and sometimes complex industry. Tim has an impressive portfolio and client list which can be seen on his ambientlife website. AmbientLife is now a huge company with clients such as Aston Martin and Jaguar queueing up for Tim's magical car photography skills. Enjoy!

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SELF-PORTRAIT TIM WALLACE WEBSITE AMBIENTLIFE.CO.UK

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© Copyright Declaration All images and media contained in this communication are protected by International Copyright Law and by the Copyright, Designs & Patents Act 1988. All images are the 'intellectual property' of Tim Wallace™ In this exclusive interview Camerapixo published all materials including photos by written permission from Tim Wallace. EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH TIM WALLACE

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PHOTOGRAPHY © TIM WALLACE

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CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND AND HOW YOU GOT INTO PHOTOGRAPHY? WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY DO? My interest in photography started at the very early age of 7 when I started to learn how to process film and print for my grandfather, he loved to shoot pictures but had no interest in the development process. From there I was pretty much hooked and went on processing and printing film and prints for years until I reached 16 and then I went to work in the darkrooms of a a major UK national newspaper. I did that for a number of years and soon started to shoot my own work too, sometimes for the newspaper and sometimes for just myself. I went onto work in a few agencies from there and then went on to join the Royal Marines. 7 years ago I started my own business, AmbientLife, and that has gone from one success to another it would seem. Its hard work but like anything in life if you want to succeed then you have to be willing to work hard and put in the time and effort to achieve that. Today I shoot commercially, mainly with the prestige end of the automotive market and also carry out some commercial work for high end transport related clients such as super yachts.

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WHICH DO YOU CONSIDER TO BE YOUR MOST SUCCESSFUL COMMERCIAL PROJECT AND HOW WERE YOU INTRODUCED TO THE CLIENT? I would really have to say that my most successful commercial work has been that connected to Aston Martin. They were indeed one of my very first clients and it was not so much of an introduction as myself approaching them with a constructed business idea to increase there profits through the use of photography within a certain area of their business that I saw as a open door for me to use. That’s probably all I would say at this point as its part of my own personal strategy but what I would say is that in my view its crucial that photographers these days clearly understand that just 'taking a good picture' is not enough, its about also having good business sense and knowing how to approach clients.

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WHAT DO YOU LIKE THE MOST ABOUT COMMERCIAL ADVERTISING PHOTOGRAPHY? For me its all about creating that one perfect image that does exactly what it was meant for, to sell a a £1million car or a £85 million pound yacht. To capture a dream or an aspiration in the viewer and do that in just one single image.

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WHAT, IN YOUR OPINION, IS YOUR MOST OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT SO FAR IN YOUR LIFE? In truth I would have to say on a personal level it would have to be when I joined and completed the 9 month training course to gain my green beret and become a Royal Marine, the training is one of the toughest if not the toughest in the world and is I believe still the longest basic training anywhere in the world today. Photographically its a difficult question to answer, in many ways I get a huge sense of achievement from watching my business reputation grow as the years move forward and we keep on creating great work that people seem to really love. I spent some time a few years ago working with Scott Kelby from KelbyOne media in the US and we reordered a group of videos seminars to really look at helping others with items such as shooting and lighting. These did amazingly well and there are today I think 7 videos in total all over 1 hour long as well as 2 filmed interviews where I talk about what motivates me and inspires me. These are viewed all over the world by people and in September this year I will be on stage at Photoshop World in Las Vegas, this to me a massive achievement considering that 7 years ago I could not even open a picture in Photoshop and no idea really about how to use that.

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WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO PUT FORTH YOUR GREATEST EFFORT?

I try to ensure that I put in 100% effort aways, probably the ex royal marine in me! I do get motivated though through results and when I see a campaign going really well or hear that a client was really really impressed it spurs me on to try even harder.

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WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS FOR YOU IN PHOTOGRAPHY PROJECT? For me its essential to understand that whilst I am being commissioned to shoot the project 'in my style' its also important to understand what will work best for the client and even more so for their own customers, its all a about business, not just pretty pictures! The main aim to get a powerful image that not only is string commercially but in many ways will become iconic for the client if at all possible, an image that will be associated with their branding and be part of that, that’s a huge goal for me.

