Dan Winters & Photojournalism
enowned photographer and photojournalist Dan Winters joins Fritz Coleman and Louise Palanker with stories from the field along with knowledge and wisdom gleaned from his own deep dives into the history of photography, World War 2, the Viet Nam War, space travel, and the impact of photography on human awareness and societal progress.
Louise Palanker (00:00:05):
Welcome to Media Path. I am Louise Palanker. And
Fritz Coleman (00:00:07):
I'm Fritz Coleman
Louise Palanker (00:00:08):
And our mission is to safely guide you through an array of visions and vistas, sounds and sensations, which will both entertain it and enlighten you. Where does the tour stop off? Well, we've got world renowned award-winning souling photographer, filmmaker, artist, model builder, storyteller, Dan Winters, <laugh>, joining us in just a few moments. But first, Fritz and I have our eyes on the media landscape, and we have been taking notes. Fritz, what have you discovered? I'm
Fritz Coleman (00:00:35):
Going big right off the bat here. Cool. Cruela. Ah, everybody knows about it. It's in theaters, Disney plus H B O Max Hulu. This is adapted from 101 Dalmatian story, not a prequel. It's a much more adult punk. 21st century origin story of Cruella Deville, the Villainist from the original tale. Do not take your toddler. Do not take your pre-teen to this expecting to see carloads of cute spotted puppies, <laugh> that it ain't <laugh>. This is Disney's brilliant marketing, understanding that those of us who wore out our VHS tapes of 101 donations have all grown up, gotten more grizzled and more cynical. I love this. I went with my daughter who was singing for the second time. Now this was my first trip to a theater in over a year and a half. And it was just a magnificent release. It was like a rock and roll fashion show <laugh> with lots of laughs.
It stars Emma Stone as Estella a youngin, skilled grifter determined to make a name for herself in the fashion industry. Her nemesis is the Barness, played perfectly by Emma Thompson. The Barness was sort of Meryl Streep's character in The Devil Wears Prada with even less empathy and more over the top evil, fantastic, lots of laughs and hijinks from Jasper and Horace Estella's street level crime partners. They played, uh, by Joel Fry and Paul Walter Hauser. They were two of my favorite characters in the original story. And even more underhandedly funny in this movie. And we see, uh, in a couple of our podcasts, we've talked about securing music rights for films. I don't know how they did it here. There were probably 20 major rock and roll hits, including The Stones Sympathy for the Devil. I think maybe the top or second best rock and roll song of all time. But it really drove the energy and the visuals. I wouldn't be surprised if just like Wicked Disney turns this in to a Broadway show. I I really loved
Louise Palanker (00:02:43):
It. So does it show cruels multi-layers or give her backstory? Is there sort of an an origin story to her evil?
Fritz Coleman (00:02:51):
Yes. And, and, and you, and the beautiful thing about it is you let her be really wacky later on in the arc because you understand her less than perfect circumstances at the beginning of her life. And it also, I, I won't say how it also gives you energy and either your like or your dislike of the barness.
Louise Palanker (00:03:11):
Ooh, okay. Great movie. It sounds amazing. So I have another movie that's opened in theaters, but it's also opening at home at the same time, which is new interesting paradigm that we're witnessing before our very ears and eyes. Uh, this is in the Heights long ago in a time before Hamilton Lynn Manuel Miranda wrote and launched in The Heights with Kiara Allegria. It hit Broadway in 2008, where it won multiple Tony's including best musical. The show takes place in Washington Heights, a tight-knit, mostly Dominican neighborhood situated at the top of Manhattan. Here, a kaleidoscope of dreams pulls and pushes a yearning vibrant community into heartfelt song and dance. The film adaptation is in theaters and streaming on H B O, directed by John Chu. It features a wonderful cast including Anthony Ramos, Corey Hawkins, Leslie Grace, Melissa Burrera, and Jimmy Schmitz. The film just pops with color, community and song.
It is at once cozy and big, filling you with warmth, rhythm and celebration. It's positively the perfect post covid theater film celebration, but I watched it at home. Now, if you have gone to the theater like Fritz has, we would love to know how that felt for you. I imagine this film would be thrilling on a bass screen, but I don't feel ready to sit and laugh and sing with strangers. Also, when I sing in theaters, I am escorted out with a flashlight <laugh>. So yeah, we watched it at home and we absolutely loved it. It's just spectacular.
Fritz Coleman (00:04:36):
Well, Lynn Manuel Miranda with Hamilton has changed Broadway, not only his multicultural casting, uh, but the way he's written the lyrics and the the dense hiphop type lyrics. And you were saying that you find a great similarity in the way that show was written. You can see his progression to the Hamilton score as well.
Louise Palanker (00:04:55):
Yeah, he has certain chord progressions in certain syncopations that are just notoriously him, but it's just all great stuff.
Fritz Coleman (00:05:03):
I think an interesting, uh, face off and artificial face off as it will be is between the Steven Spielberg West Side story, which is a Latin flavored story along with, uh, in the heights and to sea, which comes victorious in America's minds. But I think they're both really gonna be a
Louise Palanker (00:05:23):
Team. Can I root for both? Yes. Do I have to pick a team? Yep. All right. So what else you got, Fred? All
Fritz Coleman (00:05:27):
Right. I have a nature documentary. I love these because you can watch them with a whole family, all the nature docs, David Attenborough, the explain series that we've done earlier on this podcast and this one, this one's called Human the World Within. So on Netflix, it was acquired from p b s Brilliant Animation, easy to understand narration, and most importantly, personal stories. Your child will probably learn more about anatomy from this film than from any school textbook. They go through the different systems within the miraculous organism that we each are, for instance, how the brain and the central nervous system turn information into action. How the heart powers us through physical and emotional changes, how the human gut processes our food so we can survive how our immune system works. Really interesting. The only thing is, after you watch this, you'll become very self-conscious of your internal organs, <laugh> as you go through the day. You'll be wondering what your mitral valve is doing right now, <laugh>. And you'll also wanna take better care of yourself cuz it's all miraculous. But a wonderful documentary series.
Louise Palanker (00:06:38):
It is, it's what's going on inside of us and you can scale all the way out and look at the universe and be completely mesmerized. And then you can go down to the cellular level and be just as osr. That's what it does. It's all a miracle. So I watch, speaking of the Body, I watch Two Hearts on Netflix. It's two with the number two in case you're looking for it cuz this is a popular title. Uh, if you're a, if you're a Phil Collins fan, uh, this movie is Boats. Did you Know it? Do you know what Boats means? No Boats Fritz, based on a true story. Oh, it's an Oregon donation love story. And I would have said spoiler alert, but it is based on a book, based on a true story called All My Tomorrow's Colon, A Story of Tragedy Transplant and Hope.
So the Transplant part comes even before the Hope. In parallel Love stories, the lives of college student, Chris, and wealthy businessman Jorge, intersect in a profound twist of fate. Fyi, the wealthy businessman Jorge, in real life is Jorge Bacardi. And you may ask, did Rome assault his organs or his colon? And I will tell you no. He was born with a congestive lung problem and not expected to live past 20. And in the parallel stories of Chris and Jorge, we really don't know who is going to give, who a handy life-saving organ. It's very touching. Fill out your donor card, check that box on your driver's license. You are going somewhere that does not require your kidneys. It's like leaving a book behind on an airplane for somebody else to enjoy.
