Esquire’s RED ONE Cover Photo and Motos (Moving Photos)

Posted on April 28, 2009

The latest cover of Esquire that’s coming out, featuring Megan Fox, wasn’t shot with a still camera but with the RED ONE, the super inexpensive, super high-def movie camera.

Basically Megan acted for 10 minutes, which they filmed on the RED, and then pulled out the best frames. My first thought was doesn’t that defeat the purpose of capturing a moment and photography, and won’t this lead to lazy photography because basically you’re shooting 24 pictures a second, so you know you’ve got something. Plus, at 24 frames per second that’s over 14,000 photos to edit!

I first read about this on Chase Jarvis’ blog. Then this morning it was on A Photo Editor, so I decided to look more into it and it’s actually way cooler than it originally sounded and has some unique potential. First, the photographer behind the cover is Greg Williams, whom I later remembered did one of my favorite photo series ever in the book Bond On Set, which has great set photography from Casino Royale.

Secondly, this wasn’t just a shoot with the end goal of getting a cover photo. The 10 minutes they shot was on sets with a loose narrative, which they’re editing down to 4 minutes and putting on Esquire’s site next month.

But lastly, which I think is the coolest, is you get these really cool, Harry Potter-esque moving photos, or Motos, as Williams is calling them. While this may be the first cover to be shot on RED, Williams has been playing with this technique since Quantum of Solace.

Here’s Megan Fox’s Esquire Moto from Williams’ site:

Pretty awesome, right? Movie posters, National Geographic, photojournalism – there’s all kinds of applications for this, to have a little expanded slice of life. Now we just need digital paper to slap this stuff anywhere.

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Written by Joey Daoud

Joey Daoud is an award-winning documentary filmmaker. His past films have appeared on Netflix, The New York Times, and National Geographic. He is also a YouTube creator across multiple channels with videos garnering millions of views. In his free time, he likes to climb mountains, scuba dive, and brew unique coffees.

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  1. Joe Craig

    This is amazing. I watched an interview with Bill Gates a while ago and when they asked him what the future would look like he said that there would be plasma and lcd screens everywhere… the walls in your house with digital wallpaper. Imagine that on the side of a building.


    Hmmm…I’m not impressed. I saw the images on Greg’s website and it just look right to me. I think of this more as a gimmick for Esquire. Anyways, that is my opinion.

  3. Harvey Robinson

    Some people get it. Others don’t. This is where it’s going. It might not be tomorrow, but it’s coming. Canon 5D with video capability anyone?

  4. Joey

    Yes, Esquire is like the embryo of what will probably be more and more convergence between film and photography. And as Joe said, as display technology improves and becomes more ubiquitous, so will the ability to display moving ads and images.

  5. Martin

    Hadn’t seen those “moto”s before – though I don’t like the expression…

    As video capability is becoming pretty much a standard even in high-end stills cameras (and more and more photographers are asked to provide video of their work), I am excited to see which new visual narratives will emerge, and video in such a capable hand as in Williams will be exciting.

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