Holiday Photography

I love the Holidays. I feel like everyone is nicer during the holidays. Don’t you agree?
Well, it may be true after all. Everyone is reflecting the past year and thinking about how good/bad they were in the past year and perhaps they want to do something better for the new year.

I see many people at the mall giving things to the charitable organization and taking photos with Santa for a good cause. Speaking of taking photos with Santa, this is a big deal for some new (young) family.

Young families love sharing photos with their friends and family. They want to show their baby to the world! I get it. I have done it myself with my wife when our kids were babies. People stand on a long line to take photos with Santa at the malls. It must be very tiring for the Santa.

When you are taking photos with Santa, you have to remember a few rules. Here. Let me share some of my own experience in the past and you can choose to follow them or not.
Rule #1. You can’t wear RED!
Let me explain why. Your center (focal point) is a giant dude wearing an item of red clothing. Santa is a big dude (usually) and he is supposed to be the focal point of the photo. When you wear the same color of clothing, you suddenly become a part of Santa’s clothing. This is not good because your focal point is being distorted by the same color. Trust me. Instead try to wear Green, White, and or any colors that are much lighter than red.

Rule #2. Try to avoid any weekend. This includes Friday afternoon as well. Think about it for a second. Everyone in your neighborhood will be there doing the same thing. When I go to the mall and see the line to take photos with Santa, I want to throw up. It’s darn so long and kids look miserable.
Instead, try to go during the business hour during the week. I understand that parents can’t really take time off during the day to take the photo. However, if you really want the photo with a Santa, it may be worth taking a half day off and spending time with your family. Your kids will have a great time with you and you will cherish the moment without so much stress. (Isn’t that why we work in the first place?) Just saying.

Rule #3. Be polite and considerate. I remember I was waiting behind these two ladies who took 30+ mins looking at three same photos and could not decide which one to pick while the line behind them was forming like crazy! They just didn’t care about other folks and taking advantage of their time. This is not cool at all. You have other kids waiting on the same line so they can have fun with Santa. Why would you take away their joy and you become that annoying person who becomes that Grinch? Please be polite and be reasonable.

Anyway, I hope that everyone is enjoying the holidays and having fun. This year was a great year for me (personally) and I am very thankful for it. I have more time taking photos with my family and using the film camera that I purchased earlier this year. I am super excited to take more photos in 2019 with my camera.

Ghost Photography

I can’t believe it’s already the end of October. It’s that time of the year, Halloween. I think I heard that people spend a lot of money (2nd most after Christmas) during Halloween to decorate and to give out candies. It may be true. I see so many houses decorated with the haunted house themes, zombies, and carved out scary pumpkin heads. Halloween is a special day and the spirit of Ghost is everywhere!

I couldn’t stop thinking about this ghost spirit during this Halloween. How many people actually believe in ghost? How do we really know if they exist or not? There aren’t that many ways we can prove that the ghost exists or not. However, the images in photography cannot be ignored. The photos cannot be captured without the existence of the real thing. If the ghost is captured in the photo, the ghost must be real. As a photo enthusiast, I did a little bit of research in the past and I wanted to share some of my thoughts and opinions based on these photos and stories. I don’t know if these photos are real or edited with scary images, but I am definitely scared now.

This photo is known as the “Brown Lady” of Raynham Hall. It was shot in 1936 by a photographer documenting Raynham Hall in Norfolk, England. The photographer, Captain Hubert Provand, thought his assistant was joking when he said that he saw some object figure when he was taking the photo, but then it became true when the photographer saw the image for himself. There was some story that the person in the image, Lady Dorothy Townshend, was locked in her room by her husband because she committed an adultery. The image was so clear. It’s hard to image that this was edited back in the 1900s.

This is another famous one. It is the famous Tulip Staircase Ghost photo. It was developed by Rev. Ralph Hardy. He was a retired clergyman. In 1966, he visited the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, England. He took this interesting spiral staircase. When he developed the photo he saw the ghost touching the staircase.

