Over the years, I have worked with some amazing crews, and I have established long term relationships with the best of the bunch. So today I’m featuring Bruce, who worked as my first assistant for a decade back in the late 80’s and 90’s. Bruce has moved on to a different profession, but we are still great friends and enjoy rehashing the crazy escapades we encountered over the years.
Other than being the “stunt double” for the real talent while we set up, a first assistant has to be my right hand guy – he has to really know this job, think ahead of me, solve problems before they get to me or the client, and he has to have a great attitude while doing it. For all practical purposes, he needs to be able to orchestrate and shoot the job the way I have envisioned it.
A great rapport between a photographer and his assistant is essential; it must be almost telepathic. We grow extremely close on these long shoots, working together day in and day out from dawn to dusk, (so you really have to like the guy) honing his ability to understand my non-verbal cues and “read” my intentions. Bruce was instrumental in helping me create some fantastic photos, and he kept the energy level high to insure we had fun along the way. I’m sure you’ll get a sense of his character from the photos I selected from Bruce’s collection of over 1000 “stand-in” Polaroids. (Yeah…remember those?) Sometimes the photos are fabulous portraits, other times they are magnificent images in their own right, but more often, they are amusing or outright hilarious.