Thu. May 28th, 2020

Frederick Dunn Suspends Disbelief With His Enchanting And Authentic Photography Skills, Highlight Hollywood Spotlights Suspended Moments Photography

Having known Frederick Dunn over the years, I have been impressed with his growth as a photographer. Gone are the days, the dad, husband and chicken lover, yes, we both have that in common too, once a novice, who simply enjoyed capturing moments of his family, and boy, did they ever wonder, if dad and husband Fred would give up on this hobby? Maybe it takes an outsider, a family friend, not a family member, to understand what Fred felt the first day he decided to take up photography as a hobby.  But, I knew he would never abandon the camera again, I also knew that he had the instincts and the eye to become a top rate professional in this field. Has he done so already?
You bet he has.  And he no longer is shy about sharing his love for this creative and artistic genre, and that he definitely should never do again.  Highlight Hollywood  FredDunn-1spoke exclusively with the Pennsylvania based artist, photographer and devoted husband and father.  Fred is beloved in his part of the world, and for good reason.  In Hollywood I see people every day, that are in the business because of who they may know, or what they may know. Fred does his authentic work with ease, but with love for the Art of photography He should be on all the Paris and Milan runways, he captures the very essence of his subjects. With wisdom, he looks to the “true face,” as my pal director David Lynch calls it.  He sees what few others see, until they view his works, and then they say to themselves. “How did Fred capture that? I never saw that in his subject before he took these photographs.
When asked if 2012 was as exciting for the handsome photographer as previous years.  He laughed, and he said, “This is an easy one Tommy, this year has been very interesting overall, but I have to say that underwater portraiture has topped the “exciting” chart for me this year.  Coaching beautiful people to look natural while immersed in a river, pond or lake is a challenge in itself, then add the technical aspects of lighting and exposure control… FABULOUS in a word!”
Fabulous is definitely a word to use when describing Fred or his extraordinary images.  It goes to show that if you have a hobby, you love it, you work hard at it and you get the word around, you can make your dreams a reality.  I wondered out-loud, if this was Fred’s plan, to make this joyous hobby, he’s so darn good at, into a living?  Fred said very quickly, “My (plan) is simply to improve with each and every shoot and continue until I run out of creative steam.  Finding some new technological advantage is always exciting, as it allows me to achieve almost anything I can think of, without the restrictions and consideration of low light, rain, wind, snow or other environmental conditions which, in the past, would have made shooting a no-go,” said Frederick Dunn. “I would like my (focus) to be geared towards the art minded client and push the shoot and post production techniques towards a deeper, more sophisticated result.  The sort of image that would cause the observer to remain frozen in their tracks with some level of appreciation that’s it, simply put.”
I pointed out to Fred, that his lighting patterns are so natural, not fake-looking or even intrusive. He photographs kids a lot, and most wouldn’t sit still if they didn’t feel comfortable with the photographer, and they also would not seem so poised, but natural with anyone else but this talented shutter-bug.  “Thank you for all of these observations Tommy!  When it comes to children, household pets, exotics or even horses, being “ready to shoot” is a huge part of the game.  There isn’t a lot of time to fiddle when the moment is just that, a “moment”.  A horse looks your way, perks it’s ears and you have to get it.  A child pauses and gazes in your direction or off to some distant point of interest, without being “posed” and you have something that communicated who they really are,” said Dunn.  Adding, “I’m patient and conversational with all of my clients and have a pretty good repertoire of noises that produce FredDunn-4the expression I need from animals.  Children don’t really respond well to commands and directions, but are happy to be encouraged to join in the portrait game as they enjoy the environment they are in.  Humor goes a long way with everyone and as I have no pride, making fun of myself is a good beginning.
I take a lot of photographs. Let me rephrase that. Many photographs are taken of me.  And the most difficult thing about it, is that oftentimes, I feel the photographer is uncomfortable, which a subject can feel, and then rebel of sorts, in the shoot.  You become tense, and then you can only count the minutes until the shoot is over, then you run out the door, if not literally, definitely figuratively.  So, I had to know if Fred is one of those nervous photographers, or if he also feels on edge while behind the camera?  “Depending on the client and what expectations there are, hours before the session, I tend to get pretty focused on what I plan to do.  My wife Annette likes to give me lots of information surrounding the client and I reject that, wanting to keep a clean line of thought about the shoot itself.  Once I’m there and on location, I’m very calm and easy going, never nervous.  I love people and am always excited for the opportunity to show them how I interpret who they are in my mind.  I discover them on shoots that can last up to two hours.  I’m calm, getting the model to also relax is often the challenge and something I constantly work on.  I’m not looking for a  “poser” but rather someone who can be natural while having their photo taken.  I deal with lots of laughter and crack ups, I fredDunn-5almost never have to say “smile”,” said Frederick.
Highlight Hollywood and many other publications promoted Fred’s awesome DVD, which is still for sale by McMurray Hatchery and other venues, including getting it directly from Fred.  I wanted to ask him, if he plans on doing more DVD’s about raising chickens in the near future?  “Well, the DVD which was published in 2006 (thank you for your support of that by the way Tommy), filled a niche that hadn’t been well covered before.  Photography is a saturated market where instructional materials are concerned, so no plans for anything like that, [regarding teaching photography].  Then he said, “I have given seminars and taught short courses on photography, but I no longer have a slow season, so teaching isn’t practical for me in the near future.  I’m always flattered when a group asks me to speak or provide photographic instruction and I love public speaking.  My schedule doesn’t leave much breathing room these days.”
FredDunn-6But, I noticed recently, that Fred’s work is very much a part of his daily life. You can see it whenever he shows photos of his beautiful wife, Annette and other family, and extended family and friends.  Fred didn’t shy away from the question, is this something that his family was prepared for. “Now this is an area that all of my family members (extended family included), must put up with.  When I have new equipment, whether it’s a piece of video gear, a steadicam, underwater pack or new lighting technology, my friends and family will be the test models.  They know I will be snapping and filming at each and every family gathering… it’s what I do and I can’t stop it.  No one complains as the result is full documentaries of the wonder years of nieces, cousins, sons, daughters and nephews.  This year I have a new daughter in law, she suggested I do underwater portraits… so, in my book, that means she’s the first test model as was my beautiful daughter Shannon.  They were both troopers and received high praises for the portraits which resulted,” concluded Frederick Dunn.
Underwater? I will have to ask him more about that soon.  Check out Fred’s insanely amazing and breathtaking photography at:
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Written By: Tommy Lightfoot Garrett
Photographs are Courtesy: Frederick Dunn and 
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