Donavan Freberg bio picture
  • My name is Donavan Freberg and I’m a Los Angeles based portrait photographer specializing in personality driven headshots for working actors, models and musicians.

    I shot my first picture in the summer of 1977, the same year that two of my favorite movies came out, Star Wars and Annie Hall.

    I was six, and the camera was the Polaroid SX-70.

    I can still remember the soft brown leather that smelled like an old wallet and the shiny round shutter release button that was the color of a freshly washed fire engine. I’ll never forget that camera and the way it felt to watch the little picture develop before my eyes. It was my first taste of magic.

    I've been chasing that magic ever since.

Vera Abrams, Headshots & Modeling Shoot

vera red kimono retouched- good

Vera Abrams is a wunderkind. She’s a marvel of a mind, a stunner of a young lady and a stinger of a genius. Her wonderfully offbeat and smart sense of humor combined with her shy radiance is a photographers dream. I’ve known Vera since she was much younger, through her brilliant mother and father, Phil Abrams and Michelle Bitting, both of whom I have photographed. Phil (who makes a few cameos here) is an amazing character actor, a well known acting teacher (the audition physician) and (literally) a magician. Michelle is a brilliant artist and poet, whose stunning words have won many accolades and awards and appeared in print in many celebrated publications. So it’s no wonder that Vera is a golden ticket off the old Wonka bar, a chameleon of charm, grace and talent. I use the word “chameleon” with full wattage here, because I was amazed (but not surprised) to see Vera transform herself from a kimono wearing Kabuki Theater Vogue model to a Royal Tennenbaumish librarian, a giggling daughter to a young Audrey Hepburn (with shades of Mary Tyler Moore)…and even a super nerd who seemingly defies the laws of gravity.

Her range is a delight to witness and I have zero doubt she is going FAR in whatever field she chooses. I know her mind is second only to her looks, the perfect combination for a budding young artist, actress, model, writer and renaissance girl. Her focus and poise far exceeds her biological years as does her intellect.

I wish you much luck, dear Vera. It was SO fun to photograph you.

Thank you, Phil & Michelle for providing the perfect amount of artistic direction without getting in the way and thank you Anjanette Caron for the assist and fabulous make-up work.

veravoguekimonocool
veraground cooler
veraredkimonogroundcool copyIMG_0551PSIMG_0543PS

IMG_0511PS

IMG_0522PS

IMG_0528PS

 

veraparasol

veraglowsveraatlacma

verasmirks
verabowsherheadshyverawatercute

IMG_0273PS

Vera Walks The Catwalk

IMG_0344PS

IMG_0405PS

IMG_0205PS

IMG_0214PS

IMG_0144PS

verareddoorparasol

vera&philps

IMG_0219PS

philandvera

 

wallverapops

IMG_0862PS

phonewow

kickingitfloats

verastudious

verawarhol2

IMG_0907PS

verashadow

Melissa Kitchen - March 14, 2015 - 11:45 pm

What stunning art you have created of such a beautiful girl. I have been singing your praises far and wide already but now I shall begin shouting them. Please continue filling the world with your visual (and written) stories.

SHARE ON FACEBOOK|TWEET THIS POST|PIN TO PINTEREST|SEND TO A FRIEND

Kiki Ebsen, Scarecrow Sessions, Album Cover Shoot

IMG_7232PS

I am honored to have gotten the opportunity to shoot an album cover and liner notes for Kiki Ebsen once again. She recently released a new album, “The Scarecrow Sessions” and like all her work, it is absolutely delightful. The entire album is a glorious homage to her late, great father, Buddy Ebsen. From her beautifully simple and honest rendition of “If I Only Had A Brain” to her gorgeous version of “Somewhere Over The Rainbow”, the whole album is just marvelous. As many know, Buddy was unofficially promised the role the Scarecrow. This was not to be and he was later cast as the Tin Woodsman. His costume was composed of real metal stove pipe putting certain body parts in jeopardy especially during the complex dance numbers. It was the make up that would be his eventual downfall. His exposed face and hands were covered in grease paint and dusted with powdered aluminum for a “real metallic” look. It was, of course, highly toxic and it coated this inside of his lungs like a coat of paint making it impossible for oxygen to get to his blood. He spent several days under an oxygen tank and was eventually recast in the movie. This story replaces the PR tale that he was allergic to the make-up.
 I encourage you to buy the album if you are a fan of the film, a fan of Buddy’s or most importantly, a fan of Kiki’s.

Be sure to give the album a listen and a download on iTunes here and check out the electronic press kit, giving a really lovely behind the scenes look at the making of the album here.

She never fails to do justice to whatever she puts her voice to. Enjoy the photos, they were a pleasure to shoot.

<3

IMG_7373PSIMG_7318PSIMG_7341PSkikiretouchhighcontrastPSIMG_7155PSkikisoldpianoIMG_7537

IMG_7424kikilaughsmic

Thank you Kiki!

My favorite part of the shoot was your thank you note…

Kiki Thank You Note-2

!!!

