live TRAVEL STREET FILM PHOTOGRAPHY
ISSUE THREE 2018 Cover shot by Renee Robyn â€” Feature Artist
Photo by: Travis Burke (See page 26).
CONTENTS 4 WELCOME! Polaroid Photography
6 INSTANT DREAMS 8 SELF DEVELOPING NOSTALGIA Film Photography
14 PUSHING FILM Fine Art Photography
20 RENEE ROBYN Adventure Photography
26 TRAVIS BURKE
Mobil Phone Photography
32 BEAUTIFUL SIMPLICITY Travel & Street Photography
38 MEHMET IZDES Passion to Pro
50 THE JOURNEY What Weâ€™re Loving
60 BOOKS 62 SOFTWARE
Publisher : Rob Jenkins (www.robjenkinsphoto.com) Design : John Montesi (https://johnmontesi.com)
WELCOME! PHOTO live ISSUE 3 Welcome to issue 3! This issue takes us on adventure with Travis Burke, to the streets of Turkey with Mehmet Izdes. We load up our film cameras with Hashem from Pushing Film, get our Polaroid cameras out as we watch Instant Dreams, the brand new movie from director, Willem Baptist. Plus sit down with the amazing Renee Robyn and fall in love with her art. Plus we talk to a couple of “just starting out pros” who share the highs and lows of going pro... Being a not for profit magazine means we do this out of our love of photography and our desire to share with you photographers you may know and those you’ve never heard of. There is so much talent across this planet, so many great photographers and they all have stories to share. If you really like Photo Live and would like to support it, consider buying me a cup of coffee using the link on the button below. It doesn’t actually allow me to rush out for a lactose free soy latte but it goes to paying people like John Montesi for his amazing design work. Finally if you have a suggestion for someone we need to talk to for our next issue or your a brand wanting to be involved with sponsorship, email me and I’d love to talk to you and spend your money making Photo Live bigger and better. Thanks all
Rob Rob Jenkins Editor/Publisher
p.s one thing everyone can do and it’s free is share Photo Live on your social media, or website to give these photographers the exposure they deserve... click here to buy me a coffee - lactose free please
Photo by: Charlotte Nicholson (See page 50).
GRAPH O T O H P D POLAROI
a feature documentary by Willem Baptist Instant Dreams is a feature documentary by Willem Baptist (Wild boar, Iâ€™m Never Afraid! ) about the fascination and love for Polaroids. When Polaroid announced the end of instant film in 2008, the last still working factory was bought by a small group of enthusiasts. Among them is the retired scientist ,Stephen Herchen who previously collaborated with the inventor of Polaroid and is still trying to unravel the secret of the lost chemical formula. In this overwhelming cinematic journey, Baptist introduces us to a number of quirky individuals who are connected to Polaroid in a special way: the German artist Stefanie Schneider, who does a photo shoot in the California desert with her last existing original Polaroid stock; New York Magazine editor Christopher Bonanos, who wrote a book about Polaroidâ€™s history and tries to capture the relationship with his son with his instant camera; and a Japanese girl who first discovered the magic of Polaroid in Tokyo. Everyone tries to keep the instant dream alive in his or her way. 6
Slowly we also begin to feel the magic of Polaroids. Like the instant photos, we are chemical creatures full of unpredictable reactions.
Eventually, the Polaroids in Instant Dreams are a metaphor for our desire to capture our dreams.
Q: Mr Baptist, why is it important we keep Polaroid alive? The more connected we are, the smaller the world seems to get and the less we really experience. When is the last time you got lost, really lost? I can’t remember. I really enjoy the fast moving digital age but I’m also old school, in a sense that I really have strong memories of writing pen-pals and waiting for an actual letter to arrive weeks later, discovering weird records on your own in a record shop or winding up in alien places because you just walked miles in one direction because you felt like it. Embracing the unexpected and having the time to really take in experiences are things that I feel are lacking nowadays. Polaroid pictures are tangible, draw you in and compel you to think about the moment. At the same time the results are unexpected, blurring fantasy and memories over time. Q: People love to hold a printed photograph, how do you communicate that feeling in your film? Holding it and sharing the moment is very important, the social aspects of it. In Instant Dreams we see for instance one of the characters, Christopher Bonanos a writer at New York magazine, casually shooting pictures on his SX-70 camera at a party and handing them out to the guests. While the picture develops in their hands interesting unexpected conversations start to happen. One
could say that the chemical reactions happening within those who partake in this ritual mirror those happening within the Polaroid pictures it self. Q: Tell us a bit about how the project got started? What was the driving force? It all started with coming to terms with my desire to keep on shooting my films on S16mm celluloid while moving to digital. Trying to keep that feel of cinematic mystery alive in a digital world using artificial means. Secondly the realization that many people do the same, putting filters on their digital photos to make them feel more ‘analog’ or ‘real’. I saw an interesting way to use the story of Polaroid, it’s invention and the love people have for it, as a metaphor to tell a bigger story about our relationship with photographic images and our desire to capture our dreams. Why do imperfect images feel more real to us than accurate captured
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ones from your latest device? Or what if I told you the concepts for the Iphone and Instagram where invented in the 70’s? These are some of the ingredients that triggered me to make this film. Q: What do you think of photography today and film making in general, are we relying too much on post processing and special effects? I think, the more digitally tinkered with films or photographs become the less the experience affects us. At the same time there is a growing longing for authenticity in our digital world. Thus we ironically try to artificially create it. Q: What’s your next project? I’m shooting a documentary for television about show-wrestling in The Netherlands and contemplating transitioning into feature films as a director and looking for a suitable project to direct.
