This. This was the best “Meet the Pros” that I have ever attended here at City Tech. Our guest speaker was Dustin Cohen, a well presented New York based photographer and videographer with an extensive portfolio. Cohen opened up his presentation with his website displayed on the projector and walked us through a few of his favorite pieces. He mainly focused on the photography work he has done with some huge stars such as Jeff Bridges, Rick Ross, 2 Chainz(for XXL Magazine) and many more. As opposed to the last Meet the Pros, Cohen spoke more on his experiences rather than the technical aspects of his work. It wasn’t a “oh this was shot with a 5D” but rather a more engaging story behind every photo. He spoke comically about his difficulties with some rappers being divas, like they would show up to shoots hours late, they would refuse to comply with certain shot specifications such as location(not wanting to shoot indoors)and even smoke heavily during shoots, he joked about experiencing a contact high from just being around certain rappers.
After about halfway into his talk, he began to show us his videography work. This was just amazing, how simple a concept can become something much greater. He would go around and just find things that intrigue him and create an entire story from it. This one in particular is called “The Shoemaker”. It is about an elderly father and son that run a shoe repair shop, which is a very small market in today’s world. Nothing stops this old man, he gets around on his own and still works everyday. These little films intrigued the interest of Stella Artois, a beer company that wanted Cohen to follow them and highlight a year long project of creating an instrument of hundreds of glass chalices.
Dustin Cohen is a remarkable person, he gets to travel and he says he loves doing what he does, but only about 90% of the time. There are days where he just doesn’t even want to bother with anything (boy do I have those a lot) and he’d rather stay at home or just do something for entertainment, but he says we have to get through those ruts and don’t settle, the message I got from this talk was to be the best that you can be, but maybe even a bit more than that.