Ice Mountain Spring Water - Weber Shandwick - FYT Productions by Christian O'Grady

FYT got to document Nestle Waters doing their part to help Flint schools during their time of crisis. We went to Stanwood, Mich. bright and early to photograph the factory workers at the Ice Mountain Spring Water bottled water supplier. To help support Flint in their time of need, you can donate to the Flint Water Fund which helps purchase bottled water, water filters and emergency support services. 

LEAR Charity Preview NAIAS - George P Johnson Marketing Experience - Event Photography by Christian O'Grady

FYT has been documenting the LEAR Charity Preview even before we were FYT!

This is our third year photographing the annual event for George P Johnson Marketing Experience (formerly pulse220) who puts on an in incredibly decadent event in celebration of LEAR and all hard work the company has done. Gourmet food along with crafted cocktails which this year included a ten foot tall ice sculpture martini ice luge....! 

This year topped them all because the energy was high, food was plentiful and the live band played hot all night long! See for yourself! 

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Year in Review 2015 - FYT Productions - Photography and Video by Christian O'Grady

FYT Productions was born one year ago and this first year has been such a great ride. We travelled to New Orleans, Maryland, and Toronto to pursue new sights and expand our minds. We had the opportunity to work with closely with TEDxDetroit, Zoup!, The Metro Museum Of Design Detroit, Zara Creative, and many others. In 2015, we incorporated video production into our company, which allowed us to work on a multitude of projects including two music videos for young female country singer Tegan Marie that have totaled over 100k youtube views as well as crafting a kaleidoscopic nature video content for MM-O-DD, and even landing a video on QVC for one of our newest clients, Skinnytees! Phew! 

Starting a business is a long hard road but in 2015 FYT Productions flew down that road and primed 2016 as a year for growth. Throughout 2015 we took some big steps toward making our company exactly what we envisioned. Now, we are ready to help grow your company through crafted  visual content marketing. 

Top Ten of 2015

Victoria modeling a black Opera Coat for CUREiosities in the Skillman Library, Detroit.

Victoria modeling a black Opera Coat for CUREiosities in the Skillman Library, Detroit.

SOFI K reaching out to fans during her first concert at the Royal Oak Music Theatre.

SOFI K reaching out to fans during her first concert at the Royal Oak Music Theatre.

Milk chocolate being poured into custom molds to make bon bons at BON BON BON manufactory in Hamtramck.

Milk chocolate being poured into custom molds to make bon bons at BON BON BON manufactory in Hamtramck.

Young female country singer Tegan Marie

A Lamborghini photographed during a Platinum Motorcars customer appreciation event at Waterford Racetrack.

A Lamborghini photographed during a Platinum Motorcars customer appreciation event at Waterford Racetrack.

A wild horse running along the road on Assateague Island.

A wild horse running along the road on Assateague Island.

Product/lifestyle shot for Triple Thread Apparel shot in Pontiac.

Product/lifestyle shot for Triple Thread Apparel shot in Pontiac.

Keynote speaker Kevan Hall at Fashion Speak in Detroit.

Keynote speaker Kevan Hall at Fashion Speak in Detroit.

#SaveTheBats founder and advocate Rob Mies showing off one of his friends at TEDxDetroit.

#SaveTheBats founder and advocate Rob Mies showing off one of his friends at TEDxDetroit.

Robbie Kowal, DJ MoPo, spins at the silent disco during Electric Forest Festival 2015.

Robbie Kowal, DJ MoPo, spins at the silent disco during Electric Forest Festival 2015.

Blue and Purple foods as the second installment of our Chromatic Cornucopia series. It's a still life series focused on particular colors, previously we did a green food shoot and this series will continue. Styled by Madalyn Knebel, shot and edited by FYT Productions.

Blue and Purple foods as the second installment of our Chromatic Cornucopia series. It's a still life series focused on particular colors, previously we did a green food shoot and this series will continue. Styled by Madalyn Knebel, shot and edited by FYT Productions.

Metro Museum of Design Detroit (MMODD) kaleidoscopic centerpiece for the Frost Fairy Queen during Detroit's very own Noel night at the Detroit Science Center.

Music by Rachel Skotarczyk.

