were similar to his. The idea was to figure out how they
were marketing themselves and landing jobs.
One of the first photographers he contacted was Jake
Stangel, who is based in San Francisco. Stangel looked
at Johnson’s work, and when he was unable to get to
Seattle to photograph musician Perfume Genius for
Dazed & Confused, he referred the job to Johnson.
Through his connection to Stangel, Johnson also
started corresponding with other photographers including Shawn Brackbill, Michael Friberg, Adam Golfer, Alexi
Hobbs, Daniel Shea, Geordie Wood and several others. He
used that network as a source of inspiration, information
and feedback on his own work.
“Jake would do occasional group e-mails sharing new
work and sometimes asking for feedback from everyone.
I was included on these e-mails,” Johnson says.
Those connections led Johnson to assisting jobs with
other photographers coming to Seattle to shoot assignments. They included David Black, Autumn de Wilde and
Elizabeth Weinberg as well as Stangel.
One lesson Johnson learned on those jobs is that print
advertising productions can be a lot simpler than he’d
once thought they were. And that suited his own natural-
setups, with natural light.” ©K
Writer Neal Stephenson was the subject of Kyle Johnson’s first
assignment for Bloomberg Businessweek in 2012.
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