Fritz Coleman (00:08:02):
Nice, great review.
Louise Palanker (00:08:05):
I don't really think I reviewed it. I think I just kind of like told you what's in the movie, but I actually, the kid who plays Chris is very amusing. He did a a wonderful job of bringing that kid to life. So it's just one of those Netflix movie movies that Netflix says you might enjoy. And then, you know, Hey, Netflix, you were correct. I enjoyed it. I got something out of it. Very interesting. Are you ready to introduce our, our guests? I can't wait. Okay. I was making sure we were all caught up to speed on our recommendations. I highly recommend Dan the work of Dan Winters. Let us now welcome Dan Winters. Hi Dan.
Dan Winters (00:08:34):
Fritz Coleman (00:08:35):
Dan Winters (00:08:35):
Awesome to you. Good to see you both.
Louise Palanker (00:08:37):
Good to see you.
Fritz Coleman (00:08:38):
Have a great review, uh, for you from Weezys sister Joanne, who is a graphic artist. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and visually knows of what she speaks. She said, there is not a Dan Winters photograph that doesn't give me goosebumps. Aw,
Dan Winters (00:08:53):
Louise Palanker (00:08:54):
She's so cute. Good. Good review. Can you put that on some of your business cards? Dan
Dan Winters (00:08:58):
<laugh>? Yeah. I'm actually thinking about putting that on my business card.
Louise Palanker (00:09:01):
<laugh>. All right. I'm gonna tell you a little bit about Dan. Dan's bio is rich and thick. He photographs performers, athletes, world leaders, spaceships, eagles, peacocks and bees. His Instagram bio reads, photographer, director illustrator, Nat Geo Explorer, model builder, beekeeper, family man. Follow my other account at Tone short film. Dan is making a short film and you can follow Dan Winters on Instagram as well. And you'll be amongst many other people with fine tastes on Instagram, who enjoy looking at everything that Dan posts because it's all, as Joanne said, goosebump inducing. Uh, now Dan, the latest thing that's happened in on your Instagram was that you, or where did this post originate? Were you photographed and filmed Angelina Jolie wearing a family of bees? And where did this first appear?
Dan Winters (00:09:48):
That was commissioned by National Geographic and, um, it was, uh, commissioned and the idea was that it would, uh, that it would, uh, go on Instagram in conjunction with World B Day. And, uh, so we did a shoot, uh, I I guess about a month or a month and a half prior to World B Day. And then the intention was that that would go up on Instagram and then later on images from the shoot would be published in the magazine.
Louise Palanker (00:10:18):
No, I understand that getting bees to hit their mark can be a little challenging, <laugh>. So please tell us how you captured these beautiful images.
Dan Winters (00:10:27):
Well, the first, the, I'll give you the whole process, which I think is pretty fascinating. Yeah, please. So Angie wanted to, uh, do this picture, uh, that referenced a photograph that Richard Avedon did in 1980, and it was called The Beekeeper. And it was a, uh, photograph of a man with covered with bees, and it was a part of his America West series of images. And so we, uh, set about trying to figure out how to go about getting the bees on there. And now it's very tricky. Uh, and I think you throw into the mix, you throw covid into the mix, the fast that we're all working through masks, uh, you throw bees into the mix and then you throw Angie into the mix. And so it was kind of a difficult process to figure out. So we tried several things. So the idea was to get the bees onto her body and we would do a portrait of her.
And, you know, bees aren't, they're kind of like cats. You can't really train 'em. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So, uh, we did some research and I found an article that was printed, uh, shortly after Avedon did that beekeeper photograph where they interviewed the entomologist, who was the B wrangler for that shoot. And he talked about using a queen pheromone. We had tried some other things. We had, we had kind of been led down a couple of paths that didn't really pan out. Uh, so my friend Conrad, who I'd hired actually to wrangle on our shoot, uh, did some exhaustive research and actually found the entomologist. He's 90, how old is he? 87. He's 87 years old now. Uh, Dr. Gary, he lives up north. Uh, he's retired. So we found the guy that had done the avadon shoot in 1980, and he still had the queen pheromone that he had produced for that shoot.
And then our, of course, our first concern was like, well, yeah, but is it still gonna work? And he said, yeah, it'll, it'll work. No problem. Don't worry about it. So the second thing was a lot of the bees in Southern California are africanized bees, and they're very aggressive. And so the idea of using a hive. Yeah. Here's the avadon image. So the idea of using a hive in southern California, just a, uh, in, as a part of an apiary, the idea was, or the, the concern was that, uh, the bees would be really aggressive and we need real tame bees. So we found a beekeeper in carpenter that raises, uh, almost a pure strain of Italian bees, which are the most docile bees there are. And so we got some bees from him, and we used the queen pheromone and I put it on her body, you know, her neck on her clothing on her face.
And, um, we got all the lighting dialed in and then we brought the bees in and had a table sitting in front of her with bees. And she brought her waist right up to the table and they just started climbing all over her. And she just stood there. I, I checked the time imprint on the chute from first frame to last frame, and it was 18 minutes and change. So she stood there, covered with bees for 18 minutes, didn't get stung one time. And then the only time she got stung was after we were completely finished and we were walking back toward hair and makeup. And, uh, a bee went into her boot. She was wearing these boots and a bee went into her boot and stung her on the calf, which completely non-PhD her, she was just like, oh, I think I just got stung.
Fritz Coleman (00:13:54):
And you got stung. Dan stung.
Dan Winters (00:13:56):
Uh, go ahead. You got
Fritz Coleman (00:13:57):
Dan Winters (00:13:59):
She got stung once. I got stung seven times.
Fritz Coleman (00:14:01):
Seven times. What's the pheromone do, Dan?
Dan Winters (00:14:04):
Well, it's, uh, queen mandibular pheromone and it's basically, uh, the product of grinding up a bunch of queen bee heads and bees communicate through smell, which is why beekeepers use smokers when they work bees because it masks the danger alert that goes through the hive. Uh, so they can't smell over the smell of that smoke. And so the hive stays calm. Um, so the pheromone is basically indicating that there's a queen. And so these bees, they turned very docile and they were just kind of wandering around on her looking for the queen.
Fritz Coleman (00:14:40):
Well, well you're not just, uh, you, you, you're a twofer. You're of course the world's most talented photographer, but also you're a beekeeper yourself, right? You had to have some expertise in this.
Dan Winters (00:14:50):
Yes, that's correct. Yeah. I started raising bees when I was nine years old and uh, I was in four H and, uh, I had hives all the way through high school. And when I left for college, I sold my hives to a beekeeper. And then about eight years ago or so, um, I got, uh, some hives. I have three hives now. I'm a like a gentleman beekeeper, but yeah, still have bees. And, and that was one of the reasons, I mean, I've shot for Nat Geo for years. Uh, but that was one of the reasons they reached out to me as well, is they knew that I could shoot, you know, a celebrity. And they also knew that I could deal with the bee problem or the bee, you know, part of it. And in solidarity, I, I in solidarity to her, I didn't wear any bee uh, attire. I didn't wear a helmet or veil or a bee suit or anything. Cause I felt like, you know, I was gonna be right in there with her. But I was handling the swarm outside to get it into the building, which is when I got my stings. Once we started shooting, I was fine. I didn't get any stings at all.