www: instantdreamsmovie.com Instagram: instantdreamsmovie 7
SELF DEVELOPING NOSTALGIA mike rollerson Mike Rollerson is a well established photographer whoâ€™s creative and experimental style has inspired us here at Photo Live and has been featured regularly in magazines and online interviews. Mike is based in San Diego and is known for his cosplay and event photography as well as his brilliant horror themed photography. When we decided to feature the new Instant Dreams film interview we had to ask Mike about his instant photography heâ€™s been featuring on his Instagram feed.
Q: Tell us about your Polaroid project, why Polaroid (instant prints)? My first step into photography was as a teenager, carrying a backpack loaded up with disposable film cameras and a couple packs of polaroid film to a comic convention and I remember having a blast with it. Times were much different than with digital where you can fine-tune your exposure, composition and focus to get the perfect shot. With the polaroid and disposable cameras you had no idea what you were getting.. it was always a bit of a surprise. I moved onto digital and have been shooting that for nearly 15 years now and decided to pick up one of the Instax cameras a couple years ago to use as a fun behind-the-scenes camera at shoots. I quickly realized how addicting it was and loved the throwback to my starting days with film.. There was just something refreshing about it. As much as I still love Digital (and have no plans to move away from it) there’s something nice about a candid instant print and looking back at it years later.. It’s a completely different feeling than with looking at an album of JPEG files! Q: What do you want to accomplish with the project? My main goal in starting with it was to just have a good time with it - and I definitely have been! - it’s also been great seeing others so into it. With Instant Film making a big comeback in recent years a lot of people are getting it (either getting back into it or discovering it for the first time) 11
Q: You take hundreds - it must cost a fortune!
and seeing what it can do. There’s a totally different experience than shooting with Digital.
cool. There is no negative to make copies from, just the original photo itself which makes it a bit special.
Q: I’m guessing many of the people you photograph may not know much about Polaroid, do you get any interesting reactions from them?
Q: There is a sense of simplicity about the prints, how do you go about taking the pictures?
Surprisingly, I still find a lot of people who are new to the whole polaroid/ instant film process! The cameras themselves are usually the first tipoff (especially the bulkier and almost brick-looking ones you’ll find from companies like Lomography) but seeing the print pop out and start developing is something that most people want to see. I’m always happy to shoot an extra shot for them to keep as a take-away! Q: Do you think instant prints have a sense of nostalgia that makes us love them? There’s definitely a sense of nostalgia. There’s also the fact that they’re far from perfect. Shots can be unerexposed, out of focus, off-center but they’re still special. While these are usually shots I’d delete on digital, having a one-of-a-kind print to look back at years down the road is really
This is one of the things I really liked seeing.. every instant photographer tends to have their own process. Some get in very-close for more of a headshot, some stand further back to get a full-portrait. I usually bring a few different instant cameras with me since each one gives a very different feel (some give a more dreamy look, others give a sharper look.. some are wide-angle, others a fisheye-effect and some are more of a portrait lens), same for the films (color, monochrome, different borders) which help set the mood of different shots. It’s a lot of trial an error, but more importantly just having fun with it and trying new things. Sometimes it works and you get some really awesome shots, sometimes it doesn’t -- either way it’s always a new experience!
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I’ve taken probably 15,000 (if not more) over the last couple years. It definitely adds up (and I prefer not to think about it sometimes!). In the end though, it’s all about enjoying it and having fun which I definitely am. I look at it much like a hobby though. When you get some really neat shots, you don’t worry about the money. It’s when you’re not getting those shots that you start to feel the cost of them :) Q: So what’s next with the project..? Perhaps a gallery or display somewhere? I’ve recently started sharing more an more of these online. A gallery/ display would be great but no plans for it quite yet. I’d love to put together a book of instant photos (either just my own work or even partnering with other instant photographers to share the different styles we shoot). There will definitely be lots more to come from the project in the future! Q: Mike - thanks for being our friend and letting us feature you, where can readers see more of the Polaroid Project?? Always great to be featured with you guys! I’ve recently put together a portal to share these . . .