This one is a little bit more controversial than the other ones. Many people think this is a fake image. Tony O’Rahilly shot this image of a girl standing amid the flames as Wem Town Hall in Shropshire, England. The place was burned to the ground in 1995. People said that there was no way anyone could have survived this flame. For a long time, many people thought that this was a girl name Jane Churn who accidentally set fire to her home in 1677 and her ghost was shown in the photo. Later on, however, the national museum of the photography examined the photo and said this was edited.

It’s amazing to see some of these old photos and how people have been amused. I, personally, believe there is the good vs evil spirit in this world and that we cannot see with our own eyes. These photos may not be true and may not able to authenticate, but the 35mm slr film cameras captured these images and make us wonder in this Halloween.

Shout out to the link below. The site has other more ghost images and stories. You can check them out!

Photography Career

Do you enjoy taking photos and sharing them with the people? Would you like to make money by taking photos? Well, you may be the person to look for a career in the photography industry. However, you may need more skills and passion to pursue the career you think it’s the best career for you. I will try to break it down in this article for you.

Let’s first look at the places where you can work as a photographer. You can obviously start your own business and have your own shop. You can work for an agency or an advertising company since they are always looking to take photos of their unique articles. People are visually more intuned with the photos so many agencies love adding photos with their articles. Like this one 🙂
You can only work over the weekend – weddings and other occasional events usually need a photographer as well. The job opportunities are abundant for anyone who is looking to pursue being a photographer.

The real question, however, is should you pursue the career? I heard so many people say “follow your dream and the money will follow”. I think this is the stupidest thing that a person can say to anyone. If anyone follows their dream, they will be homeless. Period! You don’t get paid if you don’t work – work as a definition is not simply just doing what you love doing. If you get good at what you are doing and you feel comfortable, you may love your work but you do not need to love your work. Work simply works. Sorry, I got little carried away. Let’s get back to you.

You are reading this now because you are considering pursuing your career as a photographer. I am here to lay out the facts before you continue your career move. Here are 3 things for you to consider before you jump right in. These may be subjective but I think it’s relevant as you think about the career. Matter fact, it doesn’t have to be a photography career, it can be anything.

#1 Competition.
Okay. Like I mentioned above, if you enjoy taking photos you can find a job that requires the photography skills. The issue is that the photography is not really a skill set you build like studying medicine or law. Okay, I am not trying to burst your bubble but hear me out. A middle school student can take a point & shoot steady images. In high school, you can learn how to shoot a film camera as a hobby. I am trying to say that everyone can take a photo. The problem with the photography career is that there is such big competition when it comes to finding that dream job. You really have to outshine other people to get the job which brings me to the next problem.

#2 Skills
You may be better taking photos than a high school student. I get that but what or how is your skillset determined? By a photo? What if 100 people take the same photo of the same object? What if that was a job interview process? How would you stand out? I am not sure how people can determine your skill set when there are multiple photographers who are taking the same photo. You take all these art classes even on a college level, but would you really learn how to shoot with the camera in an education setting? I doubt it. You need hands-on experience and that will make you a better photographer. The problem is everyone is doing the same thing.

#3 Trend
My last problem is that the camera (hardware) the very thing that you take photos with constantly changing with the new/ better camera features. It’s really hard to keep up with the digital camera industry because there are so many new ones each and every year. You need to buy a different lens and gears so you can do your job – which cost a lot of money. Some photographers spend thousands of dollars so they can make money. Unless you have a lot of money, if you want to make money by taking photos, you’ll need to spend a lot of money to get there.

In conclusion, I think the photography career is a great career because there are needs and people are always looking to capture the special moments. I am not discouraging anyone to move forward with their career, but I hope that you get to know the pros and cons. Hope this article was helpful. Good luck with your career. Remember, don’t simply follow your passion! Be reasonable and practical.