Welcome to my new site – a work in progress

Welcome!

I’m an Adelaide based professional photographer and the majority of my work is shot around South Australia.

My two real loves are food and portraiture. I like sunsets, but you won’t see too many here.

I work with great publishers, restaurants, food producers, wineries and breweries. Sometimes I also write about travel, food and beer in magazines.

Please feel free to have a look through my Facebook Business page facebook.com/JohnKrugerPhotography/

You can email me at john@johnkruger.com.au or call my mobile on (+61) 0409800813

 


Equipment

There’s an old saying with photographers that goes something like this:

Amateur Photographers worry about equipment.

Semi-Pro’s worry about light.

Professional Photographers worry about invoices being paid.

Hardware. I suppose as a professional photographer, I make sure I use the best equipment I can so I don’t have to worry about gear. I get the occasional “train spotter” come up to me while I work and try to strike up a conversation about their camera they use at home. I’m actually the last person to talk to about consumer and pro-sumer cameras because I haven’t had much experience with them before. The top level Nikons I’m familiar with are the D2X (my first freelance digital camera – before that we had D1’s at work.), the D3 and my current D4S. I had a look at the D5 but the minor improvements don’t seem to match the extra expense.
I did buy a D5300 as a second video DSLR, and to be quite honest, I hate it. I hate the feel of it, the sound of the shutter, the convoluted controls… It’s a real pain to use. Sure the pro cameras don’t have WiFi or GPS (unless you pay through the nose for add-on hardware) but my fingers know where all the buttons are on a D4S and it’s super strong and reliable.

I take literally millions of photos and I’ve only had to replace one shutter mechanism on the D3 a few years ago. It turned out, after the cost of a D4 camera hire and the cost of replacing the shutter, it would have been cheaper to fly to Sydney and have it replaced straight away. That’s one of the few downsides to living in South Australia.

After years of digital work, I stick with some reliable brands. SanDisk for CF memory (that’s right, pro-cameras still use CF cards, much to the disbelief of electronics store employees. Apple, the SD card reader on a MacBook Pro is almost useless.) I also use Sony QXD cards and Western Digital hard drives. It’s not unusual to shoot a large project that requires around 70gb of card storage, plus hard drive backups.

Lenses. The great thing about a pro-camera vs the D5300 is I can use any Nikon lens. I love old manual 50mm “pancake” lenses, obscure macro lenses, you name it. I haven’t used many other brands because years ago the auto-focus was really slow and vignetting was sometimes extreme. I’d be happy to try some new other lens brands in the near future.

Computers. Apple all the way. They work in a simple and easy way. Using a PC is a nightmare for me. Everything works in the most convoluted way possible. I can’t stand them! I currently run a MacBook and a MacBook Pro, both with 1 external monitor each to maximise palette space and make workflow easier.

As for software, I’ve been a Photoshop fan since version 5 in the late 90’s. Before that I was using Aldus Photostyler which was acquired by Adobe in 1994. Most of my training that wasn’t in the workplace was done at Regency Park TAFE. It was a great place to learn.
I suppose I’m quite set in my ways in regard to workflow, so other than some new plug-ins occasionally, I’m very happy to stay with Adobe Creative Cloud and the regular updates to Photoshop and Bridge.

I’ve still got a fantastic Nikon negative scanner which I used before moving over from SLR to DSLR and I’m really disappointed that OSX upgrades have meant I can’t use it any more. I’ve still got piles of transparencies that I’d love to digitise and put up online.

 


Shooting a cookbook with a difference – The Primo job

When I got the call to see if I was interested in shooting a small brochure for a wine company, I was pretty keen and in the end it turned into a pretty big shoot. The brochure tuned into a small book and we organised to shoot almost a full week at Joe Grilli’s house and then a day or so at his cellar door in McLaren Vale. Joe owns Primo Estate Wines.
This was a cookbook with a difference. The brief was all about family. Each shot had to have a family member in it somewhere because all of the recipes are old family recipes, passed down for generations. It gives the images a different feel having people in shot as well. Most of the close-up images of just food were quick grabs before we cleaned up and moved onto the next dish. Joe’s house is a beautiful open space building with great natural light, so we barely had to light anything, which gives the dishes a lovely warmth and natural homely look. Everything was cooked on site apart from a few slow-cook dishes and they were all cooked by family members. Occasionally Joe would say, “Let’s cook that dish next instead and we can have it for lunch.” Then we’d all sit outside in the sunshine, eat delicious food with liberal splashes of his olive oils and drink his Tuscan wines. It was fantastic! He’s a very interesting man to talk to and a delight to work with. He’d wander around the house chuckling to himself and he made such an impact on me and my own cooking style that I’m delighted every time I bump into him.

The book is still available via the Primo Estate cellar door and online www.primoestate.com.au/product/Primo-Style-Book

Below are some of my favourite photographs.

Primo Style Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style
Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style
Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style
Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style
Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style
Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style Photo: John Krüger

Primo Style
Photo: John Krüger