According to photographer Dan M. Lee, a blend of journalism and candidness when shooting his subjects helps him stand out among the many photographers one has to choose from in the New York tri-state area.
"While I love to shoot a few weddings a year for special clients, as well as cover events, I very much enjoy the commercial aspect of photography," he says. "That could be product, real estate or maybe headshots for corporate clients. Being versatile has really bought me benefits and improved me as an artist, an advantage my clients can benefit from."
Lee is the owner of Dan M. Lee Photography, offering his services for a variety of events and subjects such as weddings, music festivals, corporate events, headshots, fashion, real estate, commercial space, and product photography. He also works as a freelance photojournalist for a website called The Culture Trip and is a professional member of the National Press Photographers Foundation.
Samples of some of his real estate photography can be seen at RealEstatePhotography.NYC .
Like most photographers, he became enamored with the camera at a young age, but it was the work of another photographer that convinced him to take the first step into making those first few snaps.
"Growing up I was inspired by a photographer called David Bailey who created the most amazing portraits that really spoke to me," he explains. "All his shots were just amazing as it was just David and his subject; they felt intimate and private as well as honest. That got my interest in picking up a camera. The technical side of using film in a fully manual camera was also appealing; learning how to capture amazing images without the tech of today was truly thrilling. Seeing images in books has also inspired me to get my own book deal."
Lee's first job working in a photography store in the UK while attending school there helped him hone additional technical skills for his profession. He then earned experience photographing music events and all kinds of subjects including street scenes, landscapes, sporting events, and more.
Variety may be the key to appealing to a lot of clients, but Lee stands out among his saturated industry in another way: by offering photography classes. All of his 2016 sessions on learning studio, strobe light, and modeling photography were fully booked for 2016.
Upcoming events and classes are in the works for 2017; all of them take place at his NYC studio. They offer an insightful way for budding photographers to get their hands dirty working with equipment and begin building a portfolio.
Lee offers several wedding photography packages that can incorporate social media sharing, an elegant photo book, make-up and hair services, a photo booth with an assistant and props, and more. But at the end of the day, some of his favorite moments on the job have been capturing the unexpected ones.
"Having covered events large and small as well as family portraits has expended my portfolio," he says. "However, most of my favorite images come from my travel portfolio. The Tarry Town Lighthouse is a recent favorite of mine, with a man asleep on the subway platform and commuters looking depressed in the background. It was a joy to capture that."