Home Forums Am I a Fauxtog? Let's see if this ends in tears…….. Reply To: Let's see if this ends in tears……..


Click it,
My high standards have nothing to do with experience or lack there of, or about what equipment anyone uses, or doesn’t use.
People should be honest and forthright.
People should become photographers before they become professional photographers and offer and/or sell professional services.

Professionals should price for profit and offer finished work

While I admit when a tog comes here asking if they’re a faux (or for CC) when they’re already a pro, it immediately puts a bad taste in my mouth, and it may come across in my words.  but how is being honest, answering questions to my best ability, offering links to good information, and offering my truthful opinions being a dick?!  Should I not elaborate, and keep it short and simple “You have no business being in the business”.  How do I word “I don’t think you understand proper exposure.  You aren’t paying enough attention to light.  Full sun and full shade doesn’t work.  Your subjects look to have jaundice”, etc etc  in a nice way? Have I ever been inaccurate when posting?  If so please correct me.  Not only will I learn from it, but togs who are listening will as well.  MBC has corrected me in the past, and I’m grateful he did.  I’m still pondering the thought of high key and Rembrandt outdoors 😉

Should I have said to this poster? “Wow!  Love it that you mislead me to believe that you were a student of photography and amateur like me, and wanting to learn as much as possible and get input how you can improve your work, when you have in actuality been in business for over a year.  LOL you got me 🙂 It’s so cool that you are  a professional while learning, and making money.  Isn’t photography great that way?!”
Then why bother even being here?  Why bother even creating this site?  Why does it even exist?
How do I say “I think what you are doing is a pretty crappy thing to do, and there is a better and more honest way to go about this”  Softly?

I think it’s a heck of a lot meaner and less productive, to tell people “Hey!  you’re doing great, and if people are willing to buy your services, you are already good enough” and the like, when they are seriously lacking in skill, paying too much attention and working too hard on the business end of things, and doing others and themselves a disservice by not going through the learning process that always involves shooting for yourself first.  Giving people a false sense of validation/approval when what they are doing isn’t validated at all?  It’s setting them up for sure failure!  It’s encouraging them not to discover what their true potential is!
Look, I thought my instructor was a dick too.  There was no pleasing that man!  URGH!  but I now see what he was trying to teach me, and if I can help people get out of the faux trap of doom and become the best photographers they can, while risking being labeled a  “dick”… I’l do it.  Unless you have a better way.  If you do, please instruct me.  I’m being sincere.

OR are you saying that my lack of experience, my lack of pro status, or lack of some sort of equipment or my lack of photoshop software makes my opinions and observations worthless/invalid and I should just stay out of it?

“Malula You’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t.  However, if you don’t charge and a photographer is complaining about you not charging, more than likely they are a fauxtog and their opinion doesn’t matter.  Any true professional photographer will tell you to shoot your family and friends and practice, practice, practice.  You shooting for free will not harm their businesses.”
I think I need to elaborate on this great advice to add, that when shooting for yourself and practicing, there’s no need for marketing.  There’s no need for millions of different faces to learn the foundations you need to eventually portfolio build and experience build and get your ducks in a row to go pro.  No need to take on important events, or portraiture work when you feel uncomfortable doing it, and know that they would be better off hiring a pro with more skill or expertise than you.
Example:  I was taking on lighting for the first time, and my neighbor had been on me about doing a stylized shoot with her (she worked in fashion in Hollywood films briefly, modeled quite a bit and was very comfortable in front of the camera, and wanted to get creative, unlike my usual live model, my daughter, who is into self sabotaging photos and teaches me more about proper direction than lighting lol bless her).  Instead I told her “Actually, I just need to do a few head shots to work out this lighting problem I’m having and not completely understanding.  I’d love it if you’d help me with that instead.  She said that she could use a good head shot for work (she’s currently a dance instructor).  I went on to say that she may not get a good usable head shot from me, and I wouldn’t be able to pay her for her time, but if she got nothing usable out of the deal I would help her find a good photog in the area.  Turns out, I got her head shot 🙂 and it was really nice to have a model that knew how to pose so I could concentrate more on my real task at hand.  but even after the shoot and some success, I still didn’t understand what was going on with the lighting, so I asked her permission to post her image for critique and help.  My next sessions were with my daughter, and with stuffed animals, and with my vacuums and they continue to be my usual subjects.  Yes, my subject matter isn’t exciting at all, but I finally have a grasp on how it all works, and can move on to create different lighting patterns and moods while understanding how my lights effect everything.  I’m no longer stuck, and no one had to invest in my learning process but me.

There’s no FB likes or any sort of attention while doing this, but there is a lot less pressure, and my learning process is going much faster now that I say “No” and the quality of my shots instantly got better.(very very briefly I shot for others for free, and after only 4 “sessions” found that I wasn’t learning what I needed to from it)

Shooting for free does not mean being in business and offering your services for free.  That WILL make fauxs angry.  It’s easy to say “Don’t worry about them”  when you aren’t living your life with them.  I think this is where male togs lack understanding.  We have to see these ladies everyday, not just online, but real life.  Our children play with their children and go to school together, we shop at the same grocery stores, and have joined the same play groups, ect.  I don’t know for sure if this is your situation as well Malula, but if it is, I whole heartily understand.
Being in business and marketing yourself as free will also attract lot’s of people that don’t value good photography. It will harden you to the point you want to scream “FORGET THIS!  I’M DONE!”  but, shooting for yourself, and only seeking out models outside of your family and your very close friends when you are needing something in particular to learn the technique you are trying to master, will free you.  Ideally, assisting a pro would be the best option, but a lot of us don’t have the luxury or opportunity to do so.  By not having a business page/website/and not constantly posting your shots to FB, and announcing “hey, everybody!  Free shoots!” all over your wall, you’ll find that the demand and pressure dies down, fauxs won’t even notice you, and you can go about doing what is important to you.

Malula, I thank you for looking and for your compliment.  I haven’t been able to experiment with my lighting in months due to a long crazy move my family and I have just made.  But, soon things will get back to normal, and I can have at it again.  My portraiture is pretty basic and straight forward at this point in the game, but I can link to my headshot and all the help I received, that I was talking about earlier.  I keep the link on my desktop so I can refer back to it when I need to.  I’d let you in on more, but it’s seems pretty creepy to post my family shots, and shots of my kids here on YANAP.
BTW  Photo.net is a wonderful resource!  I look up info and read everyday and learn so much.  Book mark it! 🙂


I also feel I should explain in case this conversation continues.  I have a busy few days ahead, and will most likely be unable to reply for awhile.  I haven’t left the conversation, nor do I want to.  I’ll be back