Shout out to Anjanette Caron for her stellar make-up skills and Nancee Waterhouse for her hair magic.
Album art design by Stacy Madden.

<3

SHARE ON FACEBOOK|TWEET THIS POST|PIN TO PINTEREST|SEND TO A FRIEND

Alena Chinault-New York Headshot Photography

 

alenabenchwebsizePSWhile I am normally a Los Angeles Headshot photographer, I sometimes travel to to the east coast to see dear friends and when I am there, I always try to book a photo shoot or two. I <3 NY and I am very proud to say that this is my first full blown fashion/headshot shoot that I have done outside of the sweet light of California. I was a little nervous that the weather wouldn’t hold up, as this was a June shoot and we all know that New York in June can have four seasons in one day. And that day, it did. As I headed to Queens, where this shoot took place, the town car driver (I always travel in style in the big apple, especially when shooting super models) said it might rain. And it did. The whole way to the shoot. But by the time I stepped out of my ride, the sun was shining like a summer day in Beverly Hills. And I met my client for the first time and what a client she was. Her name is Alena Chinault and I can promise you that this won’t be the last time you hear her name. The moment I put my 5D to my eye, I knew I was staring at a star. Some people just exude it from their pours. A quiet talent, a bright flame, all wrapped in a green velvet dress, standing in snakeskin heels. And this is that moment I am thankful to do what I do. I witness the blooming of a bud, the shining of a sun, the making of a legend. Alena, I want to thank you for an INCREDIBLE shoot. I’d also like to thank my NYC friend, client and “assistant” for the day, the brilliant and versatile Marisa Viola. A fun day, so enjoy the shoot as we went from park to apartment to current day to Marilyn Monroe to Madonna. Alena, you have wings. Thanks for letting me lens your flight of fancy. Keep at it, you’re going nowhere but up.

alenagreenleaveswebsizePS

Springlight Alena Websize

 

Alena In The Park Web Size

 

Alena Green Bokeh Websize

IMG_7930dapplesbwwebsizeIMG_7984redretouchedwebsize

IMG_8100websize

Alena Blue ShadowWebsize

 

IMG_8025websize

IMG_8032WebsizeAlena Tunnel Websize

IMG_8051websize

IMG_8044PSWEB

 

Alena Blue Websize

Alena Gold Websize

 

IMG_8134websize

Alena Kitchen websize

alenasmokespswebsize

facePS2 small

Alena Red Bathroom Two Web SizeAlena Red Bathroom One Websize

alenamirrormirrorwebsize
alenabrownmirrorbw websize

mirror1BW websize

crazyhairB:wWebsize

 

IMG_8447websize

Tiny Alena Websize

Alena Monocle Printsize copy 2

 

 

tunnel mirror BWwebsize

 

radiatoroldschoolwebsize
windowalenaBWwebsize

<3

SHARE ON FACEBOOK|TWEET THIS POST|PIN TO PINTEREST|SEND TO A FRIEND

Morgan Lane, Los Angeles Headshot Photography

morganlanepop

Morgan Lane is the quintessential “California” girl and by that I mean she is as smart as she is funny and as sweet as she is confident. A true pleasure to work with from beginning to end, her infectiously bubbly and bright personality shined through my lens from the first frame to the last. An actress with a college degree in communications, this is a person who is going places. Fast. She’s one of those people who can tweet while she’s reading the New Yorker, while putting on make-up, planning a power point presentation and doing pilates. You just get the sense that she’s going to be famous. Most of the people I shoot have that special “something” about them, but Morgan has it in spades. Morgan, it was seriously a blast to shoot you and I really can’t wait to see you living your dream of becoming a full time working actress. I know I won’t have to wait long. You’ve got what it takes, my dear. I’m delighted you chose me to capture your personality and your presence.

