Home Forums Am I a Fauxtog? Here Goes Nothing… Critique (+ Intro)

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    For being in high school, you ARE miles ahead of your peers. You obviously have a deep respect for photography and for those who’ve taught you. Keep doing exactly what you are doing. Your sports photos really are good, and probably better than anything I could produce in that subject. It’s not something I’ve really done much of. Your technical aspects are also pretty good, but the others here have touched on what you can improve already. Just take it to the next level and I think someday you will be a really good photographer (well, you are already, but you know what I mean.) Do not go into business with your friends. They’ll only bring you down I think. There is nothing wrong with being a good friend and teaching them some things if they are willing to learn though.


    Thank you, Browneyedgirl. Your words are very thoughtful. I don’t plan on going into business with anyone except myself someday. I appreciate your thoughts, and I agree that sports are definitely my strongpoint and what I enjoy the most, perhaps also along with portraits. In the age of digital, I think it’s imperative to respect the art and the veterans of it, so thank you for seeing that.

    I appreciate the thoughtfulness of everybody here.


    Drive-by post again… DO NOT apprentice under those “professionals.” Their work belongs on the main page (or in the forums) here.

    Back to my wall display guides… yawwwwn. 😉


    True that, Rizzo. An interesting tidbit: Jenny was perhaps the best photographer in our area; I would have apprenticed under her in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, now that she is gone, a good majority of clients have moved to one of the other two I mentioned- talk about a downgrade. 🙁

    thanks for the drive-bys. 😛



    I just took a look at your flickr stream and you have a good eye for sports, I would have easily used several of your photos in my newspaper.
    You may want to approach your local paper and offer to shoot as a stringer. It would would give you a chance to rub shoulders with pro photogs and get feedback from editors. Most PJs are happy to give pointers to “kids”, I know I got plenty of advice from them when I was in high school, along with brutal critiques from my editor. (I started stringing when I was about 16)

    I’d like to see more of your sports stuff, so I’ve added you as a contact on flickr.  Feel free to ask questions, especially when it comes to sports/action, since that’s where my first photography love is. Just so you know I’m no poser, I’ve taken first and third in sports photography in the National Newspaper Association contest.


    Wow, thanks! That is a true compliment, if I’ve ever received one. Thanks so much for the Flickr add; I’ll be sure to post more sports for you at some point too.


    I think you are doing just fine, but keep in mind that editing things a little too much sometimes makes them a bit hard to look at.


    My hardest thing to look at is the crop job of the first one. I get you wanted to put your watermark in there, but his foot is half gone. As a visual artist that is distracting to me, and I get it you wanted to have room for your watermark which I hope is really just an advertising image.


    Keep up the great work!


    I wasnt precomposing for any kind of watermark- just poorly composing on the fly. You give me too much credit. 😛


    thanms for the kind thoughts and words of advice. 🙂


    Hey Andrew,

    I thought I’d throw my two bits in here. I think by large you’re heading in the right direction. Your images are overall very good, and several of your sports shots are magazine-quality photography.

    One thing I noticed in several of your shots is that you sometimes tend to cut people in half, right at the waist. The rule of thumb I’ve always heard that has helped me immensely is “don’t cut someone off at a joint” in other words, necks, elbows, wrists, waists, knees, ankles, are places I try to avoid chopping people apart at.

    Also, years ago when I was apprenticing as a camera operator in a TV studio, there’s a phrase that my mentor/producer would yell to me over the headphones that still helps me today as I tinker on still cameras. It was simply “watch your head room”. In other words, keep an eye on how much space is between a person’s head and the top of your frame. There are a few photos I noticed where I think you were trying to stick to the rule of thirds (which is important, no doubt!) but as a result of the way the shot was framed, there’s sort of an awkward amount of space above people’s heads. Not enough to write off as “negative space”, but too much not to notice. Some of these are the same shots where people got cut off at the waists, which I think can contribute to that. Don’t forget that all photography rules, even the rule of thirds, can be “bent” a bit. Knowing when and how far to bend them takes a lot of practice, but you’re young, you’ve got the time 😀

    I could nitpick a little more, but honestly, that’s all I’m doing. Overall, your photos are very good. With the very smallest bit more experience you’d probably be able to “go pro” and smoke 99% of the fauxtogs of the world. To me, it looks like photography is something you take seriously though, and I get the idea you want to be the best you can. That in itself puts you light years ahead of most people. It’s HARD to let other people pick on your work, but it’s how we all learn. Sooner or later I’ll post some of my less embarrassing photos here, and I hope I’ll receive positive, constructive criticism that doesn’t patronize me so I can get better at this and maybe someday get to where my photography is as good as my video work was. (Long story short: I was in video production for over a decade and a half. I left that to help kids in a non-profit, and so I took on photography as a hobby to keep my visual arts side alive.)

    Keep up the good work, and don’t stop learning!

    Oh, before I forget, regarding your friends: I won’t dig in too deep, since they aren’t here and didn’t ask for my constructive feedback, but in short, it’s best you teach them what they can, but keep your friendship just that – a friendship. I ran my own video production business for years, and not taking a partner was the best decision I made in that business. A financial guru I’ve heard a few times on the radio has a catch phrase that “The only ship that won’t sail is a partnership.” and especially in this case, it’s true. Bri has a lot of potential. If Alec could hold his camera straight he might have some hope someday, but with both of them, you would be putting yourself in a bad spot by partnering with either. Partners are equal, and their work is not equal to yours. Besides, business can ruin friendships. My advice: Spend a few more years really tightening down your photographic awesomeness, learn everything you can, figure out what kind of photography you want to do all the time, and then hang up your own shingle and go for it. As is, you could probably do it, but again, you seem like someone who actually wants to be the best they can, and that mentality will make you one of the best. Keep it up!


    Thank you so much, JimC. That is incredibly appreciated, and I will be sure to take your advice directly to heart. I’d love to see some of your work someday, or even some video productions you worked on, so be sure to point me to ’em when you post. 😀

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