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LIGHTING A CAR IS NOT EASY. TIM CAN YOU REVEAL SOME OF THE TECHNIQUES YOU USE TO CREATE THE IMAGES? Lighting is very personal and is different with each and every photographer I believe. I did not take any formal training in lighting and have taught myself, which I often find is the very best way, this way you can understand light fully and not just follow lighting diagrams etc. Its not that difficult in truth, for me its about first placing the car into the position you want to shoot it and then deciding on your own shooting position, if you don't know exactly where you are going to shoot the car from you don't stand a chance on lighting it properly as a little movement to the left or right cold change things dramatically. From that point its a case of lighting the car one light at a time and building up the scene with the lights as you require, then lighting the environment around it. Take each stage one light at a time and don't over light !

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WAS THERE ANY OR WHAT WAS THE MOST DIFFICULT THING THAT YOU’VE EVER ACCOMPLISHED? I did a shoot of a super yacht a while ago and we had a very tight time frame to shoot all the work in, a lot of it being required to be shot from a helicopter with the doors off so that I could get right out over the yacht. The yacht was off the coast of Palma and we had a 48 hour window to shoot and the day of the flight from the UK the air traffic controllers went on strike in France and the flight was cancelled. It caused us a major problem and I had no choice but to get all the gear into a BMW estate car and drive the whole distance from the UK to Palma non stop to make the shoot in time!

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WHEN WAS THE MOMENT THAT YOU KNEW PHOTOGRAPHY WAS WHAT YOU WANTED TO DO?

I would have to say that in all honesty at the age of 7 year old when I first saw a print start to come to life in the developer, today its still magical and I still love to develop and print film just for my own personal work.

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HAVE YOU HAD ANY MENTORS ALONG THE WAY?

Not really mentors so to speak, I draw inspiration from many area's, both photographers, business people and artists. I like to keep an open mind and I believe totally that there are always new things to learn each and every day.

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OTHER THAN YOUR GRANDFATHER, WHICH PHOTOGRAPHER INSPIRED YOU THE MOST? I think that the person that I most admired as I grew up was the war photographer Don McCullen, for me his images are real and they are a moment in time captured as they should be. Also he is a really amazing person with a very good view of life and humanity.

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ARE YOU CREATIVELY SATISFIED?

I don’t think any person who is 'creative' is ever really satisfied! I have days when I shoot and think to myself that what I captured was really great and I have others when everything I shoot I hate. Its very much an emotional rollercaoster I think of highs and lows when you are creative and indeed you are your own worst enemy I think a lot of the time.

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YOU HAVE CREATED PLAN B, PLEASE TELL US WHAT IT OFFERS Plan B is basically the control and sale of stock photography for commercial use. A lot of people say these days that stock sites are over run with poor quality photography that is coming in from part time amateur photographers trying to make a few extra dollars, in truth this is correct but also I would note that many of my stock clients are also aware of this and they don't really use stock libraries in the same way that they did years ago, they preferrer to source the images in other ways. I built Plan B and promoted that as the supply of high quality stock photography that is only available directly from us and is controlled by us. Our clients really love this and over the years this has done very very well and in some months the revenue from this has exceeded that from actual shooting, and that’s quite a huge achievement as most people who know me will tell you, I am a pretty busy photographer!

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YOU ARE THE HUMBLE RECIPIENT OF MANY AWARDS OVER RECENT YEARS AND DESCRIBED BY SCOTT KELBY AS ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL PHOTOGRAPHERS, HOW DO YOU STAY ON TOP? Staying on top is a fight but in many ways it all comes down to a few basic things for me, never follow everybody else in life because you will not stand out! Never copy what others do but instead be brave enough to try new things and that is not just about photography but also comes into play for business too! If you want to really succeed as a photographer then you need to specialise, you will never be famous for being that 'guy' who shoots a bit of everything!

