Shawn Amos and I met back in 2004. At the time, he was doing A+R for Shout Factory (that's Artists and Repertoire for the kids not familiar with the term :) ) Shortly thereafter, he suggested my portfolio be considered for cover art for Solomon Burke's Make Do With What You Got album.
I was fortunate to be chosen to shoot the job. I'd say "the rest is history", but then you wouldn't get to read about what an amazing person Shawn is, and about our continuing collaboration.
About a year or so ago, he contacted me about a blues music project he was embarking on: The Reverend Shawn Amos.
The idea sounded interesting, and Shawn's raison d'etre for the project was especially fascinating: To keep the blues alive by getting it in front of those unfamiliar with the genre, or to re-introduce the blues in an approachable and stylized way to those who are uncomfortable with it.
Most of the blues giants are no longer around, and Shawn seeks to connect people to this great genre of music. As the phrase goes: Whats old is new again.
Shawn is a man who wears many hats (literally and figuratively) - A natural mentor, content guru, blues preacher, great husband and father, and donut lover.
His juggling all of this while maintaining a sense of being truly present is a valuable reminder to me not to get too caught up in the micro stuff. It is also great to work with someone so sensitive to other artists. And I make him look pretty damn good too...
The Reverend and I work well together - There is a real kinship of visual ideas. Maybe part of my getting to the heart of a music image comes from my deep love of music: I think that informs my ability to capture it on film, and this collaboration is a testament to that .
He is tuned into the uniqueness of our working relationship, which is so important in creating good work, in any field. And of course, being reminded of how good that feels inspires me in my own relationship with clients.
In Shawn's words: "Beth and I met back in the summer of 2004 when I was overseeing my first album with Solomon Burke. She was exactly what I imagine a true photographer to be: a perpetual observer with a camera always at the ready.
I've been lucky to have Beth around at the birth of the Reverend. She's been capturing this journey from the very first steps. There are not many people who can be so present yet discreet. Through her images, I have learned about this man named The Rev. The honesty and clarity in her shots have helped keep my focus. It's a bit of a private partnership — this exchange of visual ideas. Beth does what great photographers do She helps her subjects see something unseen to themselves. and in doing so, she helps them move their own story forward."