Simon Chetrit
Portrait Photographer / Journalist / FRIEND


Simon Chetrit

Portrait Photographer/Journalist

Brooklyn, NY
Instagram @simonzchetrit


What do you do?

I am a portrait photographer specializing in intimate, intense, colorful, rich, mainly medium format film photography. 

I am a portrait photographer specializing in intimate, intense, colorful, rich, mainly medium format film photography.

What steps did you take to get where you are now?

Shoot shoot shoot. Shooting every day. Shoot every camera I possibly could and read about photography when I'm not shooting. Hang out with photographers and editors. Shoot on Icelandic glaciers, Moroccan deserts, in the Israeli ocean, on New York City subway tracks. Just shoot and shoot and shoot until I could bury myself in exposed negatives and understand all the minute nuances of every camera I use and how they make people look.

That, and social media. 


For other people in your field, what do they usually lack?

Resourcefulness, openness to new ideas, ingenuity, patience to research and try new things.


What are you working on right now?

This summer I will be going to Iceland to document the Syrian refugees being resettled there, and their struggle to build their lives up in a new, foreign land. I am also working on documenting the growing hobby/industry of competitive gaming, or eSports. 


We are all Slashies with multiple skills, which one do you wish you could do more often?

Journalism. The single most important field of work in the world today, just about. Specifically from a video perspective. I also do makeup.


What is frustrating you right now?

Simply not enough exposure. Not to toot my own horn, but the work is there, but my social media game isn't doing the pictures justice. And that's what seems to count these days. 


What task keeps landing at the bottom of the To Do list?

Getting my driver's license (born and raised New Yorker, no need here), shooting more video to sharpen my editing skills, perfect my GIF-making game, blog about more personal photographic work, sending W9s to various people. 


If you could hire someone for $20/hour, what would you have them do to make your day easier?

Organize my negatives. That, and to email as many people as humanly possible.


Let's bring out the time machine. What do you wish you could have told yourself, when, and why?

Stop spend so much time chasing after love and spend more time working on yourself, and challenging yourself to be better, do more, and overall be stronger and more disciplined. Do better in school, or you'll regret it your entire life. Work out, but don't push yourself to an extreme.


If you could talk to an expert to gain more insight on something, what would it be about?

The Syrian refugee crisis, video editing/shooting, especially as it pertains to dSLRS, and social media. 


What kind of opportunities/projects are you looking for?

Portrait projects. I am a portrait fanatic, and am always hungry, nay, STARVING, to shoot more. Especially of cool/fashionable people. 

I am a portrait fanatic, and am always hungry, nay, STARVING, to shoot more.

What is your ideal client?

I just worked ESL One New York 2015 at Madison Square Garden.

It's always been a dream of mine to shoot there, and to shoot there for a gaming-related event was a nice way of my gaming passion and photography love to come full circle. The production was massive, the stagecraft was genuinely impressive, everyone was professional and visionary and focused and excited for the future. So inspiring to be around.

Do you allow yourself to say No?

Sometimes yes, sometimes no. I'm stubborn but I know when I'm wrong and see nothing wrong with admitting that. 

What is your rate? 

$350 an hour for photo. Depends on the project, for sure. But compared to what my friends seem to charge, that appears to be fair. Simple digital headshots? $250. If I'm busting out my 4x5 and spending roughly $4.50 a shot to insure you get the best possible portrait possible, I will charge more, in accordance with the cost and work involved. 

How should someone approach you about working together?

With seriousness and focus. We can have fun on the actual job, but when proposing a job or gig, the job is all that matters. Witty banter and a humorous back and forth are nice, but in an email, I'm merely scanning for info and processing it. I have enough false starts and shoots that don't actually end up coming together to worry about whether or not my jokes came across properly. 

This member profile was originally published in November 2015.