Lyndon & Lindsey Wade (The Wade Brothers)

June 12, 2024

Our interview with The Wade Brothers, Lyndon and Lindsey Wade, a creative duo known for their distinctive and imaginative photography and filmmaking. They are celebrated for their healthy dose of madness and ability to blend surrealism with a strong narrative style, creating visually striking and conceptually rich images.

Wade Brothers interview

The Fashiongton Post: Is it harder or easier to work as a duo? Who usually wins in a creative disagreement, and what’s the most memorable standoff you’ve had over a photoshoot?

The Wade Brothers: It’s easier and always better to have two brains, two lenses, two equally talented and creative people on one project… at least for us! We do very large productions, as we’re tasked to be the directors and photographers on most projects, being a creative duo, that truly shares a brain and well prepared and aligned together throughout the creative concept phase it just allows for a more streamlined efficient shoot. Yes, we do sometimes disagree, we challenge each other’s ideas, and push each other to be the best. At the end of the day, we throw our egos out the door and whatever is truly the best idea wins. So, as long as we always have that intention it’s not an argument, it’s just part of the creative process. If we’ve had a stand off before, it’s comes down to who gets to shoot from the most exciting POV… From a helicopter for “Oakley”, or when one was strapped to a rig tracking skateboarders down a hill for “Bose”, or maybe who gets to roll with ski patrol to bomb avalanches for “Helly Hansen”. We both grew up adrenaline kids, snowboarding, skateboarding, rock climbing, living a robust experience rich life has always been our focus. So yes… we both want the best seat in the house.

Wade Brothers interview

F.P.: When shooting together – do you both take photos simultaneously and then select the best shots or you split the roles in some way?

W.B.: We normally shoot simultaneously, it’s just an added value to get two angles, with two different lens compression on a scene. It’s something a single photographer just can’t do. We direct so much that we love a two camera setup and we’ve adopted that for still photography too. We do have some creative projects where it’s a large scene, one of us will direct the talent’s performances, and the other handles photography. We also sometimes just direct a campaign which at that point we find value even then with two heads and eyes on the scene.

Wade Brothers interview

F.P.: What’s the story behind the “Room 107” series: whose idea it was to shoot it? What was the process of brainstorming the plots for each of those episodes? Was it shot in an actual motel or in the studio?

W.B.: This was back in the beginning of our careers. We started traveling quite often, sometimes you work in some remote areas and question the motel or hotel you’re staying in. We get to stay in the most extravagant places and hotels, but sometimes we need a location in the middle of nothing and we’re staying in some questionable spots. We’ve slept in all of our clothes just to limit the contact to the sheets. We started thinking who might of checked in before us and then once we check out who checks in after. That time you grab the key, you look down and just asked the question, who had this last?  You then fill in the blanks, with stories and scenes to develop the narrative.

Wade Brothers interview

F.P.: What is one unique quirk or habit any of you has while working that the other finds amusing?

W.B.: Sometimes, when Lyndon is in deep thought, he will unknowingly stare directly into other people’s eyes, not specific to any persons, could be anyone on the set.

Wade Brothers interview

F.P.: What’s the weirdest location for a photoshoot that you had?

W.B.: Oh man…so many!

Barrow, Alaska – the Northern most point in the USA. They kill 60ft+ wales, drag them on the beach, and butcher them right there. The entire town then cooks the meat in many different ways for food for the winter months.

Wade Brothers interview

Sand dunes of Canary Islands – Olympic runners just peak over the horizon lines.

Wade Brothers interview

An active airport in Uruguay with Olympic runners on the tarmac with planes landing on all sides.

Wade Brothers interview

Middle East for “Nike” – filming the first ever Women’s only Nike campaign in the Middle East. We had women running openly in the streets, and a boxing training gym set up in the streets. This created much controversy for the men of this culture. We didn’t care, it was beautiful.

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For “Bacardi” we were tasked to find the most epic bat cave in the world. We heard of something to see a few hours outside of Mexico City. Doing what great production does, they hunt, make connections, find the right person and continue to grind until you make it work. We ended up finding a person called “The Mystic” that knew the way and would take people to this bat cave. Each day at 5pm exactly this huge hole in the mountain side would start to spin and swirl with bats. Then at that exact time they exit and literally fill the sky with millions of bats. It goes on like that for hours until it becomes completely pitch black. The Mystic had never let a film crew there and not sure if they have since, we spent time having lunch and beers with him, creating a relationship and winning him over. It was all worth the effort.

Wade Brothers interview

F.P.: A nerd question but our readers would definitely want to know – what cameras and equipment are favorite to use for each of you two?

W.B.: We don’t have a go-to piece of equipment. We pick the right system for the job. If it’s handheld fast action we’re going to choose something with the best auto focus tracking that has bounced around from “Canon” to “Nikon” to “Fuji”, etc. We do take into consideration the final deliverable on size format. We have top trained crew members that stay on top of the best equipment. We take their consult on each project and decide collectively. Same when it comes to live action cameras, we work with some of the best cinematographers in the world. We’re always deciding on the best camera system but maybe even more important the lenses, is in anamorphic or spherical, is a vintage with a ton of character or is it clean and crisp. We build treatments for each campaign and attach the right equipment to match that vision.

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F.P.: Knowing you photographed a lot of celebrities like Eminem, 50 Cent, etc., we guess there were many funny situations with that?

W.B.: 50 Cent – came into the studio wearing a bullet proof vest. I questioned at that point why we all weren’t’ wearing one.

Eminem – wearing the most baggy, sack like sweatpants. He kept giving us shit for our “tight ass jeans” as he would put it. He showed up with no entourage, just him and his best friend… No ego!

We filmed and photographed RZA for “The North Face”. RZA had a flutist booked for his dressing room to get him in the right space, what a legend!

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