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Author Topic: What happened to my photography in 2013?  (Read 2543 times)
Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« on: March 06, 2014, 05:20:58 AM »
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After reading the thread
"What happened to the photography industry in 2013?"
I thought I'd spawn a new thread  - this one:

So - what happened to YOUR photography?
Were there any significant changes or developments?
What matters to you?

I myself can say that an addition in gear - getting a Fuji X (E2) system significantly changed my pace of output, which leaves me with a dizzy feeling.
My serious cameras beforehand were film only - a Mamiya Press and later the Mamiya 7 II - which is still in use in a hybrid workflow.
I cannot yet fully judge where this addition of a serious digital system will lead me to, but that was the most significant change for me concerning my photography in 2013.
Another very significant change for me was to emphasize and accept postprocessing much more than I did earlier.

What about you?

Cheers
~Chris
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KLaban
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« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2014, 06:32:58 AM »
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What about you?

Never had more fun with a camera in my hand.
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Justinr
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« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2014, 06:59:18 AM »
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The crystallization of the idea that photography was just going to be an addition to the main source of income rather than trying to make it a major plank of my efforts in trying to derive a living. It was really quite liberating in a way.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2014, 07:02:22 AM by Justinr » Logged

mahleu
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« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2014, 07:04:44 AM »
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In 2013 I started working for a daily newspaper. It's crazy, everything is a rush to get multiple shoots done, tagged and uploaded before deadline every day. I've learnt a huge amount from having to do 3-6 shoots per day in varied situations from protests to court, sports, funerals, portraits. It's an amazing learning environment but could very easily burn you out.

I also effectively stole my wife's 5DII to use as a second body and then found myself using that a lot more than my 1DIII so I have just sold that. So to be anti-trend i'm camera shopping... I also got an EOS M for about 2/3 of the normal retail price during a promotion and it's proving very useful.

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Justinr
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« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2014, 07:20:07 AM »
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In 2013 I started working for a daily newspaper. It's crazy, everything is a rush to get multiple shoots done, tagged and uploaded before deadline every day. I've learnt a huge amount from having to do 3-6 shoots per day in varied situations from protests to court, sports, funerals, portraits. It's an amazing learning environment but could very easily burn you out.

I also effectively stole my wife's 5DII to use as a second body and then found myself using that a lot more than my 1DIII so I have just sold that. So to be anti-trend i'm camera shopping... I also got an EOS M for about 2/3 of the normal retail price during a promotion and it's proving very useful.



Whilst we might envy those who craft beautiful shots in the studio or on site with the time and resources to achieve prescribed results it must not be forgotten that getting a decent shot in the hurly burly of life outside of a controlled environment is a skill in itself. It's where I'm happiest and I wish you all the best in your new job.

BTW, I learned more about digital photography working for a school photography company than anywhere else. Sounds silly? Probably, but the trick was getting the lighting to match in each and every shot.
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RSL
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« Reply #5 on: March 06, 2014, 08:29:46 AM »
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For various reasons I had fewer opportunities in 2013 to do my favorite thing -- street photography, so I began re-learning artificial lighting. I'd pretty much mastered it in the sixties, but then I switched to available light exclusively. Now, getting back into it I'm discovering the incredible improvements that have taken place in the last 40 or 50 years. i-TTL is an incredible blessing, and combined with the power of digital it's a whole new world. I'm not interested in studio lights and I'm finding that with today's speedlights it's not necessary to go to big Elinchroms to get big results. Photography is fascinating stuff, and there's no end to it, heart-rending whines on LuLa to the contrary notwithstanding.
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Isaac
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« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2014, 09:35:57 AM »
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Photography is fascinating stuff, and there's no end to it, ...

That I'll agree with.
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RSL
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« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2014, 11:11:22 AM »
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Isaac, it delights me to know we actually agree on something.
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Rob C
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« Reply #8 on: March 06, 2014, 02:42:24 PM »
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For various reasons I had fewer opportunities in 2013 to do my favorite thing -- street photography, so I began re-learning artificial lighting. I'd pretty much mastered it in the sixties, but then I switched to available light exclusively. Now, getting back into it I'm discovering the incredible improvements that have taken place in the last 40 or 50 years. i-TTL is an incredible blessing, and combined with the power of digital it's a whole new world. I'm not interested in studio lights and I'm finding that with today's speedlights it's not necessary to go to big Elinchroms to get big results. Photography is fascinating stuff, and there's no end to it, heart-rending whines on LuLa to the contrary notwithstanding.


