Caesar Lima “Steampunks” Papercut Magazine


Steampunk – a word describing steam-powered machinery, western fantasy, rebellion in a quasi-Victorian world and a subculture where antique meets contemporary, is the focal point of this collection. Award-winning fashion photographer Caesar Lima’s “Viva la Revolución!” photo ensemble for Papercut Magazine turned many heads. The model clads mad scientist glasses, a metal headpiece,  provocative black gloves that reach the elbows, and an erotic fashion mystique known only as industrial-chic. Or, as Lima describes, “when steampunk, fantasy and high fashion unite.”

Steampunk – Viva la Revolución! from Caesar Lima on Vimeo.

Since 1991, Caesar has been mixing simplicity with edginess to create a stunning portfolio. Caesar Lima is a master of creating fresh, unique and visually stimulating work and finding ways to push the limits of photography and design. His repertoire features photos of feline fatale Catwoman, athletes on an all-black background, and the T-Mobile alter-ego campaign and commercial featuring a pink and black Ducati. He attributes the uniqueness of his work to his “non-purist” inclination and imagery. Caesar has recently received multiple accolades and awards including four IPA Awards in 2012, one IPA Award in 2011, Archive 200 Best, 2010 IPA Awards, 2010 PX3 in Paris, 2009 IPA Award and 2009 Addy Award to name a few.

In Caesar’s own words:

Born in São Paulo, Brazil, crazy about photography, technology and soccer, have a studio in Los Angeles. I do a lot of conceptual photography in the beauty and fashion industry, and a little bit of still life, we’ve been shooting a lot of people. I love to work with a big crew and enjoy working with a creative group. ie. models, make up artists, stylists, hair people, art directors etc…

I have a BA in Advertising. I should be working as an art or creative director, but when I was in school (the first time I’ve stepped into a professional studio), I knew exactly what I wanted to do! I felt in love with the equipment, cameras and the whole mood.

I started shooting in Brazil assisting a couple photographers. Then, in 1984, I had an opportunity to come to Los Angeles for the Olympics and liked it so much that I moved to LA in 1985. I opened a studio in my garage and start shooting lots of product for advertising. I research a lot and I try to develops new – unique looks, I do test a lot I love to play with lighting.

[My photo heroes are] David LaChapelle, Richard Avedon, Jill Greenberg, Mario Testino, Annie Leibovitz and Miro + Luis Crispino in Brazil but also I follow Marc Newson, Philippe Starck, Rashid and Jonathan Eve – amazing designers.


Learning from the Pro


What are we going to shoot today?

Steampunk inspired fashion shoot for Papercut Magazine with amazing furniture / props by Mark Silka. The model is Cherish Waters from Pinkerton Models. The model is young and has great skin.


I need drama. Lighting has to be moody with lots of shadows. I need attitude from Cherish…I will make her jump, scream and cry we need to tell a story visually without words, that’s the trick.


How did you learn how to do what you are about to show us?

Doing it, but in every shoot I do I try something new something different, something not planned.


What tools are you using to make this image?

My weapon is my new Hasselblad H4D with the 100mm lens. My belief is that you should use the best equipment you can afford; it’s very important to be able to use the best tools on the market.


Caesar Lima Photography

Interview with Shoot NYC presenter David Robin

Once a design and fine art painting student, photographer David Robin began to explore the medium of photography as another outlet to convey emotion and envelop the purest form of objects through portraiture.  Filled with wisdom on human life, archival methods, lighting and the natural world around him,  Robin found that photography lent itself well to the translation of idea to image, and was a better match for his stylistic vision.

Robin attended Brooks Institute when he realized that in order to pursue photography as a career, a technical background is imperative: “You need to train yourself to see, understand and control light and it’s relationship to the medium.  All the latest and greatest advancements in photography are useless without this knowledge.”

With a new technical grasp on photography, Robin moved to LA and then NY to assist top photographers, but never tied himself down to one person; he wanted to learn different techniques and stylistic tools from each of the photographers he encountered.

“I assisted in LA for a year and in New York for a year. I knew I wanted to photograph people but that it was important to assist all kinds of photographers. Once you set up your own studio … you’re in a vacuum. No one is going to show you the ropes. It’s better to get production experience watching others than experimenting for the first time with your own clients.  Part of being a successful photographer is having the experience to anticipate where the problem areas may occur on a shoot and being prepared with solutions based on that experience.”

