04.09.15 by Jeff

An Interview with Photographer Ryan Schude

One of my favourite photographers working today, Los Angeles’ Ryan Schude, just released his new book “Schude” and it’s gorgeous. If you’re at all familiar with his work then you can imagine how overwhelming it is to look at 192 pages of it in one sitting. Good news for all of you, I’ve got two copies to give away!

If you’re looking for more inspiration after you read this little interview, you should take a peek at his Instagram @ryanschude and study the work on his website. If you wanna leave a comment below with some encouraging words for Ryan, next Friday we’ll hook two of you up with his book. This particular giveaway is open to anyone in North America.


ryan-schude02Portrait of Ryan Schude by Lauren Randolph

Jeff Hamada: If you’d never picked up photography as a hobby in school and continued onto business school like you planned, what sort of business would you be running now?

Ryan Schude: The mere speculation gives me anxiety but I do remember wanting to open a sandwich shop at some point and I could definitely see that as something I would enjoy.

JH: What would you call your sandwich shop?

RS: Schudinski’s.

JH: Are you an obsessive person? The detail in your work has a certain madness to it.

RS: During the planning and carrying out of a shoot, I can absolutely get a little obsessive. Overthinking things in general is sometimes an issue, for example, do we really need to discuss the pros and cons of 10 different restaurants before committing to dinner?


ryan-schude07Collaboration with Lauren Randolph – Summer Camp (2012)

JH: It must be hard to know when to stop. Your images must require a significant amount of post work, are the ones with lots of different people in them single photos or are they all composites of several different shots?

RS: They are setup in an attempt to get it all in one frame. Everybody is there at the same time and placed in a predetermined spot according to sketches designed before the shoot. There is a process of directing their action and shuffling back and forth between the monitor and the actors to see what is working and what isn’t. By the end, you have a handful of options for each character and are able to select the best of them to composite together. Many of the shots take place at golden hour so it is crucial to get as much as you can in as few frames as possible to ensure the lighting is seamless when you put it together in post production.

JH: What role do you play on the actual shoot days, are you hands on with the camera or are you more of a director instructing a crew?

RS: It really depends on scope of the shoot. Ideally, you have a solid crew in place you can direct, otherwise you end up running around trying to get a hand on everything which can detract from simply focusing on the story.


ryan-schude05Collaboration with Collins Schude, Callin Passero – The Promised Land (2010)

JH: Was it hard for you to build your team? I feel like finding the right people is the most crucial part of any project.

RS: The team is constantly fluctuating but I have been beyond fortunate to have worked with such amazing people thus far. This is one of the reasons I can’t imagine doing what I do in any other city in the world. Los Angeles is stuffed to the gills with people owning the best combination of open minds, creativity, and ambition.

JH: I feel like cinematic work like this inevitably gets compared to Gregory Crewdson’s, was it his work that influenced you to move away from documentary and more toward staging exactly what you wanted?

RS: I made a few short films in school before attempting to apply the same narrative techniques to a still photo. It was really a slow process from shooting editorial portraits and realizing I wanted to add a fictional element to them. It wasn’t until after I made Nog (2005), that a friend showed me Crewdson’s work and it was certainly encouraging to see what other people had done in that world.


ryan-schude04Nog (2005)

JH: How much of a story do you write for each of the characters in a scene? And what’s something you might say to an actor or model to get what you want for the scene?

RS: Usually the character’s roles are pretty straightforward and there is one specific action in mind. It can get fun when they get into the role and suggest things you didn’t think of beforehand and you have more options to play with after. In Red House (2012), the actors playing the parents began improvising an entire argument and stayed in character the whole time while we directed their children outside which added a significant amount of emotion to their expressions and body language.


ryan-schude06Collaboration with Justin Bettman – Red House (2012)

JH: I love that – do you play music at all on set?

RS: If there’s music it is probably an oldies radio station.

JH: Have you ever considered shooting moving picture of the actors holding their positions? Large video installations could be interesting.

RS: There was a very interesting concept built by an agency once around a car campaign which used my work as the inspiration for this exact output. The scale of the project ended up being too large for their budget but the possibilities presented were very exciting for both the agency and myself. Their idea involved an interactive website that zoomed in to each pocket of characters in a large tableau where you could scroll over the subjects to see an animated gif of their action. On a simpler level, I am currently looking into ways to shoot stylized video during the Them and Theirs shoots and have a narrative motion aspect to the portraits.


ryan-schude01Annie McCain Engman and her 1969 Buick Skylark Special Edition. (2015)

JH: What’s the thing (art related or not) that you’re most proud of so far in your life?

RS: The relationships with my family and friends which have been so integral in developing who I am and what I have experienced both personally and professionally. The fact that I am able to wake up each day and do exactly what I want is a testament to the encouragement of those who surround me.


ryan-schude08Ryan Schude’s new hardcover photo book “Schude”

Ryan Schude’s Website

Ryan Schude on Instagram

“Schude” book on Amazon

22.06.15 by Jeff

Booooooom Hookups: 3 Komono x Andy Rementer Watches

Our Vancouver-based friends at Fbomb Trading have hooked us up with 3 fantastic Komono watches designed by a personal favourite, illustrator Andy Rementer. We wanna give them all away to you and two friends, we’ll even throw in Andy’s amazing book as well!

