Get to Know: James Worrell
doesn't just work hard, he works smart. He considers his style 'photography for thinking' and his specialty is helping clients communicate specific ideas through photos. It goes beyond 1000 words - sometimes you want it to be 1 word, and emotional, and powerful. All on schedule and within budget. James is your man!
Do you remember your first big shoot on your own? Tell me a little about how you were feeling...
Hmmmm... the first big shoot. My first jobs were small things for NY Mag and Time, but my first feature stuff came after my first direct mailer right when I started. I got a great job for Departures and another for George Magazine. It was a bit of a whirlwind as I was still kind of assisting and had just started to share a studio, then all of a sudden I was shooting almost every day of the week. Granted, it was editorial, but it was great. I was on top of the world and was making some money for the first time ever. I did feel a particular anxiety at being so young, I was 27 or something and looked much younger. I got a job around then for House and Garden and when the photo editor showed up she was noticeably taken aback by how young I looked. She said, "You
are James Worrell?"
The first ad job I got was about the same time and it was from an art director that had hired a guy I worked for a lot. I know now that he totally underpaid me but it was more money than I had ever imagined for a photo job. I got to illustrate 3 concepts with my own ideas for a sound editing company. Great project.
What is your idea of a dream vacation? And is there a camera involved?
My dream vacation starts with one week on the beach and then one week in Paris - I did that for my honeymoon. I always travel with a camera, although not always with a good one. Even though we're headed back to school with the kids, right now I'd love some more time on the beach, maybe even in Italy with the family and yes, camera included. I have managed to sell many photos to magazines of my travels.
If you could photograph any one object, person or event - what would it be? and what would be your gear setup?
It may be a bit cliche perhaps, but the person I would love to photograph would be the Dalai Lama. He is a watch guy and I would love to get him wearing about 4-6 really fantastic watches on one arm or something. I am a Buddhist as well and I love the apparent contradiction that presents. He has claimed a good watch is his one weakness with modern culture. As far as just an object, I have always wanted to do a series of portraits of objects, that is, have someone pick out their favorite object and then photograph that, not the person. Or perhaps photograph them both separately and present as a diptych. I would also love to be given a bunch of any company's product with an unlimited budget and creative freedom to make a series of conceptual images. I guess that's every photographers dream, to get paid a lot to do what you want. I typically love the collaborative process but doing whatever you want every once and awhile sounds great.