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Tom. Tell us ABOUT yourself.
London based Artist turned Director of Photography. My background in art drives my visual style and I'm heavily influenced by the baroque period. I recently shot a feature film with Director James Whitehill 'The 12' which will be released by the end of the year.
Our readers would love to get to know you more Tom. Tell us about yourself, what is unique about you?
The current interest in my peer group of cinematographers is in very specific technical details of cameras, personally I don't really care. I feel there is far more value in studying and understanding the painting masters in wealth of galleries we have in London. They understood lighting, composition and storytelling in a way I feel is missing in a lot of cinematography.
Tom, what are your passion and aspiration in life? How did you start as a Photographer?
My aspiration is to become a well established Director of Photography in London, my passion is all in my work. I live and breath cinematography and I believe photography is a cornerstone of that.
Who is your inspiration in life Tom? How do you keep inspired?
Galleries, photography, films, people. I think it's important to feed inspiration, it doesn't just come to you, you have to go out and get it.
We all make mistakes Tom, we wish we could take back. Please tell us about a time being a Photographer , you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.
Honestly I haven't really had any bad experiences with people on set, I've been lucky to work with some great people. On set I'm very easy going but also utterly focused, if something is distracting from that I don't give it any attention.
Tom ,when you’re working with a large number of clients, it’s tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. As a Photographer, how do you go about prioritizing your clients’ needs?
My job is very specific to the visuals of film so that is my priority. A lot of it is balancing expectations with budget and achieving the highest production value possible within any given budget and most importantly ensuring it is justified by the story.
Please tell us Tom, about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities as a Photographer?
The film we shot recently had a very very tight schedule, we shot it in an unbelievably short amount of time. At the beginning of the shoot myself and the director decided on a style of shooting that would enable this to be possible and stuck to it.
Tom, please give us an example of a time when you were able to successfully persuade someone to see things your way at work.
My job always involves working alongside a director who has the final say so this comes up fairly often. Generally I present the case as to why I think something should be lit or shot in a certain way and back it up with justification. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't
Tom please tell us about your proudest professional accomplishment as a Photographer. There might be many, but there is always this proudest moment that you just want to share to everyone. What is it and why?
Completing 'The 12.' What we achieved in such a short amount of time and with a very tight budget is impressive by anyones standards. As a bonus I think it looks great too and I'm very proud of that.
Tom, please give us an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
I shoot a lot of music videos and there is always scope for creativity there. Trying something a bit different or new is always a bit a of a gamble but that's what spec shoots are for.
What advice would you give to the people who wants to be successful as a Photographer?
Network like crazy, this industry is all about who you know, and learn to light well.
Are you looking for collaboration with fashion talents, brands and creatives? If yes, please state below what type of collaboration you are looking for?
My style is quite dark so I love working with people on the same page.
Please add any photo credits for the photos you uploaded so that everybody can get recognised. (Name and Instagram @Username)
Photographer: Tom Watts @tomwattsdop
Model: Joie Merana @ann_itsjoie
Make up: shamirah sairally @shamirah_makeup