Is trying to be “seen” as a photographer worth it?

Ok, I’ve being taking my photography seriously for the past couple of years and apparently I’m doing ok...not my words, other peoples! 

Because of this goodwill gesture to increase my confidence I, as most photographers do, decided to try and increase my “brand”, basically my name on social media. 

First of all I don’t have a big following on Facebook: Personal page has 106 friends and my photography page 75 followers. The  

I tried Instagram and got fed up with the constant having to post something to attract followers so I deleted my account. Then things happened that having an Instagram account would be beneficial so I started it back up with the full intention of being more focused. 

This focus has continued to the point of hiring a social media company to try and increase my followers, with the goal of making it a bit in Instagram. This is working, so far. I’ve increased from 388 to 648 as I write.

But,

There’s always a but...

But, there is times where I think to myself “is it worth it?”

Is it worth having to upload images regularly? 

Is it worth it when you keep looking at your account wondering why nothing is happening? 

Don’t get me wrong, posting an image and seeing the likes and comments coming in is a great feeling, and I appreciate everybody that takes time to do this. 

It’s a similar things with this blog, “does anyone actually read it?” 

If not then what’s the point? 

I don’t need to write my feelings on a blog, I know them, they’re in my head. 

As I said earlier, it’s great to be acknowledged but on the other side it’s crap to not be! 

I feel social media is there to make the already known more known and the little players stay small.  My opinion is the opposite, 

Social media should make the smaller users more public, the big account already have their million or so followers so why give them more, channel the ‘algorithm’ to smaller account to make then grow. 

If you agree comment, also if you are reading this, firstly thank you very much, secondly well done for getting this far, and finally comment to let me know if you enjoyed this blog and my others. It’ll mean a lot. 

The Holy Grail of Photography........getting published!

It’s now into the start of May, as you’ll know by the date on the blog!

A couple of months ago, on Facebook, I replied to post on N-Photo magazine page asking for people to send in 5 images that could possibly be used as a portfolio for publication. 

Never in a month of Sundays did I ever think this would actually happen to me!!! 

Approximately an hour after sending my 5 images I received an email saying they liked my images but did I have any other images of other buildings in Abu Dhabi? My 5 images were of Sheikh Zayed Mosque and Gate Towers.  

Panic set in as I wasn’t sure I had any!!!! 

Phew!!! 

I found 1 other picture of Etihad Towers and the hotels beside them. So I sent this in. 

I then received another reply to say they likes everyone and will publish them in the May issue of the magazine, out on 11th April.  

After a few weeks of not hearing anything I eventually received an email with a PSF of the article, from this I presumed it was going to be my 3 images on a small part of one page......oh how wrong I was!!! 

The magazine was published on 11th April and I couldn’t wait for it to arrive here in UAE so I subscribed to the magazine. When I saw the publication I was completely speechless, those who know me know that this doesn’t happen often!! 

It was a 3 page spread!! 

3 pages!!! 

One for each photograph!! 

OMG!!!! 

Now after a few weeks I still cant believe it. My daughter bought 3 copies, apparently she got a strange loo from the guy that served her :) One for her, one for my parents and one for prosperity.  

I bought 2, one for showing off, well why not? And one for prosperity. 

Gobsmacked! 

Below is the first page of the article, if you want to see the rest go buy the magazine. 

So always keep going for what you want because you never know what is waiting round the corner. 

Thanks for reading this and till next time...

Bye. 

EB0B3067-3963-4A96-AF94-35B84ABA9408.PNG

Getting out and taking photographs...even after surgery.

Sorry guys but I know it’s been a while.

I actually have no excuse for not posting a blog before this except procrastination. 

Just over 4 weeks ago I was playing a Padel Tennis match, with my wife, and there was a couple of shots that came towards me and I only saw them at the last second. This was strange but I put it down to being really, really tired. I had worked 11 12 hour shifts in the previous 13 days!!!

A couple of days later whilst at work I became aware of a line in the vision of my right eye that wasn’t clear. This made reading a bit difficult. 

On the Tuesday night I was playing Padel Tennis, again, and I fresh aired so many balls and just couldn’t see properly. Needless to say we got hammered!! 

That night I made an appointment with the eye doctor, opthalmologist not optician, the next morning.  

At the appointment they noticed i had a detached retina! 

Now this is a serious condition so I was fast tracked to the hospital, I only went to a clinic for initial appointment, and eventually operated on in the afternoon!!! 

Now that was the bad thing, over. 

For the first week I couldn’t do very much, especially as I was constantly putting drops in my eye, every hour!!! 

Not doing much meant I spent a lot of time on social media. Doing this I found a local photography group that had just started. Through a couple of comments I made, constructively, I began chatting to a guy, lets call him Mike......cause that’s his name :) 

Mike lived in the building opposite me and went out every night for a walk with his camera. So I decided to tag along one night.  