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MOST OF OUR READERS WOULD LOVE TO KNOW WHAT POST-PROCESSING STEPS ARE ESSENTIAL FOR CREATING YOUR IMAGES? Post processing is probably my weakest area, I much prefer to try and achieve as much as possible in camera, mainly because I firmly believe that photography is a skill still and we should not always allow ourselves to get to lazy because we think that later on photoshop can 'rescue' our images. My approach to post production is quite simplistic really in that I use Photoshop in many ways like I used to print in a darkroom. I look at tone, contrast, texture and work with these to build up the image as I think it should be.

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A LOT OF YOUR ADVERTISING AND CREATIVE WORK IS RATHER UNIQUE. HOW DO YOU THINK DIGITAL EDITING OR MANIPULATION AFFECTS THE IMAGES YOU PRODUCE? I feel in truth that the biggest thing that affects my images is not the manipulation or digital ability to do that but the lighting that I use when I shoot.

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IS THERE AN IDEAL PLACE WHERE YOU WOULD EVENTUALLY LIKE TO SEE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY PUBLISHED OR DISPLAYED? I would like to have an exhibition one day and ironically that might be happening this year. I was always unsure about having an exhibition because in reality who really wants to look at lots of car pictures? I do however shoot personal work for myself each year, I think its important and it keeps things fresh and gives you a small break from what you normally do and can help to keep you inspired yourself and also can help you learn new skills. Last year I shot some personal work in an abandoned town in the middle of Death Valley, this was picked up by lots of magazines around the world and the images have been very popular, it is this set of images that I am considering using to have my first exhibition. It will be my photography and my style but not maybe just the 'commercial' side of things so in many ways it is a true reflection of myself personally.

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IN YOUR OPINION, IS PUBLISHING YOUR WORK IN CAMERAPIXO MAGAZINE WORTH THE EFFORT, AND IF YES WHY? I think that Camerapixo is a brilliant arena to have work displayed. It is so important to make sure that people out there are seeing your work and its not too difficult to get work into magazines these days but those can often just be small exposure and small images on a page. What I like most about this magazine is the usage and the way that the pages and images are displayed and put together. Its a magazine about photographers for photographers.

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WHAT DO YOU DO IN YOUR FREE TIME WHEN YOU’RE NOT WORKING ON YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY? I like to listen to music, try to relax, never easy as when you run your own business its very easy to dedicate far too much time to it. I love to travel and when I am doing that I love to shoot pictures still, its what I love! I will spend time shooting images and just using my Fuji XPro1 which I bought last year just for this reason. I also shoot a lot of pictures on my iPhone as I pass through my day, sometimes I just like to shoot something I see just to see what it looks like shot!

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AND FINALLY A QUESTION NO ONE HAS ASKED YOU YET, BUT YOU WOULD LIKE TO TALK ABOUT IT. ANYTHING REALLY :) WHAT WOULD MY BEST ADVICE BE TO SOMEBODY STARTING OUT? I would say that the most important things are to follow your heart, shoot what you want to shoot and do that in the way that you want to do it, never be told that it won't work or that you can not do that, you are a photographer and you can do whatever you want! The world is yours and its up to you to shoot it through your own eyes.

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THANK YOU ARTUR J. HELLER

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Thank very much Tim for getting more personal with us, we are very honored to have you onboard and sharing your inside details with us. Ambientlife, the company that Tim created in 2006 was also honoured in the 'Best New Business Awards' in the UK and won the 'Best New Creative Business Award'. You may visit his website at: http://www.ambientlife.co.uk where you can find out more on Commercial and Corporate photography services, seminars in UK and more.

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BEST WORLDWIDE PHOTOGRAPHY

INSIDE

OUT

CAMERAPIXO.COM

BEING PUBLISHED MATTERS

DIGITAL

VERSION COVER PHOTO © TIM WALLACE

PHOTOGRAPHY TIM WALLACE WEBSITE AMBIENTLIFE.CO.UK

UPLOAD . PUBLISH . SHARE . BE VISIBLE

LET’S TALK ABOUT PHOTOGRAPHY

INDEPENDENT PHOTOGRAPHY MAGAZINE


Camerapixo Inside Out with Tim Wallace