Lifestyle photography is a combination of authentic and staged interaction; it’s about photographing a slice of life. In most of my work, I try to create a feeling of life’s activities unfolding in front of you. With over 30 years in this industry, I’ve learned how to make people feel comfortable in front of the camera. To help my subjects relax, I try to have fun with them and show them simple tricks in order to capture their best qualities.
Throughout my career, I’ve had the pleasure of photographing many elite people in our society, including the owner of McDonald’s Restaurant chain, George Cohon. During this shoot for an annual report, I needed a casual shot of Mr. Cohon leaning in a doorway, reviewing some papers. I could see his mind was going in a million different directions trying to figure out what I wanted, so I started kidding around with him and then asked him to step aside and I simply demonstrated what I wanted. His response was, “You make it look so easy!” I smiled and said, “I call it creative leaning.” I’ve had a lot of practice with this because I hate standing, so I’m always finding something to lean on. This friendly connection makes a world of difference when working with live subjects.