Mod Alumni Alison & Hobbes28!

Discussion in 'Interview with Mod' started by TPF Staff, Dec 2, 2008.

  1. TPF Staff

    TPF Staff Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2006
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    By terri at Mon, 2006-09-04 10:09

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    <p>Alison and Hobbes28 first met online, right here at The Photo Forum. In addition to their eventually joining the TPF staff, they also became the first official &quot;TPF couple&quot;. <br /><br />As such, we thought it would be fun to do a dual interview - with a twist. Neither of them has seen the other's answers to the questions below - until now. We take no responsibility for any ensuing arguments, of course. Here they are!<br /><br /><strong>1) All right, guys, it's now a documented fact that the two of you met on TPF. Let's get the juicy stuff out of the way. What made each of you join TPF? How soon did you become aware of each other?<br /><br /></strong><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="left" src="" /><em>Alison:</em> I joined TPF on a whim while searching for other portrait/wedding photographers. I was new in the business and was hoping to get some critique on my work and some marketing ideas. I had been a member for about two weeks when Aubrey joined. I would say a few weeks after that we started talking. He sent me a link to and said that he thought I might find the site funny (I did) and then we just started talking. Mainly about photography and a little about ourselves. I would say I knew from probably our second conversation that I had met someone truly special. He made me laugh for the first time in a long time, and he listened and respected what I had to say. He was in SC and I was in NH when we started talking and it was only about 8 weeks from the time we first started talking until he moved here to be with me and my boys. At the time is seemed completely crazy, and I know that looking at the situation from the outside it would have seemed insane, but we both knew that we had found the right person. Now, two years later we are married and have a baby girl together so I would say it worked out pretty well!<br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="right" src="" /><em>Hobbes:</em> I started looking for a place to get some good critique on my photography and found the forum and was hooked from the instant I joined. There was such the feeling of community here that I feel still exists and what makes this forum one step above most other forums that I've visited. I discovered Alison within a month of being a member here. I didn't discover her looking for a relationship but rather because the emotion she captures in her photography is something that is moving to me. We chit chatted a little after a while of me commenting on her pictures and a few PM exchanges (including one miffed pigeon) and we found more than what we were looking for in each other. Now, here we are. <br /><br /><strong>2) Aside from photography, what other hobbies or passions do you two share? <br /></strong><br /><em>Alison:</em> Family is a huge part of our lives. Raising three children takes up most of our time. We both enjoy swimming, oh and bowling! I think there will be more hobbies that we'll share in the future. Aubrey's wanted to teach me how to golf but we haven't had the time or money for that shared interest yet!<br /><br /><em>Hobbes:</em> I think the only definitive passion that we share aside from photography would be the kids. Everything else is we both enjoy to do what the other likes doing where as we may not particularly seek out doing it by ourselves. Anything we can do with or for the kids we both enjoy doing. <br /><br /><strong>3) What's your gear lineup? Do you share the cameras, or is certain equipment dubbed &quot;Hobbes only&quot; and &quot;Alison only?&quot; Tell us why or why not. </strong><br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> I shoot with the Canon 10D and the following lenses:<br />20mm<br />50mm<br />70-200mm<br />100mm/macro<br /><br />Hobbes shoots Nikon and also has an assortment of antique film cameras. We share all the gear, but I would say we stick pretty closely to our primary cameras. We switch off at weddings sometimes, and Aubrey has a Lens baby for his Nikon that he uses a lot. <br /><br /><em>Hobbes:</em> We have: Canon 10D, AE-1, 50mm, 20mm, 70-200IS, and a partially functioning A70. The Nikon side is the D70, N75, 50mm and 18-70mm. We have a Lomo fisheye, various Polaroids, a Yashica TLR, flashes, various accessories and two camera phones. ;) We share usage of all of the cameras equally but tend to lean towards my using the Nikon and her, the Canon. I haven't gotten her to where she's using the alternative process equipment yet but she's definitely interested in it all. There is no Hobbes or Alison only gear in our house. I think that goes out the window when your love for an art extends out to wanting for others to share the joy with you. That means so much more than whose camera it is. <br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="right" src="" /><strong>4) We have all enjoyed the photos of little Evelyn, and enjoyed watching her grow along with the photos of Alison's two little boys. What challenges have you faced being a combined family? What are your thoughts on having more children?</strong><br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> It's challenging at times to manage the needs of two very different families and keep everyone happy. Aubrey has done a fantastic job as a step-father, he loves the children very much and it's evident that they love him too. That doesn't take away from the love they have for their Dad, it just makes them lucky to have so many caring adults in their life. I have to say I was surprised at how well they adapted to having Evelyn join our family. I anticipated jealously or at least some behavior issues after she was born but there weren't any. They love spending time with her and delight in watching her learn new things. Christopher can make Evelyn laugh harder than anyone else, they have a very special bond. <br /><br />As for more children, absolutely! Aubrey jokes that he wants 16. Wait, maybe he isn't joking?! Seriously though, our children enrich our lives in so many ways. At this point we'll happy welcome any children into our lives, though I don't see us having more than 6 (total). It's amazing to see how siblings interact and how different they can be from each other. We know that by having a large family there are sacrifices, but they are ones we are happy to make. <br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="left" src="" /><em>Hobbes:</em> The major challenge about having a combined family is trying to make three different people come to agreement when looking out for what's best for the kids. That includes making many sacrifices and not always doing what's best for yourself but is more than worth it. I've been a kid before, I have to let them be as well. <br /><br /><strong>5) Who is the better driver - Alison or Hobbes?