compagnon of inspiration - Part 6: Brian Caissie

compagnon der Inspiration - Teil 6:  Brian Caissie

Our guest this month should be well known to some magazine readers, as he has been shaping the look of these pages for well over a decade. The only unusual thing is that he won his first compagnon more or less by chance. The results and the final image are his focus, which he is now pursuing with a little messenger. We look forward to talking to him:

"compagnon of inspiration" - Part 6

Brief portrait

Brian Caissie is not exactly new to professional photography; the Canadian has been working as a photographer and photo editor for popular magazines for over 15 years, with around 100 issues already bearing his signature. His experience in travel, sports and portrait photography certainly helped him win the Photo of the Month Award by Red Bull Photography in June with a photo of skater legend TJ Rogers. compagnon: Hi Brian, it's great to have you as our guest. You've been in photography for a long time. So there's certainly a lot that our readers want to know about you. One thing that immediately catches the eye is your relaxed look, which you also like on your little messenger. How important is your style & clothing for your work?

Brian Caissie: I usually dress very modestly and simply, I'm usually lying on the ground or climbing trees etc. I also look for adventure with and in my work. When I'm traveling in foreign countries, I don't really want to stand out. I also like to put tape on my camera and my external flashes to make them look cheap and simple.

compagnon: That really is something new. It's like a camouflage suit for professional equipment. The pictures you've brought us really do come from all over the world. Do you deliberately travel light and compact when it comes to equipment or do you take everything you can with you?

Brian Caissie: Well, my new Fuji X100 always blows me away. I find it practical that I can synchronize the external flashes with it at any speed, an advantage of the mirrorless setup. It's also small and has no shutter noise, so you can use it silently. I also have a notebook with me for ideas or a shooting plan for a new location.

compagnon: Does that mean that you believe that an ambitious photographer doesn't need much more than such equipment to achieve good results?

Brian Caissie: It depends, but on the whole, yes. A notebook is much more important than many people think, even a light meter can make a difference. A true photographer manages to tell a story and build it well. Anyone can take a single good picture.

thailandcompagnon: Is this storytelling an element that is important to you in your role models? If you have any...

Brian Caissie: Oh yes, there are some that I admire for various reasons. Nadav Kander, Peter Beard or Thomas Prior, for example, whose lives and styles are creative through and through. A life in a beautiful environment, surrounded by people who are similar to you, that sounds like a good choice to me.

compagnon: If we look at your recordings from various continents, we are sure that not everything went smoothly with this work. Let's hear a horror story. What was the most annoying, stressful project you've ever worked on?

Brian Caissie: I would say it was a trip to China, we were a big crew. We were in Shenzhen for a month with 20 people, nobody spoke the language and that caused a lot of confusion and stress. Organizing a dinner alone, for example, when you can't even order properly, let alone read the menus.

shenzhencompagnon: That sounds really exhausting. Remembering is sometimes too. But our fans always like to know what technique our talents started their careers with. Do you remember that?

Brian Caissie: Sure, it was a Pentax K1000, that camera certainly had a huge impact on me as a photographer. It was so simple. There was a film setting, aperture and shutter. That was it. Today, people spend half their time searching through control menus instead of relying on their brains and skills.

oregoncompagnon: You have built up an excellent reputation over the years. You are known for realism, minimal photoshop, you even avoid cropping your images afterwards. If we ask you for a tip for our readers to improve their own work, what advice would you give them?

Brian Caissie: One thing is important: stop paying attention to what others are doing. Take pictures of what you like and have fun taking them. This is the only way to find a style that is uniquely yours and sets you apart from others.

spaincompagnon: Brian, it was great to have you with us. We wish you continued success with your work and hope you can still fulfill some of your dreams. Thank you for inviting us to your house in Hawaii, which you are still working on. We'll bring the ingredients for the barbecue when the time comes. All the best!

The pictures in this article were provided by Brian Caissie. The images are protected by copyright. The sole rights are held by Brian Caissie. More from Brian Caissie on and Instagram or Tumblr

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