Louise Palanker (00:15:51):
So if we go out past the lens, you know, we see the bees that are on an Angelina, if we go out past the lens, how many bees are there in, in your surroundings?
Dan Winters (00:16:01):
Uh, a lot. Um, they're, you know, there are probably maybe 2000 bees. Whoa. In the, uh, yeah, a hive, like a healthy hive is between 35,000 and 60,000 bees. Um, we probably had a couple thousand in there. Uh, I'm not sure how many, I actually had thought I should count how many bees are on her. Um, there are mult, multiple images and uh, I think the one Nat Geo ran, uh, I was gonna count to see how many bees were on her, but just outta my own curiosity. But, um, I would guess, you know, several hundred around her. But, um, yeah, there are a lot of bees. A lot of bees. And, and one of the problems we had was we have, we used electronic flash to light the, uh, to light the, uh, portrait, which I always do, but, or usually I always do.
Um, but the, um, modeling lights from the heads were kind of making the bees go crazy. So we were working in almost total darkness, which was very difficult to focus and stuff. You know, we had almost all the lights in the place off so that the bees would calm down cuz it's just like moths to a porch light, you know, they were going nuts, flying into the lights and stuff. Oh. So that was a problem I had actually hadn't anticipated while we had to deal with it, you know, on the spot. It worked out fine.
Fritz Coleman (00:17:17):
The first thing I thought when I saw that photograph was she, she has one of the most spectacularly beautiful faces on the planet. Right. And I watched her with a, with a bees, and she was so composed and, uh, serene. Yeah. Serena. And I thought she's saying in a subconscious way, not even the threat of being stung by 2000 bees can upset my, my <laugh> stature here. I mean, she, I couldn't believe the confidence she showed.
Louise Palanker (00:17:51):
But you know, that the message is that th these are our friends <laugh>. Okay. Yeah. And they, and well,
Fritz Coleman (00:17:57):
For those of us who, who don't have that kind of a relationship with bees, I thought it was pretty impressive.
Louise Palanker (00:18:01):
But on this planet, we need each other and, uh, and we coexist. Go ahead.
Dan Winters (00:18:05):
Very much so. Very much so. And that was her message. And, you know, it seemed like this really, it was just this really gentle, serene, like, we went to great lengths to make sure she was safe. We had a paramedic on standby. We, she had done an allergy test the week prior to the shoot because she'd never been stung as, as an adult. So I wanna make sure she didn't have any allergy paramedic on set. We had a number of people ready and at a moment's notice to intervene if there was a, a problem. And I think she felt, and I explained all that to her. I said, you know, we have done every single thing we can to ensure that this goes down safely. Um, you still may get stung, but I can promise you that there's not gonna be a stinging event, you know, a mass stinging event or anything. And I think she felt good about it, but what a just fearless woman. I mean, she
Fritz Coleman (00:18:59):
Walked in. She, that, that, that's, that's what I was trying to say. Wow.
Dan Winters (00:19:02):
She, yeah, I know Fred. She walked in and she just said, okay, let's do it. You know, let's get the beast. And it was just, there was never a moment of recoil. It was pure acceptance in the most beautiful way. Um, yeah, I really, I mean, I've always admired her. I've worked with her before. Uh, and, uh, it's like my level of admiration just skyrocketed after that. It was just the most beautiful, simple, gentle moment. You know, it was like 18 minutes, uh, seems, you know, very short. But I think with a couple thousand bees around, it was kind of, it seemed like an eternity. I didn't want to stop shooting, but I felt like I can tend to be greedy as a photographer because I, I like to explore. And, um, this was one of those times where I really had to say, okay, we have this and we need to stop.
Right. And, you know, I just, it it's sometimes difficult for me to do that because I know that possibly something that's around the corner that hasn't sort of presented itself yet may present itself. And I'm always ready to react to that. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. But in this case, you know, we got to a certain point, and this was not reviewing, this was, I was not able to review the monitor either. Oh. Because there was no time to like say, okay, hold tight for a minute. Let me go through the shoot. I had to just be confident in my own abilities and just call it, you know, and we got the bees off of her really quickly. And,
Louise Palanker (00:20:28):
And if you speak b they were saying Yes. Queen
Dan Winters (00:20:32):
<laugh>. Yeah, exactly. <laugh> that they were as they were. What's
Fritz Coleman (00:20:36):
Dan Winters (00:20:37):
And then getting 'em off of her
Louise Palanker (00:20:37):
Was really Oh, getting 'em off. Yeah.
Dan Winters (00:20:39):
Really was really hilarious too. Because, you know, what we did is we took her outside and we had her jump up and down to get to shake 'em off, and we used a brush to brush 'em off of her. And, uh, I actually have video of her jumping up and down trying to get the bees off of her. It's, it's really, it's really kind of sweet. She's got a big smile on her face and she's completely surrounded by bees and still is just completely nonplused by. Wow. She's pretty interesting.
Fritz Coleman (00:21:04):
What's the Women's B initiative?
Dan Winters (00:21:07):
So UNESCO and GLA perfume company, uh, started a initiative, uh, through which women beekeepers around the world are being, or women around the world are being educated as to the intricacies of beekeeping and supplied with hives and materials. And it's a very long-term project and ongoing project. And the idea is that out of the seed, these seed, a apiaries comes, uh, the ability of the women to then educate others and to, uh, form, uh, an economic, uh, uh, platform for themselves. And also obviously it's, it benefits them, the crops, it's all in agrarian areas, but it's all around the world. And Angie is the, um, is kind of at the forefront of that. She's sort of the spokesperson for it. And, uh, and, uh, it's a really bold and very profound initiative that they've undertaken that really, really I think will yield sort of some beautiful results. I know the first place they're starting, they're doing it in Cambodia, which Angie has deep ties in Cambodia and, uh, south of France. I know there, there is a project going on there right now, but
Fritz Coleman (00:22:27):
From an economic standpoint, how many bees do you have to have where it's financially feasible to you for you to turn this into a business? I mean, to sell honey or whatever you
Dan Winters (00:22:37):
Do? Yeah, I mean, to make a living at it, to be honest with you, uh, do, it would depend on the economy that you were in. Um, my friend Conrad Ard, who, like I said, wrangled that he owns a company in Austin, Texas. And so beekeepers that's a good, really good question for it. So, most commercial beekeepers don't make their money off of honey sales. They make their money off of pollination of crops. Oh. So they truck their bees all around the country, and they'll put it into, for example, they'll, they start usually up in the northeast with berries and they'll put hives and, and it's, it's been worked out to get optimal pollination of any particular crop. How many bees per acre, how many hives per acre are required to get an optimal pollination Once that pollination takes place, and they'll pick the bees up and they'll move it to a different crop, work their way down south, work their way over to California for the almonds and et cetera, pecans.