MM-O-DD - Michigan Science Center: Noel Night - FYT Productions by Christian O'Grady

This year FYT got to participate in one of Detroit's holiday traditions, Noel Night! 

A good friend and client of ours Leslie Ann Pilling is the founder and President of Metro Museum of Design Detroit (MM-O-DD). The museum explores the industry of design with a current mobile presence. We are on board as in-kind sponsors. FYT donates our photo and video services to the non-profit which gives us the opportunity to work closely with talented creatives and craft content for the up and coming museum. 

For Noel Night, we created a video to set the stage for MM-O-DD's Design Showcase of The Frost Fairy Queen. We shot video footage of the first snowfall back in November highlighting frost, snowflakes, icicles, and other variations. To incorporate the aesthetic of MMODD, we gave geometric shape to nature's design mimicking a kaleidoscopic effect. The music recorded and produced by friend Rachel Skotarczyk, worked together with the video to deliver a more dramatic epic ambience.  

MM-O-DD was stationed in the downstairs of the Michigan Science Center located in the DTE Sparks Theatre. Children lined up to have their picture taken with the Frost Fairy Queen with our piece making for a beautiful backdrop.

There was even a station for kids to design their own ID tags, each unique and special - just like a snowflake!

Featuring artists include: Mobel Link Modern Furniture, Celeste Smith of Celeste Couture Hats, BWP Light and Sound, S. Kay Young Photography LLC, Hair Lab Detroit and Presence II Productions.

CUREiosities - Rose & Robert Skillman Branch Library - FYT Productions by Christian O'Grady

Photography is my road to the unknown, toward existence...
— Victoria Zegler, FYT Productions

The Rose & Robert Skillman Branch of the Detroit Public Library is a beautiful gem tucked away in Detroit. While it houses the history of the nations automotive collection, it also contains historic architecture - like most of the city of Detroit. FYT had the pleasure of getting to explore this historical landmark with a close friend of ours, Leslie Ann Pilling during a photoshoot for one of her Detroit fashion brands. Leslie has a garment manufacturing studio located on Library Street in Detroit just across from the Rose & Robert Skillman Branch Library, where the shoot took place. Many of her apparel lines are produced in her studio, one of which is CUREiosities. CUREiosities is a highstyle fashion brand appointed with luxury fabrics and hardware. The opera coat, featured above has ruched details to soften the designs and play into strong, simple, and classic shapes. It gives off an edgy vibe which blends both current and deco details. Leslie explained the look as, "...if Audrey Hepburn played a role in Star Trek, her character would be the perfect client." 

Shooting inside of the library allowed us to integrate subject matter into the compositions of the building naturally. Christian was on camera, while Victoria was modeling the pieces with her camera in hand.

The concept expressed behind this brand revolves around people who explore. When Leslie initially reached out to FYT with her vision, she introduced the idea of having Victoria model the pieces. To Leslie, Victoria was a great match: a photographer and visual journalist who just this year started her own company, FYT Productions. FYT's core values lie in storytelling, quality, and purpose. These values fell parallel when landing on our location at the Skillman Branch, a place driven behind quality, purpose, and educating. In each image, a camera is present in the hand of the female photographer, as she wanders through the library exploring and finding beauty in her surroundings and documenting the story unfolding before her.

To view pieces from the CUREiosities apparel line, visit www.CUREiosities.com

Tegan Marie - "God Made Girls" - FYT Productions + Sweety High by Christian O'Grady

A few weeks ago, FYT got the opportunity to shoot a music video with 12-year-old country singer Tegan Marie. It was Tegan's debut, being her first music video, showing her fans just how serious she was about becoming a star. To continue that investment in her brand, we were contacted again by SweetyHigh.com to find a location for Tegan's second video for RaeLynn's "God Made Girls."  After a full day of location scouting, we found the lovely Camp Cavell on the east coast of Michigan along Lake Huron. It was an awesome location featuring a long coastline, abundant trees, a wrap-around porch and much more. Our contact Jill was very welcoming and even offered for us to come back if we ever need a location again, thanks Jill! 