From there, Robin “went to work for a major department store setting up their in-house fashion studio.  It was an intense experience.” This is where he learned the value of lighting. Thereafter, he built a 4,000 sq foot daylight studio in San Francisco.

Printing for Irving Penn gave Robin interest in taking the reins and developing his own style. Now known for his black and white portraits, David Robin has always been interested in the way a photograph communicates. Unlike color photography, where the focus can be on how vibrant the colors of the image are and the semiotics of those colors, black and white photos are communicative in lighting, contrast and shadows. “I find the interplay of the positive and the negative fascinating,” Robin says. “I believe an image is reduced to its purest compositional form in black and white. To light a black-and-white photograph well is truly an art. You have to love light and love composition.”

The same goes for his “Stealing Fire” project, which detailed the lives of the scientists of Los Alamos who worked on the Manhattan Project and had been secretly testing the atom bomb in 1943 in an exclusive site on the Pajarito Plateau in Northern New Mexico.  In black and white, portraits were taken of five scientists, detailing their secret work and the impact of living life “on the hill.” The monochromatic hue and the deep context of the images brought to life a story that had been otherwise forgotten.

His personal projects allow him to digress from client visions and work on his own personal creative:

“One night I was watching a 20-20 broadcast and they did a story on the Romanian asylums that had just been discovered [after the fall of dictator Nicolae Ceausescu].  The story touched a nerve because of my father’s Romanian background and I knew that this was something I needed to document. So I called the reporter who wrote the story, and since no Western photojournalist had been in there yet, I put together a plan to do a shoot.

I committed to a one-man show of my Romanian Images at the Ansel Adams Center in San Francisco –before I even had any images, before I had even boarded the plane. But I find that’s the way I create: Light a fire under my ass, give myself an impossible task to do, and it works.  In the end the show was a success both in San Francisco and New York.

A few years later I went to East Africa to do a story on the Doctors Without Borders.  I had this unique opportunity to live with the people of a Massai village for a month. Those images are some of my favorite because they go to the essence of why I became a photographer.”

David Robin’s images can be seen in everything from CD packaging and advertising to fine art galleries.

“I believe in shooting constantly for myself while pushing the envelope.  I also ask a lot of questions. Constant experimentation coupled with a healthy dose of humbleness and failure is the only way to really grow as an artist and craftsperson…I am never satisfied with my work.  I always feel I can do better.”

David Robin Photography

Come see David Robin speak at Shoot NYC, October 25-26 at the Terminal Building. Shoot NYC is an exciting and informative professional photographic forum based on the premise of sharing knowledge through educational seminars from top industry professionals and hands-on demonstrations of the latest photographic technology on the market today. Top industry professionals will host workshops and hands-on seminars in an array of subjects, whether you’re interested in fashion, portraiture, commercial, stock or repro. For more information, click here.

Seminar Synopsis:

David Robin – Sponsored by Santa Fe Photographic Workshops

Lighting Dramatic Portraits

Thursday, October 25

Award-winning portrait and beauty photographer David Robin, whose clients have included Levi Strauss & Co., Gap, Sony, Coca-Cola, American Express, BMG, Blue Note, and PolyGram Records, explains and demonstrates his techniques for achieving meaningful portraits, covering the gamut of editorial, beauty, advertising, and journalism. In this workshop, David aims to briefly decode the mysteries ofportraiture and review techniques, through live demonstration, to help participants consider their own unique voice and style.

Photographer’s Profile: Catherine Asanov

Photo courtesy of Catherine Asanov

How did you become a photographer? Describe your career development.

Becoming a photographer was part of the becoming an artist process to me. I placed myself in a box, and painted the walls different colors, then opened the box to let the air in.  When I was growing up in Moscow, my mother constantly surrounded me with all forms of art. In high school, I fell in love with the darkroom. My teacher, Mr. Lark not only showed me the technical side, but he challenged my creativity. I started on 8×10 film, then went down to medium format 4×5 and 120. The darkroom was a mystical and magical place for me…. and the whole process of photography captivated me right then and there.


