Even he might find this a surprise but, Bart Cepek was at one time one of my rivals or you might say I found myself threatened by his existence in our industry. You see Bart is what I consider a heavy hitter on the verge of a winning streak. He owns an incredible studio just off state street in Boise, ID. However, if you’ve ever wandered through the doors of my studio you’d find his to be a little different. Not only does Bart have a passion for automobiles and photographing them but he is also brilliantly can capture the grace & movements of dancers.
So of course you noticed the title of the blogpost says new recruit and it’s right, he is now apart of our team at Samuel Marvin Photography. Don’t worry he hasn’t sold out on his own business. I found myself in a unique situation a few weeks back and reached out to him, not for the first time, and asked him to come work with us a little. Let me tell you a little about Bart before I go into much depth on how we became friends and mutual entrepreneurs instead of rivals.
Bart is a father of two young kids and married to Victoria. As a young child, he grew up in Poland before his parents escaped and fled to Italy shortly before settling in the United States. In the 1980s Bart, still very young, found himself living here in Boise, Idaho. Just a few short years ago he was granted citizenship in the USA.
If you take a minute to scope out any of Bart’s work on his website BART CEPEK PHOTOGRAPHY you’ll see the incredible detail he captures in his photography work. What you won’t see is the immense amount of capable talent he has for everything he touches or the won’t quit attitude he totes around with him. A few short years ago Bart built out the space that has become his own studio. And when I say built out I mean a 20-foot tall cyclic wall (special curved wall for photography) sheetrock, paint, and epoxy floors but what’s most impressive is he built, yes from scratch one of the biggest lightboxes for lighting full-size automobiles, boats and of course million dollar plus cars. To top it off he designed & wired a lift that lifts this 12×36 behemoth up and down and also tilts it left, right, forward, or backward.
And just when you think I’ve already shared all of Barts abilities 80% of the equipment in his studio has been sourced by hand by the man himself or traded or purchased used or broken and fixed by him as well. The list goes on and on but before I sell you on the idea of hiring him lets slow down on the gushing over Bart.
As I mentioned before for a time I found Bart to be a rival. I didn’t know him well but I knew he wasn’t afraid to speak his mind or even point out the flaws in my work online so, for me, I kinda wanted to just stay clear. A few years ago I realized I had a lot to share with other photographers since I had found what I felt was great success in the industry. I started to open myself up to other photographers and one day Bart sent a print over to our lab (CiC Pro Lab, a printing business I own and run out of the same building as our studio) and when he came to pick it up we got to talking. That is when I think all of the walls came down. Since then we have become good friends and despite my fear of trusting people, I found he was someone I did trust.
I learned that Bart was still working a regular day job not yet making the leap into the scary abyss of letting go of his supporting day job and becoming a full-time photographer. Then, COVID-19 hit, and Barts hand was forced. Recognizing the opportunity I called him up and offered him a position as the production manager for our lab. Because the job is quite flexible it gives him plenty of time to focus on his own studio and keep all his effort in an industry he is passionate about.
Needless to say, the reason I am writing this is that he accepted the position. I’ve never seen anyone train so fast or pick up on the details so effortlessly. Sadly our future with Bart is bleak. His talent and abilities will soon be in such high demand I am sure he won’t have time or desire to stick around and I will truly be saddened. I can’t tell you how excited I am and how lucky I feel to have Bart as a part of our team at Samuel Marvin Photography. So without any more blah blah blah I want to say “Welcome to our team, Bart!” Glad to have you.