A tribute on Martin Luther King day

Rev. James Lawson, photographed at the Holman United Methodist Church, Los Angeles, Ca 1/12/09. Photograph by Robert GallagherRev. James Lawson, civil rights activist photographed for Time magazine. Lawson, a revolutionary figure in the civil rights movement, invited Martin Luther King to Memphis in April 1968 where he went on to deliver his famous “Mountaintop” speech. One day later he was assassinated.

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interview on Photo District News

I was interviewed recently by PDN about my work, my process and my Clickbooq website (seriously, the best websites in the business, for photographers, in my view). Here’s an excerpt and you can read the full thing here.

“Robert Gallagher’s photography career is dynamic: One day he’s shooting a travel feature in Bora Bora for The Guardian; another day it’s the cofounder and CEO of the dating app, Tinder, for the cover of Forbes. When we connect over the phone, he’s brimming with excitement over a shoot in Los Angeles with singer, songwriter and musician John Lydon, who is best known by his former stage name as the Sex Pistols’ front man, Johnny Rotten. The shoot was a treat for the photographer, who having grown up in England in the 1970s, notes that it was “Margaret Thatcher vs. the Sex Pistols” in the spectrum of cultural iconography. He had the opportunity to get to know the family-man side of the infamous English punk rock singer when he gave him a ride home from the shoot. “That’s why I love my job,” he says. “You never know who you’re going to meet from one day to the next—I love those little vignettes of life.” But what really struck him about Lydon was that he showed up to the set with only a simple plastic bag full of his belongings. “He still a little bit anti-establishment,” Gallagher laughs.”…….

John Lydon aka Johnny Rotten of the Sex Pistols, photographed at the Andaz Hotel on Sunset Blvd., Hollywood, California, April 17 2015.

John Lydon aka Johnny Rotten of the Sex Pistols, photographed at the Andaz Hotel on Sunset Blvd., Hollywood, California, April 17 2015.

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Rickie Fowler wins PGA Players Championship

Rickie Fowler Golf DigestCongratulations to our buddy Rickie Folwer who finally won his first Major tournament this past weekend, and what a nailbiting playoff to decide it too. We got to have fun with Rickie during my first ever assignment for Golf Digest, one of my favorite clients.Rickie Fowler Golf DigestHe’s a first rate Motocross rider it turns out and apparently could have turned pro there too. I think he made the right choice. Good on ya Rickie, although it appears your girlfriend may have stolen all the headlines!Rickie Fowler Golf Digest

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Imagination Masterclass 2011

Imagination 2011 compilation from Imagination Maastricht on Vimeo.

Ok, so this is cool, I just found a little film of the Imagination Masterclass 2011 which I was fortunate enough to be asked to take part in, all the way over in Maastricht, Holland. Thanks to Roy Wanders and all the team. what a great event. The gallagherphoto show begins at 3:03 on the timeline:)

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Bora Bora for The Guardian Weekend

travel photography in Bora Bora by Robert Gallaghertravel photography in Bora Bora by Robert GallagherIt makes for an interesting life when one day out of the blue an email can come in and the very next week you’re off to a South Pacific Island for a few days to tootle around and shoot beautifully inspired pictures. What i love specifically about travel photography is that in its very essence it’s your job to immerse yourself in the travel experience. You have to feel it to capture it. That does mean long hours though, as you’ll always be top and tailing the day (shooting at sunrise and sunset) which means up at the crack for the best light, but it does make for a memorable experience!

This assignment was with esteemed writer and columnist Andrew O’Hagan, who was a great travel partner and portrait subject. Like me he had no problem getting into the zone!
travel photography in Bora Bora by Robert Gallagher
And as an extra added bonus to myself, I managed to wangle my return flight at my own expense……
Flight change fee: $100
Extra nights stay on Tahiti: $150
Rubbiing lime juice on hand, feet and butt after getting dragged over the reef surfing Taapuna: priceless!

I’ve always dreamed of surfing Tahiti, so couldn’t let this opportunity pass, but definately had no plan as to how to make it happen (there’s nowhere the rent boards on the island it turns out). But after meeting some awesome people within 24 hrs, I was also able to turn an amazing work trip into a fun little surf trip as well. Life is what you make it and take chances when opportunities arise. Oh, and the $150/ night place on Tahiti? The Tahiti Airport Motel. Great place, very clean, friendly and literally right across from the airport. I walked to catch my flight!

