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“Picture Perfect’” is where Kaboom! Magazine.com sits down with some of our favorite photographers and get to know how they come up with ideas for their photoshoots, thoughts on photography, and ask them some of their favorite moments of their career. Today, we get the chance to sit down with the very talented Stefan Jhagroo. The highly popular veteran from the Florida tells us about his very favorite locations to shoot, how he comes up with amazing ideas for photoshoots, working with famous fashion models and celebrities, perfecting his craft, photography in social media, and many more. Get to know and strike a pose with literally one of the best young photographers in the world Mr. Stefan Jhagroo.
Stefan Jhagroo Info:
Photographer Name: Stefan Jhagroo/Canefield Studios
Zodiac Sign: Cancer
Hometown: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Years in Photography: 6
Personal Website: www.jhagroo.com
Camera Equipment: Whatever’s around, usually my Canon 5D3, iPhone or my Mamiya RZ67 when I’m in the mood.
Notable models/celebrities you’ve worked with: I’ve done work with published fine art models such as Aleksa Slusarchi and Zoe West.
Notable brands/magazines/websites you’ve worked with: Fuse Magazine, Skyn,VOLO, Penthouse, & Popular Photography
Some of your favorite locations for videoshoots/photoshoots: Rooftops, studio, beaches and the occasional picturesque street or deserted road.
If you could have one videoshoots/photoshoots with one person (past or present) who it would have to be with…..: Stephen Colbert.
Tell us a little bit about where you come from?
Born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago, came to South Florida 17 years ago, graduated from college and have been working in this area ever since in various agency and digital consulting jobs. Photography has grown from a part time hobby to a pretty serious hobby and an occasional side gig for me.
Growing up did you always want to be in the cinematic industry or did you have other dreams?
I did not, my dreams were simply to try and be good at whatever career I decided to end up with. I thought I’d end up writing more than I would end up using a camera.
What was the first camera that you received?
The very first? Probably one of those disposable cameras that you took to Eckerd’s (old person alert!) to get developed. The first camera I ever bought for myself was a Minolta s304. 3.3 Megapixels of JPEG goodness.
What type of cinematic education have you’ve had?
Youtube. Trial and Error.
Describe your style photography?
I shoot a little bit of everything but no matter what I do I try to keep the light and emotion of the subject at the forefront.
How did you get into photography?
I can’t draw, paint or play an instrument. This seemed an easier way to create interesting imagery. I began to shoot models as a way to become less awkward with people and to practice getting strangers comfortable in front the camera. It also plays into my fondness for gadgetry.
Are there any artists who have inspired your work?
Lots of artists and filmmakers – particularly Salvador Dali, Dan Winters, Zack Arias, Christopher Nolan, Corey Rich, Dave Black.
When you work with individual subjects, how much time do you spend researching and getting to know them first?
It’s always my preference to meet people ahead of time. Usually a 30 minute meeting is enough. Part of the fun of shooting people is that you get to know them more and more as the shoot progresses. For people who do multiple shoots with me there is always a higher chance of creating something new and interesting that arises out of the rapport.
Do you still remember your first videoshoot/photoshoot?
I do. The model was quite kind to shoot with a stranger on the streets of Fort Lauderdale but my editing back then was horrific.
Do you remember the moment when you realized that you were actually a talented videographer/photographer?
That moment hasn’t arrived yet. Will keep you posted 😉
What is the wildest moment you’ve ever had during a videoshoot/photoshoot?
I’m pretty boring – I think I’ve been run out of parks a couple times by cops after sunset.
Sexiest videoshoot/photoshoot you’ve ever been a part of?
Sorry, binding non disclosure agreements are in play.
Over the years, did you ever encounter famous people who were very difficult to shoot?
All the famous people I’ve shot have been great! Just kidding, no famous people for me…yet.
How has social media influence your career?
Networked with lots of great local talent and the ability to follow (and even connect) with commercial photographers. Also the largest avenue for my new business next to referrals.
Social media can be very profitable and very risky at times. Can you tell inspiring cinematographers some of the Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to involving your business with social media?
Be genuine. Shoot what you want to shoot and what speaks to you. Follower counts don’t mean money in your pocket. American Apparel has like 2m likes but it didn’t stop them from going bankrupt.
Where is the most fascinating place you’ve been to do a videoshoot/photoshoot?
With a model – the Japanese gardens in San Francisco.
Explain how you come up with ideas for projects such as videoshoots/photoshoots?
Films, books, music, other photographers or artists. The Dali museum in Tampa was an inspiring trip, for example.
How much planning do you do for each shoot, and how much happens naturally?
Depends on the shoot – but for my portraits I usually have a loose plan and work around it when the time comes. Locations, light and weather never play nice at the same time so best to be flexible. Studio shoots or weddings and events require more planning up front.
Do you coach or talk to your subjects about the expressions they will be making, or do you capture the spontaneous expressions from your conversation with them?
A bit of both.
What’s your single favorite video/photo that you’ve captured, and what’s the story behind it?
I don’t know if I have one favorite but I really like the image I captured of Zoe West with fabric in the middle of the day out in the Everglades….(NSFW)
When you’re not working with models or capturing some of peoples greatest moments, what do you do in your spare time?
Spending it with my baby daughter.
How often do travel?
Couple times a year.
Besides your equipment, what is one thing that you must have when you travel?
Podcasts and/or a good book.
Let’s put you on the spot! Who is your favorite model/celebrity you’ve ever worked with?
I don’t play favorites!
Have you ever been starstruck by one of your subjects?
What are some of your ultimate goals that you would like to achieve being a videographer/photographer?
Movie set shoots and actor portraits. Personal projects with a social commentary.
What would be your dream videoshoots/photoshoots?
Famous actor/actress/musician/public figure brings me on to shoot their life for a year and a ton of money.
How can people book you for their next project?
What’s next for you?
Continuing the balance between my family, my career and my photography.
Follow Stefan Jhagroo on these following social media websites:
Personal Website: www.jhagroo.com