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  • in reply to: Can Take Critique #7434
    My Heart

    And you know what?

    I give in.


    I am a Fauxtographer.

    in reply to: Can Take Critique #7433
    My Heart

    Thank you, Stef. 🙂

    in reply to: Can Take Critique #7430
    My Heart

    And I was actually complimenting you, not trying to get you to “prove” anything by displaying your work.  I just hoped to gain some insight into your visual creations, as it seems you and I have a similar view and appreciation for what you called, “eclectic” and what I call, “controlled chaos,” – the same idea, same principle, different words.  We both like things that are somewhat different, following the rules,  but still displaying a style.  Like the quote on Steele Magnolias, “Accessories are the only thing that seperates us from the animals.”  Or something – you get it.  We like to make our own stamp, our own “mind” on our projects and if it’s eclectic, then ok – we both like eclectic.  Maybe I like to get drunk, too – I’ll let you know in about 16 months.  🙂

    Again, I just wanted to see your pictures, Stef.  I think I would appreciate them, and I like how you think.  I hoped to gain some insight into your version of “eclectic” and your overall artistic eye.  That’s all.  I was basically giving you a compliment – without ever seeing your work.  Please, feel free to share, only for me to have as a learning tool.  No, I’m not a copy-cat.  But I love to look at other photography in hopes of understanding what the other photographer saw and how it was taken, etc… in order to put that thought process into my own way of photography.  That’s all.  If you want to, you can send it to an email, fb, whatever.  It’s no big deal, though.

    Thank you, Stef.  I appreciate your feedback.  I really do, and I do agree with some things, others I’d like more elaboration so I can correct, some I think you’re just dead wrong, and finally – I’d like the honor (not being sarcastic, being serious) of seeing your work.  I actually did a whole gallery just on “Time Flies When You’re Drinking Wine… or Having Fun.  Tomato, tomato.”  I love wine, but I don’t drink as much as I did in my 20s.  🙂

    in reply to: Can Take Critique #7429
    My Heart

    “I don’t think I can easily link the shots to show you what I’m talking about, since your site runs in flash. I’d have to take screenshots and post them, and that’s just a pain.”

    Um… you could just give a brief description.


    I’ll give you a pass on the insult of calling me a fauxtogpraher, since you’re drunk.  And if you don’t like me calling you out for being drunk, which I’m not trying to bully you or be mean, it’s a free country to freely ignore me for calling you an alcoholic.

    in reply to: Can Take Critique #7427
    My Heart

    Okay, I get it.  Thank you to all for the critique.  I’d like to take all of your site advice and create a cleaner, more streamlined, user-friendly site.  THEN, I’ll come back to show you all I did listen and I do care about your opinions – I truly do.  I thank you all for your time, even those that your comments made me cringe.  I agree, my flaws are:

    – Lighting

    – Basic composition and use of my cam

    – Bad website

    – I promise to take the music off! 🙂  What I meant by saying the song had meaning to me was just that I like the song. It’s not super important to my daily life, lol.  It goes, the song stays on my playlist on Spotify.

    – Def no flash site, I get it. I’ve been looking into others, and I actually used Smugmug when they were still in beta. I’ll have to go back and give them a 2nd try; maybe.

    Editing is sometimes bad / sometimes good, but my main contentions I wanted to know is: Do you see any improvements?  The pictures on the site were taken over a 7 year period.  I know some were obvious, such as the cup dated in 2009.  However, I thought that maybe you would all be able to sort of “date” them re: style of clothing, wedding gowns, hair styles, etc.  I am wrong.  😉  Just for the sake of argument, I should have just used a simple photo gallery to start my images from the beginning of my work to most recent work.  That’s what I really wanted to be critiqued.  Like I said, I’ll streamline it and bring it back.  Your comments – both good and bad – have just made me want to work harder.  The site isn’t even a site I share.  I have been photographing for profit for 7 years.  However, I have put it on the back burner and am doing it as a hobby / release for myself / weekend type thing for friends & family.  I would love to just rely on that for financial gain, but I need health insurance, lol.  And really, I’m at a point where I need to focus on a lot of other things, but again – it is my release.  (Ex: I’m starting a new job – a “real” job, I have a family, I am actually going through infertility and am about to start IVF, etc….)  I’m sure someone can relate to all that, to some degree.

