Light. Action. Elements.
Photographer Q & A
Describe the moment or event that inspired your decision to become a photographer.
At about the age of 13 or 14 I really started to be inspired by all sorts of images, including landscapes, portraits, travel, and black and white images. While attending college I worked for a local newspaper and started photographing wildlife. The most inspiring moment came when I took a chance and left Minnesota to move to New York City where I had the opportunity to immerse myself in my passion and to be constantly surrounded by other arts professionals chasing their passions. My early experiences with commercial and portrait photographers gave me great direction and opportunity that has allowed me to persevere as an independent photography professional.
What is your favorite photography tip to share with other photographers?
Pay attention to everything when you have a chance to shoot a great image. Light, action and elements change quickly, so always be prepared to shoot. Take chances with your cameras, gear and lighting.
Favorite photography book and why?
I do not have a favorite photography book. However, I can spend hours in a book store on any given day looking at different photography books and find something special in almost every one of them. War photography really inspires me and it impacts the way I approach my assignments. Nick Ut's photograph of Vietnamese children fleeing a napalm attack is as real as it gets. That photo inspires me because it captures the essence of so many elements of the Vietnam War that I can translate into my work today.
Most unusual item you keep in your camera bag?
A Morris Mini Slave Flash. These units are the best little flashes around. With a piece of duct tape, you can stick one anywhere, and it's amazing the impact they can have on your images.
What's the best advice you ever received from a fellow photographer?
"If you have nothing good to say, say nothing at all."
Name a geographical place that you'd love to return to or go to for an assignment.
There are two places I would like to go on assignment: South America and Switzerland. They are two places very special to me where I would relish the opportunity to pursue my passion.
What photography project or assignment has been most meaningful for you and why?
All of my assignments are meaningful in their own way and it is difficult to distinguish one from the other. Recently, I shot a project that I have now done for three consecutive years. It's a three week shoot in the mountains of Wyoming in the wintertime and I am blessed with the company of great clients, great friends, a great crew and scenic natural beauty that is unsurpassed. This year the shoot was the first three weeks of January. It is a nice psychological boost to start the year with such a good project. This client is one of my favorites. They encourage change and are looking to rebrand seasonally with high quality and powerful imagery.
If you could publish a book on any photographic subject, what would it be?
I really enjoy the intricacies of action snow sports photography. It is a very difficult medium and few photographers have mastered it. If I were to publish in photography, I would like to create a coffee table book on action snow sports.
What your favorite photography tip to share with other photographers?
When you have your camera, always pay attention. Situations change and things happen fast so be prepared to get the shot. Take chances with your cameras, equipment and lighting.
What do you love about your Lowepro bag(s)?
I like everything about my Lowepro collection: durability, reliability, comfort and all the new and innovative designs that keep my equipment in great shape in the worst of conditions.
Please visit Todd Williams' web site to see more of his action sports, portraits, lifestyle and travel, and personal photography—including his unique imagery from the American West. Follow his amazing adventures on his blog.
Todd Williams' Lowepro gear includes:
"Lowepro manufactures the most reliable and durable camera bags in the industry. I've taken the Pro Trekker 300 AW on location with me the past two years in extreme conditions ranging from subzero temperatures in the Rocky Mountains and Grand Tetons to the hot and humid regions of South America. My cameras are always protected from the elements with my Lowepro bags. The Scope Photo Travel 350 AW from the Optics Series is by far my new favorite camera bag. While on location the first three weeks of 2012 (shooting for a snow client), I took this backpack with me every day. The shoot took place at elevations between 8,000 and 10,000 feet and every day my crew and I had to endure snow, freezing temperatures, wind and ice. The Scope Photo Travel 350 AW made it easy for us to keep our gear in top condition for every shot. This pack has a very unique interior design; the pouches of the interior have their own soft lids that protect each piece of equipment individually which is essential when shooting in harsh conditions. When I need to make a gear change I can open the pack and grab what I needed while the rest of my equipment is protected from the elements. The Scope Photo Travel 350 AW is ideal for any extreme-condition shooting."
- Todd Williams
Todd Williams:Web Site
Editorial and commercial professional photographer Todd Williams was born and raised in central Minnesota. His down-to-earth style and core values help him capture unique subjects in a particular context at a specific moment. Todd relocated to New York City in 1995. Over the past 13 years, he developed his own distinct and creative style. Todd's international travels provide him the background and opportunity to capture subjects, landscapes and action sports that convey spontaneity and embrace a surprise element that stir the imagination. His specific lighting techniques and unique camera perspectives give his work a crisp, inviting look that lures the observer to stare deep into the image. Todd's clients include Polaris Industries, Nike, Fly Industries, Scott USA, Smith Optics, and HMK USA.