PUSHING FILM hashem mCADAM
We came across the Pushing Film channel on Youtube and decided to ask Hashem why he loves film so much that he created a channel dedicated to it... Weâ€™re so inspired weâ€™re looking for a film camera ourselves to experiment with!
Q: Why is film so popular now? I think it’s because it’s gone full circle. At one point digital photography was new and cool, and kept improving to a point where it reached a plateau, therefore people who previously shot film found inspiration in going back to it, and a younger audience who’d grown up by then found something that (to them) is “new” and different. Q: You do a variety of photo genres - I’ve seen landscapes and weddings, what gets you most excited? I think the most exciting photography for me is anything candid, especially street or documentary photography... which is funny because I initially hated and was terrified of invading people’s privacy. But I forced myself out of my comfort zone realised you don’t have to violate any social etiquette in order to document life through photography if you do it right. Q: As someone who loves film, do you try to make your digital shots emulate the look of film? (If you only shoot film please ignore this question) Yes, I sometimes do. The reason is that you generally get nicer colours and character out of film, especially with some flat/raw images. But that doesn’t mean overdoing it or adding a ton of grain which doesn’t belong, but merely being inspired by the colour pallete or tones of a particular film stock.
Q: You’re weddings are beautiful, how long have you been doing them? Thank you! About a year; I still consider myself new to weddings, and have mainly been “second shooting” until this point to gain more confidence in delivering the standard of work that I strive to in a high pressure environment like weddings. Q: When you shoot a wedding using film, what gear are you using? I use a Pentax 645N medium format camera, and sometimes a Canon EOS 3 35mm camera. Q: Do you ever get nervous not being able to see the wedding shots until they are developed? Yes, this why it’s good to shoot “hybrid” by using digital alongside film! Q: Is photography your job as well as your passion?
overseas. It was a way to connect with the community that we already loved and saw potential in. Q: The channel features nice video quality as in the style … are you doing the edit? For the most part, yes. I’m fortunate enough to have gotten the help of others on a few videos however, such as our recent Perth vlog which was edited entirely by my partner Sarah. Q: your Japan Blog part 2 was really nicely made, are you planning on more travel themed video? Absolutely. I think travel and photography go hand in hand, and it would be a shame not to record at least a bit of footage to share with the world. Q: Some of those Fuji Velvia shots, the purple toned, how did they come out like that?
Q: Talk to us about the Youtube channel - how and why did you guys start it?
The thing about Velvia is that it is known to have a purple/magenta cast. It can appear strongly sometimes more than others. It is a beautiful slide film in the right situation, and I’m especially a fan of the 50 ISO version.
We started it because we thought “why not!” and there were no Australian based Youtube channels on film photography at the time, and we would always be watching other channels put out great content
Q: Do you think photographers need to tell stories with their images? Can you share some tips on story telling with a camera?
I would definitely say so!
I do think so, but there also is nothing wrong with taking photos merely for the enjoyment of a subject or the documentation of memories. Personally I’m still trying to grow in the way of being able to photograph with a sense of story and purpose. I think good photos should be made for others, and should have multiple elements that come together rather than just a single aesthetic aspect. The photos I enjoy the most illicit some kind of response in me for having seen them, and that is the kind of ability I’d like to achieve. I think a good tip is to simply ask yourself “what am I saying with this photo” or “what reading or response do I want the viewer to have”. Also to look at something in more than one way and dig deeper... “what underlying elements are present in a situation that someone may not see at first sight?” Q: What’s a film camera you really want but don’t yet have and why? I am actually quite satisfied with what I have at the moment. If I had to pick something I’d say a Contax 645, but they are really overpriced in the current market! Q: OK to wrap up - where can our readers go to find out more about you and your channels..? We can be found as “pushingfilm” on Youtube, Instagram, and Twitter. We also have an article on the website “Australian Film Photographers Scene” (afps.blog) 17
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Youtube: pushingfilm Instagram & Twitter: pushingfilm 19
APH R G O T O H T P FINE AR
Renee Robyn PHOTOGRAPHER | ARTIST | TEACHER
Q: How would you describe your photography? This is definitely a part of personal branding that I’ve often struggled with, I’ve never really been sure how to nail it down. It’s mostly the result of a lifetime reading fantasy novels and playing video games, expressed with photography and crushed through Photoshop. Q: How or where does the idea for an image start for you? Another question I wish was a simple answer. Images start anywhere from a dream, a book, a conversation with someone else. Sometimes I find a prop or I’ll watch a scene in a film and notice a little detail that starts this rabbit hole of a thought process. Other times I’ll be in the studio and shoot a frame and go “Oh wow, I have to build something with this one day”, or I’ll be out shooting back plates and suddenly everything just flashes into my mind and the entire concept is clear as day. The rest of the time it’s an endurance race, of just sitting down, and crushing through ideas, and it sometimes takes me a year or 20
three to figure out what the hell to actually do. I have three images in my mind right now that have yet to be completed because what I thought was clear and simple in my mind, when I got down to it, was not any of those things at all. It can be frustrating, but I’m learning to accept that sometimes that’s just how this brain works. Q: Your post about “somebody hates you” really nailed it for me, what the heck is wrong with people? Why do even other pro’s feel the need to attack another photographer? (I’ll link to it cause I love it and think it’s important : LINK : www. reneerobynphotography.com/ somebody-hates-you/ I’m not a psychologist, so I can’t really give you anything there other than personal experience. I rarely find pro’s attacking other people’s work, they’re usually too busy working to troll, but I’m sure there’s examples. Reality is, this is our world right now, and while we can try to change it for the better, we still have to build coping mechanisms to survive what comes at us.
