Home Forums Am I a Fauxtog? Did my bestie use a fauxtog?

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    I’m so sorry your photographer responded to you they way she did ūüôĀ

    A more proper response would have been (contacting you privately) “I’m so sorry to find out you are unhappy with your images. ¬†I just recently learned that when you are a photographer, you have to calibrate your monitor to insure truer colors. ¬†I’m so sorry I was unaware of ¬†this fundamental task, and embarrassed that I have made such a terrible mistake. ¬† I will promtly refund all of your money. ¬†Can I offer to re edit and reshoot at no cost to you?”

    This would have given you the chance to come back to the forum and let everyone know that your photographer is trying her best to rectify the situation.  A much happier solution/ending than getting treated the way you just did.

    What dreams,

    No, that is/was not are intentions at all. ¬†So you have a dream, and you’re finding out its a heck of a lot harder to achieve than you originally thought. ¬†I challenge you to take down the price lists and keep learning. ¬†Keep shooting without the goal of making money in mind, but by taking the steps to become ¬†the best photographer you can be.


    I am not giving up, there is no way. I never would because some strangers and ONE client out of a many (which apparently is NOT the client as I just found out) critique with such vulgarity. I will take what I feel isn’t childish into great consideration. I feel I have come a long way since this shoot and that the colors on this shoot were a mistake. I have offered to redo the photos as well as do another shoot entirely for free. I don’t wish to be nasty, but I’m sure you remember the first time a more experienced photographer or client ripped you to shreds…it just plain hurts because we are human. We are striving, hard-working mothers who are trying to follow our dreams no matter how difficult. It is hard to make it in any field of art, but it is the only thing I am good at. I have a long way to go with photography, but I have gotten to a level of professionalism in other art forms and fully believe I can do this too. No one on this ridiculous website will ever get me to quit. This website was made out of an attempt to help out others and has been turned into something nasty and hurtful to many. I encourage many of you to critique without being so hurtful. It can be done, and should. Lift up your fellow photographer, we all started somewhere and I guarantee no one here has been perfect at this since day one.


    Well I was trying to be nice but I suppose there is too much anger to diffuse this situation…oh well.

    You still need to get¬†a monitor calibrator ūüėČ

    I’m done!


    Well, I’ve come to this topic a little late, apparently.

    I’d just like to say one thing- One of the most valuable lessons you get out of going to school for photography (or any type of art, really) is how to take criticism without getting upset. You spend hours in the darkroom, perfecting your prints, go to class still smelling like fix, and the instructor rips you to shreds. You learn to listen to the criticism, learn from it, and not lash out at them (well, with the exception of the one instructor who gave the women a better grade when they argued with him. Creep.). ¬†Lashing out accomplishes nothing but momentary personal satisfaction. You’ll still be angry tomorrow, and you won’t have learned anything. The posters on this forum may be a little harsh, but they are usually right. Listen to their advice, and learn from it. You’ll be better photographer for it.


    I remember having my final project at high school absolutely ripped to shreds by the judges. I had worked for countless hours in the darkroom and spent crazy amounts of money on film and paper, and finished up with what I thought was a really good project. I got 42%. I was utterly, utterly devastated! So much so that I stopped doing photography altogether for a good ten years.

    Looking back, being older and somewhat wiser, I can totally understand why I bombed – my subject matter was far too abstract and I had forgotten the rule of “keeping it simple”.¬†¬†This was a¬†hard lesson to learn at 18!¬†¬† Fortunately I got over it, and here I am back doing what I love. Does everyone like my work? Of course not!¬† But I haven’t had a client complain about me yet, and if they did I certainly hope I could rectify the situation without having an epic tantrum ūüėČ



    what.dreams, I’m sorry honey but I would not pay you to photograph my family, and whatever clients you have are either going to take the $50-70 at a loss when they finally see the final product, or they are going to come to forums like this and ask photographers if she hired a fauxtog.¬†¬† You have a lot to work on and I’m sorry that no one here has offered you much constructive criticism besides¬† “calibrate your monitor” and “suck it up and learn to take harsh criticism”.