So that's so interesting. For example, in Southern California where I grew up, I had my bees in citrus orchards, uh, out in Ventura County. And citrus requires 2.5 hives per acre for an optimal pollination. And so the honey, because it's mixed honey, so it's not like a pure honey. Like for example, if you left them in the citrus crops in California, you'd get a, a citrus, uh, citrus blossom honey. But it would be intermixed with eucalyptus because eucalyptus has been used for wind breaks for a very long time up in Ventura County. So it's a wonderful honey. Um, but the honey that oftentimes is sold at the market is blended honey. And it's, uh, it's almost blended in the same way that like wine would be blended where they have a blender and the guy's blending the honey and getting a taste out of it, et cetera, et cetera.
So it's not like a pure strain honey, like a clover or something. Um, so they're really selling their honey in bulk to these big honey companies that are then blending it and they're not getting optimal prices for it. Now my friend Conrad, on the other hand, does not do any pollination. He has 4,000 hives and they're kind of all over. He's got 'em out near Houston and he's got 'em in Austin and, uh, down south in the valley. And he does kind of mono crop honey. So, um, much of agriculture these days is mono agriculture, where it's a single crop mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And as far as I can see, it's one crop. You know, they don't, it's not intermixed. So this is something that doesn't occur in nature either, you know, where you have a single crop covering, you know, hundreds and hundreds or thousands even of acres.
Um, but he's got 4,000 hives and he is got a thriving business. So I guess to answer the question, you know, in the US to have a really solid sort of honey business, several thousand hives, probably you could have a very, now he's got a bunch of employees and huge commercial extractors and all the machinery for bottling and all that. So that's all required to be a, you know, viable commercial entity in, in B market. Um, you know, when I was in high school and in grade school, I sold my honey literally no exaggeration, like out of my wagon. I would go door to door, knock on the door of people and ask 'em if they wanted to buy any honey. And I actually counted on that money. You know, that was one of my sources of income, uh, when I was growing up, was my honey, honey money, you know, <laugh>. So it was, uh, it worked out for me that way. But I would say, you know, somewhere to get back to your initial question somewhere in the 2000 hive range to sort of be able to like make a decent living off of
Louise Palanker (00:26:33):
It. So this post goes viral. It goes viral for everyone who posted Nat g o u. Did Angelina post it as well?
Dan Winters (00:26:40):
Uh, she doesn't have Instagram <laugh>. Oh, she doesn't? No. That's, which I thought was hilarious. Uh, her assistant Mindy has Instagram. Um, but uh, yeah, it went very, it was really crazy. It went viral really quick. I think the first image we posted went up to like 40,000 likes and, you know, over a thousand comments. And the second energy we posted was close to 20,000. And I can't, I don't know how many comments. And then more than that, more beyond my Instagram, Nat Geo's Instagram, I think it was the largest, uh, re the most well received, viewed, and commented on, and, uh, liked image that Nat Geo's ever posted.
Louise Palanker (00:27:26):
So when speaking as someone who, for whom that has happened, cuz a lot of people, a lot of our listeners haven't had a viral post. So what is it like, do you try to keep up, do you try to answer everybody? Do you try to dialogue with everybody that's en enjoying the image? Or is there, it just keeps scrolling and there's just no way you can keep up with that?
Dan Winters (00:27:44):
Well, I would answer that by, there's no way you can really accurately keep up with it. Uh, and then to answer the other part of the question, Kath, my wife, uh, is the one that managed all that, and she managed it that day. I would periodically ask her what was going on with the image during the day that day, and she would kind of give me a, uh, kind of give me a, um, rundown. One of the, one of the problems we have, and we've had images go viral on a number of occasions, but one of the problems we have with it is that, uh, people don't bother to give photographer credit.
Louise Palanker (00:28:22):
Oh. They just take
Dan Winters (00:28:23):
It, they post with no credit. And, you know, there are people that, there are, you know, there are a lot of big sort of like luminary or public figures that have reposted our images with no credit, who have many millions of followers. Wow. And, um, I think Stacey Abrams was another, uh, was another picture we did not too long ago that, um, went very, very viral. And, um, to this day it's constantly posted with no, no experience. And the Angelina stuff too is just constantly reposted with no image. I mean, you can't really keep up with it. It would be kind of a full-time job. Kaf does spend time, uh, reaching out to people and just saying, you know, we, that's our image, please credit it. You know, she's very nice about it too. Very non-threatening. It's just very much so, you know, we're happy, you love, we're happy you like the image, can you please credit us? You know, rather than sort of cease and desist kind of stuff. But, um, it, it's a little frustrating. I mean, you know, I, I don't think anybody does it with any kind of malice. I think that it doesn't occur to people that there's an authorship, you know, it's beyond what's in the frame. You know, it's like that mm-hmm. <affirmative> that had to be created. And I don't think it occurs to people to, to credit, you
Louise Palanker (00:29:40):
Know, I think occurs to people. I I, especially if it's a publication, I just don't, I don't believe it doesn't occur to people. I just, you know, I guess it's, it depends on how it's being used or what it's being used for, if you're showing it to kids at school or something that, you know. Yeah, I guess so. But what is your, what are your thoughts on watermarking and, you know, and the ways in which photographers who make a living at this protect themselves? Or is there a certain amount of leakage that's expected as, as part of the craft?
Dan Winters (00:30:07):
Yeah, and I would say that, you know, publications of course know the rules. These are what I'm talking about are just private, you know. Yeah. People with, uh, people with accounts that think it's cool and they share it and they don't credit it. And, you know, uh, if they have a really high volume account, it goes out and it doesn't, no one has any idea where it, where the image came from. Um, yeah, certainly publications, et cetera, know the rules. Um, so it's very difficult for photographers to protect themselves. You know, we can watermark our images on Instagram. Uh, we can, the, the one thing about the image is, I know that I've had this conversation with my wife before Catherine, is, um, the notion that people can take your image off Instagram and, and use it. And, um, the one kind of, the nice thing about Instagram for me in that regard is, and I have no fears for that, because those files are so small that you really wouldn't get any mileage out of it.
Okay. You can't print it. They're so small. Okay. You know, they're a couple kilobytes, so there's not really anything on Instagram. Now, images on my website, for example, which this is something we've discussed, you know, at length in the past. Um, you know, there are high res files. They're still not, you know, high resolution files. I mean, like the native file, Adam, the camera I shoot with, the native file that comes out of the camera is a hundred megabyte file. That's a massive file. Wow. That's a hundred mega pixel camera. It's like 120 mega file, or close to 200 on the hundred megapixel. I think the F 50 meg files 110, the 50 me camera's, 110 megapixel file, a hundred megapixel camera is like two close to 200 megs. So those are massive files. Right. So, you know, if I did a screen grab, if I did a screen grab off my website off of a big monitor, I'd have like a five meg file.
You could make a little print off of it mm-hmm. <affirmative>, but it wouldn't look great. You know, it's, it's difficult, you know, it's difficult to get anything offline to actually print mm-hmm. <affirmative> and turn into something physical. It's really easy to get stuff offline to use again, then off online, uh, from our, off, off of a website or off of, uh, uh, any kind of post. It's really easy to get stuff to repost with. But Instagram, if I took one of my Instagram files and put it on full screen on a computer screen, you can see that it's a Degradated file. It's not a good file. They're tiny files, you know, so, so that's a good thing. Yeah.
