MOST Magazine Fitness APR-MAY'15 ISSUE NO.1 - Page 52

JA SULLIVAN Q&A Y FMM: Can you tell us about yourself and how you got started in photography? JS: I grew up with a great family in a small town in Maine. I have two older brothers and a mom and dad that are still married today. I was a normal kid who liked to draw, skateboard, ski, play music, I was a drummer in a few different bands in high school. I tended to raise a little hell from time to time as we do in sleepy little towns :) I did photography in high school and loved it but never thought of myself as a photographer and didn’t know a career was possible in it. Before art school, I spent a couple years in Vail Colorado where I got a job as a Mountain photographer taking pics of families, trick skiers and snowboarders and spring breakers. I loved it, and it was during that time I decided what kind of job I wanted to have… it felt good not just taking pictures, but making people like themselves. FMM: Are you a self-taught photographer? Did you start as a fitness photographer? JS: Somewhat... I think we all are in some way self-taught. I did go to art school and learned how to use a camera and process film and print and critique other people’s work and those fundamental things, but the real knowledge comes from experience. I had assisted different photographers for six years before I made it out on my own. I certainly learned what not to do from everyone, but what to do came from within. Finding a subject matter to specialize in came directly from working with an adventure photographer when I moved to New York back in 2001. One of his biggest clients was SELF Magazine and we traveled all over shooting fitness and fitness fashion / lifestyle and I decided then I wanted that to be my career. It had 52 || FITNESS M A G A Z I N E || APRIL / MAY 2015 all the elements I cared about in photography… action, beauty, fashion & composition. I was surprised it was not more popular. FMM: Did you have to transition from film to digital? JS: Actually yes. I am fortunate enough to be one of the photographers that was trained in film in art school and started my professional career in digital. I honestly don’t think I would have made it if I had to rely on film… It is not only expensive, but very time consuming. Digital gave me the freedom to shoot and deliver the same day, which clients could not believe in the beginning. Now it is the norm. FMM: What was your first digital camera and what camera are you using today? JS: First digital camera was a Canon EOS 1D Mark II. I remember walking into Adorama one day knowing exactly what I wanted and the possibilities it would allow me to do. I threw down my credit card, and it was the most important $4000 I ever spent. I used it until two years ago when I bought a 5D Mark II that I use today. I like to use my gear to its fullest :) FMM: What is your all-time favorite camera/lens combination? JS: Depends on what I am shooting, but I’d say my go to is the 50mm f/1.2L. It has the right amount of width I like without influencing the shoot too much. I typically use this for action shots. For close up I use the 100mm f/2.8L pretty much every time, and for outdoor 70-200mm f/2.8L is my newest love. >>>