The Many Faces of Gifted: Lucian

January 22, 2013

By Carole Rosner

Every gifted person has a unique story. The following story is part of a series of posts depicting the many faces of gifted by highlighting gifted children and adults we have found through IEA programs. IEA’s Apprenticeship Program – mentioned in this story – links gifted high school students from across the country with mentors who advance each participant’s skills through the application of knowledge and exposure to real world experiences.

Photo courtesy of Lucian Capellaro

Lucian Capellaro
IEA Apprentice at CNN Atlanta in 2000
Sr. Photo Editor in International Publicity, Paramount Pictures

It is true that Lucian Capellaro’s current job involves international travel, world famous celebrities and cutting edge photography; however, he actually started on his career path shortly after participating in IEA’s Apprenticeship Program at CNN in Atlanta in 2000.

“I was originally interested in the photography program. However, after hearing about IEA’s involvement at CNN, I became excited about the prospect of learning something completely new. I wanted to see a real-world career application of my photo, video and writing interests. Journalism always appealed to me, and seeing a company like CNN in action was an exciting prospect,” Lucian explained.

“While at CNN, we were given some amazing insight into cultural sensitivities and global mindsets. I wrote, shot and edited a video story on the practice of Reiki and its adoption in western culture as an alternative healing art. Being part of an objective global news channel brings with it the obligation to think carefully about the world as a whole. Pronunciation of names, syntax and communication style all became topics of discussion in our group. The experience helped flag awareness in me regarding my environment and how I would choose to interact with it.”

Lucian said that after completing his CNN Apprenticeship things were put “into perspective a bit” for the rest of his time spent in high school. “It’s always helpful to have an end game in mind, and a career using my interests seemed like a real honest possibility after seeing the teams at CNN working. The staff and amazing hosts treated us like adults. That instilled confidence, which made high school and subsequently college hold more meaning. I was there to learn, earn a degree and find a rewarding career.”

After high school, Lucian went to Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Georgia, and earned a BFA in Photography. “I was planning to attend school in New York City, but after spending some time in Atlanta, I thought I would try something new. I always had it in my head that I would go to school for photography, and after hearing some further support from the teams at CNN, it felt like a good fit in Savannah.”

How did Lucian end up photographing celebrities such as Randy Jackson, Seth Rogan and Reese Witherspoon? “I moved to Los Angeles after college and was shooting portraits and retouching for various clients. I started to book retouching jobs for some entertainment clients, which led to movie studios. I retouched magazine covers for Rolling Stone, Maxim, Black Book, WIRED and tons of ads.”

“When a friend at a major studio needed someone to sit with a director and work through the color on publicity stills, they hired me for a quick last-minute job. It started as a one-day gig sitting with Director Michael Bay but continued through all three films of the Transformers franchise. This opened the door to other exciting projects, and I was given the opportunity to sit with some amazing filmmakers, retouching images from their set photographers to more accurately represent the feel of the film. Meanwhile, the same studios were hiring me to photograph their talent for publicity shoots in addition to the advertising jobs I was shooting.”

“Paramount came to me in 2009 with a job opportunity to handle all photography materials for their International Publicity department. I continue to serve this role as Sr. Photo Editor for Paramount Pictures in International Publicity. I handle talent and filmmaker approvals on publicity photographs as well as work with our global offices to ensure appropriate photo material is available and on target with the message of the film. I also organize all our International Publicity photo shoots for the studio from concepts to final placements. Additionally, while traveling on our international publicity tours, I photograph the red carpet events and behind the scenes coverage of our participating talent. This has taken me to some amazing places around the globe, for which I am very grateful.”

As for anyone considering the IEA Apprenticeship Program, Lucian said, “Take any opportunity you can to explore the real world before you are launched out there. IEA’s program helps introduce you to the many possibilities in a very positive, rewarding way.”

Does Apprenticeship sound like an experience someone you know would like? Applications are currently being accepted for IEA’s high school Apprenticeship Program in Los Angeles!

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