This time around it was important to bring out more of Tegan's attitude with high energy and movement. Our coaching gave Tegan the direction she needed on camera to deliver a more engaging performance. She even snuck a wink in there! ;)

One of the core principles of FYT is teamwork. Tegan Marie, SweetyHigh.com and FYT came together to put out a compelling product. While Tegan is off recording an original Christmas track in Chicago, we'll be brainstorming ideas for her next music video back in Michigan...stay tuned!

SOFI K - Royal Oak Music Theatre - FYT Productions by Christian O'Grady

14-year-old Sophia Washer - known as Sofi K rocked the Royal Oak Music Theatre Friday night as she debuted the release of her album "LoveHate," a collection of 10 tracks that showcase an eclectic mix of creative directions and different styles that have influenced Sofi over her young career. The lyrics for the tracks were written by Sofi K and the music was co-written by Sofi K and produced by Kresge fellowship recipient Bryce Harding. 

The concert also included performances by Soul Divide and Stereo Jane. 

Teenagers filled the music theatre to see Sofi K, grabbing free popcorn, candy and soda before the live performance. As the opening bands transitioned from one song to the next, the anticipation grew stronger. Stereo Jane wrapped up their set and the MC introduced "the reason we're all here tonight!" The crowd began to scream with excitement as Sofi entered the stage with a big smile, greeting her fans.

Watching Sofi perform, I noticed the young pop artists stage presence come so naturally, giving her the ability to sing confidently and move swiftly in front of a live audience. 

As Sofi introduced her next song "Stars," a girl yelled to her friend "I know all the words to this song!" As the crowd began to sing the words to "Stars," they reached out their hands to connect with their peer who turned to a star on the stage.

Tegan Marie - Sweety High - FYT Productions by Christian O'Grady

FYT got the opportunity to shoot a music video with 12-year-old up and coming country sensation Tegan Marie...on her birthday! Tegan was born in Detroit in 2003 and started playing guitar when she only 6-years-old. A couple years later she was writing music at age 8 and playing national stages by age 11.

Tegan has a genuine presence about her that comes through in her vocals. She's natural, fun and always on allowing her to work hard to achieve her dreams.

We were contacted by a production company based out of Los Angeles by the name of Sweety High, who make content for the tween and teen market. Tegan initially reached out to Sweety High by sharing her homemade videos on their site. Our contact at the company told us about Tegan and the incredible digital presence she had been creating for herself. The next step...producing a music video. It was time to show the world what Tegan was made of.

 

We started the shoot at 8 am on a chilly October morning in Metamora, Michigan. Our good friend and fellow photographer Dan Lippitt owns at 10-acre farm with unlimited shooting potential. FYT loved getting to work with Tegan and the team to create the video for "Mama's Song," which has reached over 100,00 views!

A week later we're shooting Tegan's second music video for "God Made Girls" by RaeLynn. Stay tuned!

FashionSpeak - Detroit Garment Group - Event Photography by Christian O'Grady

FYT had the opportunity, this year, to be the official photographers and sponsors for the business-education event FashionSpeak. FashionSpeak brings together many different sides of the fashion industry together to help keep Michigan's fashion industry in Michigan. The conference was held at One Woodward in Detroit, with keynote speaker and native Detroiter, designer Kevan Hall.

Aside from the unique fashion pieces present at the event, there were a lot of interesting textures and interiors within the venue which made for nice backgrounds when shooting. Not to mention the entire third floor was wrapped in windows from the floor to the ceiling - allowing natural light to pour in during the first half of our day.

Thanks Karen Buscemi for being a great leader in Detroit!

Thanks Karen Buscemi for being a great leader in Detroit!

TEDxDetroit - FYT Productions - Event Photography by Christian O'Grady

Victoria hooked FYT up with access to shoot TEDxDetroit this year. We love TED talks and have been inspired by them for years. It was a great experience to help TEDxDetroit prosper this year with beautiful event photography for those to see around the world. Here are some of our favorites from the day! 

Conservation Biologist Rob Mies, founder of the organization Bat Conservation #SaveTheBats campaign! They are a vital part of the ecosystem and they need our help!

Conservation Biologist Rob Mies, founder of the organization Bat Conservation #SaveTheBats campaign! They are a vital part of the ecosystem and they need our help!

People lined up outside of the Fox Theatre for TEDxDetroit.

People lined up outside of the Fox Theatre for TEDxDetroit.

