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Creative family roots drive photographer’s success

Photographer: Seth F. Johnson

Seth F. Johnson grew up in a world surrounded by creative minds. You could say it’s in his blood.

By the age of six, Seth was in his family’s studio learning the tricks of marketing and advertising through imagery. But perhaps the most important influence came from his grandfather, a U.S. Navy press photographer who travelled the world capturing spectacular scenes. He even spent time working in the White House basement developing some of those images.

Soaking in his family’s experiences, Seth was inspired to carry on the tradition. For him, success came through Georgia’s film and television production industry,

“It’s kind of crazy to see your images while scrolling through Netflix, Hulu or Prime Video,” says Seth, now a Savannah set photographer and founder of Moon Rabbit Media.

After growing up in Ohio and visiting Georgia often, Seth’s family decided to make the move to Savannah permanently when he was in middle school. Savannah College of Art and Design captured Seth’s attention immediately as a great place to grow his photography skills and maybe get a job doing what he loved.

Photographer: Seth F. Johnson

But that would have to wait. After graduating high school, Seth worked in New York City as a photo assistant in the fashion industry hoping to learn as much as he could while he was there. Yet as fun as NYC can be, Savannah was calling him home.

“When I graduated high school, the entertainment industry was starting up in Savannah,” says Seth. “I knew there was something great brewing.”

Seth returned to Savannah and enrolled in SCAD where he thrived, earning a B.F.A. in Film & Television in 2015 with a focus in writing/directing. These newfound skills would lead him to jobs as a production assistant on locally shot films and music videos.

“On set I would talk about photography all the time,” Seth said, “I would even bring my equipment with me sometimes in hopes they would need someone.”

Sure enough, after a month of hearing him talk about it, Seth finally got the opportunity to take some photos. He would take a couple more jobs as a PA, but he knew where this was heading where it was always going — to a photography career.

It wasn’t easy to get work less than a year out of college, but Seth trusted his gut and stuck with it. Now the hard work is paying off. Since his time at SCAD, Seth has photographed more that 150 celebrities including Daniel Radcliffe, Sylvester Stallone and Shia Lebeouf. He worked on numerous productions, was the lead photographer on “Council of Dads,” filmed in Savannah and joined his local International Cinematographers Guild (ICG) Local 600 in 2016.

In 2015, Seth founded Moon Rabbit Media. His father, Scott Johnson, joined him as a creative director and brought his 30 years of experience in marketing and advertising. Together they’ve built a multimedia film production company that staffs directors, producers, cinematographers, and editors based out of Savannah. Depending on the project his teams can range from five to 75 members, the majority of them being fellow SCAD graduates.

Family has always been important to Seth, and that’s why being able to do what he loves close to home meant so much. Seth’s latest adventure may be his best yet — Over the summer he got engaged to his girlfriend of five years, Minji, who earned her undergraduate degree from SCAD and is currently working towards her Masters at Georgia Tech.

“Transitioning to the workforce and still living in my hometown has been amazing,” Seth said. “Usually, you have to go where the work is, but I’m lucky the work is here at home.”


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