Fritz Coleman (00:32:44):
It, it's obvious that it's a violation of your intellectual property rights being the creator of this image, but does Nat Geo have any recourse, for instance, if you put one of those photographs that will end up on the cover of Nat Geo, uh, on your Instagram account to promote it for the magazine and for otherwise, do they have any recourse, uh, going after these people for a rights violation?
Dan Winters (00:33:09):
You know, it would depend on what it was. You know, I mean, for the most part, I think a lot of it is viewed by probably their legal staff as stuff that's kind of what they would probably deem harm, harmless or
Fritz Coleman (00:33:22):
Dan Winters (00:33:23):
Promotional. I don't, yeah, exactly. I don't know that they, uh, I don't know that I've ever been in a situation with Nat Geo where I've relied on their legal team for anything that's ever come up with us. Um, we've had things come up, but it's never been something that was related to Nat Geo. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, I would agree with you that they probably would view a lot of that as promotion and be thrilled. You know,
Louise Palanker (00:33:49):
I think it would be if it were used in an ad or in some sort of promotional way where Yeah, exactly. And it's like, yeah, okay. You'll be hearing from our lawyer.
Dan Winters (00:33:56):
Yeah. That's when it's a problem. And we've had that happen. We've shot bands before and suddenly we find out that they're selling the photograph on concert t-shirts on their tours. Oh, wow. Which is a total No-no. You know, it's like that's all negotiated stuff when you do shoots. Merchandising is a separate line item, and, you know, if there's no merch deal, you know, and they just kind of <laugh> like, do it, you know, it's, yeah.
Louise Palanker (00:34:22):
Well, I'm gonna, we're going to, Thomas, could you please, uh, scroll through Dan's Instagram and then, and anything that that strikes your eye, uh, fritzie or strikes my eye that we wanna ask Dan the story behind the image? You know, maybe we'll do,
Fritz Coleman (00:34:37):
While he's racking that up, let me throw you, you mentioned one of the names that, uh, uh, that was on my list, Stacey Abrams. I'll mention some other names and just give me your reaction to your brief experience with them in the photo shoot.
Dan Winters (00:34:52):
Fritz Coleman (00:34:53):
Like Joaquin Phoenix,
Dan Winters (00:34:56):
Uh, Joaquin is a really quiet, kind of shy, uh, very introspective, I would say introverted a little bit, um, methodical person. And I don't, I don't think that being in a still photography situation is comfortable for him. <laugh> like many actors, they would rather have a task. Um, and usually what I'll have to do is just say, look, I know you'd rather sort of have motivation and be doing something, but let me just talk you through this. And that 99% of the time, nearly a hundred percent of the time, is a relief to people where I just say, just sit tight. Let me just talk you through this. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so I could tell when Joaquin got, uh, in front of the camera, he was a little bit, he felt a little bit awkward. And when I started to just kind of talk 'em through it and just breathe, you know, gimme your head in this direction, chin down a little bit. Good. Hold that right there. That's that's good. Kind of just talking 'em through it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and being there for 'em. And I do that a lot with, with actors, and I've actually had a lot of actors thank me for, uh, not expecting them to generate content, you know, just like at telling them what I need, you know, just directing 'em essentially, which is, they're very used to being directed as it is. Mm-hmm.
Louise Palanker (00:36:23):
<affirmative>. Yeah. They, yeah, they are. Let's talk about Willie Nelson,
Dan Winters (00:36:30):
Willie, coolest guy. Yeah. Mm-hmm.
Louise Palanker (00:36:33):
Dan Winters (00:36:33):
Ever. Yeah. Just the coolest guy. I actually have a funny Willie story. I I, I smoked pot with Willie and, um, you
Louise Palanker (00:36:42):
Should not have, that's like, that kind of an Ali Lama. You should not have been that kind of an influence on Willie. That's <laugh>. No,
Dan Winters (00:36:50):
I know, I know. I brought it
Louise Palanker (00:36:51):
It's dangerous Gateway, gateway stuff. Dan <laugh>.
Dan Winters (00:36:55):
No, it was, it was crazy. He, him and Leon Russell were in the bus. Oh
Louise Palanker (00:36:59):
Lord. Oh, wow. That's a long
Dan Winters (00:37:00):
Afternoon, right? Her, yeah. And Mickey Raphael, his harmonica player, came out of the bus and said, oh, you know, Nick, Nick, um, Willie wants to talk to you. So I said, oh, okay. I went in and they were sitting down on the bus and I sat down with him and started chatting while Leon was rolling a joint. I don't even smoke pot, but I figured like, if I was gonna smoke pot, you know, will, will would be a good person to smoke pot
Louise Palanker (00:37:25):
<laugh>. It's a good place to start. Well,
Dan Winters (00:37:26):
This is such flawed thinking. It's not even funny <laugh>. Cause you know, it was like the strongest, I mean, I, I, I took two, uh, hits off of it and then just passed it. <laugh>. I got that under my belt though. You know, I smoked pot with Willie Nelson. I thought that was kind of cool.
Louise Palanker (00:37:42):
That is excellent. Yeah. But I remember you talking about how you guys were up in Bakersfield and you took him Correct. The, I mean, the shot looks just ethereal, but you actually are in a parking lot.
Dan Winters (00:37:54):
No, we were in a field next to a Walmart.
Louise Palanker (00:37:56):
Yeah, okay. Yeah, yeah,
Dan Winters (00:37:58):
Yeah. So Buck Owens has a venue up in Bakersfield called Crystal Palace, and it's a country venue. And Willie was playing there that night. And, uh, Leon was, uh, playing with him and also opening for him. And so we got there and I checked in with Willie and I said, you know, I need to set up gear, uh, and I'll find somewhere around here to do it. And so that field, it was just this wonderful kind of empty field. And, uh, you know, if you look around, I always feel like it would be really neat to do 360 degree photos of my photo shoots <laugh>. Oh, yeah. Because, because you, I only give you sort of like what my frame holds <laugh>, you know, I don't give you the context that's
Fritz Coleman (00:38:39):
Dan Winters (00:38:40):
But yeah, it worked out really well.
Fritz Coleman (00:38:43):
You got one fridge, y y Yeah, the, um, the, I, I wanna go back to the Stars. Al Pacino.
Dan Winters (00:38:50):
Oh, incredible. I was nervous for that one. I, I, no, I don't remember ever being so nervous as I was for the Angelina shoot of any shoot in my entire career. And I told her that because there were so many things that had to go right. And that's a very, so many things that I had no control over that had to go right.
Fritz Coleman (00:39:10):
Al Pacino wouldn't have done the Bees
Dan Winters (00:39:12):
<laugh>. He would not have done the Bees. But it was a really, it was kind of amazing because, you know, it's like, you know, I'm a film fanatic. I watch film constantly. It's my favorite art form. And I, uh, of course am a huge fan of him. And I feel like oftentimes, and I know the New Yorker and I know the New York Times, both, uh, and I've discussed this with the photo directors, but they've said like, we give you shoots that we think are gonna be difficult shoots. Mm-hmm. Because we feel like you know how to do it, you know, you can get it done, kind of thing. And the Pacino one was, I think the photo department felt like, you know, it could be difficult, could be problematic. So, you know, good luck kind of thing. I mean, oh my God, he gets there. He was a little late apologetic, got him right in, uh, and he was just working with me.
