Introducing the team-Part 3

So as you may have realised Garage Studios is rapidly expanding at the minute- far beyond what we predicted even a few months back and this is our newest recruit, Beth. Beth graduated from Brighton University in 2007, after studying the renowned Editorial Photography course and first came to us for work experience. We run a fairly constant work experience/intern program and everything really clicked with us and Beth. She worked extensively on the scanning of the Vanity Project and Kevins Polaroids as well as assisting on numerous shoots.

She is now in the somewhat unfortunate position of handling the admin work of Kev, Matt and Tash (we aren’t good at paperwork) but has made massive inroads already- but more importantly she is also the ‘face’ of Garage Studios. If you call, visit, have a course enquiry or even receive an invoice or attend a networking event then its very likely that you will meet or speak to Beth and then you’ll see exactly why we hired her. The paperwork chaos left behind by the previous Studio Managers walk-out has now been rectified and we are a smooth running system- (we don’t even keep the money in shoe boxes out the back anymore).

So if you have any questions about what we do, how we can help you, what courses we run, tailored 1:1 training, or even just want the inside word on what its like to work with the mysterious M.Halls (she won’t say a word about me) then drop beth a mail

Beth- The newest Garage recruit

Beth- The newest Garage recruit

Up next- our web Guru- the manlike Delarge. Paul Burgess.

Introducing some more of the Garage Team

So we started of with two of the founders of Garage Studios, the creative team behind the name, Kev and Matt, and now we have part 2 of introducing the team. I will post more fully later as its late and I am hungry, but this is Natasha and Jonjo.

Natasha really deserves a full blog post of her own as not only is she a super talent but she has been here 2 years now, she teaches, she shoots, she lights, and she’s just about the best damn assistant I could ever ask for… so that post will follow.

Jonjo joined us on a placement scheme that we are taking part with via Wired Sussex, he has been responsible for many of the blog posts, keeping the twitter active but also researching and working on some large pitches and the general marketing of our courses, making sure we fit the right course to the right person. You’ll also hear a lot more from him soon too, but for now, here they both are, shot by kev.

Tash and Jonjo- Part of the Garage Studios Team

Laura Pannack

Brighton University graduate Laura Pannack has recently won the award of ‘Best in Show’ in this year’s foto8 exhibition, with this image titled Shay. Judges said that they were won over by the emotion of the image and its power as a stand-alone portrait.


Laura focuses on the complex emotions of her subjects, and especially on vulnerability in projects like the untitled where she took pictures of teenagers from various backgrounds and the ongoing images of members of the Young British Naturists which she regularly updates in her blog.

She has also won the prestigious 2010 World Press Photo award in the portrait singles category. Her photo of Graham who suffers from anorexia beat over 100,000 other entries from 128 different countries. We have been particularly impressed by the directness and quality of her work, as well as her ability to perfectly capture the complexity the people she encounters.


The foto8 Summer Show will be displayed until 4th September at the Host gallery in London so drop by if your in the area, she’s destined for big things.


Runner on a Fashion Shoot in Brighton- position filled- thanks

I have just had a call from a Producer for a Fashion Shoot that is happening in Brighton tomorrow. For obvious reasons I cant give away all the specifics but its for a very high-end fashion magazine, with a very respected photographer. The producer is looking for a spare pair of hands to act as a runner, help with gear etc on the shoot which is location based.

This isn’t anything to do with Garage- but we are just helping put the word out so that if you are free and have some kind of interest in photography you may be able to take up this opportunity. It is a an early call time, morning and will be a full day- but its a real chance to watch a shoot, help out, plus also get a free workout by carrying a lot of kit…..


Pocket Wizards- Overpriced and Badly Built?

At Garage we use Pocket Wizard Plus 11 for all our triggering studio needs. In terms of effectiveness of the individual units, they are the most reliable that we have used so far, but why is their build quality so appalling? The radio technology inside the unit is, I would imagine very cheap to put together, so what is the extortionate cost price spent on, it doesn’t appear to be the manufacturing.

If, as we are led to believe by the pro’s and the magazines, Pocket Wizards are the industry standard then why do they have a hot-shoe connector made of very flimsy plastic, with an often badly sealed join over the hot shoe pin. Through normal everyday use we have now had 2 of these hot shoe plates snap in half- the cheap plastic and spring contraption inside didn’t exactly inspire confidence in build quality.

Why is the body such cheap quality, and why at a unit price of approx £180 does the receiver require what is essentially a 50p Maplins/Radio Shack connector to plug into the back of the studio flash head? Surely a sealed one piece connector supplied with the unit wouldn’t raise the cost price and would provide a far more reliable system. A cable into a larger Jack cable is not an efficient system of firing, especially as when hanging from the Studio Light it often pulls the connector apart. Gaffer-taping the trigger to the Flash unit is not a good enough solution for a radio trigger in cheap plastic that retails at this price. It wouldn’t take much work to have a base station or similar, like say an ipod dock, that the receiver fits into which would then plug directly into the Studio Light jack.

Its about time that PW really thought about how there products are used, and dropped the price and also created a much more sturdy unit- that can deal robustly with adverse weather conditions when outside, and has the build quality that a studio in constant use requires.

Has anyone else had issues with these units in general , or have any better value alternatives? We’d love to know. I never want to miss a shot again due to a dodgy cable, or a unit sending itself to sleep at the wrong time…

Male Model Test Shoots

Natasha has been testing male models all week, we like to keep things fair after all, and we don’t have enough Male Model shots in our portfolio at the minute so Tash has been street casting, asking on FB and contacting local talent. None of the models below have, as of yet, done any editorial modelling but most have some catwalk experience and have been scouted by a few agencies.