    That being said, I have to defend a few things that I truly believe are ridiculous.  Sure, I may wield my camera like a sledgehammer. But, I truly believe I do have an “eye” for certain things.  Sometimes my best shots are not even ones I recognized while taking, but were spur of the moment shots that I see when I get home and look at the memory card(s).  I’m taking my learning photography back to 101.  I’m learning a lot at this time in my life; something I just didn’t do when I first started.  Actually, when I first started – I had a great paying job, I was starting my journey with infertility and was newly married with a young stepson.  Similar to where I am now.  But, I have seen enough, done enough to know that the best place to be is right here, right now – at square one.  Learning about my cam is my #1 priority with my photography right now.  (Not in my life, but in my photography)  And, then editing, using the tools I have, learning about overlays / presets / etc.  So, it’s kinda great that I have this time to learn and grow, unlike the knee-jerk reaction I had when I first bought a cam and the full Adobe suite.  Now I know I need to learn how to make them all fit together, not that they’re just going to fit themselves together – like I originally and stupidly thought.   I’m still a newbie.  Maybe I always will be, but maybe not.

    BUT – OctoberMoon – you have been the most helpful.  In both your critiques and in your subtle, yet convincing way of telling me to not give up.  And for that, I truly thank you. 🙂  Let’s get coffee sometime.

    – yes, I can see your point about the lighting and times of day.  I will work on that.

    @ Stef – not seeing what you see, but ok.  Maybe if you elaborated on the images you were screaming at, I may be able to understand and learn from it, but you didn’t so I can’t.  Thank you for some of your thoughts, but some of your rambling is ridiculous.  Sorry, but even I know that.  There is absolutely no “cold sore” on the pic on my home page.  The girl has a birthmark, freckles, and fair skin.  She is also the most beautiful creature I have ever had the pleasure of photographing.  I disagree w/ all comments about that image.  Yes, she’s my niece.  But I’m not totally biased – you can see she is beautiful.  That’s all about her I want to get into. I appreciate you saying you like the eclectic feel of the site – that’s how I feel, and that’s a representation of me.  I’d really like it if I could see some of your work, Stef – Throw your site out there, please.

    For now, I thank you all again for your time and comments.  I will be back, and better than ever b/c of you.  Thanks so much – you don’t know how much I appreciate you all.

    Lastly, again @ Stef – I AM NOT A FAUXTOGRAPHER.  I don’t accept that statement.  I am a real photographer, and I am good.

    Thanks, all – and again – I’ll prove Stef wrong and display a much better representation of my work and tools I’m learning and will still continue to learn;  I’ll be back.  🙂  Thank you, everyone!!!


    in reply to: Fauxtogs who should end up on the main page… #7120
    My Heart

    Cam – the photo on the main page didn’t really start out as a theme, or a “reason.”  It was a pic I took of my niece for her Birthday a couple of years ago.  However, the color in the background matched the wix site I picked – yeah, I know, not totally professional for using a template and free photog website, but I’m really just a newbie.

    Anyway, the photo of my niece can’t really be changed – it’s also on the last page, which is unintentional – the site just did that, but that’s ok.  I kinda like it.  And I like my photo, even though it’s blurry.  The colors seem to all coordinate, unintentionally.  Not being conceited, it’s just that I’m hardly ever on the “other” side of the camera.  That’s one of the only pics of me – and by that, I think there have been maybe 3 pics taken of me in the past 7 years, lol.

    Back to the main pic… why do you ask, Cam?  I thought it kind of gave the site both an “innocent” yet “edgy look, as well as a picture of something you couldn’t quite put your finger on.  Kinda like, you don’t really know how old she is – pretty, thoughtful and wise looking eyes, but the freckles look young, it appears she’s not wearing anything, so again – you have the contrast of the young / innocent / vulnerable person or is she the tempting wiser than her age seductress / stab you in the back but looks completely innocent kind of complexity.  Does that make sense?  And btw, yes – she’s wearing a sleeveless dress.  🙂  I don’t care how old my “baby” niece is – she’s still “MY baby”  <3

