Gallery

Jordan Matter

I’ve been taking photographs for years. But so what? At last count I believe there were 1,567,892 photographers in New York City, and more are squeezing through the cracks every day. So who am I, exactly, and why am I in the mood to go against 1,567,892 to 1 odds? Well, I began my career as a professional actor, so I know about long shots. And photography really happened by chance.

I never planned to be a professional photographer. Actually, playing baseball occupied the first two decades of my life. After college, the transition to acting seemed like the most obvious choice. After all, they’re both highly competitive and immediately gratifying performance based careers. But photography? My grandfather, Herbert Matter, was a highly successful photographer, with projects commissioned by President Kennedy, Vogue, National Geographic and Harper’s Bazaar, and I spent much of my childhood with him in his darkroom. My father, Alex Matter, is a gifted film director whose work has been seen at the Venice Film Festival. My mother, Paula Feiten, was a successful Ford model (must be where I got my stunning looks). So being around a camera is definitely in my blood. Still, I wasn’t inspired. I mean, where’s the drama? Where’s the applause? Where’s the curtain call? I was enjoying success in acting, so I didn’t give photography another thought. That is, until I saw an exhibit by photojournalist Henri Cartier-Bresson. Then my attitude began to change. He had an extraordinary ability to capture a person’s essence and to tell a story. His subjects are always beautiful because they are human. Photographs like Richard Avadon’s image of a model hugging an elephant never really interested me, but Cartier-Bresson’s images of humanity moved me. I wanted to learn how to photograph people intimately. Soon it became a hobby. Then it became a passion. But I still never thought it would become a career.
One day I was at a friend’s house, looking through her headshots. Not one photograph said the slightest thing about her. They were very generic, very studio and very boring. When she told me what she had paid, I almost choked on my Starbucks. Outrageous! I’ve been the victim of that a few times myself. The next day I grabbed my camera, took her up to the roof and fired off two quick rolls before the sun set. That was it. I was hooked, whether I knew it or not (see her photos).

Her agents soon sent me their clients, who in turn recommended me to their friends, and a photography career was born. The Today Show, Tyra Banks, MSNBC, CBS, NBC and the BBC have since profiled me, and my work has been featured in many magazines, newspapers and galleries throughout the world. I enjoy the process, I love what I do and I consider myself very lucky. That’s the whole story.

Latest tutorials by Jordan Matter:

Dancers Among Us
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Interviews

Martin Lawrence

After many years as a keen amateur photographer, I decided to start a small landscape photography business called Lakescenes which I ran alongside my main job as an IT Manager. As business increased, I found myself working long, but rewarding, hours just to keep up […]

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Rob Sheppard

Rob Sheppard is a naturalist, nature photographer and videographer who says his favorite location is the one he is in at any time. He is the author/photographer of over 40 books, as well as a well-known speaker and workshop leader, and a Fellow with the […]

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Gary Hart

Gary Hart has photographed California’s natural beauty for over 30 years. Gary’s photos and writing have appeared in many publications, most recently Outdoor Photographer and Sierra Heritage magazines. You’ll also find his images in greeting cards, postcards, calendars, and many galleries and private collections throughout the world.

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Jaroslav Wieczorkiewicz

Originally from Poland, based in London UK, Jaroslav has background in Fine Arts, degree in Architecture, and wide array of experience. Being an Architect taught him how to be resourceful and to solve complex problems with simple, yet innovative solutions. Constant passion for graphic & […]

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What's Hot

Mountain Landscape Photography Tips

There are few experiences as exhilarating as trekking in a mountainous landscape. A few years ago I did a three week long trek in the Himalayas, walking a circuit of about 300 km. As you can imagine, it was a huge experience, both physically and […]

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Start Making Better Bird Pictures

At once challenging and wondrous subjects, birds are fast, elusive, biologically diverse, and can be stunningly beautiful. “There are about 10,000 species of birds in the world, and their range of behaviors is very wide,” says William Majoros, a North Carolina–based scientist and avid bird […]

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Composition: Small Things Make a Big Difference

I’m continually astonished at how small things can have a big impact. Take the humble comma for instance. The placement of this relatively insignificant little mark can make all the difference to how legible a sentence is. Not adding a comma into the relevant place […]

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