You have to differentiate between true amateur photography and dedicated professional photography. They are far from sharing a comparable history of success and failure rates; they are even further from sharing a common raison d'être.

Affecting particularly the lower levels of professional, the shamateur was ever there, and as he has often declared, why should he care the damage he does? It's not his living and family that pays the price of his 'fun'. Open season, innit?

Rob C
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RSL
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« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2014, 06:59:35 PM »
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Rob, I agree with you that a couple decades ago shamateurs tended to cut into work that the lower levels of professionals might do. I don't think they do any longer because most lower level professionals have disappeared. But at the same time I have to say that if you can't compete and make a living in your chosen line of work, you're in the wrong line of work.

The problem isn't so much the shamateurs themselves; it's the world full of people who don't know any better than to let Uncle Henry shoot the wedding because he's got that neat SLR and he won't charge us. I ran into the same thing occasionally in the early days of microcomputers. I particularly remember a woman with a consignment shop who desperately needed a way to keep track of things. I made her a quite reasonable quote but she decided to go with a friend who was learning to program in basic and told her he could solve her problems. It was about six months later that she went out of business.
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Telecaster
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« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2014, 09:49:16 PM »
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What happened to my photography was pretty momentous...for me personally, that is: after spinal surgery, exactly one year ago yesterday, I was able to do it again! The surgery relieved pressure on the nerve root leading to my right shoulder, arm & hand. Numbness and pain begone. Within a week I was snapping away like a madman, in a near-euphoric state, even while wearing a neck brace. Since then I've unloaded some older cameras, bought some new ones, grown fond of a new system (m43) and adopted a more freewheeling approach to pic-taking that I find really enjoyable.   Smiley

-Dave-
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #11 on: March 06, 2014, 10:08:24 PM »
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Dave,

Sad to hear about past but great to hear about the future! Enjoy!

Best regards
Erik

What happened to my photography was pretty momentous...for me personally, that is: after spinal surgery, exactly one year ago yesterday, I was able to do it again! The surgery relieved pressure on the nerve root leading to my right shoulder, arm & hand. Numbness and pain begone. Within a week I was snapping away like a madman, in a near-euphoric state, even while wearing a neck brace. Since then I've unloaded some older cameras, bought some new ones, grown fond of a new system (m43) and adopted a more freewheeling approach to pic-taking that I find really enjoyable.   Smiley

-Dave-
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wolfnowl
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« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2014, 02:02:50 AM »
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Traded in my Galaxy S1 for a Galaxy S4! From 5MP to 13 MP. Other equipment still the same, although I ran more 120 film through my old double lens reflex than I have in a while. LR5.x came out, along with all that brought with it... Still learning, still sharing.

Mike.
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Rob C
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« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2014, 03:21:36 AM »
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1. Rob, I agree with you that a couple decades ago shamateurs tended to cut into work that the lower levels of professionals might do. I don't think they do any longer because most lower level professionals have disappeared.

2. But at the same time I have to say that if you can't compete and make a living in your chosen line of work, you're in the wrong line of work.


Please excuse the splitting of your paragraph as above - it's just to make the reply more clear.

1. I can't argue that point because I'm now out of it, but not because of amateur competition - few amateurs regularly produced bespoke calendar print runs of above thirty to forty thousand units.

The 'lower level pros' were not necessarily worse practitioners; mostly I'd suggest they were living in areas where the clients at the levels that produce (and can pay for) top work simply didn't exist. And for the Brits, not everyone has the fortune to be born in London or has the resources to move there; in my case, a very comfortable home in Glasgow wouldn't have bought more than a garage in fashionable (liveable) parts of London. It couldn't happen.

Weddings: I did some for a few of the first months I was out on my own, then I walked the Damascene church-steps walk, images of a smiling Bailey in my head, and said enough! fashion, which is why I own cameras, or back to the factory unit. I'm glad I got tough with myself - changed my life. Big wedding companies also hired shamateurs to shoot on Saturdays... the BJP often ran classified ads to that effect.

2. That's really a part of the problem I tried to address in (1) above: things that the local 'social photography' snapper could find to do, and often did very well, such as wedding, portraits and christenings etc. were take over in large part by the traditional uncle with a hobby.

Digital only made that bad situation worse, and I believe the subsequent conditioning of expectations, when the person who might originally have been a client, made his own snaps, and because of the intimacy with the subject could no longer see those images objectively at all, least of all make a call on quality. Hell, we face that challenge ourselves at all levels of expertise each time we make an edit.