</strong> <br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> It depends on your definition of better! Hobbes is much more aggressive when it comes to driving, and he is moreĀ…opinionated about other drivers on the road. I am more likely to do the speed limit and not a mile over. <br /><br /><em>Hobbes:</em> That's all a matter of view, really... If you ask a police officer or the person that gives you the road test, Alison is the best driver I've ever met. She's courteous and always follows the rules of the road and respects other drivers out there without showing any sort of aggression. If what you are looking for is someone that can get you through traffic quickly and safely, that would be me. I still respect drivers and follow the road rules but am much more aggressive of a driver when needed, so by the words of &quot;them&quot;, I think she's the better driver.<br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="right" src="" /><strong>6) Where do you see yourselves in ten years?</strong> <br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> Aubrey is heading back to college to get his nursing degree later this year so I suspect he'll have a career change in the near future. We'll be raising a house full of teenagers/pre-teens and I would imagine that will occupy most of our time. I hope that we'll still have as much fun together as we do now. We laugh a lot in our house, and I hope that never changes. We currently run a photography business and right now we're not certain if we'll keep that open. I know that photography will always be a big part of or lives though; regardless of if we do it as a hobby or as a career. <br /><br /><em>Hobbes:</em> I see us in a lot better of a place in ten years. I am going back to school to get a different degree sometime in the near future so that will be done and I will be well into a new career path by then. Alison will be ten years further into her career than she is so it will be a pretty nice place to be. That is assuming that Nostradamus is incorrect again in his prediction that the world is ending this time in the year 2012...<br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="left" src="" /><strong>7) Have you ever had any major disagreements over the running of the forum? Give us an example of how you've compromised.</strong> <br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> I can't think of any major disagreements off hand. Living in the same house gives us the unique opportunity to talk about things face to face as they come up. <br /><br /><em>Hobbes:</em> We have pretty similar views on how the forum is run. Between the both of us and Chase, we're almost like talking to the same person over and over again. We are all very good at expressing our views and talking things out between ourselves to make sure we all feel like we're doing the right thing.<br /><br /><strong>8) You climb into bed one night, look at each other and say, &quot;This was, without question, the best day of our lives together!&quot; What happened? Give us details!</strong> <br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> It would definitely be a day filled with family and friends. We've been apart since May due to relocation and I just miss having him around. You adapt and find ways to make it work, but my days aren't the same without him here. So, maybe a trip to the science museum with the kids, lunch out and then a movie and some homemade popcorn to round off the night. <br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="right" src="" /><em>Hobbes:</em> With a fear of sounding like a total suck up and cheesy at the same time, I would say it was our wedding day. Not only for the obvious, but because we had our friends, family and the boys with us and had a whole day of celebrating our lives together and enjoying the company that had all come to be there with us. That was a truly wonderful day.<br /><br /><strong>9) Who are your photographic influences?</strong><br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> I really admire danalec99's work from here on TPF, I enjoy the realism in his photos and it's something I strive for in mine as well. Artistically I'm a big fan of Georgia O'Keeffe's work as well. <br /><br /><em>Hobbes:</em> My photographic influences range to almost every member of the forum. There is so much talent here that it makes me strive to be better and branch out on my style of work. There is also a magazine that I get every once in a while that showcases photographers from around the world and I get tremendous amounts of inspiration from there as well. I also have as an influence, my Aunt Roxy, my Mom, who is giving me a lot to look up to and, of course, Alison.<br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="left" src="" /><strong>10) Finally - what do each of you think it takes to be a good TPF moderator? Is the job harder or easier than you thought it would be? </strong><br /><br /><em>Alison:</em> I honestly never thought I would be an administrator of this site. I still remember the first time Chase talked to me and I was in awe that he knew who I was! Overall the job is a lot more rewarding than I thought it would be. It's been a privilege to watch TPF grow and change and know that I had a small part in helping that happen. <br /><br />I think being able to work as a team is a must for a good moderator. You also have to be willing to be disliked. It's not always easy to enforce the rules or be the &quot;bad guy&quot; but it's necessary to keep the site running smoothly.<br /><br /><em>Hobbes:</em> For me, it takes being able to separate personal from business to be an effective moderator. It's easy to feel like you're being attacked as a mod here and to take it personally but if you can break that apart from the business side of running a forum, you'll do great. When I first became a moderator here, I thought it would be just a little bit of time here and there to move posts but since the forum has grown like it has been, it is a lot harder than it looks. Add in doing extra things like contests or setting up galleries, making big changes to the forum and it is almost like having a second job. I think that is something that none of us expected and something that oftentimes seems to be unnoticed. I just thank every day that we have such a strong team of mods and support to keep this place running like it is.<br /><br /><br /><img vspace="2" hspace="5" border="0" align="right" src="" /><strong>We'd like to thank Alison and Hobbes for taking the time to answer our interview questions, and for playing along by keeping their answers a secret until publication. Of course, this is also the time to give a big &quot;thank you&quot; for all their combined effort at helping keep TPF the great forum that it is. </strong><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /></p></font><font size="2"></font>

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