"Reality is, this is our world right now, and while we can try to change it for the better, we still have to build coping mechanisms to survive what comes at us.â€?
Q: Composites, why are they so hard (for me)... I mean why do you think getting a good composite is so hard. Perhaps share a bit about how you got into them, what they are and perhaps a few tips for beginners. For some people, they think with a composite mind naturally, and others do not. That being said, I think most people can learn it. I got into it because I was involved in a motorcycle crash and I couldn’t walk. I wanted to be anywhere other than where I was, so I would Photoshop myself into places that were not the bed I was stuck in. Composites are like entry level painting. You’ve got to understand perspective, composition, color balancing between images used, masking, lens distortion, depth of field, and so on - also just making something with an interesting story.
There’s so much effort put into making compositing faster and more efficient, and I really think there are steps being skipped by taking the easy way out early on. My best composites don’t come from using quick mask... They come from being accountable for every single pixel in the image, and taking my time with each one. Q: Finally where can we find out more about you and tell us about your training... My website has a blog which is a lot of my brain thrown into words. You can also search on Creative Live, RGG EDU, and SmugMug Films for more education and some longer versions of how I got started, although I don’t recommend my method. :)
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www: reneerobynphotography.com Prints: reneerobynphotography.com 25
gra o t o h p venture
TRAVIS BURKE live passionately Travis Burkeâ€™s diverse and creative approach to outdoor adventure photography stems from his own perspective on life. His dedication to conquering anything thrown at him and living life with no regrets shines through in his photographs.
Whether itâ€™s walking a slackline over canyons, freediving through caves in the ocean or capturing the Milky Way Galaxy in remote locations, Travis is constantly pushing himself and the boundaries of his craft.
Q: Travis you’re a dream chaser, what dreams have you achieved that you are most happy with? My dream of becoming a full-time adventure photographer and athlete is definitely my biggest achievement so far. It wasn’t all that long ago that I was scraping grease out of restaurant vents to make ends meet, dreaming about one day being able to support myself doing what I love. Q: How do you choose your next adventure? Almost all of my adventures take hours of planning, especially when I’m executing specific shots or scenes, but my day-to-day is often
determined by last-minute factors like the weather and the needs of my clients and brand partners. This keeps things interesting and it’s a lifestyle that keeps me energized and inspired, but it can be hard to predict exactly where I might be traveling next month or even next week. With night photography though, it’s a little easier to plan ahead since I’m typically working with phases of the moon. A lot of my adventures are structured around that. Q: You’ve created images for a range of clients including National Geographic, Red Bull and Google, tell us about some of your first paid projects, how did they happen? My breakthrough project was with GrindTV. I happened to meet one of their editors who was teaching a workshop I was attending, and showed him my portfolio. They ultimately paid me to take a 100day road trip across the Western U.S., and social media began to really take off for me from there. That, along with a lot of persistence, allowed me to continue to travel and work on assignment for a number of larger clients. Q: How many people are in your team that you work with? Right now I’m working with a team of four who help me with everything from social media to business development. But up until the middle of last year, it was just me. Q: Apart from Betty (your van) what 3 things must go with you on any adventure? My camera, my headlamp, and a slackline.
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Facebook: /TravisBurkePhotography Instagram: travisburkephotography 31
GRAP O T O H P ne o h P E L MOBI
beautiful simplicity mark cushway
About Mark... Sydney based. Married. Father. Photographer. Business owner One of the longest surviving people still living with Cystic Fibrosis Double lung transplant 20 December 16 Exhibitions: Head On Finalist 2015 with ‘Yellow’, 2 Dank St Gallery, Waterloo. 2015 Space’, Bellevue Street Gallery, Bellevue Hill. 2015 ‘13’. Group exhibition. Town Hall. 2016.
