Exasperation, frustration, intimidation

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by Iron Flatline, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. Bit of rant...

    I have been shooting for 25+ years... though in fairness biggest efforts happened between 2001 and 2007. I am now trying out a new direction, and it is the first time since I started that I am intimidated to a point of freezing by the learning curve.

    I have decided to shoot models, and to use strobe lights, or better yet to combine it with ambient light.

    On one hand I've been looking at a lot of fashion magazines, but have decided to back down because those photographers have twenty years of experience that I will not make up in the near future.

    But even looking at the Strobist pool on Flickr (well, some of them), or some photographers on Model Mayhem or Model Kartei (I live in Berlin) is daunting.

    I am overwhelmed by a lot of it... how to work with models, how to come up with the right ideas, how to set up certain shots. I feel incredibly limited by the lighting, instead of feeling freed by it... though I'm ok with that part. The idea is to learn it, after all... I look at a lot of shots and wonder "how the f#%k am I going to do something like that?"

    I don't seek or expect answers to a problem I haven't expressed yet... I just wanted to share with a few photographers in a community I know.

    Bah... it's going to be a long year...
     
  2. AfroKen

    AfroKen TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    166
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Rarely is there ever a time in which you're the greatest. There's almost always people who are better than you. If we got caught in this sort of thinking, we'd be overwhelmed by everything. I say be humble, dive right in, and do it. All of these people sucked at one point.

    Anyway, is it possible to apprentice/assist on a shoot so you can get an idea of what a good photographer does in these situations? Can you practice with your wife, kids, friends, family, etc.?

    Anyway, hopefully this helps.
     
  3. All this is good advice, and it is exactly how I'm proceeding... except for the wife and kids thing... if they have to see the glassy side of the lens one more time they're going to pack up my gear for me, and push me out into the snowy cold :)
     
  4. digital flower

    digital flower No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2005
    Messages:
    1,409
    Likes Received:
    36
    Location:
    CT
    It seems to harder to grow as you get older. My advice is jump in do the best you can and see where that takes you. I think you are doing one of the harder things as an artist: challenging yourself and trying something that you are unsure of. For me it is never easy to try and branch out.

    This may or may not work out for you but you will never know if you don't try. You may also discover something along the way that leads you in a totally new/different direction.
     
  5. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2003
    Messages:
    5,600
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Hermosa Beach, CA U.S.A
    It is going to be a great year! Mags etc are great inspiration, but they are only that; inspiration. Finding your style is a lot easier then you think. I have already seen in it in the lens flare portrait you shot. Only things you need for a great shoot is your and the subjects creativity.

    My blog goes into detail of model shoots from my perspective. Here it is in a nut shell:

    Talent shows up. Always a plus.

    Go through wardrobe. This is actually the one the defining moments of the shoot. Here you gain rapport and envision the production. Be sure to explain exactly how you want the deal to go down.

    Make up and hair. This will take a while. Set up lighting take test shots while they do their thing. The goal is to get as close as possible so there is no fussing with lighting or exposure.

    Photographying (I just made up that word and love it). This part is up to the parties involved. Best advice is to communicate and have fun!

    )'(
     
  6. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2009
    Messages:
    35,456
    Likes Received:
    12,797
    Location:
    USA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Well, the vast majority of the people involved in the Strobist movement have only a couple of years of a head start on you--many of them have been using off-camera lighting for only a very short time, and you have the advantage of 25 years or so of photography experience. It wasn't that many years ago that a good deal of hobbyist photographers, even dedicated amateurs, owned basically no lighting or grip equipment. Until the Strobist blog hit, the use of off-camera flash was confined to a pretty small group of people.

    I've been involved in studio lighting stuff,off and on, over the years since the mid-1980's and one thing I believe is that it's easier to learn how to light when you are working with 'real' studio lighting gear, that has 150 to 250 watt modeling lights in each head. I'm not trying to 'knock' portable flash or the Strobist movement, but it is in many ways "shooting blind", which is different than being able to move a light a few inches and actually see where the catchlights fall, where the shadows fall, and where the light drops off,etc,etc. I really think that if you want to learn how to light and position lights, you need both a theoretical understanding, and tools that make it easier and more productive; my contention has long been that beginners learn better with "good tools" than they do with "beginner tools". Not trying to knock the efforts or the results of the Strobist-using people, but just pointing out that there is an entire world of studio flash lighting equipment that has been perfected over the last 40 years or so,and the prices for the needed equipment are not that high, but the value of it is high.

    I hope you have a good time and a great year in your new endeavor, however you decide to approach it.
     
  7. Thanks Derrel. I actually agree, I have no misconceptions about the strengths and weaknesses of flashguns... hard to put a beauty dish over bulb behind plastic. If the opportunity arises - an opportunity I will seek out, btw - I will work with real lights. Until then I will use what I have...

    The upside is that I want to work on locations. The studio environment is handy to try out variations.

    I live in Berlin, Germany... the world capital of super-cool cheap real estate, not to mention a glut of under-utilized photo studios. I'm scouring the pages for a sublet so I can set up shop without having to strike set each day, and return the house's basement to the kids who have nowhere to play outside in the winter.

    I'm quite serious about this sabbatical... But so far (week one!) my oldest has been throwing up till he hits bile, one of my parents is going into surgery, and my wife is still in the US... there has been shockingly little time for photography :grumpy:
     
  8. gsgary

    gsgary Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2008
    Messages:
    16,062
    Likes Received:
    2,813
    Location:
    Chesterfield UK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Chill out, don't worry about it explain to the model this is not your field yet and just enjoy it, try and use models that know what they are doing to start with and they will help you
     
  9. jnm

    jnm TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2009
    Messages:
    297
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Palo Alto, CA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    in every new venture there's a thousand reasons why it won't work. the people that can get over that mental hurdle and make it happen are the ones that become successful. no doubt there's countless people in all walks of life that would've/could've/should've been great but weren't because they got in their own way.

    get out there and make it happen.
     
  10. Shockey

    Shockey TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2009
    Messages:
    350
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Boise Idaho
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Just start...if you put in the work you will get there.
     
  11. Phranquey

    Phranquey TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,527
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Dayton, OH
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    It's nice to know I'm not the only one in this boat.

    Been shooting for 24 years...mostly wildlife, motorsports, & outdoor stuff. We began breeding pugs about two years ago, and my wife wanted really good shots for the ads, so I was "allowed" :)sexywink:) to put together a studio set-up for this. Shooting animals is quite easy, but when it comes to working with people, I just kinda go duh with both the lighting & posing. I pull the kit out & work with family & friends on occasion, and the confidence and comfort is slowly coming up, but I definitely give kudos to those who do it on a full time basis.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page
esposure exasperation
,
exasperation
,

exposure exasperation

,
frustration to communicate and desire from both parties to terminate discussions
,
intimidationbyfrustration