Robert Gallagher

Hi everyone, I’m a London born, Northern England raised, Los Angeles based photographer best known for my iconic and reportage work.

I’ve been fortunate to work with such luminaries as Clint Eastwood, Steven Spielberg and Charlize Theron, and for clients such as Ferrari, Nike, Paramount Pictures, Time, Empire and Forbes. I’ve also exhibited in Paris, London and Los Angeles, and some of my work is archived in The National Portrait Gallery in London.

As for my working process, i’m looking for a striking, graphic visual, and for my portraits my preferred situation is natural light, and always try to add artificial light as simply as possible. Under-lighting is always better than overlighting, in my view. I’m all about the authenticity of the subject, and of the scene. At heart i’m a documentary photographer, and i try to bring that same ethos to whatever i shoot.

I’m also not that much of a tech-guy, to be honest. After all, it’s not the equipment that makes the photographer, and i’ve often made the most memorable pictures with just the simplest and most meagre equipment, but when a big upgrade is in the offing, then I’m paying attention.

I only really use prime, fast lenses. I’m interested in maximum sharpness over multi-purpose. If i immediately need a different focal length, i’ll use those two things attached to my body called legs.

I shoot quickly and move quickly, so my equipment needs to be fast, fluid and light on its feet! Humans, and capturing humans, is a fleeting thing, so i work with a lot of awareness, anticipation, ready to capture.

Although a portrait is essentially a contrived affair, I don’t like to set up or direct the situation at all. Once I have them in the location and light, i’m interested in what it is they bring to the table.

I want to capture the authentic thing that’s going on. And to be able to do that, you have you literally move around your subject, stalk their emotions, see it before it happens. Its exhausting! But fun. As one of my first bosses told me about shooting sports, in particular boxing….”if you see it, you’ve missed it!” Thanks Tommy Hindley! Wise words indeed.

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