TEDx gathered a wide variety of entertainment such as slam poets, singers, and speed painters.

TEDx gathered a wide variety of entertainment such as slam poets, singers, and speed painters.

There were inspiring people, such as Social Entrepreneur and Philanthropist Mallory Brown, that dedicate their life to helping other lives.

There were inspiring people, such as Social Entrepreneur and Philanthropist Mallory Brown, that dedicate their life to helping other lives.

Between TEDx speakers there were interactive demonstrations to promote future ideas.

Between TEDx speakers there were interactive demonstrations to promote future ideas.

There were also many great ideas shared at TedXDetroit this year.

There were also many great ideas shared at TedXDetroit this year.

When people think of fashion they think of Tokyo, Paris, and Milan. Why not Detroit?
— Karen Buscemi
Engineer Paul Elio even brought his personal automobile on stage!!!

Engineer Paul Elio even brought his personal automobile on stage!!!

Texture Photographs - Focus Your Talent - Cranbrook Institute of Science by Christian O'Grady

This is the start of a new ongoing series FYT has recently pursued where we will be documenting interesting textures in different places we visit around the world. These particular textures were captured in a place very near and dear to us, The Cranbrook Institute of Science. This series is one we are excited to share with you because it is always evolving. It gives us, the photographers, a chance to show you our eye for detail with interesting compositions, color and of course texture! 

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SOFI K - LoveHate Album Shoot - Behind the Scenes by Christian O'Grady

14-year-old Sophia Washer - known as Sofi K, is releasing her debut album LoveHate on Friday, November 6th. The concept of the pop album revolves around the idea of mixed emotions and rather eclectic in terms of how each of the songs sound with hints of rock, jazz and blues. Christian O'Grady was called upon to conduct her photo shoot on top of Music Hall Detroit at the 3fifty Terrace for the young female artists new album art. Bryce Harding, who is producing Sofi K's album, was introduced to Christian through Sigal Levine the makeup artist and hair stylist for our shoot. The rooftop terrace was the perfect location giving us the beautiful Detroit skyline as our backdrop.

Thanks to all who contributed and Sofia's sweet mom Linda (who provided water + snacks)! 

 

Christian pointing out possible locations to Sofia and Bryce before the shoot.

Christian pointing out possible locations to Sofia and Bryce before the shoot.

Christian trying to get Sofia in the mindset to shoot.

Christian trying to get Sofia in the mindset to shoot.

Sofia was electric, filled with energy and quick to laugh.

Sofia was electric, filled with energy and quick to laugh.

Christian balancing the light from the strobe to the available light from the setting sun.

Christian balancing the light from the strobe to the available light from the setting sun.

Sofia makes a puckered face to allow Sigal to get the makeup just right.

Sofia makes a puckered face to allow Sigal to get the makeup just right.

Behind the scenes of behind the scenes, Victoria shooting the process of the shoot.

Behind the scenes of behind the scenes, Victoria shooting the process of the shoot.

Sigal lending a helpful head to lean on.

Sigal lending a helpful head to lean on.

Linda covering her eyes as Bryce pulls Sofia up onto the edge of the wall to get in position for the shot.

Linda covering her eyes as Bryce pulls Sofia up onto the edge of the wall to get in position for the shot.

Detroit stadiums in the skyline behind our location on top of Music Hall at 3fifty Terrace.

Detroit stadiums in the skyline behind our location on top of Music Hall at 3fifty Terrace.

Follow Your Truth - Manifesto - FYT Productions by Christian O'Grady

FYT Productions crafts content with photo + video to strengthen your visual brand identity. We created this company to create relationships and tell stories. Our beliefs about business are based on what is in our hearts. Victoria and Christian have worked together from the beginning to have a company that is true to our own values. 

We crafted this manifesto to share our core values; please share and enjoy.

Focus Your Talent - Portrait Session - Alchemy Thomas by Christian O'Grady

Recently Christian took some time to work with the head turning Alchemy Thomas. During the adventure through Pontiac Christian photographed Alchemy in a variety of spots. Christian as he walks through a space is always looking for "good" light, meaning light that will offer a way to make an interesting photo. 

Shooting directly into a light source you can create lens flare. Sometimes this is a problem, but in this case it adds an interesting element to the photograph.

