Director of Photography | Drone Operator
Ryan Brooks has spent most of his life behind a camera, beginning with many years spent as a photographer, now a cinematographer and drone pilot. After college, he moved to St. Vincent and the Grenadines as a Peace Corp volunteer focused on youth development. His experience there not only informed his world view, but also gave him a far deeper understanding of cultures beyond his own— an empathy he’s leveraged throughout his career working on pieces that highlight marginalized stories in the LGBTQ community and beyond.
Upon his return to the US, he moved to New York City to work on his own documentary projects and begin his career as Director of Photography. He’s shot for CNN Docs, VF Corp, Lonely Planet, VH1, MTV, Comedy Central, RuPaul’s Drag Race, NPR, NY Times and PBS as well as non-profits including It Gets Better, SAME Cafe, and the Colorado Department of Transportation for which he won an Emmy as DP for Outstanding PSA for his work on Seatbelt Stories.
Marrying his passion for capturing stunning footage with his raw yet thoughtful approach to storytelling, Ryan brings a versatility on set that goes far beyond the duties of DP. He’s a roll-up-your-sleeves team player who has trouble idling on set, which means when there’s a job to be done he’s your guy. He also enjoys solving complex problems while keeping his signature calm, collected attitude, finding solutions to achieve each client’s vision despite the inevitable hiccups that come with live productions.
Having grown up getting outside and into the wilderness as much as possible, he’s worked on, and thoroughly enjoys, projects requiring technical capabilities in some pretty harsh climates, alongside a healthy dose of endurance and grit. So whether it’s a five-mile hike in, long days on the side of a mountain, or keeping up with elite athletes, Ryan is always up for the challenge.
– Ways To Work With Ryan –
Director of Photography
Ryan brings nuance to each shot through his authentic composition, technical capability and empathy for the kind of real, human stories he enjoys telling most.
As a certified drone pilot, Ryan can be hired to capture drone footage in conjunction with a larger project or as a separate assignment.