For those of you that haven’t heard of Jeremy Cowart, let me briefly introduce you to a few pieces of his work.
Jeremy Cowart is one of the most impressive and influential working photographers in our industry today. His background in graphic design has enabled him to create an editorial style of photography that is very distinctly his own. Jeremy’s list of celebrity clientel is quite extensive, from musicians such as Taylor Swift to athletes such as Tim Tebow. While Jeremy’s primary focus is in shooting musicians, he pretty much covers the entire spectrum from advertising, to television to movies, and more.
Jeremy has been on our radar for quite some time now as one of our favorite sources of inspiration. So, it is no wonder when he released his first educational DVD, LIFEFINDER, we just had to get our hands on a copy for review.
Cost: $249 + Shipping
LIFEFINDER is split into 2 DVDs and contains over 4 hours of content with a beautifully designed DVD menu system.
LIFEFINDER Disc 1 – The first disc is focused more on Jeremy’s background, as well as his photographic workflow. Jeremy discusses his RAW workflow, photography toolkit, 10 commonly asked questions, as well as some of his recommended “best practices.” We found quite a few gems of information and inspiration on this first DVD, however the bread and butter of LIFEFINDER is really in the second disc.
LIFEFINDER DISC 2 – The second disc is a little treasure trove of inspiration and information. There are a total of 6 narrated photoshoots where Jeremy is discussing his thoughts and ideas while viewing a behind the scenes look at each shoot. Each narrated photoshoot is for a completely different type of client/delivery. The 6 scenes include shooting a Band, Male Musician, Female Musician, Experimentation, On Location Fashion Shoot, and a Seamless Fashion Shoot. For those of you that are a bit more experienced, you will be able to glean a lot from these narrated behind the scenes shoots.
It is important to note that LIFEFINDER is not an A-Z instructional guide for beginning photographers. It is assumed that those watching the DVD have a knowledge of camera settings, lighting equipment, post production, etc. Each topic and scene is discussed at a very high level discussing the vision for the final product, light placement, composition, etc. However, if you are expecting step-by-step instruction, you may be dissapointed.
The bottom line is that Jeremy’s style of photography often requires quite a bit of planning, photography equipment, lighting equipment, post production technique, and much more. To teach all of that would require not 4 hours of instruction, but probably more along the lines of 400 hours of instruction. So LIFEFINDER probably isn’t the best resource for beginners, nor does it try to be.
However, experienced photographers (in particular with a good understanding of equipment and lighting) will be able to glean quite a bit of wonderful information from this DVD and from Jeremy’s instruction and vision behind each of his setups.
I would have loved to see Jeremy work through a few images completely in post production. Specifically, in Photoshop. Jeremy has a very unique style to his post production, which I was hoping to get a little insight into. While Jeremy does go through his RAW workflow on a high level, he doesn’t actually get into showing detailed editing techniques. Perhaps in his next DVD =)
Overall, we loved LIFEFINDER and learned a great deal of information from this instructional look into the work of Jeremy Cowart. If you appreciate Jeremy Cowart’s work and are an experienced professional looking for new ideas and inspiration, LIFEFINDER is the place to go. While seeing Jeremy’s lighting and scene setups was very educational, seeing and hearing him discuss his vision in each scene was truly enlightening and inspirational.
So, Jeremy, congratulations on making this wonderful educational product, we would definitely have to say that it is SLR Lounge Approved!
Post Production Pye
SLR Lounge Senior Editor
Partner of Lin and Jirsa Photography