Andy Marcus is a highly acclaimed social events photographer who operates Fred Marcus Photography in New York, a studio his father and mother founded during 1941. Today, Andy’s son, Brian, is the third generation of Marcuses in the business. Andy is proud to follow in the footsteps of his father photographing weddings and other family and social events with stunning portrait techniques and memorable candid effects. He uses Nik Software to help achieve the Marcus “look” that wedding couples and families have come to appreciate and demand for almost seven decades. Andy’s Nik Software Webinar on wedding photography can be viewed here.
What event or experience first attracted you to photography?
My father was the founder of our business, Fred Marcus Photography, so I have been around the business all my life. I started working at weddings when I was 13, as an assistant.
When did you know that you wanted to pursue a photography career?
I always was drawn to the business. I studied economics in school and when I graduated I decided I wanted to be a photographer.
Did you receive any formal photography education?
I have a Bachelor of Science degree from the City University of New York.
Were you influenced by a famous photographer’s style?
I was most influenced by my father's photographic style. I try to emulate his beautiful portraits and classic candid look.
What was your first professional/commercial photography assignment?
Hey, that was 45 years ago…I have trouble remembering what I had for lunch.
Do you specialize in a specific type of photography?
We photograph mostly social events with a principal attention to weddings.
How many years have you been a professional in this field?
If you define professional as charging money for what I do, then I would say 45 years.
What was your most memorable photography assignment/job/project?
There have been so many that were memorable. Working with Donald Trump is always fun, photographing Eddie Murphy's wedding, William Baldwin, Howard Stern (My photo of Stern with O.J. Simpson was the back jacket cover of his book).
How would you describe your specific style?
My style is to shoot great portraits that people will look at again years from now, and enjoy. Also capturing the important moments and emotions of the day is crucial to giving customers what they want.
In which major publications have your images been published?
PPA Magazine, Shutterbug, Rangefinder, Popular Photography, Bride's, Elegant Bride, PDN, Newsday, New York Times, New York Magazine, The Knot
Have you published any books: photography or instructional?
Wedding Photojournalism: Techniques and Images in Black & White.
Which photography awards have you received?
Master Photographer, Craftsmen Photographer and ICP Leadership Award.
Which photo of yours is your all-time favorite?
A portrait I took during 1967 of Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir was one of my favorites. She liked it too and used it as her official photo.
Where have your photographs been exhibited?
Leica Gallery, NYC 2010, 2012.
Do you conduct photography workshops?
I don't give many workshops as I have a business to run and that takes much of my time. I am speaking this year for the Professional Photographers Association of Massachusetts during June 2012, and the Southwest Professional Photographers Association October 1, 2012.
What is most amateur photographers’ #1 mistake?
Not learning the basics about lighting, posing and exposure.
With what brand name equipment do you shoot?
Canon 1Ds Mark III and Canon 5D Mark III. Lenses from 14mm through 200mm.
What post processing software do you enjoy using?
Most of our post work is done in either Lightroom 4 or ACR in Photoshop, with enhancements using the Nik Software tools when appropriate.
Do you shoot video and create multimedia presentations?
Approximately one-third of my business is video presentations.
What is the most important lesson you learned during your career?
To listen to my clients and to anticipate all possibilities.
What advice would you share with aspiring professional photographers?
Work with a photographer you respect and absorb everything: the good, the bad, everything. Being a great photographer does not happen overnight.
Photo copyright Andy Marcus