“When I first saw Mark’s work, or vision if you like, I was spellbound. He has such a unique way of stripping away distraction in a frame. Such a clean image. Little people in a big beautiful world...” Georgie Parker @georgieparker, Actress, Mobile photographer
Q: Take us back to your first camera, what was it, what did you photograph and how did that lead you to where you are now? Think it was a Kodak Instamatic. People shots, festival crowds, sporting events, whatever was going on. I can trace my minimal style back to a shot I took in the 1980s of a solitary aqua blue seat. It still resonates with me today. I was crouching low looking through the viewfinder when I heard a girl say to her friend, “he’s taking a photo of the bench” then laugh as they walked away. I took that one shot and left. Q: Your images generate a mix of emotions when looking at them - peace, loneliness, even longing, what are you thinking when you’re creating them, are you creating based on your mood at the time? Thanks. I like to find simplicity in my world around me. I like to tell a story by removing the clutter and reducing a shot to its core using a solitary person, a tree, bold contrasting colours, a long shadow, the horizon or just simple lines. I like to capture people lost in a moment. That innocuous glance or movement. The way people wait. How they sit, stand or slouch as they’re zoning out. I try to capture that moment and set it apart from its surroundings. Minimalism has a way of telling more with less. 34
Q: One image - Don’t sweat the big stuff, is so peaceful and sparse, tell us about that shot. It’s a blend of two shots: a guy relaxing on a seat looking towards the horizon and beach grass. I blended them using Superimpose and the Blender apps and edited it in Snapshot. Q: How often are you shooting? I look at the world around me like I’m looking through a camera lens. I used to shoot all the time, now I’m more deliberate. It’s more like once a week now, at dusk. Q: Is shooting therapeutic in some way? Yep. I like the solitude of shooting and the peace that it brings. Q: gear also minimal? An iPhone. It’s about as minimal as it can get. I have a few SLRs but they’re too obtrusive for street photography. Q: What’s next for you … are you planning on teaching or travelling? Planning a trip to New Zealand. Always been keen to shoot the countryside there. Q: Finally where can readers see more of your photography? Follow me on Instagram @mark_pc
Find out more: Instagram @mark_pc
“Mark Cushway has the kind of Instagram feed that the platform was built for; sexy, minimalist and consistent. I enjoy following Mark’s work because his squares are always a breath of fresh air on my Instagram feed.” Lauren Bath @laurenepbath. Photographer, Australia’s First Professional Instagrammer
“Mark Cushway’s imagery, as zen in his taste for minimalism as it is precious in his aesthetic, is living proof that sometimes going small is a choice to go actually for big and bold.” Sion Fullana @sionfullana, Mobile Photography Pioneer
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P A R G O T O T PH E E R T S & TRAVEL
MEHMET IZDES FROM TURKEY WITH LOVE Mehmet has the gift of capturing emotion on the street. People going about their day, children playing and moments of life from Ankara Turkey.
Q: Can you tell us how you got into photography? When and what was your first camera, and also why… I got into photography in 1973. I was a 7th grade student at a boarding school. My four friends and I established a dark room in the school and started taking pictures and processing them in our darkroom. Taking pictures during the week and developing them over the weekend was just fun for us. My first camera was a Zenit E as it was a really good and affordable one. Everything to do with taking and developing the pictures was fine but we were having difficulties accessing the knowledge as there were no photography books in those days. Q: You have an amazing mix of street photography, portraits and landscapes. Are all your images from where you live? Although most of my portfolio is from Turkey, I also like travelling a lot. I have visited more than 30 countries and wish to travel more.
Q: What’s the photography scene like in Turkey? The photography scene in Turkey is really interesting. Historical places, landscapes (such as Cappadocia, Istanbul, Lake Van, Mount Ararat, the North Anatolian Mountains, the Mediterranean Coastline), and people with different cultures are always of interest to photographers. Q: Are there any photography clubs in Turkey you’re involved with? Yes there are several photography clubs in Turkey. I am a proud member of AFSAD (the Association of Art Photographers of Ankara) which has been an active club for 41 years. Q: How often are you out shooting? I mostly go shooting twice a week, but my camera is always with me. Q: And what is you’re preferred genre to shoot - portraits? Street? I like taking portraits of people and also street portraits.
