Wade Steelman


Retired from the U.S. Navy. I’m extremely professional, knowledgable, reliable, forward leaning, and hard working. I regularly work for 3 busy commercial photographers where I’ve gained a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience on large and small scale commercial productions, a wide range of equipment, lighting, grip, and photography in general.

Valid DL with a 2018 full size truck with plenty of lockable storage space for hauling gear.

Available to travel local, national, and international. Valid U.S. Passport.

I provide a grip kit on every assistant booking. Grip kit inventory list located in Lighting and Grip section.

Digital Tech kit available for rent during assistant bookings. Kit includes 15″ MacBook pro, 24″ Asus wide gamut monitor on roller or C-Stand that I provide ,2 – iPads, multiple hard drives, and necessary Cables for Nikon and Cannon DLSR cameras. MacBook can be mounted on tripod, C-stand, or rolling cart with deck, I can provide all three. One iPad floor stand provided, the other iPad can be on a table top or handheld.

Studio lighting kit available for rent during assistant bookings. Kit includes 4-Einstein strobes with PocketWizard triggers, stands, sandbags, 1-47″ Octabox, 2-36″X24″ Soft boxes, 2-10″X36″ Strip boxes, 2-sets of barn doors, 8″ Reflectors, 7″ Reflectors with grids, 2-Vagabond minis, and power strips/cords.

I’m a licensed and insured drone pilot available for hire. I operate a DJI Inspire 1 Pro with X5 Camera and 12mm Olympus lens.

Digital Workflow Qualifications

Experienced performing as a digital tech, lighting/grip assistant, First Assistant directing other assistants, or conducting image management and post processing.

Experienced with Nikon, Cannon, and Phase One systems.

Well versed in Mac and PC using LIghtroom, Capture One, Photoshop, and Nik Collection. I teach Lightroom and Photoshop in San Diego for Local Photo Classes, a local photography education company.

Well versed in tethered capture using Capture One or Lightroom. Digital Tech kit avail for rent with assistant bookings.

With an engineering background I’ve also designed and managed image backup systems on set using multiple hard drives and cloning software.

I’ve also been a second shooter and head shot photographer for multiple corporate events.

Lighting & Grip Qualifications

Experienced with Profoto, Dynalite, Paul C Buff, Flashpoint, and other various lighting systems including strobe, hot lights, and LED continuous.

Experienced and fully understand radio triggering and optical slave systems.

In my opinion set safety is a priority which is the reason I ensure proper stand and attachment setup including rigging and bagging along with proper cable placement/taping.

I provide my own grip kit to every assistant booking. Grip kit includes:

31″ 5 in 1 Reflector
Cinefoil role
White & black 2″ Gaff Tape
Spare AAA & AA batteries
6-Medium A-clamps
4-Small A-Clamps 8-Large binder clips
3-Superclamps w/3” studs
2-Accessory hooks
2-6” 5/8 Studs
2-Walkie talkie’s
2-6” 5/8 Stud wall plates
2-Justin clamps w/cold shoe mounts for speed lights
2-3lb Clamp weights
Various adapters & studs
1- Manfrotto magic arm
Work gloves
2- Wedge it door stops
Construction twine Tape measure Various hand tools


Currently attend part time The Art Institute of California – San Diego enrolled in their Digital Photography program. FAA UAS (Drone) Certificate/License.

References & Endorsements

For the last 5 years I have been the 1rst Assistant and Digital Tech for Rob Andrew, a lifestyle and food photographer out of San Diego, CA. http://www.robandrewphoto.com/. I’m also the 1rst Assistant for Zack Benson, a architecture and design photographer out of San Diego, CA https://www.zackbenson.com/. I also assist for James Aronovsky out of San Diego, CA http://www.aronovsky.com/, Michael LoBionda out of Charlotte, NC, http://www.mlobiondo.com/, Joyce Lee out of Los Angeles, CA https://www.joyce-lee.com/, and Tony Roslund out of Spokane WA http://www.tonyroslund.com/.