Few people have gotten their hands on Canon’s new 5D Mark IV. Far fewer have ever had their work exhibited at the Whitney Museum in New York City. Roberto Valenzuela, Canon Explorer of Light, WPPI speaker and judge, and Rangefinder contributor, can proudly check both boxes.
The images on display at the Whitney weren’t taken from a life’s work, but the day before by Valenzuela using the Mark IV. In fact, Canon had orchestrated a signature challenge for the Beverly Hills, CA-photographer: go from unboxing the Mark IV to having his work printed on the imagePROGRAF Pro-1000 and hung in the Whitney the very next day.
Pulling off the shoot was an effort in extreme coordination, Valenzuela tells us. “There were lots of moving parts.” The model he had hired, Rachel Cook, could only fly in the morning of the shoot. Valenzuela also had to endure the nerves of shepherding over-sized light stands and numerous strobe batteries on a cross-country flight.
During the shoot, “there was no time for mistakes,” Valenzuela says, “we had to light meter everything.” Fortunately, the model excelled, his makeup artist Griselle Rosario “knocked it out of the park,” the dress designer RMINE came through and his editor, Rocco Ancora, pulled an all-nighter to get Canon the files.
The work was then printed at 16 x 20 and framed for all to see. On seeing his work on the walls of the Whitney, Valenzuela says it was definitely a “top honor of my career.”