Q: Are people in Turkey accepting of photographers taking their picture in the street? Generally the people do not object to photographers taking their pictures in the street. I think it is just about establishing the right dialogue with people. Q: Do you have any tips you can share with our readers on taking street portraits and street shots? I use two types of cameras, a FF DSLR and a mirrorless one. Mirrorless ones, especially with the tilted screen, are an advantage to photographers taking street portraits and shots, as you do not draw much attention from people while taking pictures. Q: What plans do you have for 2018? I have lately been focused on “stage photography” and primarily “theatre photography”. I am planning to develop portrait shot projects with actors and actresses. I will also continue taking landscape and street shots. 39
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www: izdes.500px.com Instagram: izdes 49
Pro o t n o Passi
Photographers share their stories of taking their passion to profession. This issue we speak to two travellers...
Charlotte Nicholson Initially I did not expect to make income from my photography but it became clear to me that it was something I could move forwards in and make an income from. Q: How did you deal with doubt? Q: Charlotte, why did you decide to make an income from your photography? When did you get serious about it? I emigrated to South Australia 8 years ago and after many years without creativity I got back into photography mainly to capture my own family. My love and passion for photography grew with every image I took and it very quickly became a serious hobby. I joined a photography club and thus began my learning curve. I soon went on to shoot with a team of professional photographers capturing cosplay and creative portraits. This built my confidence and skill set and I was being approached for private sets and paid consignments. 50
For the first couple of years I strived to learn and improve my skill set but I was riddled with doubts and criticised every image I took, picking out every imperfection and letting fear crush my progress. Eventually I realised that I would have to climb the mountain of self doubt that weighed heavily on my creativity. I took the first steps in putting myself out there and opened a facebook page and Instagram account. The years of networking and building relationships with other creatives and people from my local community paid off and I found myself well supported by the aforementioned. I then went on to complete a business course to educate myself on running my own small business.
I got started on writing my own business plan and the dream of Charlotte Nicholson ~ Photographer was born. Q: Do you still struggle with doubt? Every so often I find myself dwelling on the imperfections in my portfolio. Perusing others work and questioning â€œAm I good enough?â€? I have come to recognise that I can use these feelings to push myself forwards and to keep trying, learning and succeeding. Instead of comparing my work to others I now take every moment to enjoy what I am photographing, seeing the beauty in my subjects, encouraging them to see it too, building up relationship and creating images that invoke positive feelings for the people in them. ~ Failure is the key to success. Each mistake teaches us something. Q: What was your first paid or pro job you got hired for?
Paid work became a natural progression forwards in photography. I started taking on shoots at request and charged for my time. As my confidence grew my work continued to improve enquires for shoots started to trickle in at a steady pace. My first handful of paid gigs where family sets and a couple of weddings that have since gone on to be a large portion of my income. Q: You often hear from people that they need to “hustle” to work on the marketing, to network, get clients - how hard is that for you? I dont feel it a necessity to chase work. I expect seasonal peaks and troughs to effect my bookings as I shoot available light out on location. All my work comes to me via word of mouth recommendation. I have spent immeasurable hours net working in my local community, with other photographers and creatives. Q: Where do you feel you’re at today with your photography both in artistic growth and as a business? Photography is my language of love. Meeting people, listening to their stories and connecting with them on their level has become a skill that I both cherish and it is paramount to my business.
My camera freezes moments in time, taking a fragment of emotion or memory and digitalises it in pixels for my clients. I can recall every session I have ever photographed, how the person I was working with was feeling, the conversations I have had with them and nearly every reason for taking a shot. My camera has been instrumental in my life, to making friends with people from different walks of life, building confidence in myself and helping me grow both individually and creatively. Q: What’s your plans for 2018? 2018 will be another year of steady progression. Following my business
plan and adjusting it to fit well with my growth as small business. I want to continue pushing myself to try new ideas, challenge myself technically and continue to learn and improve. The life of a photographer can be one of the most rewarding, fun and adventurous careers available if handled properly. But, it can also be one of the most frustrating as well. Good luck to anyone wanting to start they’re own business, There is never and good time and tomorrow never comes. My biggest piece of advice is to just do it! Don’t let fear crush your dreams and don’t forget to remove your lens cap! 51
Charlotte Nicholson 52
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Facebook: /CharlotteNicholesonPhotographer Instagram: charliegirlnic 55
Q: Why did you decide to make an income from your photography? When did you get serious about it?
often I feel I’m so far from it. Not that my work is necessary bad but I’ve got a long way to go.
I was unemployed. So I went back to my old trade — graphic design, as a freelancer. Through that I did some product photography. I’d shot a few wedding previously but once some old work contacts knew I was now doing a bit of corporate photograph I received more work. The photography increased to the point that I pretty much stopped all the graphic design.
Q: What was your first paid or pro job you got hired for?