Photo courtesy of Catherine Asanov


After winning Scholastic’s Art & Writing Award in 2005, a miracle of a scholarship was placed in my hands to Savannah College of Art & Design, where I developed technical skills and found my niche – fashion. I was constantly inspired by Gregory Crewdson, Richard Avedon, and Jerry Uelsmann. I love Crewdson’s drama and lighting, Avedon’s starkneess, and Uelsmann’s surreality.  The merge of my “photo heroes” helped me develop my own vision and style throughout my career. Graduating Valedictorian at SCAD Atlanta in 2009, and sitting next to Andre Leon Talley at graduation really changed my life a bit as well. It made me confident in myself and in the direction I was going with my career. Afterwards, I decided to move to Los Angeles and really kick things off. Now, I am thankful to wake up every day and love that I do. The best part of my career is the happiness I get in making a client happy. I get a kick out of creating something from nothing, and having an end result that is visually intriguing. My dream is to make other dreams come true, and photography has allowed me to accomplish not only my dreams, but my clients’ dreams and goals as well.


Learning from the Pro


Photo courtesy of Catherine Asanov


What are we going to shoot today?

Today we are shooting a fashion editorial at Smashbox Studios for Shoot-LA.

How did you learn how to do what you are about to show us?

Through trial and error, classes, the study of light, and an interest in creating something from nothing.

What tools are you using to make this image?

For lighting, we have 2 broncolor Pulso Heads with modifers: Para 88 & Beauty dish, and 2 Lightbar 120’s with gels. A total of 4 lights.

We are using the Hasselblad H4D-40 with HC 3.5/ 50-110mm, and tethering live to a Mac Pro.

Why did you choose these tools?

I am using the Para 88 as my main light and the beauty dish as a fill light to control the contrast and fall-off of lighting. Both of these modifiers provide light that has great shadows for contrast, while keeping an overall evenness to tonality and highlights. The Lightbars are providing me with nice rim-lights for separation and just that extra nice kick and flare to add some depth to the image.

What features of the equipment that you use make it easier to do your job?

I have fast recycling time with broncolor, spectacular image quality with Hasselblad, and I am able to instantly see results by tethering live.  These aspects are key to me when producing an image because I am able to work more efficiently and see where I need to tweak different elements of the shoot as I go.

Did you use competing products in the past?  What made you change?

Of course. Mainly, client demands make me change my gear. When I need a high-quality product, I use high-quality gear. I couldn’t imagine shooting a campaign nowadays without this setup.


Catherine Asanov Photography

Shoot LA Recap


To say that we are overwhelmed (and happy) with the response to the ShootLA event held at Smashbox Studios in West Hollywood this past weekend is an understatement. When we opened the doors at 10 AM and saw the line running all the way down to Santa Monica Blvd., we knew that we hit the right combination of community building and education.

ShootLA, the professional photography forum held by industry leaders broncolor and Hasselblad has come to a close.  The event, which started in October of 2009 in New York City, has quickly become one of the premiere photography events in the country.  On Saturday the 28th, Smashbox Studios in West Hollywood filled with photographers from all walks of life, coming to hear about how to advance their photo business and further their lighting technique. Live photo shoots featured:  fashion, portraiture, still life and art reproduction sets. In addition, the seminars included lectures on topics pertaining to the business of today’s professional photographers.

The response was so huge that two hours into the event the fire marshal would not any allow any additional people into the event until the early afternoon. Special thanks to Kawai Matthews and Andre Rowe, who pulled two guerilla shooting seminars in the two front parking lots, in order to accommodate those who could not get inside the event.

The attendees were just as excited as we were (one photographer professed a diabetic condition, but didn’t want to leave because he was afraid he would not get back into the seminars! Don’t worry. We loaded him up with granola bars to get him through the day). Another woman came up to us crying, asking who to thank for the wonderful event.  And that was just a tidbit of the wonderful pandemonium that happened in West Hollywood.

The event marked the first of many for the fully integrated Hasselblad/Bron team. The US operations for both companies merged together to form Hasselblad Bron Inc. early last week, creating an expanded sales, marketing and customer support system .  Both Hasselblad and Broncolor represent the standard of excellence for the professional photographic market. Having  both companies together as one unit was impressive and is a testament to the seasoned players from both organizations. The combined companies’  knowledge base is something that will be a great resource to the photographic community.

Even something seemingly disastrous turned into a positive. When the original skateboarder we had arranged broke his board on his way over to the event twenty minutes before extreme sports photographer Scott Markewitz was to come on, we called local skate shops, and came into contact with pro skater “Tom Tom” Erik Ryen (@tomerikryen). We knew good karma had come our way.