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Forbes cover shoot- tinder

Forbes cover TinderPart of the job description of being an editorial photographer is being able to pull all kinds of productions together in a relatively short amount of time, without of course compromising any sort of quality. It’s a fun and exciting aspect of the game, as well as a nerve-jangling one (but i suspect that’s what keeps us in it, right?). And although this was’nt a huge production challenge in terms of what could have been needed on any given day (which basically consists of literally anything!) it’s always somewhat of a tricky challenge to create an entire photo- studio in someone else’s workspace, one that’s high quality enough to grace the cover of a major newsstand magazine, all within a limited time-frame.Forbes Tinder I mean, it’s not exactly like working in a studio where you’re lighting, spacing and set-up have some consistency and familiarity. No, in this instance we basically have two hours to park, haul a studio up to the ninth floor, construct, concept, test, adjust, back-up concept, test, think, re-think, decide if you actually like the light or even the idea, sometimes start from scratch, hopefully have a cup of tea, enough to re-build your energy, ‘cos guess what, in 10 minutes your subjects gonna arrive and you’ve got to shoot a kick-ass cover. And oh yeah, he’s not someone who makes a living in front of camera, so I’ve really gotta bring it, to get him be there! So, it’s challenging, but also fun in a sort of self-mutilating/ testing ones- self kind of way! Ha. Oh yeah, and we also need a double page spread shot too! Yep, that’s got to be creatively worked, concepted, lit etc.DAVIDFEARN_20141027_TINDER So there’s a lot of work that goes into these location cover shoots in a very small amount of time and I couldn’t even come close to doing it without a great team, who act as a spare set of eyes as well as literally muscle. The trust allows it to become a great little creative menagerie, a melting pot where i’m nothing more than the head chef, as well as kind of circus ringleader! Thanks to a great team guys….Thomas Hencz, Leah Christensen and David Fearns.

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Jim Gianopulos for Ferrari

Jim Gianopalis for FerrariIt’s not everyday you get the run of the entire 20th Century Fox studio backlot, $250,000 worth of Ferrari, oh and yes, the venerable Mr. Jim Gianopulos, CEO of said studio, to play with. But thanks to The Official Ferrari Magazine, that’s exactly what happened back in June.Jim Gianopalis for FerrariJim was actually awesome to work with. I’ve shot plenty of business types, and some you just can’t loosen up, but he seemed to totally enjoy the process and had fun with it. Partly due to the location, the car, and his Godfather-esque looks, i was feeling a kind of ‘Little Italy tough guy from the streets done good’ kind of vibe, and Jim was right there with me. Hey, forgetaboutit! It’s almost like he hangs around with famous actors all day!Jim Gianopalis for FerrariGreat working with you Jim, hope we get to do it again some day. Thanks also to the excellent production team at Ferrari, and Amy Trezise and the location team at Fox.Jim Gianopalis for Ferrari

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Tony Romo and the Cowboys

Romo and the Cowboys are a rollin’, with talk of being the best team in the league! We’ve done a couple of shoots with the Cowboys QB over the years for Sports Illustrated and Pepsi. Stand up guy!Tony Romo of the Dallas CowboysTony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys

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Lizette Salas for Golf Digest

LPGA Pro Lizette Salas photographed at Azusa Green Country Club, Azusa, Ca August 8 2014.A few weeks ago we had the pleasure of working with LPGA Tour Pro Lizette Salas for Golf Digest. The editors there are so great to work with, always encouraging to go beyond the obvious ‘golfy’ shot, gives you so much more freedom and confidence to play around and have fun. LPGA Pro Lizette Salas photographed at Azusa Green Country Club, Azusa, Ca August 8 2014.And one thing i learned, if you’re ever short of a wind machine, a leaf-blower works pretty darn well as a stand-in! Especially when subject’s Dad is groundskeeper of said club.LPGA Pro Lizette Salas photographed at Azusa Green Country Club, Azusa, Ca August 8 2014.A fun day was had by all, and i think it shows in the pictures! Thanks Lizette and best of luck, we’ll be rooting for ya. LPGA Pro Lizette Salas photographed at Azusa Green Country Club, Azusa, Ca August 8 2014.

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Sasha Grey for Der Spiegel

sasha grey, sashagreyHere’s a fun shoot with renaissance- woman Sasha Grey. This girl’s a good laugh and so easy to work with, hope we get to do it all again sometime soon.
sasha grey, sashagreyA girl who’s resume includes actress, model, author, musician, and former pornographic actress, and all by the age of 24! That’s not messing around! She played the lead role in Steven Soderbergh’s 2009 film The Girlfriend Experience ( and was excellent in my opinion) and is currently in the middle of promoting ‘The Juliette Society’, a fictional erotic novel, released earlier this year. A. O. Scott of The New York Times described her pornographic career as having “an unusual degree of intellectual seriousness about it.” In the words of Andy Samberg doing a Nicholas Cage impression…. “That’s high praise!” She’s an interesting girl, and quite clearly more than just a pretty face. Oh, and her instagram feed…. Sasha gone done got herself a good eye!
sasha grey, sashagreyand of course, suitably inspired, she insisted on getting in on the photo- taking business herself….. my, what a fine looking couple of photogs right there! 😉
sasha grey, sashagrey

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behind the shoot- ‘sand sprinter’ personal project

‘Sand Sprinter’ photo-shoot behind the scenes from Robert Gallagher on Vimeo.

Here’s a fun little behind the scenes video of a personal project i shot a little while ago. With much thanks to Devin Trafford for the iPhone camera-work, and Joe Ashby for almost but not quite pulling a hamstring!

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