John Ricard is a NYC based portrait photographer who operates a studio in Times Square. While many photographers attempt to teach photographic principles, few have an actual teaching/education background. Ricard is an exception. After graduating from Baruch College in NYC in 1988 with a degree in Journalism and Creative Writing, Ricard went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Adelphi University and subsequently taught High School English for the NYC Department of Education for 10 years. This education background gives John Ricard the ability to teach technical concepts like the “Inverse Square Law” in a non technical manner that is understandable by anyone.
Ricard specializes in shooting studio portraits of hip hop artists and in the past 10 years he has photographed the likes of Rihanna, T.I., Flo Rida, Ja Rule, Ashanti, Lloyd, DJ Khalid, Curren$sy, Elephant Man, Chris Brown and Trey Songz in his Times Square studio. Ricard is also the official on set photographer for BET Television’s top rated live music countdown show, “106 & Park”. His images are serviced by the Corbis stock photo agency to various media outlets worldwide.
A Nikon D3s serves as the workhorse camera for John Ricard’s on set and concert photography while the Nikon D3x is the camera of choice for studio sessions. The Leica M9 is a recent addition and Ricard incorporates this into as many studio, concert and location shoots as possible. “The Leica M9 is a very difficult camera to use and in many ways the files are inferior to those produced by my Nikons. For that reason, it is my favorite camera. Things have gotten so easy with the advances in DSLR technology that pretty much anybody can take a decent photo these days. I really enjoy using a tool like the M9 that requires me to do more than push a single button to produce a good photograph.”
Regarding Manfrotto, Ricard says, “I don’t use tripods often so I only own one -a Manfrotto support that I bought somewhere back in the prehistoric age and it has never failed me and it has never needed servicing. I can extend the legs outward to get the camera about 8” off the floor, or I can raise the legs and shoot at standing height. Its the only tripod I’m willing to use when I do need a tripod”.