    Study composition, lighting, stop over-editing your photos.¬† Flatter your subject, ESPECIALLY the mother!¬†¬† SKIN TONES are so important to me…¬† I don’t want my kids looking jaundiced and I don’t want my newborn faced down in a blanket.¬† Get a grey card.¬†¬† Shoot in RAW and learn how to edit Raw files properly… less is more!!¬† Think about that when you’re editing.¬† Use B&W when the image really calls for it and actually you need to learn how to get better tones in B&W too.¬† These are all the things that you need to work on along with many many other things.¬† And if a client was not pleased with your work, give her the money back.



    I’m new to this forum – not to photography, but I lurk often and this thread struck a chord with me.

    To the OP – I’m sorry you had a not so great experience. ¬†It’s not fair to you, and please don’t feel embarrassed! ¬†For anybody looking to get photos of their family, it’s like jumping into shark infested waters. ¬†If you don’t know what you are doing, it’s easy to get blinded by a great price and eaten up by one of the gazillion ‘artists’ trying to make it in this industry, using unsuspecting families for practice.

    To what.dreams here is the thing. ¬†Nobody here, imo, is ripping apart your work just to bully you and squash your dreams for ‘fun’. ¬†The fact of the matter is, we are looking at somebody (you) who obviously *wants* to do this, but failed to learn the basics before jumping in. ¬†It’s a common, honest mistake. ¬†Nobody here says you CAN’T do this, they are just saying ‘here we go again, another person using the same bag of tricks as every other new photographer, not seeing the bigger picture‘ (excuse the pun. . .)

    I always compare it, personally, to a contractor showing up at your home, offering to do the job for a cut rate, and then not even knowing how to start the consumer level machine he’s using to do the work. ¬†That would be¬†unacceptable, and yet, for some reason in photography people seem to think that it’s ok to jump in and start charging money, despite a lack of experience or even a basic understanding of how lenses and light work. ¬†Don’t even get me started on doing this for somebodies wedding day!

    It’s not the camera that makes good photos, it’s the photographer – if it were the camera, there would be NO need for people to hire others. ¬†It’s our job as professional photographers to draw that line in a MUCH higher place. ¬†There should be a HUGE difference between consumer photography and professional photography – but people who just jump into the business because it’s a ‘dream’ are really lowering the bar.

    So instead of getting defensive and upset, realize that:

    a: Professional photography is a competitive industry.   You are not special until you make something special of yourself.

    b: By shooting in auto with your pop up flash and over editing your images, you are doing yourself a disservice – this WILL be your demise as a business, and it’s unfair to clients who pay you money to be a ‘professional’. ¬†When you shoot on auto, with a pop up flash, your level of expertise is no better than that of a consumer toting around the same camera. ¬†Why is that worth money? ¬†It’s not. ¬†It’s a scam to charge people, who don’t otherwise know better, for work that is nothing more than they can do themselves.

    c. ¬†If you want your ‘dream’ to be a reality, you need to listen to what others and myself are saying here. ¬†It may sound harsh, but it’s the truth. ¬†If you really dig deep, you’ll see that myself and others are trying to help YOU, and elevate the industry which is FULL of new photographers trying to make it.
    Now that you’ve been told where you are doing wrong, do the RIGHT thing. ¬†Have some humility and say ‘ok. . .there is SO much more too this than I thought. ‘ ¬†Calibrate your monitor. ¬†Find your style. ¬†Shoot family for FREE to practice. ¬†Do NOT get yourself on groupon or living social. ¬†Take webinars. ¬†Find a local pro willing to work with you, and PAY to learn. ¬†INVEST in your business. ¬†Get a membership to a professional organization. ¬†Don’t use consumer level websites, blogs, and proofing galleries (photobucket? ¬†No. ¬†Invest. ¬†Prove that you are passionate about your business and your work.) ¬†Invest in liability insurance. ¬† Understand what the difference is between your pop up flash/kit lens and a speedlight/prime is, and how they can positively affect your work ONCE you understand how to use them.

    It’s a long, long road. . .I wish you luck. ¬†It’s up to YOU to follow your dreams. ¬†We are just encouraging you to take the right path, not the path towards failure. . .


    It is true… when I first started out with photography (mind you, not charging, or when I did charge, it was for friends who knew my skill level beforehand and were willing to help me out), I had NO IDEA how expensive, how much work, and how much thought there really is for this business and how competitive it really is. I have not yet learned everything I need to (technically, you can never stop learning with photography as the industry is constantly changing). It’s expensive. Imagine dropping your entire tax return on a camera. Or having your dad buy your lens and paying him back over the course of the next six months. And then there’s all those annoying surprise expenses, like calibrating your screen, buying a whole new hard drive for your computer when it fails, buying more RAM for your computer when Photoshop keeps crashing, all the gas money, buying more/faster memory cards, paying for website or web storage, buying additional external hard drives so that your work is safe, etc etc etc. It’s brutal. But I would never give up and say “pshhh this is too expensive, I can’t do this anymore.”


