Susan Seubert at the 2017 Venice Biennale: Virtual Tour

My show at the 2017 Venice Biennale opened last week and there was much rejoicing.  This is a true milestone in my career as an artist, so a group of us gathered, drank Prosecco and toasted to the beautiful city of Venice.  I’ll be heading back later this year to the Palazzo Bembo, where the show, “Personal Structures,” will be on display until November 26th.  If you are going to be in Venice, this 15th century building is about a block from the Rialto Bridge and admission is free. If you can’t make it, here is a 360 degree view of the installation of my work, from the, “Asphyxiation” series.  You can also look at the work on my web site here.

 

editorial photographer Susan Seubert and the Canon L Series 50mm 1.2 USM lens

This year, I broke down and purchased a Canon 50mm 1.2 L series USM lens.  It is spectacular for portrait work because of its amazing bokeh.  There is a lot of chatter out there about the spectacular price difference between the 1.2 and the Canon 1.4.  I also own a Canon 50mm 2.5 macro which is instrumental for me for shooting details of things from food to flowers but for portraits, the 1.2 can’t be beat.  Here are two examples.  One is a portrait of my husband, which I dropped into a film frame for effect – I’ve long been lugging around an analogue Hasselblad with a beautiful 80mm lens, which I’ve used for years as my primary portrait lens. It’s also fantastic combined with a few extension tubes. However, now that I’m moving into an almost exclusively digital workflow, I had to find a lens that I was happy enough with to leave my Hasselblad behind when going on assignment.  Don’t get me wrong, I still love working with film, but the practical side of my business has forced my hand on this one.  I’ve been taking the d65 wokrshop every other year to keep current on the latest digital workflow which has led me to adopt working almost exclusively in Adobe’s Lightroom.  That software combined with the Canon 5D Mark II’s and lenses I work with give me a great way to process thousands of images in a relatively short period of time, without sacrificing any amount of quality. (This year’s processed tally is almost to 13,000 client delivered images).  My digital library is now more organized than ever – I can find any image with just a few clicks of the mouse.  I hope you find this information useful!

Portrait shot with the Canon L series 1.2 50mm USM lens, dropped into a Hasselblad film frame using Photoshop CS5

my cat, photographed on the couch using the Canon L series 1.2 USM lens, processed using Adobe's Camera Raw and Photoshop CS5

travel photographer Susan Seubert about the importance of an assistant

Greetings!  As National Geographic Traveler is publishing the story I photographed about Barbados in the January/February 2011 issue of the magazine, I thought this would be a good time to write about the importance of having an extra set of hands around on a shoot.  These days, editorial budgets are very tight, so sometimes the job won’t allow for one but in certain instances, having a partner on a shoot is indispensable.  The other caveat is that often times I’m asked to also shoot video and collect audio, making my work at least three times as complicated as it was pre-multimedia.  That said, I always like to rise to a challenge, so I tried being a one man band for the first day of this assignment and realized, quickly, that it would be impossible for me to do a good job in Barbados flying solo.  Enter: fixer.  I am blessed with a partner in life that not only has an MFA in photography, but also can get himself halfway around the globe in 24 hours or less.  He was with me the morning of the shoot with the horses and took a couple of stills of me in the water.  I was just perusing some of the images and realized that he illustrated precisely why – under certain circumstances – it is necessary to have someone watching your back.  Barbados is as safe of a place as one can get in the Caribbean, but add thousands of dollars worth of camera equipment left unattended on a beach and voila, it’s like finding cash sitting around on the ground.  Anyone would be tempted to walk off with my carbon fiber Gitzo fitted with a heavy-duty Manfrotto head and, set atop it like a crown jewel, a Canon 5D Mark II with a pristine 24-105mm lens with lens hood, a 77mm polarizing filter and a nice Crumpler strap.  Not to mention my favorite accessory – a three-way hot shoe level.  It was enough of a bummer to not have a water housing to work with, but that didn’t stop me from walking into the water up to just above waist deep, to get as close as I could to the horses.  Lost in my enthusiasm, I simply left the other camera with aforementioned accessories, sitting behind me on the beach.  As I look at the photo of me in the water, I can tell that I was drawn in by the dawn swiftly changing to daylight, as is evidenced by the light on my white shirt.  These men and their horses were just then becoming well lit and I only had a few minutes before the magic of that morning dawn would turn into the white-hot Caribbean day.  In hindsight it was a bad decision and without my fixer there, would have most likely been a great loss.  But he stood on the beach, watching the gear so I could get the shot.  For that moment, I will be forever grateful to him.

