Christopher McLallen moved to New York 11 years ago to assist big name photographers already established in the industry. The experience earned him recognition by American Photo as one of the top ten young professionals in the United States transitioning from assistant to photographer.
"I used to read American Photo as a student, so I felt honored to be recognized by them while making the transition," said McLallen. "Every experience I had assisting other photographers has helped shape me into the photographer I am today."
Since venturing out on his own, McLallen has worked with celebrities Rachael Ray and Jonathan Rhys Meyers; shot the covers for The London Sunday Times, New York Magazine Weddings, Everyday and Vanity Show; and collaborated on a number of other projects with high profile clients.
"I really enjoyed working with Jonathan," said McLallen. "We did the shoot in London's Soho House, where they only gave us a tiny room to work in and I needed four different looks. Luckily Jonathan and I got on really well, my crew was great and the result was a successful shoot.
"Through my network of professional contacts, I got the opportunity to work with Rachael Ray. Having already worked with two other photographers, she knew she wanted to work with some one who could capture images true to her personality; she wanted to look good but not too glam. I established a good rapport with her and finished the shoot in about 20 minutes. I've done the covers now for nine issues of her Everyday magazine."
McLallen's interest in all things film began when he was a student at Novi High School. He was a member of the camera club but was more interested in cinematography at that time. After graduation, McLallen attended film school in Denver but became frustrated by the experience. He returned home to Detroit and enrolled in CCS as a photography major with intentions of shooting car images.
McLallen fondly remembers his CCS professorsâ€”Bill Rauhauser's passionate teaching style as well as Bob Vigilietti's constant reminder to students to treat their career like a business. The photographer started gaining hands-on experience sophomore year by working in the College's black and white photo labs.
"I seem to remember sleeping in the darkrooms quite often," he laughed. "And when I wasn't in the darkrooms, I was in the library studying the work of other artists."
- Graduation Year: 1995
- Major: Photography
- Employer: <None Specified>
- Title: Photographer
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