Featured in TagesWoche

It’s always an interesting time when we’re opening mail at the studio. Aside from the usual invoices, bills, B&H Catalogs, and pizza delivery menus, every now and then we see a special package…

Today we came across a manilla envelope addressed to Chris, adorned with about a dozen stamps and strangely enough, no return address. Upon opening the package, we found three copies of the latest edition of TagesWoche, a weekly Swiss newspaper.

Now haven’t started a weekly intercontinental newspaper subscription, it just happens to be that TagesWoche has featured a handful of Chris’s photographs both in print and online.

It’s an honor to be featured, especially to an international audience that might otherwise never come across our work.

If you step back for a second and think of the simplicity and beauty of a spread of photographs or art in the middle of a weekly newspaper, it’s really a refreshing thought. In a time when newspapers in American are at a loss and filling their diminishing pages with advertising, it’s honestly quite refreshing to see big, beautiful prints of color photography.

Last but certainly not least, do any of our German speaking friends care to translate? Leave us a translation in the comments or give us a shout @crismanphoto

Behind the Scenes – Creating Butterfly Girl

When Chris showed our team the landscapes he shot in the redwood forests of northern California, we knew that beyond a beautiful photograph, we had an incredible open-ended canvas to work with for a composite image. After lots of brainstorming sessions, we realized the otherworldly space needed to be filled with some type of magical scene.

Lots of phone calls and shipments of butterflies later, all of the pieces to Chris’s vision were finally coming together. All the image needed now was the input and creativity from our talented digital artist. Keep reading for some insight and explanation into how we created our latest conceptual portrait…


Chris Crisman on Trend Hunter

We’ve recently been featured a few times on the website Trend Hunter for some photos in our Lifestyle and Landscape collections. With the full-on heat of summer upon us, it only seems fitting that they chose warm and summery lifestyle photos and dry and striking desert landscapes for these features. If you’ve never spent time on Trend Hunter before, make sure to check it out, it’s an easy site to get lost on. Also, keep reading to take a look at more of the images they featured…


Why We Print.

A few months after I started working for Chris, I came in to the studio one morning to find a post-it note on my desk. Simply stated and in all capital letters it read “WE MAKE PRINTS.”

Puzzled for a moment, curious if I was being reprimanded for some unknown offense or unmentioned procedure, I stared at the note and began to ask a very valid question – why?

Although I failed to realize at that moment, the answer was right in front of me. Whether sitting in Chris’s portfolios on the shelves, hanging on the walls of our studio, or cut and stacked ready to be mailed to potential clients.

Prints are absolute. The physical act of putting down ink of paper has a finality to it that completes the image making process. Whether that final outcome is to be hung on a gallery wall, sent to a client, shown in a portfolio, or bound in a handmade book – once you put the ink down on paper, you’re making a statement. You’re confirming that you value your work enough to take it beyond its digital and arguably transient state.

The workflow of digital photography allows for and often encourages a constant state of change and modification in our photos. This is an amazingly powerful creative tool that allows you to continually hone your process and refine your result – it can also be a crutch that keeps you from finishing a photograph, and therefore committing to your vision. The process of making a print may not be the be all end all, but it’s a step in the right direction of finalizing your creative process.

In the end of 2010, we made room in the studio for an upgrade of sorts, a bigger brother to the desktop printer Chris has had for years. The Epson 7900 is a behemoth, sitting on its own custom stand, sucking up ink from ten different tanks and spitting out yards and yards of paper. This upgrade wasn’t merely a “bigger is better” decision, it was the logical next step to allow for our work to be seen in a new way. Why did we make the move to a larger format? It was that same year, 2010 that Chris started to work with landscape photography and shoot photos that ultimately became long horizontal images – this new work was best shown on a grander scale than our desktop printer could provide.

It was also in 2010 that we decided our studio needed new wallpaper – a constant reminder of our process and the photographs that it creates. We decided to fill the walls with these images, adding and subtracting as we create new work, evolving the space around us in order to reflect and inspire. We make prints to commit to our photographs, and we put those those photographs up on the wall as a reminder of why we’re shooting them in the first place.

So what is the takeaway? We could easily write a blog post that outlines the technical details of our printing process and how we achieve consistency across multiple printers and paper surfaces (and if you want us to, I certainly will), but we felt it was more important to answer the “why?” rather than the “how?”

If you don’t have a printer of your own, then make friends with someone who does – make a few prints, the quality doesn’t matter. What matters is that you’ve selected your work and committed to it. Hang them on your wall or put them on your desk, look at them, interact with them, learn from them.

Do you make prints? What do you think? Leave us a comment or let us know @crismanphoto, @robertluessen.

From the Archive: Cirque du Soleil

We’re headed back to summer 2010 for our latest post from the Archive. Chris and team traveled to Canada to spend two straight days shooting Cirque du Soleil behind the scenes at their world headquarters in Montreal. Aside from making a handful of incredible photos (including the American Photography 27 award winner shown above) the trip provided for a great story. I spoke with superstar assistant Jeff Elkins to share a few details from the trip. Keep reading for a ton more photos, more stories, and Jeff’s recollections of the adventure.


Weekly Wrap-up, April 2nd-6th

It was a bi-coastal week for the Crisman photography team these past few days. Chris spent the week out in San Fransisco & beyond, keeping busy with a few rounds of meetings and of course some shooting. For the rest of us, the week was spent back on the east coast enjoying the first week of April. I got a chance to work with some new gear and shoot some photos myself. Keep reading for what else we’ve been up to this week…


Weekly Wrap-up, February 27th – March 2nd

After almost a month on the road, we were back in Philly all week. We had an editorial gig to keep things interesting mid-week, but other than that we hunkered down in the studio got some work done and enjoyed a few fun diversions along the way.

It’s always refreshing to have a week back in town when you’re on the road for a while, keep reading to take a look at what we were up to in Philly all week…