photo: Nate Hoffman

photo: Nate Hoffman

Mike grew up in a creative family, born to a ceramicist and a meteorologist.  His artistic interests and abilities were clear from a very young age, excelling at drawing, painting, and sculpting.  Eventually his parallel love for computers fused with his love for art, and Mike began working in visual effects when he was 17, first for Warner Brothers Digital, then Landmark Entertainment Group.  At 19 he began studying cinematography as well, taking classes at AFI and USC, and working as a camera PA on indie features.

After getting accepted to Art Center for Film, Mike postponed enrollment because of an apprenticeship opportunity.  He was introduced to the Academy Award-winning cinematographer, Russell Carpenter ASC, and Russell mentored him in filmmaking while Mike taught Russell Adobe Photoshop.

For 3 years Mike worked with Russell on features, commercials and still shoots, while on the side shooting indie films, commercials and music videos.

Mike’s last project with Russell was Charlie’s Angels, on which Mike shot previs videos with the fight/stunt teams, did location scouts and light mapping, and coordinated the setups between 1st and 2nd units.

After Charlie’s wrapped, Mike began getting hired to shoot still photo shoots, and over the following 14 years he's shot many of Hollywood’s biggest actors and actresses for magazine covers, movie posters, and advertisements.  He continues to shoot still photography, as well as direct/DP commercials and music videos.

Mike has also been featured on 11 seasons of America’s Next Top Model as a guest photographer and judge, and is the resident photographer/judge on Asia’s Next Top Model season 2.

He still draws and paints, and his love for photography and film is matched only by his love of travel.  He has traveled extensively - from floating in the Dead Sea to running with the bulls in Pamplona to climbing Machu Picchu.