In the age of cell phone cameras and citizen journalists, anyone can take a picture of something-but it takes
talent to bring that something to you. Looking at the photography of jack schwitz- I find myself feeling small but oddly connected. Suddenly I am a part of
You can blame his Rochester, New York roots for his early interest in photography. Rochester is the home of Eastman Kodak. Jack Schwitz has a respect, if not obsession, with the company to this day. He still shoots film and fuji is in his words “the worst four letter word you
can say.” Although moving to digital for work reasons, Jack is quick to point out that he still takes the time to expose a
roll of 35mm Kodak film whenever he gets a chance.
I had the amazing opportunity to interview Jack recently, so lets get to it!
1. How did you get into photography?
My interest in photography grew out of being horrible at skateboarding. All my friends were progressing and I… was not. So I picked up a camera and began taking pictures of them. Everything grew out of that.
2. What would you consider your style?
I do not know if it is considered a style, but I love the surreal look of oversaturated reversal film.
3. What would you say influences your work?
The skateboarding photographers of my generation influenced me, Spike Jonze, Rick Kosick, Grant Brittan. And they still do to this day, as I have watched their careers grow into respected directors and DP’s.
4. Since starting, how have you changed/grown as a photographer?
Thankfully I have been able to grow my passion into a career, which is both positive and negative. I am able to do what I love, but most of the time I am shooting things that others hire me to shoot.
5. Where do you see photography heading/changing?
I see photography becoming less and less respected in the world as we shift from a select few who were able to shoot wet plate, to George Eastman bringing photography to the masses, to digital acquisition, to instagram giving everyone artistic post processing techniques.
6. Are there any photographers who you gain inspiration from?
I gain inspiration from the photographers I know and work with. Techniques are best learned by sharing ideas.
7. Words of advice for a new photographer?
If I have any advice for new photographers it would be to learn how to shoot film and take a darkroom class at a community college. You will learn how to contemplate and weigh each shot. You will debate framing and composition, and then how to develop your own negatives and make prints. Then you can take the art and knowledge you have learned and apply it to the digital realm.
Check Jack out at
35mm stuff (hobby)
Video Production (work)
Photographs are the property of the talented Jack Schwitz. You must have his permission to use them.