Andy Anderson has been a professional photographer for over 20 years. He started his photography career after being taken on the staff of Men’s Journal while still working as a fire figheter in the US Military.
His clients include Men’s Journal, The New York Times, Garden and Gun, Forbes, Ram Trucks, Harley Davidson, U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corp, Liberty Mutual, and many more.
A year ago he was one of the 10 photographers involved in a Ram Trucks “God Made a Farmer” TV spot, which went to become the number 1 rated Super Bowl commercial. The spot marked the beginning of “The Year of the Farmer” and since then, Ram Trucks dedicated a year long initiative to bring national attention to the significance of the American farmer and the Future Farmers of America organization.
Andy is also a great businessman, who’s managed to stay successful without having to live in the big capitals of the photography industry and stayed true to his passions, hobbies and environment.
Apart from his successful photography business, he also owns a stock photography site, selling and licensing his photography.
He will be giving a 2 day workshop in Austin on 27th and 28 February during the Texas Photo Roundup, the biggest commercial and editorial photography related event in Texas. We wanted to have quick chat with him about his work and the topic of his workshop, “Keeping your Personal Vision Under the Demands of a Commercial Market”.
Have you experienced that it’s easy to keep your voice as an artist in a commercial project?
Yes, but it takes a total engagement and collaboration of the photographer. He or she needs to be totally engaged.
Do you think nowadays a photographer will get hired more based on his ability to adapt or more on his personal style?
Of course, that is the reason a photographer needs to find their voice and find the ability to put there dna on a project.
Are tighter budgets cutting the freedom more now than before or has this not changed?
I don’t think so.
Does a photographer have to “earn” his right to have a personal vision only with experience or is that a prerogative for all professional photographers?
That is a loaded question. Most shooters will be hired because of what they are able to deliver. Every project is important no matter the budgets.
What’s your inspiration these days? Do you pick projects based on your current interests?
I read a lot. about 4 books a month. and watch lots of documentaries, and I am always very curious.
What is the most interesting thing that has happened to you in your professional career, or who were you most excited to work with?
I think the Super bowl TV Spot…it was great to collaborate with a concept the stills told the entire story.
What do you consider to be your biggest professional achievement?
Probably seeing my son following in my footsteps.. Zach Anderson
What do you think is the future of the commercial photography market?
There is a trend of people using more honest images. The slick images I think are almost becoming passe.