Bill Frakes is an award-winning photographer who has traveled to more than 130 countries to capture some of the most exciting moments from the Olympics to covering a six-man football team in the fields of Nebraska. As a staff photographer for Sports Illustrated, many of his images have captured the rough and beautiful essence of sports. We are very proud to have with us a photographer like you. Bill. So.. Let’s start with some questions.. Is it the gear or the photographer that makes the shot?
You make photographs with your heart, your eye, your mind and your soul. That said, having command of the right equipment to help you translate what is in your heart, your eye, your mind and your soul to what ever viewing mechanism you select is intregal to the process. You need to have the image in your mind, then choose the right equipment to exercise your vision. And that is necessarily different for everyone.
Who or what inspires you?
Life. I try to live mine fully, and enjoy the things I come in contact with, and try to contact the things that I want to enjoy.
Education is very important to me. When I feel something I reach out for it. I want to understand in order to appreciate.
Tell us the most funny Italian artist with whom you worked
Do you have a pretty strong network of colleagues that you are often in contact with?
A very tight, and strong network. We help and support each other. It’s a continual education process all around.
How do you describe your photographic style?
Simple and straightforward. I want the content to be the message, not me, not technique. I want the work to look like it was from one hand, but a gentle hand that remains unseen.
How do you get so close to your subjects?
I was born and raised in the rural ranch country of Western Nebraska. I grew up in an environment completely free of fear which allows me to have a completely open heart and mind.
When you photograph, do you have a theme in mind?
I love what I do. My vocation and avocation are the same.
What projects are you currently working on?
A short film, two ad campaigns, two music videos, a series of workshops, an assignment for Sports Illustrated, and a long term project on agricultural workers.