About Joshua Self

Josh SelfI’ve always had passion for storytelling and capturing great moments with a camera.

As Depression-era photographer Dorothea Lange once said:

“Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still.”

Ever since I got my first 120 film camera for my birthday one year in the early ’80s, I’ve been fascinated with the idea of freezing a moment in time and making that into art whenever possible. I also learned over the years that Ansel Adams was also correct in saying :

“You don’t take a photograph, you make it.”

… meaning that there is usually more work that goes into a great photo than just being there and pressing the shutter including concepts like: composition, lighting and post production. With that mentality I have studied and honed my photography skills, both digital and film, for over 10 years now and have used that knowledge and skill to serve my clients and make them look the best they can without loosing that “moment” or that spontaneity of emotion or action.

My name is Josh Self . I’ve been a professional photographer and videographer for over 10 years.

My specialties are:

  • weddings
  • special events
  • head shots for actors, models and professional business people
  • fashion
  • portrait
  • photo journalism
  • family and kids

I’ve studied photography theory, lighting, composition and digital editing for over 10 years and use that knowledge to make my clients look amazing! I started out on film and learned everything the hard way but have obviously since moved on to professional Nikon DSLRs and lenses. I still break out a few of my vintage cameras like my Yashica -D TLR and Holga medium format film cameras when feeling “artsy”. (Ask me about fine art or vintage style film commissions for your next event or portrait session)

I also have tons of experience with short films, video presentations, interviews, video slide shows and music video. I’m an accomplished videographer (MiniDV, DVCam, and others) and short film director (see accomplishments below), and also a trained hand-held and jib-crane camera man (for concerts and speaking events).

I’ve been using blogging, writing and podcasting along with social media and new web technologies for over 5 years to build digital relationships and have become a “go to” person for people that know me for my knowledge of web resources and social media expertise knowledge.

Some of my clients include:

  • Fotowerks Custom Photography – Wedding and Portrait photography in Montevallo, AL

  • Vertical Solutions Media – Marketing, Publishing, PR and Web Design firm in Birmingham, AL

  • The Birmingham Barons – Minor League Baseball affiliate in Birmingham, AL

  • The Cheesecake Factory Restaurants

  • Clay, Alabama Historical Society

  • Ed McGuffie – Mayor of Clay, AL

  • Cars By The Creek – Annual car show in Montevallo, AL

  • Rancho De Las Aguilas – Wedding venue in Birmingham, AL

  • Pitner Family Dentistry – Dental practice in Bessemer, AL

  • The Birmingham News / Advance Central Services – News and Media

  • Mountaintop Community Church

  • The American Village – Historic trust and wedding venue

 

 

A shoot I did with Fotowerks and in cooperation with Kathy G and Co. at The American Village to showcase the catering and venue.
(video by Holloway Productions, you can find me at about 3:03)

 

Josh on the Atari

on the Atari back in 1989

Fun Facts about Josh

* I’m a MK (Missionary Kid) who was born in Birmingham, AL but grew up in the jungles of Bolivia, South America
* I’m a US Navy vet and have lived in such places as Bolivia, Brazil, Guam, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Thailand, San Diego, and Mountainview, California and Memphis, Tennessee
* I’ve played guitar and bass for almost 20 years now and played in four different bands that toured the Southeast US.
* I started my love of computers with the Atari 800XL (see above) in the late ’80s and over the years I have built 3 different PCs, but now am a recent Apple convert.
* I love writing screenplays and short stories even though I don’t have much time to do either now.

Some minor accomplishments:

Josh and stedicam

shooting a short film in 2004

  • Won awards for “Best Director”, “Best Production” and “Best Cinematography” for the winter 2007 Sidewalk Scramble short film “38mm
  • The documentary “How I Get Down (The True Story of Grandpa Bill)” that I produced and co-directed was accepted and played at the 2007 Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham, AL.
  • Blogged regularly semi-regularly since 2004 on various blogs
  • Started The Wedding PhotogBlog in 2008, as a resource for wedding photographers both new and experienced. It is now named Be A Photo Pro.com
  • Speaker and presenter at Birmingham PhotoCamp 2007
  • Speaker at Birmingham BarCamp 2009
  • Venue manager for over 3 years with Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham.
  • Worked as 2nd Assistant Director for award winning short film “Piece of Cake” starring Mo’ Rocca.
  • Worked as a stand-in and extra on the Sony Pictures film Talladega Nights.
  • Worked as a production assistant on the music videos for gospel singer Marvin Sapp “Never Would Have Made It” and also country musician Jake Owen “Don’t Think I Can’t Love You“.
  • Worked as an extras wrangler and production assistant on Bill Bellamy’s Who’s Got Jokes? cable TV show for TV One network.
  • Currently main crew, camera and jib-crane operator for Mountaintop Church’s weekly TV show.
  • My photos have been featured in magazines such as Alabama Weddings, Shelby Living and Birmingham Works and many business and travel websites.
  • Some of my photography is featured at the Applebee’s Restaurant in Ensley, Alabama.

Disclosures and Relationships

  • I work for Advance Central Services (service partner for The Birmingham News and AL.com)
  • I occasionally shoot and write for  The Terminal blog here in Birmingham, AL
  • I’m a conservative leaning libertarian (if it matters)
  • I use Amazon Affiliate links to point to some of the products that I talk about.
  • I use Commission Junction affiliate links on my site, but I personally endorse all of the businesses that I link to.
  • I am an affiliate for GoDaddy, and most of my sites are hosted by them
  • If you see a Google Adsense ad, as you may or may not know, I do not personally choose or endorse these ads, Google picks what it thinks is best for my site.
  • I’ve been married to my amazing wife Andrea for over 5 years now and have an awesome little boy named Ryker.

 

Josh and Andrea

Me and the Missus