How to Shoot and Publish Longterm Photography Projects

Will Jacks has a standing date whenever he’s home on Thursday nights: he heads to Po’Monkey’s Lounge in northwest Mississippi. He’s been visiting the historic blues club regularly for about three years. During this time, he’s learned a lot about how to shoot and publish longterm photography projects.

The project on Po’Monkey’s started with a photo shoot for a magazine, which Jacks struggled with emotionally. “It didn’t feel real for me because I didn’t know enough about the story,” he recalls. And when it was over, he didn’t like the feeling of moving on to the next piece, and the next. “I felt like I was taking a lot.” The Mississippi native wanted a deeper relationship with the people and their place, he says. A deeper one.

Longterm photography projects often start with a simple question, “What can I learn?,’” says Jacks. That instinct led Jacks to find an opportunity that was …

Read more →

Best Business Practices – Part 5

Photo by Will Jacks

Spring is here, so we’re sharing a series of Best Business Practice posts featuring the team of ACEs. Get to know them and learn tips and tricks that will streamline your studio this season! As any ACE will tell you, you can’t do it all. Successful photographers understand this, which is why they partner with advisors and trainers who help them stay organized! This week’s featured ACE is Will Jacks, a guy who grew up wanting  to play centerfield for the St. Louis Cardinals, but wound up preserving wonderful moments as a photographer. As he says, “I deal in happiness, and I couldn’t be more grateful.”

Q. What’s your primary area of photography and when did you start shooting full-time?

Will: I began my career as a photographer in 1997. I didn’t know what type of work I wanted to do. I only knew that I wanted to be creative, be my own boss, and develop a body of work …

Read more →

The Merits of Mobile Photography: Part I

The best camera is the one that’s with you.

Since Chase Jarvis kicked off this discussion years ago, more photographers have adopted mobile photography as a playful personal expression and a serious artistic endeavor. In fact, “Mobile Photography” is simultaneously contributing to the democratization of image making and the artistic positioning of professionals. Last week, Instagram hit 27 million users, making it one of the world’s fastest growing social networks. To top it off, Hipstamatic and Instagram unveiled a photo-sharing partnership. Clearly, mobile photography is more than a hobby; it’s serious business. 

To explore the merits of mobile photography, The Photo Life is publishing a series of posts from photographers who embrace the adage, “the best camera is the one that’s with you!” First in the series is a testimonial from Will Jacks, a photographer based in the Mississippi Delta.

With the click of a button, you can now…slow down.

I admit it. I was one …

Read more →

PartnerCon – A Different Side

I’m lucky.

I got to see a side of PartnerCon that many of you didn’t see.

A side that makes me believe that what happened the first week in November was not just a photography convention, but the start of a movement.  As I drove home Thursday night, six and half hours up Highway 61 to the Mississippi Delta, I brought a little bit of the week home with me — both literally and figuratively.

Photo by Spencer Clark.

Five photographers from all over the country converged on three Delta towns to photograph three different weddings, and to bask in the glow of the previous week.  We chatted about what we’d experienced.  We laughed.  We spoke of our inspirations.  We shared our fears.

We learned from each other.

At it’s core, that’s what New Orleans was for all of us — a chance to learn from each other.  From the most grizzled veterans to the photographers …

Read more →