Bil Zelman recently shot a campaign for Jim Beam with StrawberryFrog. We reached out to the lovely Josette Lata, who was the Art Producer on the shoot to hear more about her experience working with Bil.
RR: What was it that first attracted you to Bil’s work for the Jim Beam campaign?
JL: The dark quality of his work. The beam campaign was mostly a nighttime themed campaign. The people needed to be doing things to make history and most fun things happen at night when you drink with your pals and Bil’s lifestyle work has that ethereal quality that is lacking in a lot of shooters of lifestyle imagery. A lot of work out there is just too happy and set up but Bil’s work has an authentic quality to it. After speaking with him, he explained how he stages events within the shoot that causes people to loosen up and really enjoy themselves. I am attracted to reportage photography and his work has that feel. And after working with him, I see how his energy with the talent really adds that extra believability!
RR: Tell us about your most memorable onset experience or experiences working with Bil.
JL: I think the most memorable experience was when the girl was being tossed around and crowd surfing overhead with scary low ceilings, he managed to direct her. while simultaneously , showcasing the product and listening to direction from the creative director. He never stops moving.
RR: What is your favorite image from the campaign and why?
JL: This is my favorite shot because it looks like an evening that I have had. It is a true moment.
RR: Would you work with Bil again?
JL: I would definitely work with Bil again. I’d make sure I got a lot of sleep first and wear my comfiest shoes so I can run next to him and enjoy his banter with the talent. To me, that’s the best part. He is an amazing shooter and is really funny. I don’t think he sleeps much.