Today is Joe McNally’s birthday and it got me thinking about all of the wonderful things I’ve learned from Joe over the years. Sure, like many out there, you’d think most of it was about using flash. But I’ve learned just as much from watching Joe about “how” to be a good photographer, that has absolutely nothing to do with the technical details about making a photo. This past year, Joe did something very special for me and included a photo of me (above) in his most recent book, Sketching Light – An Illustrated Tour Of The Possibilities Of Flash. Some of you may or may not know, but I’m a first degree black belt in Taekwondo. I regularly compete in fighting tournaments throughout the year, and actively practice at my Taekwondo school about 4-5 times per week (I even teach a little when possible).
A few years ago, Joe was recording a class for Kelby Training and asked if I could be one of his models for a specific long exposure/exposure merging technique he was doing (photo below).
I gotta tell ya, it was such a cool thing to see Joe transition from this guy, who we would goof around with and joke quite often, to the Joe who worked with the people in front of his camera. At one point, it was pretty cold outside (on the beach in the photo you see above), and Joe was incredibly concerned about me staying warm and making sure I didn’t get injured doing anything for his photo. It was really the only time I’ve ever been in front of the camera like that and Joe certainly set the bar high, should I ever be there again. Happy Birthday Joe and thanks so much for including me in your book. I’m incredibly honored and humbled to be a part it. Oh and if you wanna give Joe a present then go buy his book. Just don’t make fun of the moderately un-flexible guy on page 276 😉
Great nod to one of the most inspiring guys in photography, Matt. Joe’s in a league of his own. You guys at Kelby are terrific, too!
Great post. I have to agree that Joe McNally is one of the best educators on Kelby Training. I have watched just about every one of his courses. He is always very engaging and entertaining at the same time. Congrats on being included in the book and happy birthday to Joe!
Happy Birthday Joe! Your photography is breathtaking and I love your classes on Kelby Training! Matt – great post and congrats on achieving your black belt!
Lovely post, fits the impression I got from Mr.McNally. I just signed up for 1 year of kelbytraining, first thing I watched: One day with Joe McNally! Really interesting, inspiring and funny! So happy happy birthday And thanks for sharing so much!
Agreed 100% mate.
Joe ROCKED when he was over in London but aside from the masterful use of the flash it was the way he thinks out solutions to problems/challenges that folks talked about so much afterwards.
Couple that with being a truly genuine, great guy he’s the real deal.
Great post Matt and congratulations on being included in the book.
Agree 100% with you Matt. If there’s one thing to me that really sets Joe apart it’s the way he thinks things through and solves problems…I mean challenges.
Obviously Joe ROCKED when he was over in London but aside from the technical use of flash it was how Joe thinks things through that folks talked about so much afterwards.
Couple that with being a truly great, genuine guy he’s the real deal.
Great post Matt and congrats on being included in the book.
Happy Birthday to Joe. Great images and we know something about the Matt Man we didn’t know. I thouroughly enjoyed you NAPP seminar in Lansing. I learned more in one hour about Lightroom that made my day. I have a new insight on Importing to LR. All the best
Happy Birthday Joe! God Bless!!!
Happy birthday Joe, you, your blog, & your images are one of the main reasons for me to start learning & using flash.
Great post Matt. Joe is an awesome teacher for sure, really enjoy his videos on Kelby Training. Happy Birthday Joe!