And the, the thing I connected to him about the, the one subject that I connected with him, um, was being photographed by Irving Penn, cuz he had been photographed by Irving Penn twice. And I love both of those portraits so much. And Penn has always been one of my, uh, total idols as far as portrait photography goes and photography in general. And, um, I asked him about that right off the bat. So what was it like? And you know, this and that. And I think he liked the fact that I wasn't asking him what it was like to make Serco, or what was it like to make Dog Day Afternoon. It was like, what was it like to have this experience you had with this other person? So the spotlight was kind of off him a little bit mm-hmm. <affirmative> and more that he could like celebrate Irving, which I thought was really great. And he really, he worked hard. He worked with me. We, we figured that shot out. It's really hard to do like hand photographs that feel sort of authentic. Um, they oftentimes feel really kind of like, you know, they just feel Yeah, exactly. But I loved how he covered his, uh, eye completely with that one finger. I just love the picture. And he was, it's
Fritz Coleman (00:41:18):
Very Shakespearean. That's a great picture.
Dan Winters (00:41:20):
Thank you. Yeah, I love it. And I love the jewelry he was wearing. Cause that was his, what he showed up in. And, uh, yeah, I really, uh, I really liked that photograph. And when I finished once again, uh, you know, I shared this with the Angie and that is like not wanting to be greedy, you know, I was able to be glancing at the monitor while I was shooting, but also the L c d back of my camera images were coming up as I shot. Um, but when I got that picture, I knew I needed one portrait for the New Yorker. That's what I needed. And, um, I got that shot there and I just stopped. That was the last framer, very close to the end of the run. And I said, okay, I'm done. And the the one thing that was funny that he said, I said, I could do this all day, but I got it.
And he goes, I could do this all day too. And I just thought, that's such a pro, you know? It was so neat. But it was really good, really great. Shoot. Wow. And you know, it's interesting. It's like I liken it to the first time I saw the Eiffel Tower, you know, I, I have this, I have this kind of image in my mind of the Eiffel Tower, uh, that I've had since I was a little kid, and I've never been to Paris. And so I have this image that's a photographic image of the Eiffel Tower or, or a moving image of the Eiffel Tower from film. But I've never seen the thing. And oftentimes when I photograph people that are, I call luminaries or I don't like celebrity as much as luminary people in our personalities, in our society that we know, we all collectively know.
Um, there's a real interesting, uh, uh, connection that, that takes place when you are in the physical presence of someone you've known for a long time. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> in the same way that when I think the first time I went to Paris was in the nineties at one point, I think, and seeing Paris with my own eyes and seeing the San and the Bridges and the Eiffel Tower, et cetera, et Opera House, et cetera, um, you know, it, the context is different. It suddenly shifted and it's never gonna be the same again for me mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So I'm no longer relying on that like, third party kind of image. Uh, I have my own firsthand experience of it. And it's very interesting with personalities to have that firsthand experience, uh, of working with those individuals because it ch changes. I think the context with which I kind of like then live my life with
Louise Palanker (00:43:50):
It changes the imagery that, um, that is evoked every time you think of them from that point forward, now you've got this personal encounter so that you can, you know, that you, there's your, your framework shifts, you know, immediately mm-hmm. <affirmative>. But it's also interesting that, you know, they kind of walk into a room knowing that people already feel like they know them. And then you walk into a room knowing that they know that people already feel like, so there's this kind of like dynamic that's unique to a famous person and someone coming into work with me, that you kind of have to find your balance in a different type of way.
Dan Winters (00:44:23):
Yeah, you're absolutely right. You're absolutely right.
Fritz Coleman (00:44:25):
Do do any of these big stars, Angie Pacino, any of the people you've done, get final cut with your work? Say absolutely. No, I don't want that publicized or anything like that.
Dan Winters (00:44:34):
So Pacino absolutely not. I mean, I could probably make a billboard on Sunset Boulevard and he would, <laugh> is is absolutely not, uh, with Angie. Um, it varies. Usually what I'll do is I'll give the person a number of images for approvals, and then I'm very good about not, so there was a point in the eighties when photographers started, um, doing shoots with celebrities and shooting way over shooting. Right. And then they'd have stuff that they could syndicate, and the celebrities wouldn't be, they wouldn't have, have no control over the syndication stuff. And so publicists have got, you know, savvy with that. And, uh, typically what we do is, and the agreement I have with Angie was that we would, uh, we would, um, present, um, a take a take of images and she would, uh, she would, uh, choose one she liked, and then we could use that for, I don't even think I'll probably use those for syndication more. What I'm concerned more about usually is, uh, my archive, uh, moving forward, you know, publications, uh, like books, exhibitions, et cetera. You know, I'm always, I always wanna make, make sure that I have control over my photographs for use. That kind of usage, you know, not necessarily as much for, for publication or for reuse, you know. Is
Louise Palanker (00:46:01):
That, is what, what is the arrangement between you and the publisher? Is there any kind of exclusivity for a certain period of time before which you're not really permitted other than your own Instagram or like, what it is? Is it different with every publication? The
Dan Winters (00:46:13):
Arrangement? Yeah. So they have an embargo period mm-hmm. <affirmative>, uh, and every publication has a different embargo period. Some of 'em are longer than others. They're usually in the, uh, sort of in, you know, from weeks to months. Uh, and, um, there are some publications that restrict, uh, further usage, uh, for publication and other to be published in other publications of stuff that's used for covers. For example, like if something's the cover of National Geographic, I'm not sure if Nat Geo has this, I'll use it. I'll give you hypothetical. If I shoot a cover for Nat Geo and, uh, New York Times wants to use it on the cover of their magazine, it will be stipulated in the contract that it can't be used as a cover image for someone else. Uh, but it can be used on the inside or Oh,
Louise Palanker (00:47:00):
Fritz Coleman (00:47:01):
When you get commissioned by a magazine, new Yorker or New York Times, do they give you parameters? Do they give you, uh, a suggestions as to move or something they're trying to accomplish with a picture? Or do they let you just be your creative self and surprise them?
Dan Winters (00:47:16):
Well, a lot of times, uh, a lot of times I'll speak with the writer who's done the piece working on the piece, and I'll speak with the photo department and try to get a sense of like what their intention is behind it. Um, I usually, you know, I'm under the assumption that they hired me, so they want me to bring my kind of aesthetic sensibility, et cetera, to the shoot. Um, oftentimes there'll be a discussion if it's a very specific thing. Like when we did the Bernie Sanders ch shoot, for example, the New York Times, uh, had a specific approach that I, that they pulled off my website and they said, you know, we really like the way you did this. Can you do that with Bernie? And, uh, and uh, so I had an idea of like what their expectations were. Um, the Pacino one, there was, there were no expectations, color black and white.
They didn't, they, they said nothing, just do a portrait of Al Pacino. And I always like, I like working that way where there's no kind of expectation because I feel like I ha I challenge myself a lot more when that's the case. You know, if I never do, I never feel like I'm executing an idea that someone else has. Uh, with regards to like editorial work, you know, oftentimes in advertising it's, so many people have been involved in approval process. The approval, like for example, we do a fair amount of movie posters and, um, you know, there are so many people that weigh in, talent weighs in director, weighs in, usually producers are weighing in, people at the agency are weighing in, people at the studio are weighing in. So when you get down to the day of the shoot, a lot of people have signed off on this idea.