Shooting directly into a light source you can create lens flare. Sometimes this is a problem, but in this case it adds an interesting element to the photograph.

Pontiac is a wonderful place for a photographer to shoot. There are tons of angles with clean backgrounds and amazing textures.

Light coming at the camera through leaves of a tree makes for excellent bokeh. Bokeh is the out of focus light in the background which forms little circles and it makes a great look for a photograph.

Light coming at the camera through leaves of a tree makes for excellent bokeh. Bokeh is the out of focus light in the background which forms little circles and it makes a great look for a photograph.

When you have a backlit subject you can take advantage of shapes with a silhouette. Pay attention to the overall shapes and remember that you won't all the detail that your eye can see because the dynamic range of a camera is much less than the human eye.

When you have a backlit subject you can take advantage of shapes with a silhouette. Pay attention to the overall shapes and remember that you won't all the detail that your eye can see because the dynamic range of a camera is much less than the human eye.

The top deck of the Phoenix center is a favorite spot in the Pontiac area.

Rather than doing a silhouette in this case with similar lighting Christian decided to expose the photo so you can see the colors in the sky but still kept detail in the subject. This takes some computer work to bring out the colors of the highlights and the tones in the shadows.

Rather than doing a silhouette in this case with similar lighting Christian decided to expose the photo so you can see the colors in the sky but still kept detail in the subject. This takes some computer work to bring out the colors of the highlights and the tones in the shadows.

As you work with a subject they begin to loosen up and that's when you can ask them to do something like lay across a staircase. 

If you turn yourself all the way around and look at the light on the subject rather than the sunset  you can capture a nice soft light for your photograph.

If you turn yourself all the way around and look at the light on the subject rather than the sunset  you can capture a nice soft light for your photograph.

Bon Bon Bon - #FoodWineWomen - Food&Wine by Christian O'Grady

For months Victoria has been working with the "Babes Babes Babes" of Hamtramck's Bon Bon Bon. Alexandra Clark, owner of the starkly casual chocolate shop, was such a joy to work with that she feels like a real friend. What a treat it was when Victoria told Alex that the piece was going to be published by Food&Wine! The article which is part of their #FoodWineWomen series is expanded on here with the full photo story below. Check it out and be sure to visit Alex and indulge in a few bonbons at one of her shoppes in Hamtramck, Detroit or pop-up shop in Ann Arbor. 

Dream Cruise Weekend - Platinum Motors - Car Photography by Christian O'Grady

The Woodward Dream Cruise 2015 is roaring right outside our door but you wouldn't know the event starts on Saturday with the thousands of cars cruising down M-1 since Wednesday. We will be photographing the worlds largest one-day auto event tomorrow so for tonight we decided to celebrate cars. The photos below are from an event we shot for Platinum Motorcars. Many types of cars from exotic to eccentric, from the sleek and sporty to muscle cars, race cars and classic cars were driven at the event.

Our interest with cars starts early in life. 

We can see a sexy car from a mile away.

Some people love whacky cars and some love fast cars.

We can appreciate the tiny details and the overall beauty.

Commercial Fashion - CRAINE&LOVE - Esii Perez by Christian O'Grady

This past week FYT got to shoot with some of their favorites: CRAINE&LOVE and model Esii Perez.  CRAINE&LOVE is a clothing brand centered towards producing basic and essential pieces for women and men.  

Christian and Victoria have been working alongside owner Carol Craine for several months watching new ideas and inspirations come into play while she experiments with new fabrics and patterns.  For our latest shoot we welcomed long time friend Esii, who Christian says is the most dynamic model he has worked with, to model.  

Her form was as versatile as the pieces themselves.  Each style was photographed on Esii to represent the uniform standing on it's own.  Then combinations of clothing we're thrown into the mix such as jeans, skirts and sweaters tied around the waist and shoulders, all to show the different personas that each of the designers pieces can take on.  

Your uniform, how you define it, how you wear it.

 

Whether a night out for dinner or jet-setting cross country, the style and simplicity of each piece is tailored to your true self.  FYT is excited to be on this journey with Carol as she explores new opportunities for her brand.  We look forward to seeing our images implemented.  