Q: How did you deal with doubt? I found myself going through this cycle of “nup this isn’t for me” so let’s see what employment is out there . . . Then I go “nup!” and end up back doing what I’m doing. Also, I remember hearing someone say “to succeed you’ve got to forget about what other people might think of you”. I kind of found that liberating. Q: Do you still struggle with doubt? I think I’ve got a pretty good idea of what good photography is but I 56
Apart from a few weddings, my first commercial job was photographing product for a handmade chocolate manufacturer. Q: You often hear from people that they need to “hustle” to work on the marketing, to network, get clients - how hard is that for you? Like a lot of creatives, I’d much sooner be left alone to do the work rather than chase it. Fortunately for me, practically all of my work has been through word-of-mouth so the “husltle” hasn’t been necessary. In saying that, I have done some marketing and attended networking groups etc. But to be honest, not much eventuated from it. Q: Where do you feel you’re at today with your photography both in artistic growth and as a business?
When you’re being paid by a client to photograph their product or service art isn’t always the objective — sure things need to look good and communicate a message but as far as being free to express yourself creatively — that’s not what you’re there for. What does this mean for my artistic growth and where I’m at today? . . . Ideally I need do some of that on the side otherwise the artistic side will slump. And as a business . . . Being a freelance photographer has caused me to grow so much as a business person and as a result in myself personally – You’ve no choice really! Q: What’s your plans for 2018? No real plans. I’d be happy for things to continue as they are. Maybe earn a bit more; work a bit less. Perhaps one or two new clients . . . And the opportunity to do some more involved shoots using specialist lighting and composite images. I’d like to do one or two personal shoots to experience a few new things for myself.
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ING V O L E R ’ WHAT WE
BOOKS Photography books are often collected for their amazing images but as an opportunity to discover more about those artists we love. They allow us to dig deeper into the process our “heroes” go through when creating images. Some people collect them and leave them on the shelves like trophies, while others devour the knowledge inside. We’re a bit of both. We love having the books, but we also love sitting in our comfy chair with drink and just spending time with the artist who made the images we love.
Brandon Stanton : Humans of New York
“Humans of New York began as a photography project in 2010. The initial goal was to photograph 10,000 New Yorkers on the street, and create an exhaustive catalogue of the city’s inhabitants.” The author has gone on to create a sister title, Little Humans in the same vein.
This month we feature three books we love and recommend.
This book is not a “how to” but more about the heart of photography, telling stories that capture the heart and mind. Highly recommended! The book that started life as a blog gathering millions of followers is a beautiful book with inspiring photos and stories about everyday New Yorkers. The book is a stunning coffee table book filled with photos
and captions, often from the subject, about their lives, the moment or something important to them. As Stanton says on his website:
Mihaela Noroc: The Atlas of Beauty
Another book that started out as an online project, The Atlas of Beauty is a collection of portraits from aroud the globe by photographer, Mihaela Noroc, who has been travelling since 2013. She’s visited over 50 countries, photographing women in a way that celebrates the diversity of beauty in different cultures. I discovered Mihaela a few years back when she was raising funds for the next stage of her journey. Seeing her amazing photography, I bought the book as soon as it was available. Like the other books featured, it’s not a guide on technical specs, it’s the emotion and the story that is captured inside the pages that keeps you turning each page, absorbing each image and wondering about the lives of the subjects. It’s a wonderful book and an example of how a photography project can lead you to places many of us dream of.
Jay Maisel : Light, Gesture & Color
Jay Maisel is an American photographer who has won many awards for his outstanding photography. I first discovered Jay watching Kelby Training where Scott Kelby took a walk with Jay and asked questions on shooting as they walked the streets of New York and later on Paris. His ability to see the key elements he talks about in his book – Light, Gesture and Color, are what makes his photography so mesmerising. In this book he teaches about three aspects of his street photography as the title says. This is not a technical book, this is purely inspirational. No F-Stops or Shutter Speeds, it’s about the story, the moment. Seeing those moments that are there for just a second or two. Light, Gesture & Color is over 260 pages of inspiration and highly recommended.