The purpose of these tests is to get some natural images of the model, see how they work in the studio, their ability to work with a photographer, and in return they get to use the shots in their portfolio. We are looking to find a collection of male models to work with for both personal and commercial editorials, and this is also an opportunity for guys that are interested in expanding their modeling experience.

If you are interested in coming in for a test shoot- either Male or Female models- then please contact us . We’ll probably ask for a simple headshot to be mailed over and then contact you to book in a time and date. There is no guarantee it will lead to further work but not only do clients often want to go through our book to pick models, but also a lot of local photographers contact us asking for model recommendations. We normally like to allow and 1hr 1/2 for each test.

Natasha has some really good lighting going on here, and hopefully we will add a lighting blog about this later on in the week.

52 Photographic Projects Launch

We have contributed to a new book by Kevin Meredith, 52 Photographic Projects, an essential guide for photographers that features the diverse work of over 20 photographers, from full time Professionals to keen amateurs. It also includes the work of former Studio Manager, now Wedding Photographer Adam Bronkhost and Garage founder Kevin Mason.

The book weighs in at just under 300 pages, and is much bigger than the debut Hot Shots a guide to point and shoot photobook by Kevin Meredith, aka Lomokev, and as well as showcasing more of his own skills it provides insight into the minds, eyes and visual projects of a wide range of talent.

We will have a full review up soon, but for now here is the UK cover and an excerpt from Kevins section on Working with Models.

The book retails at £22.95, but even better option is to get along to the London launch which is tonight. Some of the authors will also be there to sign copies, not myself as I am sat here in Brighton typing this, but some of the outstanding UK contributors will be attending. Kevs launches are always fun, I think we set the standard at the launch of Hot Shots, the sell-out book, from our launch at Garage way back. To find out all the details and probably a map then go here. There will be copies for sale and also free beers, and Kev will no doubt be on good anecdotal form- so drop everything and get along to the launch with some scrilla in hand. Kev on Twitter.

Swimsuit Editorial

We staged a Live shoot at Garage a while ago, that some of you may have watched. It was a fairly ‘interesting’ shoot, some unknown variables that had a strong affect on the shoot, plus we had an Argus reporter on set doing interviews, a set that was causing me (kev) some confusion, I’m not sure why as it was pretty much everything I had hoped it would be. In fact scratch all that I think maybe I just had photographers block, and so we went on for hours and hours- in fact we probably wrapped about 12 hours after the model went into make-up. It was a good challenge though, and I am pretty happy to make my mistakes in public, as I think it helps you in the learning process. So here are some of the finished shots, it isnt the full editorial as this will appear in print sometime in the future I hope but if you did see the shoot you may be interested in the results.

First up though, I need to credit the ace crew.
The brilliant set was Designed by M.Halls and built by him and Joe Long,
Model Jocasta.
Hair by Emma Hedges at Square Roots.
Make-Up by Lucille Dee.
Styling by Rachel Holland, La Luminata.
Lighting Natasha Alipour-Faridani.
Assistant Vic Lentaigne.
Photographer Kevin Mason.

You can see the shoot here

You can see screen grabs here

Screen grabs from our Ustream page

Screen grabs from our Ustream page

Johnny Suede hair-do

Johnny Suede hair-do

Interview with Jez Eaton

We have had the pleasure of working with artist, Jez Eaton on a couple of shoots, but the most recent and most successful has been the shoot Kevin devised for Brighton Fashion Week. Jez worked on the make-up for this shoot and really nailed the brief whilst bringing here own flair and touch of magic to the shoot.

Hair and Make-Up by Jez Eaton

Hair and Make-Up by Jez Eaton

She also showcased her own incredible work during BFW with her Trashion show, which its probably fair to say became the most memorable highlight of an exciting few days. You can see the shots of her designs here , all images by Mary Pryce, backstage for Garage. As a result of watching the show, 125 Magazine have interviewed Jez and you can read it here- she has had a hugely interesting life, and its definitely well worth a look.

Well done Jez, we are looking forward to working with you again sometime,


Garage Studios and Kevin Mason in todays Brighton Argus

Garage Studios are in todays Brighton Argus, with an interview with one of the founders, Kevin Mason, during our last swimwear shoot. This was the shoot we streamed live online- and you can see some of the screen grabs in the article below and watch the footage on the link. It was a very hectic and long day but fortunately the Argus Journalist Nione Meakin was pretty patient and stayed for a few hours to get the flavour of a Garage Shoot. The first paragraph of the article really sums up a day at Garage. Go and grab a copy when you can and read the whole thing without the eye strain that this tear sheet might induce.

Nione first got in touch as they had been watching the studio for a while, seeing what has been coming out- but more importantly for us they picked up on the strong emphasis we have on using Brighton talents and showcasing others skills, from stylist to illustrators working on set pieces…. and so decided to feature us in this Fridays Guide.

Garage is changing a lot, really beginning to find its stride after almost two years and you’ll see a lot more creative shoots coming out of the studio soon- and we are very proud and excited about some of the things with have in the pipeline.

As most people know a lot about my work, (kevin) already, we will be introducing some background to Matt (co-founder) and Natasha soon, and hopefully also highlighting personal projects of some our more regular team. The article missed out mention of ex Studio Manager Adam- who was instrumental also in the first 18 months of the business- but I guess that was purely a space issue- we did big you up man. To be fair I think Matts name only made it twice, I should really learn to draw breath during interviews, give others a chance to chat…

Anyways its a nice feature and thanks for the Argus for thinking of us.