    in reply to: Fauxtogs who should end up on the main page… #7119
    My Heart

    BrownEyed – please see the other thread.  I apologized – and now, I’m apologizing and explaining to all, that I wasn’t “bashing” you or “hating on” or anything.  I don’t even know you.  I was simply frustrated b/c it appeared that I might actually be getting some useful information, but then it “appeared” that you were turning the convo back to you.  To which, I apologized in my other thread – about an hour or so ago.  I am sorry that I was frustrated and I aimed that frustration at you.  That wasn’t right, and I really didn’t say anything other than the basic statement I live by, which is – if you don’t like it, go somewhere that is better / more fun / where your opinion can be spoken.  That’s all.  Sort of, if you don’t like what’s on the TV, change it.  So, again – I apologize to BrownEyed for getting frustrated at her and, I thank BrownEyed for her critique.  I would love more advice, since it seems now that everyone is on the same page as far as any critiques of my photography and website go.  I am very thankful for your points and will change the things I can.  For the things I know I need to work on, but have no idea how to do it – please, any and all of you, please feel free to speak your mind.  Including, and especially, you – BrownEyed.  You made some good points. <3  Please read my response in the other thread; you might think a little differently about me – I’m not a basher or a hater.

    Thank you to all, and please continue to help by letting me know how I need to achieve my goals, and with what.  Thanks!! 🙂

    in reply to: Can Take Critique #7118
    My Heart

    Thank you, BrownEyed!! I truly appreciate you taking the time to offer your take on my site.  I’m sincerely sorry if I offended you in another post, but I did feel that once the forum was actually noticing me – it seemed to me – which is totally arbitrary – that you were intent on making your point, thus derailing the convo, thus frustrating me.  I didn’t mean for it to sound mean.  Just very frustrated on my end, and felt that if you were offended / angry – that you shouldn’t sit through others being rude – there’s way too many other nice things.  So, I definitely apologize and appreciate you taking the time to look at my site.  I agree w/ all; it just doesn’t work.  It’s flash – but I’ve had flash before and never had a problem.  Still, I agree that if I have to keep explaining how to use it, it’s not worth it.  Trash and start over.  Thanks about the song, btw.  I love the song, and the friend who wrote / sings it.  My lighting is always off.  My “material” is mainly a Nikon D90, with a Nikon D40 for backup.  I hardly ever use the D40 – although my hubby will second shoot for me if I need it, and he uses that – for like, balcony shots, etc.  For the most part, I use the kit lens (18-105mm).  I do have a Nikon 70-300mm.  And of course, I have some other little things – like a wide angle, fish eye, colored filters, etc… for the base D40 lens.  As for flash, I did use a Nikon SB 900, but I actually sold it before we moved to Chicago.  I tried to get rid of a lot of my equipment, thinking I was done with it.  The flash was the only thing I ended up selling, though.  I also have a “kit” of studio lights.  They’re the kind you get at a Wolf Camera or something, with 3 lights and stands, 2 umbrellas, for about $200.  The only good thing I’ve learned about them is to keep a big fan handy b/c they get hot, and you can just tell your clients that you’re using the fan as a prop – to blow their hair, kind of thing.  A lot of my equipment (or lack thereof) has to do with finances.  I was working full time as a Marketing Director, making about $55k – with hubby being the sole provider, so my income was just for me to play with.  I spent it all on the start up of my photography.  Then, the job turned out to be a bad thing  – so I quit, then tried to rely on photography for the “fun” money.  Now, we’ve moved – and even though hubby is the sole provider, I want my own money.  And, to be blunt – I want a baby.  I can’t have children, so I’m getting a job making enough to do IVF in about 3 months (insurance doesn’t cover it).  So, I’ll be working full time starting next week and with photography as my love.  Hence, the My <3.

    Yes, you’re right.  I think I’m just not ready for Prime Time, lol.  I’ve tried sooo dead-gum hard.  But I need to slow my pace, all things come in time.  What am I doing???  That’s the real question, and thanks for pointing it out.  I like my style, and it does change w/ the people I work with.  At this point, I think it’s fair to say that I need to learn some more about lighting and technique.  I’ve tried so hard to correct it with editing, but again – I should be able to take a pic well before I say I’m a photog and start editing. I think it’s also fair to say I could be really good at this, with some more work and experience.  That being said…..

    Questions for all:

    – What can I do about learning lighting?