IMG_1639cc

IMG_1521

IMG_1761 copy

IMG_1545

IMG_1659

IMG_1484ccrtfinal

IMG_1479

IMG_1435ccrtfinalcropped

IMG_1399

IMG_1409

IMG_1334

IMG_1915ccrtfinal

IMG_1902 copy

IMG_1965 copyPS-2

IMG_1829cc_rtfinal

IMG_1887PS-2

IMG_1848

IMG_2038_rtfinal

IMG_2051IMG_2021 copyIMG_1999

SHARE ON FACEBOOK|TWEET THIS POST|PIN TO PINTEREST|SEND TO A FRIEND

Cherie Kalisher, Business Headshots, Los Angeles

cherie greengrass PSv2grassfix websize-2

Cherie Kalisher is a dear friend and an amazing woman. She’s a healer, which is a word that is frequently bandied about within the New Age circles of Los Angeles like a rubber ball in a dog park. Most of the time, these “healers” are nothing more than charlatans. I hold degrees in Traditional Chinese Medicine and Homeopathy and have been involved in the healing arts as both doctor and patient since the 90’s, so suffice it to say that I’ve met and worked with hundreds of healers. Many have been good, some great, some truly gifted. Cherie is among the truly gifted. A licensed acupuncturist, Cherie also does Craniosacral Work, nutritional counseling, detoxification protocols, aromatherapy, massage and a mix of magical esoteric modalities, including the ability to work with deeply engrained emotional and spiritual issues that manifest as stress and anxiety, physical pain and chronic health problems. I have had many sessions with Cherie and always come away feeling lighter, happier, refreshed, less stressed and more in touch with my best self. I was overjoyed when Cherie asked me to shoot some head shots for her for her website, souls path healing. She wanted a few different looks, photos that had some range, showing both her light and earthy sunny side, as well as her witchy woman moon side. We had a lot of fun and I even broke out my studio lights, which is always a fun experiment and departure from my usual signature natural light work. Thank you, Cherie, for allowing me to capture you and thank you for all the great healing work you’ve done with me, I look forward to many more creative collaborations together!

cherie blackPSbestbest

If you are  a business professional who needs a good headshot, be it for your website, brochure, cards, please give me a call. I offer special rates for non-actors needing a photo of themselves for promotional use. The session is quick and easy and you’ll walk away with images you can use to represent your true self, looking your best and brightest.

cherie blue 2PSgood-2

SHARE ON FACEBOOK|TWEET THIS POST|PIN TO PINTEREST|SEND TO A FRIEND

Paul Respass, Los Angeles Headshot Photography

IMG_4499PS

Paul Respass is one of the coolest dudes I’ve ever shot. I say, “Dude” not in a “Fast Times At Ridgemont High” kind of way but more in a gentleman cowboy, Sam Elliot kind of way. The kind of “Dude” that you’d want to come to your rescue when the proverbial sh*t hits the fan. Paul is that kinda guy. Paul is real, 100% Grade-A-Good-Guy. When I first was contacted by him and looked him up on IMDB, I was amazed (and a bit scared) to find that he’d recently starred in a film called, “The Hillbilly Butcher”. As the butcher! But on the phone, he was as sweet as sugar, very well spoken and obviously serious about his craft. In person, he was just as genuine. His range, from intense tough guy to light-hearted good guy was impressive. As I looked at him through the viewfinder, I found a man of many faces. Focused, fun, easy-going and professional, a rare and wide ranging treat of traits. Agents take note, Paul is a very “castable” character actor, with character. A man who hits his marks and doesn’t miss a step. Paul, it was a true pleasure working together. I wish you the very best in what I’m sure will be a long and fruitful career as a successful actor.

IMG_4407PS

IMG_4006PS

IMG_4071PS
IMG_4087PSv2

IMG_4190PSgood

IMG_4257PS

IMG_4137PS

IMG_4124PS

IMG_4110PS

IMG_4178PS

IMG_4278PS

IMG_4274PSIMG_4305PSIMG_4360PSIMG_4540PS

IMG_4538PS

IMG_4521PSgood

IMG_4593PSIMG_4611PS

IMG_4427PS

Paul E Respass - March 6, 2014 - 5:28 pm

Donavan touches me deeply. As an actor, I know I am very “needy” in that I’m always looking for acceptance and praise. But, that being said, so few people “get” the real me.Donavan has not only seen my soul, you captured it through his lens.
I had heard of Donavan through media outlets and such and was excited in seeing how he would shoot me. It’s been my experiance that some photographers shoot “characters”, some look for the “artsy” shot, some shoot “glamor”, and others just go straight for the “show business” shot.
My day with Donavan was none of that. He wanted to know who I am and what I’m all about. And, I must say, I was overwhelmed when I saw the results. He didn’t take a single bad picture. And what’s more, he captured my “inner self”. It was quite a chore to pick which ones to use.
Here is a man who, through his camera, works magic!

Donavan - March 6, 2014 - 5:48 pm

Thanks, Paul! You’re the best!!! :)

Kathy - October 10, 2014 - 9:29 am

/ I joined LinkedIn as a rseponse to a request made by higher management. Until today I had no interest of participating in usage of social network/web utilities. My current job does require that I am in constant link with latest technologies and information’s in my business, for witch I use Internet. The amount of time that is necessary to keep the profile on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter alive , (meaning to rseponse to invitation, to read the posts, messages, to post pictures, comments etc.) maybe seems insignificant, but the grand total is huge. I preferred to be payed for work, not for online chitchatting, therefore the question goes: If you go offline is your carrier going offline? If you have no extra time for Facebook and similar social networks will it make you unemployable, undesirable and/or unwanted employee? I do not have Facebook twitter or any other account any where accept from couple of days ago on LinkedIn. And now it is been 10 days and I haven’t log on there since I have a job to do, project to finish. So, I do not see it, I do not see the significance of these web pages. Maybe in some businesses where the image and audio connection is relevant to the job, but other than that I need internet, not people in general.

SHARE ON FACEBOOK|TWEET THIS POST|PIN TO PINTEREST|SEND TO A FRIEND
M y   W e d d i n g s   S i t e