So I'll usually always do the idea and then see if I can bring more life to it and see if I can bring something else to the idea, maybe something they didn't, nor did I expect or expect to achieve. Um, so yeah, it varies. Definitely varies, but usually, uh, there's a discussion. Oftentimes the website comes up, you know, oh, we saw that picture of Pacino, we really love that. Um, if you, if you, you know, you could do something like that if you wanted to kind of thing, but mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I don't ever feel like, especially in, you know, journalism, my journalistic work, there's, there's much of a parameter placed on me at all.
Louise Palanker (00:49:33):
Have you shot Joe Biden yet
Dan Winters (00:49:36):
With a camera? I have not shot Joe
Louise Palanker (00:49:37):
Biden with a camera,
Dan Winters (00:49:37):
Have not photographed Joe Biden. <laugh> <laugh>. But you, you gotta be careful
Louise Palanker (00:49:43):
There. You do have to be news here. You will probably get to get to
Dan Winters (00:49:47):
Yeah, I would, I would hope so. Yeah.
Louise Palanker (00:49:49):
Capture his image. Oh, so in his entire career, you have not had an opportunity to photograph Joe Biden. That's, this is gonna be interesting.
Dan Winters (00:49:57):
Fritz Coleman (00:49:58):
Yeah. Is it Wayer to do candidates like Bernie Sanders? You did Barack Obama. That was before he was elected, right? Was he running
Louise Palanker (00:50:04):
Before and, and, and right before he, uh, the end of his second term. Well, Dan, Dan can
Fritz Coleman (00:50:09):
Tell you. Okay. Okay. So he was the president. So I wanna talk about the weightiness of shooting a, you know, the highest office in the land. Did they give you time parameters? Oh yeah. Were you instructed a little bit more than you normally are?
Dan Winters (00:50:23):
No, I wasn't instructed at all, but I did have a pretty conversation with the photo director Jodi Kwan at New York Magazine. Uh, going into it, we were given five minutes. Uh, so the, for just giving you an idea, so the, that dip dick there, that you have the cursor on this one here. So this is 2008 and 2016. So this is right before he was elected and near the end of his, uh, term in 2016. So, um, there was a specific idea behind the, these two. You know, I, I'd shot that first one. I think we got 20 minutes then, and then near the end we got five. But I pushed it to 10. And, um, and it was very, I was very ambitious. It was a very ambitious shoot. You know, we had, uh, a whole bunch of setups ready, backgrounds ready, all pre lit with tripods, with cameras.
So I could just move from set to setup and have 'em sit in or stand in, shoot it, and then move, which is how we were able to get, you know, like generate sort of like a quantity of images, because that was kind of the goal. Um, yes, they're, they're very intense. They go by very quickly. Um, we're really, the people I work with are incredible, incredibly professional. And, um, when we, we had a lot of setup time at the White House for the, uh, presidential shoot of him. And, um, we even had arrows tape, uh, used. We used tape and made arrows like you would at a concert for like a band going out on the stage, uh, of where he was supposed to walk. So here, walk over here, stand
Fritz Coleman (00:52:05):
Six feet apart, those things that they had
Dan Winters (00:52:08):
<laugh>, walk over here, sit down. And I shot so fast. I mean, I was, you know, the, the, the banter is literally like head down, chin down, move your eyes this way, gimme your eyes here. Are we good? Are we good on focus? Are we good on focus? And I'll check with my digital tech who's watching focus. We good? We good? Okay. Got it. Move. And, you know, maybe just shoot very few frames and then move to the next one. Move to the next one. Um, so yeah, they, they are, they're, they're, uh, they're intense and it goes by incredibly quickly. Probably like a wedding I'd imagine would go by, you know, it, all this planning and then the event happens and then you kind of stand there and go like, you know, did that just happen? <laugh>,
Louise Palanker (00:52:50):
Did that just happen? Oh, did that just happen? Someone's escorting us out of the White House. So I think that did just happen,
Dan Winters (00:52:55):
<laugh>, that just happened. Exactly.
Louise Palanker (00:52:57):
Yeah. No, that's just, that's unbelievable.
Fritz Coleman (00:52:59):
I, I just want to ask you, because it's the business from which I retired about your journalism shoots. You've done some really profound work with things like Flint and some of the mass shootings and these, what we call spot news events. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, do you feel the obligation that, um, news photographers feel where they can't put their own political or emotional interpretation on what they're shooting? Do you try to say centrist in all of your shoots? Or do you allow yourself to have an opinion either way?
Dan Winters (00:53:33):
Well, I mean, I feel like you know, this subject, it's difficult, isn't it? Because I definitely have strong opinions about things, and I definitely would, for example, I would, um, if I was assigned to photograph someone that I fundamentally disagreed with and I fundamentally felt like was taking our country in a path that it shouldn't be taken, I would decline to do that. Shoot. So I would just perfect, not do it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And, um, uh, there are a number of reasons. One is I view at this age, you know, I'm 58 years old. I view, uh, my shoot says, time away from my wife, time away from home, time traveling. What am I gonna get out of this photograph in the long term? Is this an image I want? Do I want to?
Fritz Coleman (00:54:33):
And chances are, it's a really irritating person you'd be spending time with. So
Dan Winters (00:54:38):
Yeah, that's what I'd be spending time with a really irritating person, <laugh>, which could care less about the process of, of photography or the practice of photography, the history of photography, all the things that I hold precious. Um, so, um, I would just probably not do it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and know, know that someone else would be there to
Louise Palanker (00:54:57):
Do it. Well, yeah. There'll be someone else to take the photo. It's, it's fine. But have you been asked to photograph politicians where you said, I think I'm gonna, I'm gonna call pass on this one.
Dan Winters (00:55:05):
Yeah. So I was asked to shoot Bush twice while he was president, uh, once, right when he got elected for time. And then once, uh, sort of, I guess in his second term at some point, and I can't remember the publication, both times I declined to do it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, uh, although
Fritz Coleman (00:55:27):
He seems quaint now.
Dan Winters (00:55:29):
And then I got this assignment to photograph him at his ranch, retired the painter.
Louise Palanker (00:55:36):
Fritz Coleman (00:55:37):
Dan Winters (00:55:38):
And I thought, no, I don't wanna do that. And then my wife, who's actually, you know, the little voice inside my head, <laugh> or the sort of the positive influence on my shoulder mm-hmm. <affirmative>, she said, you know, you declined to shoot him two times, you've totally objectified him. You should go and see him as a human being. And I said, okay, I'll do it. So we went up to the ranch and did a shoot with him, and it was a ton of fun. He, within minutes of the shoot, he looked at me and he put his finger out and he said, Dan Winters, you're a great American <laugh>. Wow. Which I thought was hilarious. What
Louise Palanker (00:56:18):
Did he serve? Did he serve anything?
Dan Winters (00:56:21):
Louise Palanker (00:56:21):
Did he serve anything? Did he bring out lemonade onto the porch?