    – Do I really have something, or are you guys being nice?  Is it really worth someone’s time (not mine, but a client) for me to focus on it – for their sake??

    – Money – spend on more equipment?  I’d like to start with a small studio.  I really think I have what it takes to do sessions and personal, one on one shoots.  Huge weddings, not so much.  I’d like to focus on engagement, bridal, maternity, families. And, of course, my newborn – when she gets here. 🙂

    – Anyone have any other advice, or am I just a novice that will never “get” it?


    Thanks to all – and thank you, BrownEyed, for taking the time and effort -especially after I was frustrated and took my rude attitude out on you.  That really does show your true character; thanks.  🙂


    Any more advice????  I can always use more, as well as info about learning how to fix my technique, lighting and all my issues?!  🙂

    in reply to: Fauxtogs who should end up on the main page… #7115
    My Heart

    Hey, um – just showed up to this forum; thought the comments would be under my “Can Take Critique” forum – I apologize.  I was sitting there, thinking no one was even noticing my site – and here you guys are commenting! Thank you!!

    Except for BrownEyed.  I’m sorry; just been here less than a couple of hours and even I’M sick of you ALREADY.  This forum actually got on a subject other than you, and you STILL found a way to bring it back to you! No one is attacking you, and if you are really convicted of your feelings – why does it matter so much to validate yourself instead of just shutting the computer off??

    Back to me.  I REALLY appreciate the comments / critiques / notes.  I’ll try my best to answer.  Haylott: I shoot with Nikon cams an lenses – a variety.  Yes, you can say this is a business site – although I’m too scared right now to actually seek business.  I just moved from Alabama to Chicago, so I quit my photog business for a little while.  Not knowing anyone here, I don’t have the whole “word of mouth” thing I had going on in AL.  (Moved b/c of hubby’s job, so I seriously don’t even know my neighbors.  That has been really hard, when I moved from my huge family [4 sisters] and everyone I’ve ever known [high school, college, etc.])   Side-note: BrowEyed, that wasn’t a dig at you b/c you didn’t go to college, I was just saying I went and I miss the contacts / friends I made there.

    CameraClicker and Haylott:   I really don’t know how to get the word out about my photography.  Been doing it since 2007.  I can tell that I’ve increased in both proficiency and efficiency.  I started out just teaching myself by using Photoshop and Elements.  I know this sounds crazy, but I just found out about how awesome it is to use Lightroom, as well as using actions / presets / overlays, etc. that are mass-produced, downloaded and used.  I’ve been going over some old gigs, and I’m loving how quick I can edit and how great they look now.  Yeah, I have a flash problem.  Never know when it’s too much or not enough; I just can’t get my flash right – ever.  I try to shoot manually more often, but have to rely on auto sometimes.

    To address some points: I don’t know what it is about turning a girl around for a photo.  I just do it; they like it.  I’m not saying I like it – just that for weddings, girls want it.  I agree that the train / back of dress usually has a lot of detail, which is why I try to flatter the pic as much as possible.  Again – don’t really know how to manipulate light.  That is definitely my weakness.

    Which girl w/ the red flowers looked plastic?  There are at least 2 girls w/ at least 2 bouquets of red flowers, and I’d like to edit it so it’s not plastic. I did try an HDR thing, but that could be the plastic look you’re seeing?? Not sure which photo you mean; I’m sorry.

    I agree – I love the photo of the blonde lying on the floor – but again, poor lighting, it’s too yellow. I know.  I just don’t know how to fix it.  I did take a great one of her looking out a door; it’s like a barn door – the top half opens, bottom half is closed.  I really do like that pic of her – maybe that one is ok??

    Yes, there is music.  I agree, it could be distracting.  I just added that today, so I’m open to any and all input re: music.  The galleries are definitely what I’d call “controlled chaos.”  Every pic in the galleries can be accessed – even if you only see the top or bottom, you can still click to open / enlarge it; click to close it.  Or, there is a very prominent “x” on the right hand top corner to close the pic and return to the collage gallery.  I see that having to explain it so often -there must be something wrong w/ it.  I’ll change the layout, making it more user friendly.