In other words, I think my original idea in an earlier post about the industry having largely polarized is correct: the top of the pyramid is an ever sharper point, whereas the base is wider but less interesting or rewarding than it used to be, more crumbs than broken biscuits. For that to happen, I suppose we need the outline of the Eiffel Tower, always an elegant format.

;-)

Rob C
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Taylor
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« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2014, 04:04:08 PM »
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Well my journey is a bit longer.
When I turned 50, I sold everything and hit the road to build a strong portfolio.
I have been going for 2 years now and am just starting to do marketing.
The journey has taken me from the Canadian Arctic, to central and South America and to Berlin.
I am presently living in Sintra, Portugal shooting castles and palaces.

The hard work is starting to pay off.

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Rob C
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« Reply #15 on: March 10, 2014, 04:14:34 PM »
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Well my journey is a bit longer.
When I turned 50, I sold everything and hit the road to build a strong portfolio.
I have been going for 2 years now and am just starting to do marketing.
The journey has taken me from the Canadian Arctic, to central and South America and to Berlin.
I am presently living in Sintra, Portugal shooting castles and palaces.

The hard work is starting to pay off.



I remember Sintra; fairy-tale castle, raining like hell and a British Vogue shoot to pull off... there was a knight in armour standing somewhere on a hill in the rain, too. Poor sod, I know just how he felt, and in the end, I guess we both went rusty.

One thing: I suppose nobody will steal me for scrap.

Welcome to the funny farm.

;-)

Rob C
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Justinr
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« Reply #16 on: March 10, 2014, 04:32:18 PM »
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I suppose I ought to put my hand up and confess to starting life as a shamateur, and just for the added shame I'll go so far as to admitting membership of a camera club but hey, isn't that where George Tice came from?


George Tice is one of the best known fine-art photographers in the nation and has authored 18 books. He has been making photographs for over 50 years. His prints are in many museums including the Museum of Modern Art, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Metropolitan Museum, where he had a one-man show in 1972. The Afterimage Gallery has handled his work over 30 years.

http://www.afterimagegallery.com/tice.htm


I'd also like to point out that many of the part time photographers I worked with in the wedding business did it because of the passion they held for the craft, it was not just a nice little earner but an opportunity to test their skill and there were some very good people doing it.  Were all of them any less capable than full time pro's? On the whole no, it's just that they had a day job that paid better in most cases. I'm well known to several here for defending the amateur photographer and I will continue to do so for there was plenty of wedding work back before digital, too much for the pro's to cope with and indeed many of them would farm out work to part timers they could trust as no one, not even the most professional of profesionals, has yet mastered the art of being in two churches at the same time.
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Rob C
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« Reply #17 on: March 10, 2014, 05:16:43 PM »
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I suppose I ought to put my hand up and confess to starting life as a shamateur, and just for the added shame I'll go so far as to admitting membership of a camera club but hey, isn't that where George Tice came from?


George Tice is one of the best known fine-art photographers in the nation and has authored 18 books. He has been making photographs for over 50 years. His prints are in many museums including the Museum of Modern Art, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Metropolitan Museum, where he had a one-man show in 1972. The Afterimage Gallery has handled his work over 30 years.

http://www.afterimagegallery.com/tice.htm


I'd also like to point out that many of the part time photographers I worked with in the wedding business did it because of the passion they held for the craft, it was not just a nice little earner but an opportunity to test their skill and there were some very good people doing it.  Were all of them any less capable than full time pro's? On the whole no, it's just that they had a day job that paid better in most cases. I'm well known to several here for defending the amateur photographer and I will continue to do so for there was plenty of wedding work back before digital, too much for the pro's to cope with and indeed many of them would farm out work to part timers they could trust as no one, not even the most professional of profesionals, has yet mastered the art of being in two churches at the same time.



And for some of us, there's the problem: why would we want to be in either in those kinds of circumstances?

Rob C
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #18 on: March 10, 2014, 05:18:34 PM »
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And for some of us, there's the problem: why would we want to be in either in those kinds of circumstances?

Rob C

Rob - this is your third post in this thread and you haven't even answered the original question ... Wink

Cheers
~Chris
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Rob C
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« Reply #19 on: March 10, 2014, 05:23:26 PM »
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How can I possibly answer for the OP? It's his question and problem, not mine!

Rob C
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