About Justin Cox Photography
Professional Photography for Professional Companies: Tell the Story of Your Business
One of the most basic ways to evaluate a professional is: How do they use their tools? In the photography world, which tools a professional uses is often irrelevant - buying $7,000 worth of Nikon gear doesn't make you a photographer, it makes you a Nikon owner. How I use my equipment makes all the difference. I shoot 99 percent of my photos on Manual, balancing visual composition (what you see in the frame) with mechanical composition (how the camera and lens separate or combine subjects together). While the equipment I use today is some of the best in the industry, my skill and experience are my most important tools.
Every job is different - and adapting on the fly with confidence and a creative drive make my work consistently interesting, different, and dynamic. I spent 10 years as a photojournalist at newspapers, mostly in Texas. There's no formula to creating great images. You can't learn it in a book. That's why I rarely work in a controlled, studio environment - it limits what I do best - improvise and create. I do things my own way, and I do it well.
Unwavering Commitment to Exceptional Quality
I want my work to stand out, even among other professionals. In my print work to the event photography, to telling the story of your business, I work exceptionally hard to make sure that I tell the story with my photos in a way that is unique, that doesn't use the standard as the model for success.
The Trees: Creating a World on My Camera
There’s never been a sunset that looked better on a camera than it did in person. Our eyes just see so much that cameras cannot. But, as it turns out, the reverse is true when the lights go out.My work is an exploration of night photography, using my camera to see what my eyes cannot. With the use of a tripod, I expose a single shot for several minutes, causing dim light to become brighter the longer it is exposed. This can cause an artificial light source to appear as bright as the sun despite being taken in the dark of night.
I discovered this while experimenting with my camera one night in an inner city park filled with harsh street lights and trees with long, bulging limbs and small leaves. The dramatic amplification of light created a scene that looked better on my camera than what I saw with the naked eye; one that was full, bright, vibrant and alive.
Since then, I have endeavored to take detailed control over the exposures, selectively using fixed lights with colored filters in combination with handheld lights to quite literally create a scene of my own choosing - one that looks better than the one I live in. Any light entering the camera, even for brief periods, gets exposed during that time.
Trees are a great symbol of endurance and independence. Year after year, night after night, they sit in the dark, exposed, yet strong and defiant against time and the elements. To me, they are symbols of solidarity, proof of what can be accomplished when you're alone, as if to say “this is where I stand, this is where I live, this is where I achieve.”
- Justin Cox
Maple Grove, MN