    Above all – I just truly thank you both for looking at it and providing feedback.  I’m very much still a novice, even though I’ve been doing this day after day for almost 6 years.  The only good thing that can be said, and I appreciate you both for saying it, is that I feel that I have an “eye” for it, and I definitely look at it as art, not as just another check to be deposited in the bank.  I do a lot of things for free, just to get the experience – which drives my husband crazy.  But, it’s actually very soothing for me to spend my time (all day, if needed) to just get that “ONE” shot – the one that everyone can’t quit looking at.  I try to edit as best as I can, but again – I should be taking pics that don’t require much editing.  I just don’t know what I’m doing, for the most part.  But, I still love it, with all My Heart.  🙂  Hehehe, cheesy, I know – that’s what I was going for. 🙂

    Seriously, I appreciate it.  I am very flattered that you guys took the time to look at and critique my site.  I’m going to get better.  I’m going to get cards printed up.  I’m going to make my site and layout more user friendly.  I’m going to read as much as I can about lighting.    I’m going to bother my neighbors.  I’m going to make friends with the old lady at Walgreen’s – b/c she’s pretty cool, and b/c she might know someone someday that needs a photog.  Thanks, guys.  You calling me out was well received.  And I can’t tell you how much you saying I have an eye for art, that I could do it if I get some technical things fixed, makes me feel.  You’re basically saying what I already feel and know – but I just needed someone to kinda point the way.  THANK YOU!!!  And please, any others, keep it coming!! 🙂

    in reply to: Can Take Critique #7112
    My Heart

    And, please tell me – what’s wrong with the auto-start music?  Please, I’m seriously trying to understand that one.  A great musician, my old friend, wrote that song, and it seriously spoke to me.   Please explain why that is bad on a website?  I’m not jumping in his defense – it doesn’t matter to me what anyone thinks of his music.  I like his music, so that’s not a point of contention with me. Please elaborate on why it’s bad for my site.  Thank you again! 🙂

    in reply to: Can Take Critique #7111
    My Heart

    Thank you, OctoberMoon – for at least attempting to look at the site.  If you don’t mind – please read the instructions on how to view my site on my “Services” section, which provides a detailed step-by-step tutorial on how to view the collage style galleries.  That is there for those who don’t understand how to instinctively work the little “x” on the top right-hand corner of each image, so you can close that picture and return to the gallery.  Then, again – you can click on another image, view it as it enlarges, then – again, close it by clicking on the “x” on the top right-hand corner of the image – once again returning you to the gallery.  I’m definitely not patronizing you; I understand the “style” of how to make the gallery “work” is a little different than others.  I appreciate the feedback, and would appreciate more.  In a nutshell, the site is a reflection of me and my style, which I think everything you do should be a truthful and accurate representation of oneself. I’m not the OCD type – I love how the galleries are thrown together, and every time you click on a new gallery, they are never the same.  Sort of like a labyrinth, or more accurately: The Labyrinth.  If you don’t know what movie I’m referencing, you would do a disservice to yourself if you don’t watch it – David Bowie is amazing in it.  Back to the subject:  The pictures aren’t cut off.  They are simply a huge collage gallery, and again – the pictures keep changing where they are / what size they are.  And you become a part of the ever-changing galleries, by clicking on an image to enlarge it, by closing it with the right hand corner visible “x”, by viewing another image, by viewing another gallery, etc.  It is quite eclectic; may come off as sloppy or half-assed to others, which is ok.  I want to know the harshest truth possible; otherwise – how can I correct and grow / learn and move forward?  So, OctoberMoon, and others – please, PLEASE take a look at my site (or another look, if you were confused at first how to “work” it).  I beg of you – I want advice.  Do you see anything that stands out?  Do you see any progression?  For ex: do you look at one and see a very novice shooter, then look at another image and think a much more advanced shooter took it – like, 2 different photogs on one site??  I want to know every single piece of advice possible.  You’re all very quick to judge and point out mistakes in others – and some hate that.  But I don’t – I want you all to come at me with full force, please.  PLEASE.  Thank you.  Seriously, THANK YOU!! 🙂

    in reply to: Fauxtogs who should end up on the main page… #7105
    My Heart

    Hey, guys?  Can we agree to disagree / i.e., have our own valuable opinion – for a little while?  If anyone isn’t busy, do you think it would be possible to critique my work?  I just posted my site, and I’m the “Can Take Critique” girl.  My work, on my site link:

    Critiques and / or criticism is welcome! Thanks!

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