This issue we decided to look at some great tools available for photographers. Things we'd use in our photography. Skylum have been producing great software including Luminar and so we talked to the CEO of Skylum, Alex Tsepko Q: Firstly can you tell us how it all began. We started in late 2009 as Macphun - a company who built iPhone and Mac apps. We had 5 people and did everything ourselves. Our strategy was to launch as many apps as possible and get organic sales. Back then we didn’t think about anything big - we were simply experimenting with what we can achieve doing what we like. We grew and became smarter. Back in 2012 we have decided to focus on photography software and launched a number of products that became Apple’s Best of the Mac App Store for 5 straight years in a row. These products are: Snapheal, Intensify, Tonality and others. We have been getting a lot of positive feedback from the Mac users, and that motivated us to try even harder and to challenge ourselves to come with something bigger and better every year. So in 2015 we partnered with Trey Ratcliff to launch Aurora HDR that is currently the best-selling HDR photo editor for Mac and PC. It has topped over 2 000 000 downloads since that time. Aurora HDR success moved us to focus more on proprietary technologies, AI and so we started to invest more into research and development. 62
We also decided that we want to challenge ourselves even more and bring the world the first real alternative to Adobe. Not just a cheaper clone of Photoshop or Lightroom, but a more innovative solution that will make photographers’ lives easier. That’s how the idea of Luminar was born. After 6 months of Luminar being on the market we decided to take it even further and hired more teams in US, Germany and Asia to help us achieve what we want. Right now Luminar is live with version 2. It’s only 1.5 years old, and we are just getting started. Q: It must be tough to compete with some of the big names, yet you’ve been very successful, what’s your secret? The only photography software company that we are inspired with and that we compete with is Adobe. It is a real market leader, the most innovative company in the industry with great products. We have been quite successful among the early adopters, but we have a long way to go to really compete with Adobe. We are now focused on building the world’s best product packed with innovative features and a unique user experience. As I have
mentioned, right from the start we didn’t want to follow the path of many other photo software companies who just create to clone the key features of Photoshop or Lightroom, and offer that for less. We are really looking to create a powerful alternative tool to make great photos, and this is why people switch to Luminar. As a CEO, I am building a company that tries harder and harder every day. And this is literally so. Everyone - from a software engineer to a marketing manager is obsessed with
achieving the big goal. We want to build a great product, but also show that we take care about the community. We invest in relations and don’t rush, chasing short terms revenues. I like that Skylum has a human face and customer can always speak to me and other leadership. And I also love the fact that Luminar is purely built on the customer feedback. We spend most of the time on the road these days with the company CTO and talk to photographers in US, Japan, Germany, France and many other countries. We
ask questions and get to know their problems. Then we fix these problems with Luminar. Q: Luminar is your photo management software, tell us about it and when it will be out. We will launch the closed beta within a month or so. Skylum philosophy is that an image is much more than a collection of pixels. People collect memories and their stories through taking photos. That’s why we should approach these images with respect and care.
We want to build an innovative photo management platform that will allow people to quickly access their images, pick what they like and make them better. We want these images to be secured and safe. We also want to make sure people don’t waste time figuring out how the software works, or waiting for the image to get imported. As I said, we want to build something that others could not create, and that takes a lot of time. But we will definitely launch the photo management module to Luminar for Mac and PC by autumn this year. Q: I like the look of many of the offered filters like Accent AI and Cross Processing, will there be more filters in the future after release? Accent AI is a unique filter. It is the first product that came from our research lab, and it’s the one of a kind filter. It’s not something you can create in bulks. There will be more AI powered filters in Luminar for portraits and landscapes, but they will come later this year. There will also be more filters that
give photos a certain signature look that doesn’t exist in other software. We will also introduce more smart filters that will not require extra efforts but will effectively fix the photo. Layers too! One thing I’ve been a bit frustrated with is finding a great preset with Lightroom but not being able to simply tone it down a bit. Lightroom is a software that’s almost 10 years old. Luminar is a new software written from scratch. There are a lot of things in Lr that were impressive back in the days, but we feel that now it misses so many things that modern photographers would enjoy. Layers is an obvious thing, and there are many more. We speak to many photographers around the world, and hear their frustration about many things. I don’t say that Luminar fully addresses all their needs, but we are definitely getting there. It’s an evolving process and we are still very young. You’ll be impressed with what Luminar will become soon. Q: Switching direction a bit
— are many of your team photographers? Everyone is a photographer these days, shooting with a smartphone or a digital camera. About half of the team take photos on regular basis with mirrorless cameras or DSLRs. We also have a number of professional photographers on the team, including Scott Bourne, who is the worlds top bird photographer and Olympus visionary; also Evgeny Tchebotarev - founder of 500px.com, Richard Harrington - professional photographer, Photofocus publisher and probably the world’s best photography educators. There are more world-class photographers who join our team, and we will announce this soon. Q: Are you working with photographers on new ideas, new updates? We work ONLY with photographers to come up with new ideas and solutions. We are constantly searching for innovation. That’s why we asked Matthew Jordan Smith, Joel Grimes, Dixie Dixon, Trey Ratcliff, Jerry Ghionis to help us make Luminar a true game changer. I don’t think any other photography
software company in the world can boast having so much photography talent on board. Q: Finally where can readers go to find out more? Please visit skylum.com to learn more about Luminar. Check out our videos and try the software for free. If you have questions, donâ€™t hesitate to email me directly at alex@skylum. com. I love talking to people and getting a feedback. Also, youâ€™re welcome to join our Facebook Photography Group - we organize a lot of photo walks and workshops and invite people to join, and take photos together. 65
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