    @lemonblue — The baby’s headband appears to have been white lace.¬† Even relatively inexpensive editing programs like Photoshop Elements can adjust colour balance, sometimes called white balance, if there is a suitable neutral colour available as a reference.¬† White, black and grey items make good references.¬† If you have digital images, you have something that can be adjusted, at least a little and probably enough in this case.¬†¬† That won’t fix a bad pose but it will improve the appearance.¬† You could learn to do it yourself or find someone who understands how to retouch images.¬† A retoucher can tone down or replace a bad background, too.

    @what.dreams — I agree with Nightrose.¬† If you aspire to be more than a beginner, you need calibrated equipment.¬† The least expensive is to have and use a grey card.¬† There are several ways to use it depending on your work flow and what you are trying to accomplish.¬† You can use it to set a custom white balance and set the exposure in camera, or you can shoot it in the scene to use as a reference to adjust your editing later.¬† If you are going to adjust later, shoot to raw files instead of JPEG.¬† The camera throws away most of the sensor data if it makes a JPEG and you may not have enough data left to do a good white balance adjustment.¬† If you are saving to JPEG, keep an eye on the light and adjust each time the light changes.¬† For something like four times the cost, you can get an Expodisc which will let you set the camera but it will not serve as a reference in an image.¬† Something like a Spyder¬† or Colormunki is a step up, but not a replacement for having a good colour reference.¬† At the top of the scale are monitors that calibrate themselves.¬† Notebooks have terrible monitors and the trend is to put the worst quality hardware in, then cover it with a coating that’s so shiny you can do your make up, or shave, with it.¬† The better monitors tend to have a mat finish when they are turned off.¬† Room light affects the appearance of your display and also of prints, so you have to be careful of ambient light when editing.¬† If you do your own printing, then there is a piece of the Spyder system for profiling your printer, the Colormunki has printer profiling built in.¬† You have to create a profile for each paper type you use.¬† This little diatribe barely scratches the surface of any of these topics but hopefully provides hints about some of the research you have to do.


    I am not giving up, there is no way. I never would because some strangers and ONE client out of a many (which apparently is NOT the client as I just found out) critique with such vulgarity.

    I haven;t seen people being overly aggresive on this thread.

    I feel I have come a long way since this shoot …

    While we always learn and improve, there is a minimum standard you should be able to meet before you even consider charging for your work. Learning the basics of photography with paying clients is just a bad practice.

    …and that the colors on this shoot were a mistake.

    But it’s a mistake that shouldn’t have hapenned, you should have your monitor properly callibrated. You may want to invest in a calibration tool.

    I have offered to redo the photos as well as do another shoot entirely for free.

    That’s a good gesture.

    I don’t wish to be nasty, but I’m sure you remember the first time a more experienced photographer or client ripped you to shreds…it just plain hurts because we are human.

    Nope … it didn;t hurt. actually it did a little but I understood that I NEEDED to hear that critique to improve. You need thick skin to be a photographer but you also need a good awarness of your own strenghts and weaknesses and an ability to take criticism and more importantly¬† how to LEARN FROM IT.

    I have a long way to go with photography …

    And this is why oyu should not be charging for your services … it would be like me opening a garage and learning how to be a mechanic while repairing clients cars.

    I encourage many of you to critique without being so hurtful. It can be done, and should. Lift up your fellow photographer, we all started somewhere and I guarantee no one here has been perfect at this since day one.

    If you were an amateur photographer the critique would be very different but you are purporting to be a profesional photographer and so the standards of service are much higher as are the expectations. I find it sad that you don’t see this.


    I thought the shots had alot of potential. Just need to keep in mind that women to a bit better/thinner if you’re on a small step ladder so you’re slightly above them. And just keep an eye on the light.

    There are plenty of people out there who should outright shut down and spend a year or two pushing and learning hard on the side. I would like to see this photographer talk to some people, join some Facebook groups, and realize her full potential. There is something there, it just needs to grow. ūüôā

    I’m doing the same.

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