“I came to the early realization that being organized is key to accomplishing almost anything and everything.”
- Apple 15” Computer
- Wacom Tablet + Stylus
- Western Digital My Passport
- iPhone 6 + Quad Lock Case
- Deakin Devices Card Reader w/ Sandisk 16GB Card
- Global Art - Pencil Case
- General’s - Charcoal White Pencil, Pacific Arc H1304 Mechanical Pencil, Pentel P205 0.5mm Mechanical Pencil, Pantel Graph Gear 500 0.9 Mechanical Pencil, Princeton Art & Brush Co 4 3/8 Paint Brush, Staedtler Mars Plastic Eraser
- Prisma Color Cool Gray 30 %
- Faber-Castell Artist Pen Variety Markers
- Notebook (Dot Grid Journal)
- Bose Speaker
- Sideshowtoy - GI JOE (Bruce Willis)
- Oberto Teriyaki Beef Jerkey
- Gerber Toolkit Knife
- Broncolor Transceiver RFS 2
- Broncolor Case for Transceiver RFS 2
- Broncolor Scoro S 3200 RFS 2
- Broncolor Unilite 3200
- Broncolor Flash Sync Cord’
- Broncolor P70 Reflector
- Pelican Camera Case (Green) + Pelican Camera Accessory Case (Black)
- Profoto Beauty Dish
- Vello FreeWave Plus Wireless Remote Shutter Release
- Hasselblad H5D 50c
- Hasselblad Battery
- Hasselblad Normal Lens 100mm f/2.2
- Hasselblad HC Macro Lens 120mm F/4.0
- Gitzo Mountaineer Series 2 Carbon Fiber
- Hama Air Dust Cleaner
- Sony RX 100 II
- SanDisk 32 GB Card
- Sony Battery
- Sony Charger w/ Battery
- Condor Case for Camera
- Honda Key Chain from Honda Fit
Who are you and what do you make?
My name is Alex Kapustin, a 27-year-old photographer and creative director based in Los Angeles. My career in photography evolved from working closely with creative directors for an advertising agency for the past six years.
I have been told that I am a bit insane, and I believe that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I have a tendency to be a perfectionist, and very detail oriented. I came to the early realization that being organized is key to accomplishing almost anything and everything, and for that reason, it’s become a big part of who I am. On any given day, my schedule can be a mixture of shooting an advertisement for a video game, to a full-blown lifestyle shoot, or sometimes still life photography for a product.
I have photographed for major clients such as Activision, Snail Games, Western Digital, and Turtle Beach. Call of Duty: Black Ops I was the first title that took my career as a part-time photographer into a full-time career. Since then, I have photographed the entire Call of Duty franchise including the most recent Call of Duty Black Ops III. I also had the amazing opportunity to work with talent like Ronda Rousey, the world renowned undefeated UFC fighter, for the video game Taichi Panda.
In my spare time, I like to buy interesting and unique products that I am inspired by, and draft some visual concepts on a piece of paper—then I finish it off with a full-scale photo shoot.
What’s one thing you can’t go a day without?
One thing I cannot go a day without is a form of exercise—cycling, rock climbing, or simply meditating. You have to learn how to step away from work to reset your creative juices. Exercising daily gets my head clear about all the projects I am involved with.
What could someone learn about you from your toolkit, or from watching you shoot BTS?
Probably how simple I keep my lighting set up. Coming from an illustration background, I usually light my subject flat with one source light bouncing against white or through a diffuser. Then I add a key light to grab attention on where I am focusing my vision. Last but not least, I add a rim light to give shape to my subject. Sometimes it can get a bit complex based on the creative direction, or when you have to use multiple lights to create a specific effect. Overall though, all I need really is three lights and bunch of reflectors.
I also like to work with very specific tools too. Broncolor and Hasselblad are my go to choices. Broncolor can freeze an image of a fast moving object, and Hasselblad provides 14 stops of dynamic range—making the image stand out beautifully.
A lot of your work revolves around the video game industry—what’s your favorite classic game?
Even though I do a lot of work for video games, I don’t play video games very much. I might take a stab at playing the Call of Duty Black Ops series, or Grand Theft Auto V. But, I do play a lot of arcade games on my iPhone. One game I recently became addicted to is Subway Surfer. There is no end to that game, so be careful how much time you spend on it!
Alex Kapustin is the Grand Prize Winner of our 2015 On Hand contest.