Dan Winters (00:56:25):
No, that decade it was literally in a big field. Okay. It's, it's on the, uh, website. It could, it could get brought up. But, um, no, it was just, you know, and look, I'm not gonna sugarcoat the fact that I feel like an incredible amount of blood was shed under his watch unnecessarily. Um, but in this case, you know, maybe it was a little kinda life lesson for me to go do it. I'm not really sure. Um, I definitely would not have photographed Donald Trump if I were asked to do that at all, ever. Right. Under any circumstances. <laugh>. But I will say that that had to do that would've, I would've had the same response if he had never run for office. And I had just been asked to photograph Donald Trump, like as Donald Trump, I would not have done that. Shoot. Yeah. Good point. Might've been like, there's someone else that can do that. Shoot. I don't want to do that. Shoot. For sure. I don't want that picture. That picture doesn't live in my archive anywhere. I am not interested in having that photograph for myself and someone else will go do it. Uh, you always know someone else will go do it. You know, that's the thing. Yeah. So it's kinda like, uh, you go, you know, someone else can go do it.
Louise Palanker (00:57:36):
Now, before we close, Dan, I wanna hear a little bit about the short film that you're working on, because now it has its own Instagram page.
Dan Winters (00:57:42):
It does, yeah. It's actually finished.
Louise Palanker (00:57:44):
The film is finished.
Dan Winters (00:57:46):
Finished. It has been, I wish I would've known that we were gonna talk about it, because I would've sent it to you so you could watch it before
Louise Palanker (00:57:52):
We We'll, we'll, we'll just have you as a recurring guest. You'll come back, we'll talk about
Dan Winters (00:57:55):
That. Sounds good. Um, yeah. So, um, we worked on it for two and a half years. It's 40 minutes long. Uh, it's called Tone. Uh, it's kind of a, uh, dystopian, unnamed future. Uh, two people kind of heal, two people that are broken, heal through coming together. And the tapestry is very rich. There's a lot of miniature effects. Uh, really beautiful wardrobe, really stylized, uh, a lot of sets. Uh, uh, that's actually, uh, from a different project. That's from a thing I did for Brick Link later. But, um, yeah, there's that Martian, the Martian set there miniature that I did for the, wow, look at that surface of Mars. That's the house he lives in when he is on Mars. Oh my
Louise Palanker (00:58:49):
Dan Winters (00:58:50):
Wow. And, uh, yeah, so it, it was a lot of fun, a lot of work. I built all the models myself. We built all the sets. Wow. Um, ourselves. Um, I just a couple guys. And then for, for, um, for, uh, crew, I use students from University of Texas at Austin Film students. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So, you know, a bunch of hanging out with a bunch of like early kids in their early twenties is such a wonderful, beautiful, energizing energy to be around. And they're just so raw and so they just want to work and they want to learn. And, you know, I never took it for granted and I never, I never, uh, sort of took advantage of, I made sure that I was explaining things while I was doing 'em. Um, but it was so wonderful to have that crew, that UT crew. Um, we're doing the casting crew screening is at Alamo Draft House, uh, in Austin on the first, uh, and it's already been submitted to Film Freeway, which is the conduit through which, uh, films are submitted to festivals.
Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, we're submitting to 43 festivals worldwide. Oh, cool. So, yeah, so that's all going. And, uh, yeah, we finished it completely, um, just about two weeks ago. We finished, we worked on, we edited for three months and we worked on sound for probably that, that long. Maybe. We had a lot of Foley to do and a lot of, just a lot of work on sound cuz it's a sci-fi film as well. So there's a lot of like sound that we created, which was really fun. Uh, kind of created our own sounds and, uh, yeah. So it was a really good experience.
Louise Palanker (01:00:36):
Well, I cannot wait to see it.
Dan Winters (01:00:38):
I'll send it to you. Yeah.
Fritz Coleman (01:00:40):
Awesome. Were you able to work with, uh, a, a studio to use their facilities for Foley and all the post-production stuff you needed to do? Or did you manufacture that yourself?
Dan Winters (01:00:48):
So we have our own editing suite and uh, we built a Foley studio. We built a Foley box. Uh, one of the sound guys, Charles, he's 22 years old, he's been obsessed with sound since he was a kid. He just shined in this thing. And my friend Shervin is a composer in London. He did the music, which is so beautiful and haunting. And, um, yeah, we did all the Foley stuff. That took quite a while actually to Foley, all that stuff. Some of the stuff was shot m o s we had to, you know, the entire scenes and, um, you know, just take it one thing at a time. Lay down the, you know, kind of like room noise and then just start building it and uh, yeah, nice room tone. Room tone, and then build it. But yeah, no, we did everything at my studio. Built all the sets at my studio. Um, yeah, everything. So
Louise Palanker (01:01:41):
Was it, it was the perfect pandemic project.
Dan Winters (01:01:44):
It was great. Yeah. It was a really, yeah, the editing, the editing and the sound, uh, and some effects stuff. We were, we finished all the principle photography, uh, and a lot of the effects stuff, a lot of the miniatures, uh, we shot during pandemic. We had kind of a bubble crew of people and we edited everything in the pandemic and we, uh, did all the sound, uh, during the pandemic. And I watched it, uh, last week at the draft house on the big screen for the second time, just to check a couple sound things you can only really experience like in a theater, you know? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and, uh, signed off on it. And so it's already gone. It's gone to festivals already.
Louise Palanker (01:02:28):
Awesome. That's so exciting. Well, Dan, thank you so much for joining us. I'm going to read our closing credits. So buckle up. We would love for you to join us online on Instagram and Twitter, where we are at Media Path Pod and on Facebook where we are, media Path Podcasts. You could find full episodes with all kinds of bonus visual content. Some of Dan's photographs, which would be credited to Dan, you will find on our YouTube channel Media Path podcast. We would love to know what media you've been enjoying. You can contact us at our social media or email us at Media Path email@example.com. We wanna thank our wonderful guest, Dan Winters.
Fritz Coleman (01:03:02):
Thank you so much, Dan.
Louise Palanker (01:03:04):
Our team includes
Dan Winters (01:03:05):
Thank you guys both so much.
Louise Palanker (01:03:05):
Our team includes Dean of Friedman, Francesco Demond, John Maddox, Sharon Beo, bill Fiac, Thomas Hubble, and you. Our theme music is by me and John Maddox. I am Louise Lanker here with Fritz Coleman. We will see you along the media path, but first, Fritz has more to tell you.
Fritz Coleman (01:03:21):
And listen, if you enjoyed this episode of Media Path, it would really help us to be more discoverable by potential new listeners. If you leave us a quick review on Apple Podcasts, and if you're new here and this is your first time with us, check out our back catalog. You may even find us binge worthy. Recent episodes includes all sorts of wonderful stuff. Gary Puckett in the Sils and other baby boomer bands, and Tony Dow and Bill Muey and, uh, just Diane Warren icons in many businesses. Going back to the very beginning, you'll hear exciting and exclusive interviews with Henry Winkler, Keith Morrison from Dateline. Thank you so much for spending an hour with us today, and we will be overjoyed if you took a moment to share your thoughts with us or recommend us to our friend and
Louise Palanker (01:04:06):
Fritz Coleman (01:04:07):
Louise Palanker (01:04:09):
That was awesome, dude.
Fritz Coleman (01:04:11):
That was so good.
Dan Winters (01:04:12):
I love looking at you guys. I
Louise Palanker (01:04:14):
Love looking at you in a pandemic.