Richard Franklin OMP Member #6256 has made quite a name for himself in the world of photography – so much so that he is getting a studio light named after him. Dynalite has developed a strobe that will bear his name.
“I feel that there have been two revolutions in photography and that one has been overlooked. Obviously the transition to digital and image processing through the computer is one. However, there has also been a revolution in lighting. Dynalite makes a strobe that is four times more powerful than the latest on-camera flash. It is also far more versatile and cheaper. Since I believe incident light-metered strobe shooting is far more accurate and serious than on-camera dedicated flash, I recommend to all amateurs that they consider strobes as a better alternative.
“The Dynalite strobe that is being marketed under my name has the essential elements that I look for. It has 400WS, weighs only three pounds and can be used with both battery, AC and its own generator. I know of no other strobe lights that have all these features within one light. I have posted a picture of the light with a few details on my main website.”
Richard considers himself to be an accidental artist. “I ended up being recognized by myself and others as a serious artist. However it evolved by chance more than design. I have been shooting for about twelve years, but I still consider myself more of an amateur than a professional. I have rarely allowed myself to be hired or accepted money for shoots. I have found that my best work is done if I pick who I want to shoot and stick to concepts that interest me. My artistic work is now being shown in galleries so I am professional in the sense that I am prepared to sell my work. I just refuse to be hired to create it!”
Based in California, the artist is known as both a glamour and artistic photographer. “In my glamour work, I choose very fit and beautiful young models and emphasize colorful backgrounds. In my artistic work, I tend to go for a look that resembles paintings by choosing concepts that have a timeless quality. I go for strength, color, and elaborate effects within the camera.”
Richard prides himself on his use of color and refusal to not rely too heavily on Photoshop. “I think my approach to color is like that of a child playing with a large set of crayons. Choosing different colors each time I shoot keeps me amused and my work fresh. I don’t really care for black and white and so I never aimed in that direction.
“As far as Photoshop is concerned, I certainly use it to enhance my models’ skin and to add brightness and contrast. However, I get much more satisfaction from creating clever special effects in the camera rather than creating them artificially. I don’t know how to and don’t want to learn. A lot of the value in my artistic work comes from the appreciation that the effects have not been generated through the computer.”
He advises photographers not to focus on the financial aspects of the career. “Don’t do it for the money. Do it for the fun of it all.” He also offers insight into his approach through a series of ebooks he has created. “I currently have three ebooks that are designed primarily for promotional purposes. They are part of a broad strategy that centers around branding my name and credibility. They are not ‘how to’ books but instead are more about my opinions regarding my approach to photography and to life.”
Speaking of promotion, one of the best ways to get exposure is to have one’s work shown in galleries, and Richard is gearing up for several exhibitions in the near future. “I currently have four showings in different California galleries over the next four months — two in Los Angeles, one in Laguna, and one in San Diego. I expect to be showing in galleries throughout the world in the next few years, since I regard my art as marketable pretty much anywhere. I have accumulated a large and original body of content and am having a lot of fun showing it. The reception has been tremendous.
“I think the key to gallery exposure is originality. The tragedy of the arts is not that there is too little talent but that there is too much! If you’re a great fashion photographer, for example, you have to face an endless amount of other great fashion photographers. I suspect you have to create a niche that is totally unique to succeed in the art world. When you look at my artistic photography, it simply doesn’t look like anything out there. My artistic site is www.rfphotoarts.com.”
Be sure to check out Richard’s website at www.richardfranklinphotography.com.