Photographer Spotlight: Joey Wright

Posted by: on Sep 12, 2012 | 3 Comments
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Photographer Joey Wright

Joey Wright is an Orlando-based photographer specializing in swimsuit and commercial fashion photography. Joey was recognized by Westcott Lighting in 2010 when they chose him as one of their Westcott Top Pros and has made several guest appearances on Photoshop User TV and D-Town TV. He has also been featured on Scott Kelby’s Photoshop Insider Blog, Light It Digital Magazine, Nik Radio and The New York Times. Some of Joey’s most recent clients include Callaway Golf, Atlanta Falcons (NFL), J-Woww with Perfect Tan Bikini, Star Jones with the N.A.P.W., Tropic Beauty Model Search and The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.

My first camera was…
Nikon D80 (FOR SALE!! – serious inquiries only). Honestly though, I shot about half of what is in my current portfolio with that camera and YES, I really am trying to sell it.

I got started in photography…
I started when I borrowed my dad’s film cameras to document my skating adventures with friends while I was in middle school. I took a break when I bought my first car and resumed later on when I got into wakeboarding. That’s when I moved up from my point-and-shoot to the D80 – just over 4 years ago.

I wanted to become a photographer because…
I never really decided to become a photographer. I just enjoyed shooting and eventually people started inquiring about my rates. I decided to get into fashion photography after attending a local meet & greet. That’s where I got my first taste of the industry and my craving has grown stronger every day thereafter.

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Photo by Joey Wright

My first paying photography job was…
My best friend’s wedding, where I was flashed by a drunken bridesmaid. It was unsolicited and there was a 4-year-old boy standing between us (facing her direction). It wasn’t pretty folks.

My first BIG paying photography job was…
I was flown out to Los Angeles to shoot a pre-production movie poster for a film that is still floating in the ether for all I know.

I would describe my style or shooting philosophy as…
Simple but well thought out. I’m all about the details (and borderline OCD).

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Photo by Joey Wright

Some of my industry role models are…because…
Russell James. Check out his clients and you’ll know why. I’m coming for ‘ya Russ!

If I could choose one dream gig, it would be…
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition.

Before I got started in the industry, I wish somebody had told me…
“Get a business degree.” To be a successful photographer, you have to be a great shooter and a hustler. I’m self taught in both since I went to school for graphic design and my only prior sales experience was via eBay.

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Photo by Joey Wright

My favorite piece of gear is…
My Nikkor 70-200 f/2.8 VRII. Seriously, it should be at the top of your wish list if you’re serious about photographing people.

My tethered setup includes…

  • Tether Tools Tether Table Aero System Monitor Platform (on my GT2541 Tripod Series 2 Mountaineer)
  • Manfrotto Double Head Tripod Accessory Arm
  • Tether Tools Aero XDC Duo Black
  • Tether Tools SecureStrap
  • Tether Tools StrapMoore
  • Tether Tools Aero Cable & Accessory Hooks
  • Tether Tools Aero Non-Slip Pro-Pad
  • Tether Tools Aero Cupholder
  • Tether Tools USB 2.0 Tether Cable, 15ft
  • Tether Tools USB 3.0 Tether Cable, 15ft
  • Tether Tools JerkStopper Tethering Kit with USB attachment
  • Tether Tools Orange USB Active Extension Cable  16ft
  • Tether Tools Tether Pro Cable Organization Case
  • Tether Tools JerkStopper In-Line Cable Connector Support

Have you integrated an iPad or tablet into your work? If so, how?
Yes, I use my iPad 3 mainly as a portfolio (gotta love the retina display!). I’ve been considering using it for live previews while shooting now that I have the Nikon D800, which can accept WiFi SD cards.

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Photo by Joey Wright

Given your experience, how do you think a setup for a swimsuit photo shoot differs compared to other types of shoots? Please also describe your typical setup.
If I’m shooting on location, I usually keep things “all natural” without the help of strobes or elaborate setups. A large scrim and a couple of reflectors or flags usually do the trick. When shooting in studio, I like to get all fancy-shmancy. That’s when you’ll see me rocking the tethered setup 99% of the time with all of the gear I listed above. Overall, I enjoy the challenges presented with both scenarios. On location, anything can happen. In the studio, it’s up to you to make everything happen.

Describe your typical post-production process after a swimsuit shoot. How do you accomplish such flawless images?
“Flawless?” I’m blushing! It’s a two-stage process for the most part. I start in Lightroom by correcting the colors and tones. Then, it’s off to Photoshop for the heavy lifting and pixel bending. I probably spend 80% of my Photoshop time using the healing brush, followed by a little liquefying, dodging and burning, and a couple of other small tweaks.

Anything else you’d like to add?
One last thing?  Photograph things that interest you! A true appreciation for your subject is what allows you to capture its essence while offering a unique perspective to the rest of the world.

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Photo by Joey Wright

Checking out Joey’s work is easy – his username for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, 500px, Google+, website etc. is all “joeywrightphoto”.  Connect with Joey today. 

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