All you have to do is follow @fbombtrading and @ tag two of your friends in the post above (or click here). We’ll pick winners in two weeks and you and your buds get everything you see in this photo of my desk.

Enter as many times as you like! Winners will be selected using a random number generator.

09.06.15 by Jeff

Official Release: The Booooooom REMAKE book is finally here!



After years (literally years) making the first-ever Booooooom book it has finally been released! You can purchase this on Amazon (and Amazon.ca and Indigo) and pretty much wherever quality books are sold! If you have a shop and want to carry our book that would be awesome, please contact Chronicle Books (if you’re in Canada contact Raincoast Books).

We’re giving away 2 books on our Instagram and another copy here. All you have to do is leave a comment below with a link to your favourite Booooooom post from 2015 so far. We’ll pick a winner in a week!

Thank you to everyone who has art in here, your books are all being mailed to you!




03.02.15 by Jeff

Book Giveaway: Luke Ramsey “Intelligent Sentient?”


My friends at Drawn and Quarterly sent over an advance copy of Luke Ramsey’s new book Intelligent Sentient? and is a quiet masterpiece. There are so many layers to the book, which is textless aside from a brief foreword.

To me, the book is about questioning the relationship between everything around us, and inside us, and the very idea of us. The story, if you can call it a story, features work by an all-star cast of illustrators: Jon Boam, Emmanuel Romeuf, Jesse Jacobs, Ekta, Andy Rementer, Tommi Musturi, Michael DeForge, Miss Lotion, Finlay Pogue, Remed, and of course Luke Ramsey himself. Each artist contributed a two page environment, with their own “version of an anti-character, a de-evolved human from a grey race”.

If you are excited about all this I have good news, I have a copy of the book to give away to one of you! If you’d like to snag the book, use the comments below to tell me something you’ve learned about yourself, or your environment, in recent years. We’ll pick a winner in two weeks!

If you live in Vancouver, I have even more exciting news! Luke Ramsey will be at Lucky’s Comics this Friday, February 6th, at 7pm, launching his book, and showing a slideshow!

Take a look at some images from the book below!

Read More

04.12.14 by Jeff

Craftsy: Portrait Drawing Class


Once again our sponsor this week is Craftsy which provides resources for creatives in the form of videos and tutorials. We’ve teamed up to offer a Free Portrait Drawing Class that teaches you how to capture a likeness; things like mapping the face, refining shapes, and drawing different variations. This is worth checking out if you want to pick up some fundamentals, the best part being the fact that it costs nothing.

Sign up for the free class Draw Better Portraits: Capturing Likeness.

03.12.14 by Jeff

Giveaway: 5 Risograph Calendars by J.P. King


I’ve got 5 Risograph Calendars to give away again this year, courtesy of designer J.P. King. If you want one of these puppies, tell me your favourite month and why in the comments below! We’ll pick 5 winners on December 17th.




31.10.14 by Jeff

Giveaway: Earthling by Illustrator Aisha Franz


My friends at Drawn & Quarterly just sent me over a copy of illustrator Aisha Franz’s fantastic debut graphic novel, Earthling, and I get to give away another copy to one of you.

If you’d like to snag the book tell me what the title of your debut graphic novel would be, in the comments below. We’ll pick a winner on November 14th. This is open to everyone in North America and the UK.




23.10.14 by Jeff

Design a Sticker for Booooooom! We’ll send you 500.


We’re teaming up with Stickerobot Custom Stickers to run a fun little project. They’ve been a supporter of Booooooom for a long time and have made us a ton of custom printed stickers over the years. We’ve made clear stickers and die cut ones but I’ve kept the actual designs really plain. This is where you guys come in.

This is a call to all you artists and illustrators out there to design us a 3″ x 3″ sticker. It can be whatever you want it just needs to have the word “Booooooom” somewhere in it. This doesn’t necessarily mean we just want you to draw a bunch of cool looking letters, you could though. But you could also draw a dinosaur playing a saxophone at sunset and then in really small letters at the bottom write the word Booooooom. Make whatever you want, in your own style.

You can submit your design by leaving a comment on this post and attaching a small JPG (less than 1 mb) image of your design. Keep a high resolution or vector version of your work handy in case yours is chosen.

We will pick 3 winners and each of you will get 500 stickers of your own design sent to you! We will also get these stickers made for us and the back print on the stickers will have information about you (your name, website, etc) so when we give them to people we will essentially be handing someone your business card! We will not be selling the stickers that you create, this is stuff that we want to be able to give away to people.

I’m excited to see what you guys come up with. Feel free to submit as many designs as you want. The submission period ends November 14th.