In The Field: Xi’an, China


There’s something about driving to the location site and seeing these motorized bicycles loaded to the gills with boxes (or packages or corrugated metal). It looks like the drivers had to wake up three hours before they departed just to buckle and fasten everything down for their trip.

Anyway….back in the last week in November, just after Thanksgiving, I was in Xi’an, China, with Atlanta-based photojournalist Gary S. Chapman. We were on site at my company’s location there to do some new corporate images for our image gallery.

My activity here is three-fold: I’m “the guy from corporate” who sets everything up with the local colleagues. I usually have never met them except for email, and now I’m dropping in, disrupting their days asking to be shown around and given lunch.

Another goal is to art direct the scenes. In this case, it’s working with Chinese colleagues who either didn’t speak English or spoke very little English. Gary and I try to convey the pictures we want to shoot, and then try to loosen them up enough so that we get some nice shots. I also scout for other options, see what can work, try things out and direct the photographer for specific images I KNOW our image gallery needs. We’re filling gaps here, not just randomly shooting.

We’re in a particular region, so that fulfills the “ethnic/regional” aspect. But I’m always looking for specific R&D photos, environmental scenes for those images, and people/employee shot. Again, filling gaps.

Thirdly, I act like a second-shooter at a wedding. While Gary is involved in one area, I try to get some shots in another area as well. Hey, I don’t know the next time I may get to a location with a team. May as well maximize our fire and pixel power while w are out.

I also try to shoot some “behind the scenes” stuff which is always pretty fun. Everyone likes the “BTS stuff” and it’s cool for social media too. .

Here’s some of what I shot on Day One in Xi’an.








Always looking for the image, working the scene, entire-to-detail.

Some BTS of Gary at work. (Gary uses the Sony Alpha camera system, should you be wondering, for both the still images and video b-roll we shoot. He’s switched from Nikon to Canon to now Sony and is really happy with it.)




Some short BTS video….

And…some fun.


Can’t pass up a good mirror opportunity.


I’ve been doing these types of shoots with photographers since 1998. It’s both really fun and really tiring to be on set, working out logistics and problems, especially in a foreign country. You have to be “on” a lot, and by the end of the day, you’re bushed.

But it’s still the best part of my job and I like doing this the more I do it.

More to come from Xi’an…

(c) Mark Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | 2016




Jet Planes, Bullet Trains and Taxis


Somewhere Over China

I got back last night from a jam-packed week of travel.

My Thanksgiving dinner had hardly digested and I was on a plane bound for China. Left at noon from Newark Liberty International on Saturday, November 26, flew through through the day with Gary S. Chapman, and, 6,803 miles later, landed in Beijing. Only to catch another flight to land, two hours later, in Xian, China, on Sunday evening, November 27.

From there it was a  two-day shoot in Xian, then off to Japan. About 1,768 air miles, but then an hour train ride from Narita International Airport, then  a bullet train (Shinkasen) to the Nagaizumi region. Not sure of the mileage, but at 153 miles per hour, it took about an hour.


Bullet Train From Tokyo To Nagaizumi, Japan

After deboarding at Mishima Station, a short taxi ride to the second of three hotels on this trip.


Nagaizumi Taxi

Another bullet train ride back to Tokyo where I spent about 36 hours, working, seeing some sites, doing an impromptu photo walk, eating good food and being welcomed at every place we went to.

Arrived back home in the Great State of New Jersey last evening. Walked in the door to one happy wife, three happy kids and one tail-wagging puppy. Not a bad homecoming.

Still backing up, editing and generally getting my mind back in work mode today. I’ll be sharing some more thoughts and ideas over the next few posts. It was a great trip, and great to work with Gary.

My Canon and my Fuji will have more to say….

(c) Mark Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | 2016

30 Days of Noir ~ Days 27-30: I Never Thought It Would End Like This


I never thought it would end like this.

They never do, brother.

They never do.


This is the end.

Rather than drag this out, I’m ending it here and now. It’s November 30 – Noirvember is just about done.

I’ve spent the last few day in Xian, China, where my Internet was really slow, and I could hardly access any sites.

It’s Chinatown, Jake.

(As an aside, one evening, while walking around Xian, I saw a street sign pointing to “Chinatown.” Thought that was interesting and not the least bit odd. I did a Google search and found nothing. Asked some local colleagues about it, they had no idea. Maybe the city planners were just fond of the movie.)


Out Of The Past in Grand Central Terminal

Anyway, I’m in Japan now, in Nagaizumi-chō, Shizuoka Prefecture.

We had an early flight from Xian this morning, landed at the Narita Airport, then navigated two trains – included the bullet train – and a taxi to arrive at our final destination.

The Internet is back open to me so I want to finish up this series.


Let Nothing You Dismay

I didn’t expect it to end like this. Kinda quick and all. Like two to the pump – tap tap.

But we’ve had a good run this month, eh? Really happy so many of you stuck with me through this 30 Days of Noir, and thanks for the nice comments and responses.

We’re headed into the cold, dark end of the year, and the festive holiday season. Well, it is for some, anyway. I’ve done a number of “holiday noir” images in the past. Frankly, for all the glittering lights and festive fun, it can also be a downright dark time of year. So maybe it’s good I close out with one of those images from out of the past (well, two if count my femme fatale in Grand Central Terminal from a few years ago).

But that’s it. Until the next noirvember, just remember…


Sin will always find out .

(c) Mark Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | 2016

On Hold ~ 30 Days of Noir


Hi there!

On Saturday, bright and early at  8 a.m., I headed to Newark Airport (EWR if you’re keeping score) to catch a flight to China .

As I write this, I sit in Xian, China, and it’s 11:14 p.m on Sunday. I’m almost so tired I can’t sleep.

Anyway…connection is pretty slow. And a challenge. So my #30dayonoir may be delayed a bit, and may even run into December.

Stay with me, though! It’ll be worth it!

Here’s a quick pic, the cover of Chinese Business View, recognizing the death of Fidel Castro. Love the silhouette here. Instantly recognizable.

Great use of negative space, too.

I’ll pick up our #noirvember posts as soon as I can!

(c) Mark Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | 2016