walking into the water, leaving camera equipment on the beach...

water housing? I don't need no stinking water housing...

Editorial Photographer Susan Seubert stock photography of the Pendleton Round-Up

This year, the Pendleton Round-Up, a rodeo held in Pendleton, Oregon, during the second full week of September each year, will be celebrating its 100th anniversary.  The rodeo brings roughly 50,000 people every year to the city of Pendleton.  I’ve covered this event in the past and have stock photography of both the Native American and Rodeo events.  You can check out a web gallery of a few of these images here.  Look for more to be uploaded in the coming week!

A buckin' bronco at the Pendleton Round-Up Rodeo

The Indian Village at the Pendleton Round-Up

A father and son cowboy team at the Pendleton Round-Up

Editorial Photographer Susan Seubert and Hawaii Stock Photography

Now it’s easier than ever to peruse my stock photography archive that is hosted on Photoshelter.  I have put all the images of Hawaii into one folder, then also divided the photos up by island.  The galleries are listed alphabetically. If you are a photo researcher in need of images from Hawaii, please feel free to peruse the individual galleries of Oahu, The Big Island, Maui and Kauai.  If you have more specific stock needs or would like an estimate for a shoot, please don’t hesitate to contact me directly.  I can be reached on my cell at +1-503-819-6692.  Aloha!

Ka'anapali Beach in Maui, Hawaii

Portland Photojournalist Susan Seubert shoots for the New York Times

I had the incredible pleasure of spending a day at home with Wendy Burden, author of the forthcoming book, “Dead End Gene Pool.” The assignment was for the Homes and Gardens section of the New York Times and the story was just posted this afternoon on the Times’ web site.  We spent the day photographing her amazing collections of ephemera, her arrangements of said objects and, of course, her.  There is an online web gallery of the photographs on the New York Times’ web site which you can see here. The book is scheduled to be released April 1st and promises to be a fantastic read.  It’s a witty memoir about growing up in luxurious surroundings but in a deeply dysfunctional family.  She is an absolutely lovely woman and I’m looking forward to reading the book.  I’ve pre-ordered it from Amazon and am sad that I won’t be in town for her reading at Powell’s (downtown Portland) on Thursday April 15th.

Click here for the web gallery of photos from the shoot

Travel and Food Photogapher Susan Seubert has stock images of James Beard Award Nominees

I have had the great pleasure of photographing some incredibly talented chefs in Portland over the years.  This year, three of my subjects are up for James Beard Best Chef Northwest AwardsNaomi Pomeroy of Beast Restaurant and Andy Ricker, of Pok Pok, The Whiskey Soda Lounge and Ping are both up for the first time.  Also, Gabrial Rucker of Le Pigeon is up for a national James Beard nomination for Rising Star Chef of the Year.  I wish all of these talented food professionals the best.  Bonne chance!!!

Naomi Pomeroy, owner of Beast, a six-course, prix fixe restaurant in NE Portland, Oregon whose menu changes every Wednesday.

Andy Ricker holding freshly pressed sugar cane juice at Pok Pok, one of his restaurants in Portland, OR

Chef Gabriel Rucker holding two pigs' heads in his Portland, Oregon Restaurant, Le Pigeon