If it’s true that “creativity begins at the end of your comfort zone,” then photographer/artist/teacher Michael e. Stern has taken permanent residence there in a career that spans more than four decades. For Michael, it has always been about the story.
Graduated from Art Center in 1979, Michael first escaped his comfort zone by taking on anything the Hollywood studios could throw at him. He enjoyed a long and lively creative collaboration with Disney’s many creative teams across the globe, enhancing their magic with a bit of his own legerdemain in photography, multi-media and video promotions of iconic feature animations.
When the brave new world of digital photography came along, Michael abandoned the darkroom to embrace challenging new digital programs that gave his creativity full scope.
By 2003, he had become so adept at the new medium that he was tapped to teach new photographers his Photoshop techniques at the legendary Brooks Institute of Photography. In 2009 he came out with his first book, “Build A Better Photograph: A Disciplined Approach to Creativity,” which revealed him as an innovative fine artist cleverly disguised as a mild-mannered photography expert.
Eight years later, Michael goosed the staid world of traditional time-lapse industrial photography with human interest stories about the builders and creators behind the everyday miracles we take for granted: bridges, buildings and transportation infrastructure. Lightning struck when Michael used time-lapse, video, music and voiceover to portray artist Terence Egan, the sculptor commissioned to restore and enhance the decaying faux bois concrete sculptures of the Huntington Gardens in his documentary short subject, “Faux Bois at the Huntington”.
Recently, the international supply-chain giant Syncreon has wowed their clientele with Michael’s masterful time-lapse video depicting their business processes from beginning to end.
Master disruptor, father and husband Michael e. Stern continues to rock institutions and shatter comfort zones wherever he may find them, all while living happily in Pasadena, California with his artist wife, son and his own hyperactive imagination.