Photo courtesy of Scott Markewitz

As the event came to a close, everyone enjoyed a relaxing cocktail hour and then headed home for a much needed night of rest.

We would like to thank our team, partners and sponsors: Hasselblad, Smashbox Studios, MOPLA/Lucie Foundation, Calumet, Samy’s Camera, Digital Photo Pro, APA, Resource Magazine, Adobe, Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, Livebooks, Art of Photography Show, and Hollywood Ducati. With your collaboration, this event was made possible.

We would like to thank Catherine Asanov and her amazing team of stylists, makeup artists, assistants and models for the amazing day-long editorial shoot.

We would also like to thank our speakers: Kawai Matthews, Bryan Hughes, August Bradley, Andy Patrick, Rob Haggart, Allegra Wilde, Jesse Diamond, Tim Hogan, Michael Grecco, Scott Markewitz, and Chris Robinson. Your diverse range of expertise and knowledge is what makes this event.

Andrew Southam on Shoot:

“I was honored to be part of Shoot LA’s Bron Lighting event. I had a chance to discuss my feelings and thoughts about the power of lighting in creating a memorable image, to show some of my work and then, in front of several hundred people, light a photograph of a model as I would on a job. It was a fantastic experience and a great coming together of our professional community. I want to congratulate Bron and Colin King for making it all happen and look forward to my association with Bron in the future. Their equipment is transforming my work and the way I see light.” Andrew’s Blog

Scott Markewitz on his favorite part of Shoot:

“The highlight was the live action lighting demo I put on at the end with Norwegian pro skateboarder, Tom Erik Ryen. We were really lucky to find Tom at a local skate shop, and he did an amazing job in the small space we had to work with, jumping high over a wooden box while I snapped his image.” Scott’s Blog

Future plans for Shoot include branching overseas to Asia, but will continue its tour in the US in New York during October (ShootNYC).  For those who missed it or were not able to get into the event, ShootLA will be returning in one month and will include familiar faces as well as new speakers and set designs.


Save The Date: Shoot LA, April 28

For those who remember Shoot-NYC last October, Shoot-LA, hosted April 28, 2012, will not fail to impress. It comes during MOPLA, (Month of Photography Los Angeles) an event that culminates 1 month of photographic community building in LA.  Shoot-NYC, the annual professional forum held by industry leaders broncolor and Hasselblad is now also being held at Smashbox Studios in LA, with photographic forums and some of the same keynote speakers and photographic professionals from previous “Shoot”s.

The educational seminars will encompass your learning experience: you will see live sets and photographic seminars covering  topics that range from fashion to still-life and everything in-between.  Hands-on demonstrations will show lighting tips and techniques, as well as pre/post production, portraiture and sports photography. For those who have their own business, you will find resourceful several seminars on business strategy, social media and portfolio building.  By attending, you will learn how to further harness your multifaceted talents to face the photo business.

Registration and location information is available here.


Seminar Schedule

Lecture Area 1

10:00 – 11:15 AM

Kawai Matthews:

“Guerilla Marketing 101: Quick, Cheap & Easy Ways to Grow Your Photo Business”

For those of you with big marketing budgets, this seminar isn’t for you! But if you’re a bootstrapping photographer that wants the secrets to marketing without a budget – keep reading. Grab your notebook and spend a power-hour with Kawai, learning quick, easy and FREE ways to market and grow your creative business. Get excited and get ready to turbo boost your marketing strate­gies and increase your bottom line.]

11:30-12:30 PM

Bryan Hughes:

“Uncovering the ‘Hidden Gems’ of Adobe Photoshop”

Photoshop is the premiere program for photo editing—and it just took a big leap forward. As the senior product manager for Photoshop, Bryan knows the new features you won’t want to miss. Bryan will reveal blazing fast editing tools including a new content-aware tools, updating masking, new blur tools, intuitive new video tools so you can create videos in Photoshop using footage from your DSLR and Hasselblad cameras and much, much more. For anyone that uses or wants to use Photoshop, you won’t want to miss this session.

