About Jeff Gatesman


I am a Chicago-born, Los Angeles-based Director/DP and Still Photographer specializing in commercial and narrative visual storytelling. I believe that to be a great maker of images you need a keen sense of style, and having lived a life watching and loving classic cinema and getting an education in film history and aesthetics as well as living in modern, world class cities, I believe my strong visual style has developed into one that combines a modern aesthetic with classic composition.

From Commercial to Documentary and Independent Film, my aim is to always tell visually stunning stories.

I have Directed and shot the award-winning feature documentary, The Tears of a Full Moon in the Brazilian Amazon, two cooking shows; Feeding The Fire and Breaking Bread, as well as the promo Johnny Rocket in Garage Space, and a series of education videos for children.

I studied film making and cinematography at Columbia College, Chicago, and the art of still photography at FAMU in Prague, CZ. My technical experience covers the complete spectrum of film making, from 16 and 35mm film, to high definition video and digital capture in all of its various configurations. I have lugged heavy beam splitter rigs through the  Yucatan rain forest to shoot Mayan Ruins in 3D for Mexican Tourism, shot the Amazon River in anamorphic High Definition video, strapped cameras to roller coasters and race cars, and shot a herd of stampeding buffalo from the bed of a moving pickup truck.

I am also an FAA certified drone pilot and aerial cinematographer.


Won a Bronze Telly Award for the PSA Because for the Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness, 2015
Nominated for a 2012 Black and White Spider Award, the leading International Award for Black and White Photography, for his image of a 1957 Pontiac.
Nominated for an International Color Award in the Photography Masters Cup for the image Derby Doll 2010

“Jeff Gatesman graces Solstice with excellent cinematography not typically seen in independent films.”  -Chicago Independent Magazine

Won a Gold Aurora Award for Amazonas, a documentary shot on location in the Brazilian Amazon 2004
Won a Platinum Telly for Next Opinion, shot on location in Santo Domingo, D.R. for Microsoft.
Honorable Mention from the Advertising Photographers of America for A Quiet Bright Reedsong, a portrait of a Whirling Dervish.

“I don’t know about cinematography, but have you had one of his margaritas after the shoot?” – a satisfied director

I was also the Cinematographer for the documentary film See What I’m Saying, that did this:

  • First production job out of film school was on The Oprah Show
  • Attended film school with Oscar winning cinematographers Mauro Fiore (Avatar) and Janusz Kaminsky (Shindlers List)
  • Member of The International Cinematographers Guild
  • have shot all over the United States and worldwide in Belfast, London, Cambridge, Johannesburg, Taipei, Hong Kong, Prague, Tokyo, Norway, Frankfurt, Munich, Dominican Republic and Brazil

For more information see my film credits on my IMDB page.