Ad Campaign: Weipa Tourism for Rio Tinto

A few months ago I traveled to Weipa in the western Cape York peninsula in Queensland to shoot a campaign for Rio Tinto. Weipa is a small, remote town with a huge bauxite (raw aluminium ore) mine that wants families to come and put down roots as development and local investment looks to grow in the coming years.  

Client: Rio Tinto / Weipa Tourism
Agency: ChannelZero
Creative Director: Ben Croft

Ad Campaign: Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

A few months ago I shot a bunch of images for Mitsubishi for their new car in Australia, the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross.

When we did this shoot this was the only Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross in Australia. It has a busy schedule and the only days I had to shoot it just happened to coincide with the Melbourne Cup race in Victoria, which is something of a holy week there. We couldn't find a location scout who was available (i.e. wanted to take time out of the Melbourne Cup festivities to find locations) so I had to go down to Victoria a week early and find my own locations. Because I really didn't know the Victorian countryside I started every morning looking at Google satellite maps for terrain and roads that might have something interesting to shoot on- especially private properties that looked like they had roads on them that we could get permission to use. I would then spend the next 12 hours driving every day combing over every road in that area and then try and contact homeowners that might have a nice road. After driving around 1000kms of small backroads, at the 11th hour I finally found a family that let us shoot on their land. We couldn't have asked for more amazing weather.

To do the aerial shots I worked with Flying Dragon, a drone company that specialises in high-end cinematography. I had experimented with several readily available drones like the Phantoms and the still image quality just didn't stack up for the size we were going to have to use for the stills. We had to use a camera that was over 30 megapixels to satisfy their print needs and the only drones that can hoist up a camera large enough to do that are the heavy duty 8 blade drones that require professional pilots and cost a fortune. The operator was in charge of the flight controls and navigation on one monitor and I controlled the camera gimbal and captures on the other. I have to say, despite the challenges of short flight times due to battery power, I definitely preferred using a big drone to hanging out of the side of a helicopter.

Client: Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
Agency: Richards Rose Executive
Executive CD: Adam Rose
CD: Liam Hillier

OPSM Ad Campaign in Australia and New Zealand

I recently spent several weeks traveling and working with Saatchi & Saatchi on a new ad campaign for the eye wear retailer OPSM. The job was a really exciting project for me to be a part of because it picked two small towns- Busselton, Western Australia and Napier, New Zealand- and found people of all ages and walks of life who use and need their product, eye glasses. Saatchi & Saatchi scoured through Australian and New Zealand census data to determine a town in each country that encompassed the broad range of types of jobs, incomes, ethnicities etc. that represent each country. We met with bushfire fighters, a horse whisperer, a bagpipe marching band, a master jeweller and a beekeeper just to name a few. I was really excited by the notion of shooting my favorite subject in advertising work: real people with real stories. These are just a few of the shots from Busselton, Western Australia. I'll post images from the New Zealand campaign which was shot in Napier, New Zealand in the near future.

Bushfire fighter OPSM Busselton Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton family Joe Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton farm Joe Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton Horse Whisperer Joe Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton beekeeper Joe Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton Water Reserve Joe Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton Jeweller Joe Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton Catalog Portraits Joe Wigdahl
OPSM Busselton morning landscape Joe Wigdahl

Like most of the large productions I've been working on lately, I was shooting alongside a TVC production that was filming spots for TV and the web, while I was shooting images for the new catalog, website and everything print- in-store, billboards etc. We shot every day for 10-14 hours a day for 2 weeks and I ended up shooting portraits of over 100 people and a lot of landscapes along the way. Most days I would shoot alongside the TVC crew, grabbing shots when I could and stepping in when the TVC guys were done or had a few minutes to hand the subject and location over to me. In each city I had a day to shoot 25 portraits a day which broke down to a new location, set up and portrait every 20 minutes or so for 9 hours. An exhausting but exhilarating exercise as the opportunity to meet new people with great stories just kept coming. At one point I ended up getting pretty emotional at a small town bag piper rehearsal after feeling so lucky that these people would allow us to come in and be a part of their private experience, something I would have never been able to know about or be a part of if I was on my own traveling through this small town.

At the end of the 2 week assignment I'd shot portraits of more than 100 people, was tired, sore and really missed home but damn, I enjoyed that job. I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

CD: Matt Gilmour Sr AD: Nils Eberhardt Sr Copywriter: Veronica Copestake The TVC/Motion campaign was produced by Tobias Webster at EXIT Films and directed by Stephen Carroll.

New Zealand Surfing Day Trip

I recently had 2 huge jobs which both happened to bring me to New Zealand for shooting. We had a brief day with my fantastic assistant Maxy where he took us to an incredible black sand beach north of Auckland and we took a break from the crazy job and spent the evening surfing. I suppose it's a bit of cliche now to say that New Zealand is place full of lovely people and beautiful landscapes but it just is.

