All images copyright Matt Charnitski. All rights reserved.
I'm a headshot, live event, and cinematic portrait photographer based out of Austin, Tx and I love what I do.
In the early 1980's, I drew on the walls of our home and my mom never got around to punishing me. Fast-forward 30 years and I was successfully building the life I thought that I was supposed to have. I had a rapidly growing career in tech that afforded me a nice house with a fence in a good part of a thriving city. I talked to my neighbors about their yards when we'd pass one another while walking our dogs. I wrote a lot of work emails about 'action items' and 'resetting expectations' and 'solutions oriented mindsets'. I had a roadmap for a corporate career and everything was on track.
But all I wanted to do was draw on the walls...
...so I decided to walk away from my career and never go back.
I picked up my first camera back in 2012 and photography immediately made sense to me. It wasn't long before I was taking headshots for friends and coworkers. I started covering the big annual All Hands events and the subsequent parties that my employer at the time would throw. I began shooting for the Texas Rollergirls and the Texas Roller Derby and soon started to get hired to photograph events at ACL Theater, Austin's historic Paramount Theater, and the Austin Music Hall.
While working with these music venues, I fell in love with stage lighting. I decided to bring that performance production element into my portrait work to create images that invite the eye to linger. As I learned to control the viewer's eye across a subject, I gained an opportunity to build more complex ties between my subject and the viewer. I developed a style for my images that my clients constantly told me made them feel as if the pictures were stills from a movie. So I ran with it.
As my work gained more attention, I found myself traveling more and working with NFL athletes, politicians on the world stage, music legends, comedians, TV stars, and CEOs of global companies and non-profits. My images began to appear on trade magazine covers, in print ads, in political campaign emails, and in blog entries with titles like 'Top Ten Moments of SXSW'. Producers from NBC courted me for use of my images of the Oct 2016 Hunter's Supermoon on the TODAY Show and across all digital platforms. In 2017, event marketing teams began to reach out to me to consult on how to make effective photo-op spaces within their events.
When I'm not creating images or consulting, I'm usually found on any of the various trails in Austin, TX with my dachshund, Wexter or standing in line to buy tacos. My life is weird and that's the way I like it.