This was amazing!! 

We instantly hit it off and headed out taking pics of our local area. It also meant I was doing more photography than I normally would. 

I am now 4-5 weeks post op, vision in my right eye is nearly sorted, slight blurriness at the bottom so reading is difficult. Therefore post-processing is still difficult as I look down to the pc, iPad or whatever.

But this negative has allowed to meet up with someone new and a new group.  

So always take the positives out of a situation.

Here’s some images from my evening strolls. 

Till next time, bye. 

84F34ED8-5307-4D7A-A6F6-1A8886087BC6.JPG
FullSizeRender.jpg
FullSizeRender.jpg

Sometimes exhibiting your photographs isn’t worth the money.

Ok, as I said I went out and did some landscape photography.

I went to a different location but photographed the same building I’ve photographed a few times, a different angle is like a new location.

But what I want to talk out is one of the recurring things I read online, on Facebook forums, websites and YouTube videos which is people always wanting money off our service as photographers.

So why did I go for the cheaper option?

The story behind this is:

A local gallery, which shall remain nameless, you’ll realise why later, had an exhibition of art. As i’m trying to get my name known I decided to enter. It was for just over 1 week and it cost…..a lot!

But that’s not for discussion, ok?

I took 2 of my pictures in, that were already framed, and spoke with the staff who looked at my work and recommended showing 4 other pictures.

Now, in the same building that I live in there is a gallery-come-printing and framing shop. And they are very good. Some people have said they are expensive but as I don’t know anywhere else, then I don’t know!!

This is where cost became more than quality.

The guy at the gallery said he could get the same work done cheaper. So I thought, ok, and it will be easier to have it in the gallery for the start of the exhibition.

Oh how wrong could I be!!!!

The exhibition was due to start at 1900, I arrived, all excited, at 1830.

I’m always early.

Went looking for my 6 photographs and found 2!!! The 2 that I had already given them framed.

On asking what was happening I was told that the other pictures were on the way.

Now, I don’t tolerated incompetence very well. So at 2100 they still hadn’t arrived and I was raging!! So much sports that my wife and I had go for food, just so I got away from the gallery.

At 2130 my pictures arrived. What was worse is the frames were cheap rubbish and the quality of the prints was worse!

I wouldn’t even buy my pictures the way they were!!

Well now the exhibition is over and I’ve picked up my pictures I will never go anywhere near the gallery again.

And my lesson is learnt.

If we are not happy giving less money for our services then why should we expect anything less when we need something done?

Stop photographing the same thing, get out of you comfort zone!

Last weekend I had the opportunity to do something completely different with my photography.

As you can see throughout my social media, I mainly do landscape photography. This is because I enjoy it, surprisingly enough. I enjoy getting outside and taking photographs of the world as I see it. I’ve dabbled in wildlife photography, mind you I don’t think a zoo really counts as wildlife!

Apparently, I’m reasonably good at landscape and wildlife photography, I say apparently because I have an issue agreeing with, like everyone, that says this. When someone says “you’re really good”, “you have a good eye” I usually shrug my shoulder and reply “ugh”. This is due to a confidence issue.

Anyway, I digress! You’ll get used to this as my blogs go on.

So, last weekend….

My wife is a fitness instructor at local gyms, one of which had a relaunch of new releases of classes. The previous photographer for the relaunches was unable to do it so I was suggested by a friend, who also works at the gym. Eventually, I was given the green light to take photographs during 2 mornings.

Here comes a point of debate from throughout the web……….I did it for free, yes FREE!

My decision to do it for free was because I had never done anything like this AND I’m just starting AND the gym is quite a well known place in the city AND all photographs would have my logo on it and credited on social media.

Back to the weekend…

Two mornings from 0800 - 1330, taking photographs of different classes, in different light situations, with people moving about! It was a challenge and it was extremely tiring.

Fortunately, the photographs came out not bad. So can’t argue. For this I have to give credit to my Nikon D500 which did amazing in the low light with high ISO. I love this camera, but, shhhhhh, I was thinking of changing it to a full frame camera, don’t tell the D500 I said that!

It was good to get out of my comfort zone and do something else, it was good to challenge myself, it was good to make me think more about taking the shots, made me think about composition, made me constantly think about the huge, I mean HUGE, mirrors round both sides of the studio!! Nothing worse than thinking you had a good shot then see yourself in the mirror!!

Point to remember: when taking photographs in a room with mirrors, ALWAYS remember your cloaking device!

So, doing something that scares the crap out of you, challenges you, makes you question your sanity, makes you watch umpteen YouTube videos, is actually good for you!

Get out there and do something different!

Me? I’m off to do some landscape photography .

Bye.

RPM sweat-1.jpg
Pump45 stage-1.jpg