A legacy lab staying true to its photographic roots – leading the way to book printing and one on one service.
A&I came into being when photographer David Alexander joined forces with lab manager/master technician James Ishihara to create a lab whose quality would set it apart from the rest of the pack. David recalls, “I suggested we go into business and do it the right way – which was to get the highest quality lab going, first for myself and then later, as we grew, for clients. So we built a lab in a room the size of a broom closet and went from there.”
In 1971, Isgo and Anoush Lepejian started Isgo Lepejian Custom Photo Lab. The business began in a 500 sq. foot location on Hollywood Way in Burbank, California. Isgo’s amazing talent for black and white fine art prints soon gave him a large and loyal following by some of the most important photographers in Los Angeles. A trademark signature to his pioneering work was his use of diffusion filters, which “softened” skin and gave portraits a “glowing” effect. Within just a few years, the Lepejians made the first of many moves to a larger location, this time onto Magnolia Blvd.
The oldest Lepejian son decided to follow in his fathers footsteps with a love of photography at the age of fourteen. In 1978, Baret began printing in his own style while being constantly inspired and carefully taught by Isgo. Father and son would eventually be the most successful black and white printers on the west coast.
Vic Lepejian came into the business in 1988. A computer specialist, his vision of a digital future was a decade before it’s time. Vic was then and is now responsible for bringing the digital world into his family’s business and for always keeping Isgo’s Lab ahead of the technology curve.
To continue their success, the family has not only kept up, but has been at the forefront of the photographic industry. Their first contact printer for black and white custom multiples was installed in 1990. Shooting copy negatives of their own beautiful fiber prints quickly made Isgo’s the busiest reproduction lab in the Los Angeles area.
In 1996, Isgo Lepejian was the first pro lab to install digital photo printers, allowing them to print color multiples and to be the first in the US to offer “color for the price of black and white”. Four years later they invested in a printing press, offering their clients the choice of photographic or lithographic prints. They upgraded to a digital press in 2005, giving clients the ability to order as few as 50 prints with a quality that is unsurpassed to this day. Mid-2006, one year after the launch of the digital press, the first Actor’s Headshot Kiosk was introduced. The kiosk allows clients the luxury of designing their promotional pieces from the comfort of their own home, with options to ship the job to their door or to pick up at either of our two locations.
In July of 2004, Baret and Vic Lepejian acquired ownership of A&I, one of the top pro labs in the world. It was turbulent times in the industry; film was noticeably tapering off and local labs were struggling with finding digital solutions. With a 30 year history in the industry, the family was up to the task.
In 2005 and 2006 the world lost both Anoush and Isgo Lepejian respectively. Baret and Vic continue to fulfill the legacy their parents started.
Today, the Isgo/A&I client base includes renowned celebrity, fashion, stock, editorial, advertising, nature, portrait, wedding and fine art photographers, as well as students and photographic artists whose work defies categorization. With our Southern California location and a national clientele, Isgo/A&I earns new customers daily by delivering on its commitment to provide consistently superior services and personalized attention.
THE A&I DIFFERENCE
Isgo/A&I remains passionate about catering to the ever-changing needs of photographers – whether professional, amateur or student.” Isgo/A&I helps professionals and industry leaders by being a full-service team,” says owner Baret Lepejian. “We work personally to consult with photographers and a range of institutions, whether they be a small, private elementary school or the world’s leading stock photo agency. We discuss, find and meet the particular needs of our clients by assuring the best, most efficient and most cost effective services. We pride ourselves in the range and quality of our digital services, while still maintaining the best film processing and traditional printing available.
After 37 years, the Lepejians still define and lead their industry into the future with a commitment to the absolute highest quality printing at the most reasonable prices in the entertainment industry.