Chicago Magazine Photographer: Cover photoshoot for Positively Aware

Chicago magazine photographer cover photoshoot

On a snowy winter day, we crammed 18 people into a Chicago barbershop built for a dozen, so we could shoot the foldout magazine cover of Positively Aware’s annual HIV Drug Guide. It is always a challenge when you have to work with 13 subjects and have them all engaged, while maintaining the identity of the space and leaving room for the magazine logo, text, and the fold.

The Photek Softlighter II Umbrella… the Best $115 You’ll Ever Spend

Chicago Photographer John Gress using a Photek Softlighter II Umbrella

When I received a Photek Softlighter II for Christmas in 2015, it quickly became one of my most treasured tools. I first became aware of this miraculous modifier when I discovered my favorite photographer, Art Streiber’s work on Instagram and I noticed him using a ten sided umbrella while shooting Placido Domingo for Vanity Fair. I loved the way it looked and rather than just asking him in a comment what he was using, I went on a day long journey to find it and once I did I never looked back.

Comp card photography for Chicago Fitness Model Matthew Cuff

Chicago Fitness Model Matthew Cuff by photographer John Gress on a Gravity Backdrops

The first time I worked with fitness model and personal trainer Matthew Cuff it was to help him develop his first comp card and I’m pretty sure he was about 21 at the time. Cuff, now in his late 20’s, is an Asics sponsored full time personal trainer, working all over the US, and hes looking to update his comp card.