FYT and CRAINE&LOVE plan to produce a video at the end of the month to showcase the different styles of the brand and how the form and functionality play's a crucial role in each piece.

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Food Photography - Chromatic Cornucopia - Madalyn Knebel Design by Christian O'Grady

This week FYT had the opportunity to work with Madalyn Knebel Design to continue our series Chromatic Cornucopia.  In the spring we tackled the green color spectrum and this week it's blues and purples.  With Madalyn's great eye and sensibility for design, we're able to get a hold of fresh produce that is both unique and beautiful.  With a vibrant cornucopia as our final product, Christian and Victoria are able to photograph the process in which it's built using studio lighting for still lives and macro photography.  

Victoria looked for interesting patterns within the still lives to create compositions of the tiny details.  Some were harder to find than others.  Christian caught sight of what Victoria was doing and began his own search for compositions within the tiny world that is macro photography.

Madalyn brought over her mothers old sewing box filled with tools for styling the shoot.  Cotton balls, Q-tips, sticky tack, and jars are just some of the things that contribute to the clean look and attention to detail. Our still lives range from the classic to the contemporary.  When photographing green foods in the springtime, we focused on one setup.  This time around we set up two different tables where one housed the large cornucopia and the other was staged for experimentation.

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These purple potatoes became part of a surreal landscape with the collaboration of FYT and Madalyn Knebel Design.  The deep purples in the potatoes reminded Victoria of gemstones, which gave Madalyn the idea to slice off angled sections to create rock-like formations.  The blue cornmeal resembled sand to give the still life ground.

Editorial - 5th Annual Electric Forest Festival - The Metropolitan d'Etroit by Christian O'Grady

Hired performers dressed in cage dresses and masks greet festival goers as they enter the Sherwood Forest June 27 during the 5th Annual Electric Forest Festival in Rothbury, Mich.

DJ Motion Potion performing a late night set at the Silent Disco in Sherwood Forest.

Christian shooting a portrait with Melbourne-based indie Rockers Jakubi

Melbourne-based indie Rockers Jakubi, a five piece band composed of two brothers, two cousins and one friend, pose for a portrait before their evening performance.

With our media passes on our wrists (Thanks to The Metropolitan d'Etroit), cameras and water packs strapped to our backs we ventured into the magical world that is Electric Forest. This music/art festival in it's fifth year has grown to be an amazing spectacle of lights, music, and people embracing all of their creative visions and ideas. For Christian this was his first music festival and he wanted to focus on taking portraits and lifestyle images of the artists and festival goers alike. Victoria concentrated her efforts on photographing the stage presence of the musical acts and performers. Together FYT painted a picture of the experience of this festival for our viewers to enjoy!

Victoria shooting in the pit during a musical performance at the 5th Annual Electric Forest Festival.

Robbie Kowal, DJ Motion Potion, poses for a portrait at the Silent Disco in Sherwood Forest.

Christian shooting a portrait of Robbie Kowal, DJ Motion Potion, before his set.

Festival goers explore the Lluminarium at night to experience the wonder of light and color in the Sherwood Forest.

Phantogram performs "When I'm Small" on the Sherwood Court stage.

Jose Regueiro - Trade Table for Photography - Furniture Maker by Christian O'Grady

Jose Regueiro is a skilled craftsman with 40 years of woodworking experience. Christian had the opportunity to work with Jose on some photography in exchange for this beautiful table that is way more sturdy than it looks. Whenever we get the opportunity to work with fellow artists in trade we always get some interesting results. Christian has had his eye on this table since he first saw it over 5 years ago. Luckily building a relationship and working together has brought this custom furniture into our loft and it will be a piece to cherish for a lifetime.

Priya our 3 legged cat hanging out on our new work of art optical illusion table. "It's still got one leg at each of the four corners, so the weight is evenly distributed," Jose tells me.

Priya our 3 legged cat hanging out on our new work of art optical illusion table. "It's still got one leg at each of the four corners, so the weight is evenly distributed," Jose tells me.

1/2" thick glass is suspended by the 40" square table.

1/2" thick glass is suspended by the 40" square table.

Jose Regueiro showing his love for wood. Portrait by Christian O'Grady 2014

Jose Regueiro showing his love for wood. Portrait by Christian O'Grady 2014