About Michael Maersch
and the Phoenix Lightroom Enterprise

After a couple of years working as a Photographer's Assistant I began getting hired as well by a local Properties Master and Stylist when she needed a hand on television commercials she worked on. Two additional years in the Film Industry introduced me to the ancillary production service, Location Scouting.

In 1984 I set up my own company, the Arizona Land Company, and spent the next 25 years traveling throughout the West and parts of Europe exploring and making pictures illustrating the landscapes, building, roads – whatever my film Director, Advertising Agency or Commercial Photographer colleagues needed me to find for them to craft the stories they wanted to tell.

Decades of shooting all over the United States and hundreds of ad campaigns I collaborated on produced tens of thousands of images all tucked-away in folders stored on multiple hard drives. Though early-on I began using Photoshop to process my digital images and build very basic web galleries to post online for clients, I was quickly building a real headache for myself by constantly adding photos to my overall picture library with no reasonable solution for organizing the mess I was building!

In 2007 Adobe released its first version of Lightroom and my workflow as a photographer and image manager was made A LOT easier!

Adobe Lightroom is a component application that allows photographers to import, archive and organize all their digital images as they creatively and intuitively post-process images in a non-destructive manner – very much unlike Photoshop, its parent application.

With Lightroom I was also able to quickly and easily design professional looking, customized web galleries and easily upload them to the Internet, never leaving Lightroom to accomplish this.

Life as a professional photographer was changed virtually overnight!

michael maersch

When “The Great Recession” brought down the television commercials industry from its decades-long, high-flying run of big production ad campaigns I found myself with more “free time” than I would have cared for – and the opportunity to explore this remarkable application, Lightroom, more in-depth.

Over two years (2008-2010) I explored, ran with, experienced each of the amazing tools and features Adobe Lightroom developers have built into what is, in effect, a photographer's “toolbox” for making the best pictures possible from each and every camera capture we import to it, organize an ever-expanding Catalog of images and then craft impressive reproductions for others to view online or as a print!

Lightroom is, by far, the more fundamentally important application to own and work-with than is Photoshop – for every digital photographer. Photoshop is unarguably beneficial to learn as well, though daunting a task this has become especially as it has morphed into the ultimate "Swiss Army Knife" for all digital imaging applications. You could live a quite productive life as a creative photographer using Lightroom alone.

Late in 2010 I launched the Phoenix Lightroom Enterprise as my present and future endeavor, to help others learn principally through One-on-One Training how Lightroom is the essential source for use in their own work as a professional or as a serious photo enthusiast; how to build a dynamic LR-Photoshop workflow for more advanced projects.

Follow my Youtube channel for examples of how this works.

What is:

- A "Properties Master" is in charge of providing all the big and little things that go into "dressing a set", making the space a film crew is working in look real, accurate, to the liking of the Director. A Photo Stylist does much the same only for a still photography shoot. He or she is responsible for providing lots of options the Photographer can choose-from in building a story in front of the camera for an advertisement.

- The "Art Department" on a feature film or television commercial production consists of the Production Designer, the person who creates 'the look' of the project being filmed, a Set Designer, Set Builders, the Props Department, other craftsmen and, especially in Europe still, the Location Scout. In the 1980's, in small market Production communities like Phoenix, Seattle, Minneapolis, Boston, Atlanta, etc., location scouting was often simply a part of what the Art Department handled when a production came to town.

- Location Scouts are often called even before a project is awarded, when Bidders or Executive Producers are initially crafting a response to a brief they have received from an advertising agency proposing a television commercial or series of print ads. Our input, based upon years of travel, research in advance of our scouting assignments and past explorations help these folks build reasoned and informed responses in order to help them land the job.

- Executive Producers are, depending upon the size of the Production Company, perhaps the President or Vice-President of the company (along with the company's featured Director) and, in some cases, also considered the "Head of Production" in charge of every aspect of every project that comes to the company. Executive Producers are "the face" of the company they represent.

- A "Bidder" is someone who puts together numbers – expected costs and expenses – for a Producer or Production Company executive pitching their bid for a television commercial's Ad Agency brief.

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