Renee Rhyner & Co has a foundation in commercial photography representation, but their roster has expanded to also include graphic designers, illustrators, filmmakers, and a brilliant team of producers. With offices in Dallas and New York City, Renee Rhyner & Co have been in the artist representation business for over twenty years.
Year company formed?
January 1, 1991
Who are your photographers who are based in Texas and what do they specialize in?
Fredrik Broden is based in Dallas. He shoots portraits, locations and fashion with a conceptual tone. Beth Perkins is a Texan who we book as a local photographer just to get her back home frequently, but she’s also a resident of Rockaway Beach, NY. Beth specializes in environmental portraits, lifestyle and travel photography. Our other photographer’s are in Little Rock, Arkansas and Los Angeles, CA.
How did you get started in this business? Did you have a mentor?
I was working as the Director at Page Parkes Management in their Dallas office and came to know photographers. At this time I became aware of the fact that photographers also had agents. Representing models was a good background for representing photographers. I was familiar with the type of attention needed to focus on people’s careers and the many different parts of preparing for a photo shoot. In the early days, we did all of our own production so my relationships with the agencies came in handy when booking models and of course all of the travel planning background that came with that.
editing images is the best part of my job
Choosing photos with models was always one of my favorite things as well as putting together their books. I still love this best about representing artists, editing images is the best part of my job. I met Fredrik Broden within the first few months of starting my business. Fredrik was assisting a photographer I started with named Richard Reens. Soon after, Fredrik went out on his own. I’ve been his agent ever since. I represented a teenage Beth Perkins as a model while with the agency and closely followed her career after she graduated from college and moved to New York to begin working for GQ Magazine.
Beth sent me her very first photography portfolio . It’s really special to me that I’ve been working with Fredrik and Beth since they started. I’m also still working with clients that I’ve known from my first year in business. Being able to work with clients that I’ve known for the past 20 years and keep their best interest at heart as well as the artist is a delicate balance. Trying to perfect this balance for the past 21 years has been the best career I could have ever hoped for.
All time favorite photography book?
Moments Preserved: Eight Essays in Photographs and Words.
Are there advantages to being based in Texas vs. the east or west coast?
Yes. Texas is home and I love being here. I’ve recently opened an office in Manhattan and I travel there once a month so coming back home is a welcome relief to the fast past and expense of New York. I’m also traveling to Los Angeles every 6-8 weeks and LA is also much more of a difficult lifestyle with the traffic and cost of living. It’s nice being about equal distance to both places though.
Tell us about a shoot that took place in Texas that had some only-in-Texas challenges
Last year I expanded my agency and opened a production division. One of our first assignments was with the A&E Channel. I was contacted by their New York based producer who was looking for a prop stylist for a photo shoot in Texas. Enter the best stylist in town, our Julie Whitmire. The shoot was for the reality show called American Hoggers and it was shot at a ranch in Brownwood, Texas. Julie spent most summers on her parent’s ranch in Sherman, Texas so this was a dream job for her. They even had wild hogs on the ranch so this didn’t even scare her. Find a wild boar skull and mount it on the hood of a jeep? Not a problem. Dig up a cactus that’s blocking the shot? Easy. It was over 100 degrees every single day of the shoot, but Julie was in heaven.
Can you share some advice for aspiring reps?
Realize that this is a partnership, like a professional marriage
Realize that this is a partnership, like a professional marriage. As much work as you put into repping someone and marketing them, they have to be giving you the tools you need. For example, updating their website, setting aside marketing money for promo pieces and national source books. The artists should have realistic expectations of what their partnership can do and the amount if time it takes to be successful in this business.
Smoke, 901 Ft. Worth Avenue, Dallas, Texas.
Favorite Texas weekend getaway?
The Wildcatter Ranch, Graham, Texas. Don’t miss feeding the longhorns in the morning, they will eat grass right out of your hands!