 

Vodafone 4G Ad Campaign

I just recently shot a new campaign for Vodafone launching their new 4G service. The job involved working with massive, real letters spelling out the "4G" that weighed several hundred pounds and took a team of moving experts to get the unwieldy, fragile and extremely expensive props into place. We started off at 2:30 AM shooting on Sydney Harbour

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Subaru Forester 2013- Norway

A few months after shooting the first leg of the 2013 Subaru Forester's trip around the world, AOI Pro contacted me and asked if I'd like to go to Norway to shoot the next leg. I jumped at the chance- I've always wanted to go to Norway and after I moved to Australia I considered the chances of ever going to be close to nil. Even though there would only be 4-5 hours of daylight a day, -20C most days and it would be something like 28-35 hours of travel each way depending on flight times and delays and it would be right before Christmas, I had to go.

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Subaru 2013 Forester- Australia

In September I was asked by the Japanese advertising agencies Hakuhodo and Aoi Pro to take part in a year-long project shooting the new Subaru Forester as it began a drive around the world through some its toughest terrain. I shot stills alongside a motion/TVC production headed by the Australian cinematographer Daniel Ardilley with the Australian production handled by Dynamite Productions. I felt pretty lucky to be involved in this production as I knew I was going to be going to parts of Australia that I probably would never get the chance to go see otherwise and I'd be able to go up in a helicopter to get some great views of the incredible Aussie outback landscape.

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Nikon D5200 "I Am Imagination"

Back in August I worked with the German advertising agency Jung von Matt ( JVM) on the "I Am Imagination" campaign for the new Nikon D5200. It was also one of the several jobs I've done this year alongside a TVC/motion production where I was the still shooter. I had the pleasure to work alongside Danish director Henrik Henson who shot the motion spot for this campaign.

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Australian Desert Landscapes

I know that I haven't been updating my blog very much lately but it's because I've actually been pretty busy and unfortunately many of the jobs that I've been working on have confidentiality agreements that don't allow me to talk about the jobs until several months after I've shot them. But I've got loads of new images to show you and I hope you like them.

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Monocle Magazine: Sydney Swimming

Last month Monocle Magazine featured the most liveable cities in the world and of course, Sydney was one of them. They wanted me to travel around the Sydney area and document the people and places that makes swimming feature so strongly in the Sydney lifestyle. I traveled around the northern beaches like Balmoral and Manly and many of the eastern beaches like Clovelly, Maroubra and of course, Bondi. I'm a big swimmer myself so I was really looking forward to hitting the spots that I love and getting the chance to find some new ones.

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Chicago Storm Pictures

I woke up this morning with an email from a friend back in Chicago warning me that several people were sending around a picture on Facebook that I took, claiming that it was theirs. Apparently there were some pretty ominous clouds over Chicago and someone either mistakenly (or intentionally) said that this picture was taken yesterday of the same storm and at some point, the image went viral on Facebook and Reddit with several people claiming they took it

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Tasmania / Smithsonian Magazine

I was recently asked by the American publication The Smithsonian Magazine to shoot a cover story featuring Tasmania and Tasmania's world famous MONA Museum. I was asked to document Hobart, shoot the Mona museum and some portraits of its notoriously camera-shy owner David Walsh and then afterwards make my way up to the Freycinet Peninsula to document the award winning Sapphire Hotel, Wineglass Bay and the incredible surrounding landscapes.

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Mazda BT-50 Shoot: Zoom Zoom Magazine

Last month I was asked by the UK's Redwood Media Group to shoot a story featuring Mazda's new BT-50 model for its award-winning online presence, Zoom Zoom Magazine. They wanted to tell a story about a day in the life of a BT-50 owner with a natural, reportage feel- showcasing its versatility by following the owner through rough terrain, a surf trip, a trip to the zoo "glamping" (glamorous camping) with his nieces and capped with a night out on the town.We had a looonngggg shot list for the 2 day shoot and I was working alongside Jefferson Grainger, from Corporate Video Australia, who was shooting the motion segment of the piece for the web.

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Monocle Magazine Shoot: Darwin, Australia

Last month Monocle Magazine sent me up to Australia's Northern Territory to cover a story on their burgeoning capital city, Darwin. Darwin has become big news in the last few years as the United States has promised to begin stationing several hundred troops there in an effort to re-establish a naval presence in that part of the world. There's also been some massive investment in natural gas by the Japanese and French to the tune of $39 billion AUD. Monocle wanted to find out how this new interest in Darwin might change the city and what the people and government thought about it. I teamed up with Darwin journalist Eric Tlozek to meet some VIPs there and shoot everything I could with the 2 days that I had.

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New lifestyle work for a Sydney real estate company

Back in April, a design firm based in North Sydney called Delivery Inc hired me to shoot some imagery for a new real estate development there called The Belvedere. The challenge was to find compelling imagery that told a story about working and living in North Sydney for them to use on the web, in print, in billboards, etc. I had only been living in Sydney for a few months at that point and hadn't really been to North Sydney so I needed to do some exploring. I spent 16 hours walking many miles crisscrossing North Sydney, Milsons Point and Kirribilli and shot many, many images.  It was exhausting but a lot of fun.

The Belvedere- Opera House
The Belvedere- Parks
The Belvedere- The Bridge
The Belvedere- North Sydney Court House
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