12:45-1:45 PM

August Bradley and Christopher Robinson:

Sponsored by Digital Photo Pro

“How to get published”

August Bradley and Christopher Robinson will host an open discussion on how to promote yourself as a photographer and get published in trade magazines, as well as the bigger scope: mass media.  They will bring fresh, new perspectives that are applicable to today’s opportunities and challenges. August Bradley will talk about the exposure he received with his “99 Faces of Occupy Wall Street” series that has been widely acclaimed by the Huffington Post and the NY Times Lens blog as well as other mass-media avenues. Christopher Robinson will bring applicable knowledge from his experiences as Editorial Director, who oversees magazines such as Digital Photo Pro and HD Video Pro.

2:00-3:00 PM

Andy Patrick:

“Getting and Keeping Clients”

This discussion will provide you with a roadmap of best practices used for getting new clients AND keeping them. To be successful as a creative photographer, you need to understand that you’re also a business person. This requires strategy, discipline and an understanding of the old and new tips and tools. Get your notepad ready, because you’ll want to capture every bit of valuable information from this talk.

3:15-4:15 PM

Rob Haggart :

Sponsored by MOPLA

“Social media marketing for photographers”

Social Media has quickly changed the way people communicate and do business. If you’re like most photographers you have Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts and maybe you’ve done a bit of blogging, but you haven’t figured out how this fits into your marketing plan. You’re not alone; long established media and advertising businesses were caught off guard as social media revolutionized their industry. Staying informed, making a plan and taking action is essential for anyone running a business in this new environment. In this seminar, Rob Haggart will help you make sense of how these new tools work, show you photographers who are finding success with social media and inspire you to take action.

4:30-5:30 PM

Allegra Wilde and Jesse Diamond:

Sponsored by MOPLA

“Create. Connect. Collaborate:”

Founded by Wilde and Diamond, is a new company trying to bridge the distance gap for those seeking portfolio reviews. It’s a proprietary technology that allows creative artists the ability to receive a portfolio review online, making it easy to connect with industry experts in as easy as a click-of-the-mouse. Allegra Wilde and Jesse Diamond will speak about the concept behind, whose slogan is “Create. Connect. Collaborate,” while expanding on visual strategies and approaches, self-marketing and creative direction.


Lecture Area 2

10:00-11:30 AM

Timothy Hogan:

“Understanding light: moving beyond f-stops and watt-seconds”

Light is the paint and the paintbrush by which we, as photographers, work. To use light effectively we need to first understand it, and only then we can employ light shaping tools to achieve the effect, mood and quality we wish to create. In this introductory course, Timothy Hogan will explore the qualities and moods of light and teach you how to use Broncolor and Kobold lighting in a studio environment to tell a story, moving beyond f-stops, watt seconds, and lighting ratios.

11:45-1:15 PM

Andrew Southam:

Sponsored by Santa Fe Workshops

“The Fashion Portrait”

Australian photographer and director Andrew Southam, whose work has appeared in Vogue, Esquire, Rolling Stone, US, French Elle, and GQ, shares his extensive background in and knowledge of fashion portraiture and lighting techniques. Andrew’s discussion is followed by a portrait session demo—complete with a real, live model—and includes a tethered display of his work in progress.

1:30-3:00 PM

Michael Grecco:

Sponsored by APA National

“Lighting and the dramatic portrait”

The difference between an ordinary photograph and a truly striking portrait lies in the photographer’s ability to pierce the obvious and reveal the intimate nature of the subject. The play of available angles, light and shadow, soft shapes and hard lines are tools to create not just a photo, but a work of art. In this demonstration, you will add these tools to your camera bag. Michael Grecco will explain his techniques for creating light and shadow and will demonstrate how he creates his stylistic and dramatic images. He will explain his specialty lighting, and show you the setups he used to create the striking signature looks for this new work. The last few minutes of this seminar will be a Q&A.

“Lighting and the Dramatic Portrait” , a book by Michael Grecco

3:15-4:45 PM

Scott Markewitz:

“Freeze Frame – Outdoor Action Photography Fundamentals”

Recently, photographic strobes have become an important asset in outdoor sports and lifestyle photography. Although many possess the gear, few know the powerful capabilities of this type of lighting. Outdoor photography specialist Scott Markewitz will discuss the basics of lighting for sports photography, the different types of equipment needed to achieve powerful results, specific lighting setups to control and achieve certain looks, and the use of light shaping tools in your workflow. Markewitz will give you the tools needed to shoot sports photography and the knowledge of how to capture the images that will get you published.