Interview with Luke Askelson: Colorado-raised Cinematographer

Luke Askelson - about

Continuing with our local vendor & small business profiles, we sat down for a quick interview with an old friend and a very special partner: Colorado-raised Cinematographer (and so much more) Luke Askelson.

When Luke Askelson is able to break away from his globe-trotting gigs with PBS, Discovery’s Velocity channel, shooting feature films, shorts, music videos and his own passion projects – as well as designing furniture and his artisanal ceramic work (jeez!), Luke is generous enough to direct Grand’s most important videography & photography needs. 

Regrettably, much of Luke’s work for us has gone uncredited (yes, preetttty lame) so we’re taking this opportunity to introduce his boundless artistry to all of our friends.


Let’s start with an obvious question Luke: Where are you from?

I’m from Indian Hills, Colorado.

How long have you been doing photography and videography and how did you get into it?

For eight years professionally.  It started with my dad’s handy cam making stop motion animations with legos when I was 10. I took photography and video production classes throughout high school and later pursued it in college.

Luke Askelson - image 1

Is there one you prefer over the other? Why?

I prefer videography over photography because I love the process of putting a story together through motion and how sound can enhance the visuals. I also get more travel opportunities through video work.

What kind go photography do you do? We LOVE the headshots you’ve done for Grand, and of course we had small taste of your broader talents when you exhibited your work in the salon a couple of years ago but what styles do you prefer?

I love travel photography. I love to capture any culture in its raw element. I really enjoy taking photos of my wife when we go on adventures together. There are definitely places I wish I could visit to take photos of – Japan is on the top of my list.

Same question for videography, what kind of videos do you shoot (other than the Event Videos and Tutorials for Grand of course)?

I film for a PBS television show called Music Voyager, where we travel around the world filming the music culture in different countries. Exploring traditional to modern music. I am currently in preproduction for a diving show on Discovery Channel where we’ll be traveling to Hawaii, Asia, Tulum, Costa Rica and South Africa. I wish I could film more feature films because I love telling a story with professional directors and actors.

Luke Askelson - image 2

What are your favorite cameras?

My favorite camera for photography is the Sony A7R Mark 3. My favorite camera for videography is the Arri Alexa Mini.

What do you like to do with your free time when you aren’t working?

I like to spend my free time being in my studio where I make custom furniture and pottery. I also like to spend my free time exploring life with my wife Rachel and our dog, Wrigley.

How did you get connected with Grand?

Rachel grew up going to Grand for all of her hair needs. Shelly and her husband Jay are longtime family friends and I was introduced to Grand when we started dating.

Luke Askelson - image 3

Did you always know you wanted this to be your career?

In high school, I lived in the art room. I really wanted to become an art teacher where I had the freedom to make my own art and teach others. After my first year of art school in college I quickly learned it wasn’t for me and I pursued the next outlet of creativity for me which was photography and videography. I went to Colorado Film school and realized I had a skill for visualization of a script and an eye for composition and camera movement.

Are you showing anywhere around town right now?

I have photos displayed at a coffee shop in Capital Hill called Roostercat Too. I also have a permanent instillation at City O’ City that displays my carpentry and pottery.

Who are some of your inspirations?

I’m inspired by Vincent Van Gogh, for his incredible vision of complimentary color. But who truly inspire me the most are the camera men that I’ve learned from and that I work close with; David Grauberger, Keenan Hock and Kevin Andrews to name a few.

Is it just you or do you work with a business and or partners?

Right now I’m strictly freelance. One day I would love to find the right group of people to start a production company.

Do you plan to expand or grow?

I definitely plan to expand my experience and knowledge. I also plan to own a high end production camera in the next few years, whether it’s an Alexa or Phantom which will create more opportunities for me to work with higher end productions.

Is CO your forever home?

Yes. Maybe. I love Colorado but I also love to explore and living in a foreign country sounds really intriguing to me. My family is here and that’s important to me so it would have to be a real special place that takes me away.

luke-headshotMore of Luke Askelson’s work can be found: