Born in the USA, now based and working in the UK.
I was raised in Virginia Beach, Virginia enjoying long hot summer days at the beach surfing and swimming with friends, enjoying outdoor life. Virginia showed me a perspective and vision of the beauty in my everyday surroundings. This vision has stayed with me, it’s now an intrinsic part of how I view and create images today.
My photographic education and career started in New York City in, dare I say it, 1977. These were very spirited and dangerous times to have been living and working in New York City, but what an experience. From being chased out of Fulton Fish Market while on a photographic project, at 3:00 in the morning (by a member of the Genovese Mafia family, swinging a large fishhook at me…anything for the project!) to the wonderful energy of New York City. It’s these experiences and the people I encountered which shaped my creative drive and passion.
After college, I started photographing and traveling throughout the Americas, with home changing from New York City, Miami, Los Angeles to San Francisco. Some of my most memorable experiences came with climbing down ship rope ladders at sea onto fast moving pilot boats, so I could be in Panama City before sunrise. Or, sailing into Haiti in the very early morning hours, with an eerie silence and stillness of a dead calm Cape-Haitian Bay, all to be on location at just the right time.
Whilst in Alaska, I met my British wife and moved to England.
I started Mike Swartz Photography in the UK, shooting on both national and international projects, ranging from Studio Sets, Industrial Travel, Interiors & Exteriors, Studio Still-Life, Lifestyle, Food, through to Corporate Portraiture. Having been lucky enough to work within the photographic industry for so many years, I have a unique level of creative experience which is brought into the many disciplines of my photography. All the while, continuing to learn and adapt. My many contacts and connections over the years have enabled me to work with some of the most talented fixers, stylists and production teams worldwide to carry out even the most demanding video and photographic briefs.
My Interior, Exterior design and architectural photography client base has grown in recent years. I am now shooting internationally for Interior Designers, Architects and Custom Home Builders. While always understanding the importance of strict confidentiality and privacy for our clients and property owners. Reliability, quality with the understanding of obtaining highly accurate colour and composition within all our images. Video has now become such an important addition to our clients requirments when documenting their projects. We offer video with inhouse editing for the most accurate reflection of our clients properties.
The digital revolution has helped to forge new creative directions, allowing me to offer video alongside my photography. Digital imaging and new technologies have provided a unique opportunity to increase the scope of creativity, allowing me to continue to travel the world shooting. Such clients include, DHL in Panama, AL Bank in Spain and in the United States; Allison Ramsey Architects, Sommer Design Studios and Simpson Builders Inc. to name a few.
Creativity and technology together are now key to creating contemporary, modern images. Capturing high quality imagery through composition and exceptional detail is only part of creating images of the highest quality. Detailed post-production processing and retouching are the added layers in producing the very best and most creative images possible. Every photographer handles these processes very differently, the key is sensitivity and vision. Understanding your client’s needs from the outset, adding creative individuality, and delivering quality on time.
“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.”