Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A Collaborative Blog Post

I've been writing a lot lately about the time I spend online, meeting fascinating people. I have been touched by many. I recently met a fellow photographer named Evan Ashenhurst on twitter. Through our conversations, we discovered some similarities... a similar sense of humour, similar interests (photography, obviously), and similar things that drive us nuts! Evan's blog can be found at and he can be found on twitter here.

Evan and I recently collaborated on a blog post. It started with a conversation about the things people say to us at a craft show. It evolved into the following post: (Evan's answer's are in italic)

PLEASE NOTE: This is when we are talking to people that clearly have no idea what they are talking about when it s to photography. If you came up to me and said "I have a (insert camera type here) and i just got an awesome shot of (insert subject here) using my (insert techy lingo camera gear name here). Then we speak camera language to them

1. Did you take all of these photographs?

Nope, I downloaded them off the internet, aren't they GREAT??

Honestly i dont mind this one too much...normally I'm at a show and Melissa is there too and we both shoot. But when you're in my studio/gallery and i say "this wall is all my work and that wall is all Melissa's and you say "so you took that" i kinda feel like your either dumb or deaf

2. So you must have a really expensive camera huh?

Expensive is a relative term, how much did you buy that necklace for that you're wearing?

You idiot its not the camera its the photographer! The camera only helps a little bit. do you think you could just walk out and get `that` shot with my camera! there is more to it than that! there is practice there is time there is effort and there is waiting at the right place waiting for the right time to come along!

3. do you know Mr. X He's a photographer from the "area"?

by area they normaly mean 100 miles in any direction from where the show I'm at is...(i travel upto 4 hours for some shows meaning its like six hours from where i do business...and half the time i only get to the show because of GPS/Maps/Mapquest.

This is a *huge* area... that would be like being able to identify one kernel of corn in a bag of popcorn!

4. This *has* to be photoshopped, these colors are not natural.

Your Shirt had to be sewn with a sewing machine... thats just not a natural shape for fabric.

It was about my jellyfish photo. Completely unedited. Take that!

5. What kind of camera do you have?

I have three at home/with me.

A Kodak and an Olympus, what kind do you have?

6. What Camera Equipment do you have/use?

I have over thirty different pieces from tripods to cameras to lenses and other little pieces. (honestly if i say much more they get confused)

Cameras and tripods... then I see their 2-second attention waning.

7. This is a real photo (referring to their own photo), it hasn't been photoshopped.

So mine are fake because i have edited them slightly?/Ok explain to me how that photo is a fake.


8. Who does your printing?

Right im going to tell you who prints my photos so you can just look them up and see how much profit i make per piece right? Can i see your paystub please? Oh that's too personal? Well, so is my printer!

It's a trade secret. I had to find my own, if you'd like to be a photographer, do the work!

9. How has the show treated you? you make lots of cash yet?

So how's your job? How much do you make an hour? Oh, too much info? Take the hint!


10. How much money do you have sitting here between booth costs, inventory, travel costs and such?

How much did your nosejob cost? I realize that's a rude question, but once again, you're trying to figure out my profit margin. If you're doing the research to see if it's something you'd like to do, then go DO the research.

None of your business!/Enough/(only if there really nosey do they get what they will soon to believe the truth (" HAVE DONE THIS BEFORE" I guestimated the value if every piece of paper every photo/matte/frame right down to the last pen...(it was a dead show and after 20 minutes she wanted an answer...we came up with 2.2 million..and thats waaaaaay to much! but she wouldnt i just had fun with helped me do inventory anyway (she was counting sheets of paper and brochures and everything)

11. I have some photos that are just as good as these, maybe I should do a show.

Feel free to try it, but without the proper skill and research, you'll be throwing your money away!

Everyone can take a decent shot...but very few can take the perfect shot...I'm not saying mine are the perfect shot but unless you invested thousands of hours in those shots they probably won`t sell./

You cant just jump into it it takes careful planning to get all your ducks in a row...and i dont suggest putting all your eggs in one basket cuz if you're screwed!

12. How much did it cost you to be in this craft show?

None of your business!/Enough


13. How Much is your camer/gear worth?

None of your business!/Enough


14. Is this your final price?

Yes you cheap bastard! (My real response is something to the effect of "figure out everything you want and we will come to an agreement i dont mind making a deal If you are purchasing more then one piece" (better to make 20 bucks on three pieces then 30 on one right?))

Seriously?? This is not a flea market! I do not barter. My price is my price. But I will offer a deal if you purchase 3 or more prints.

15. How come you are always at the right place at the right time?

When you have 2 photographers standing infront of some tigers for 3 hours taking 750 pics each of the tigers you are bound to be there at the right time..eventually.(its always said about the below image thats blown up to 11X14 in a 16X20 matte/frame). To see what i ACTUALLY say go here!

One day of shooting yields thousands of shots, most are "off" for some reason. Most get trashed. But one or two usable shots in a day is good. I spend hours and days to make it look like I'm "always" in the right place at the right time!


TheHappySoul said...

HAHA! This is fantastic! Love the collaberation, and it sounds like he's a pretty smart guy to be learning from. Great post, Sis... and SO TRUE!


designsbykari said...

LOL! What a great post. Even more comical is I can imagine the looks and the attempts to stop snickering.

Keep up the good work both of you!

KanYoFuse said...

Great collaberative post Robyn. Fun. It's a great thing that people can't read our thought bubbles.

giggles'N' rainbows said...

I love this! It was so much fun to read...Sometimes it would be fun to tell them what you really think.
Someone wrote that an artist work is never appreciated until after they are gone.
That is so true! It applies not only to the work of the painter, but the photographer, the designer, and the creator of art in any form.
It is so ridiculous to assume if you put a camera in anyone’s that they can take photos that will sell.
Even spending hundreds of hours to get a shot doesn’t make them saleable. It’s the artist behind that camera that feels the right time, right mood, right light, right angle…
Art is not about numbers, like the number of cameras, lenses, tripods or hours (those help the artist), but you either have the talent or you don’t. Art is, and will always be about feeling….You have to use the right side of your brain to feel … You simply can’t think your way to a wonderful painting or photo.
Robyn, Your work shows that you have the talent, the feeling not just an expensive camera.

42PurpleElephants said...

A friend of mine who is a very talented photographer (hobby, I don't think she sells her photos, but she could if she wanted to) addressed the "Wow! What kind of camera do you have? It takes great pictures!" question/comment with a picture. It was an absolutely gorgeous picture, perfect lighting, perfect setting, perfect framing...everything. It was taken with a little point and shoot digital camera with minimal settings that could be modified. Now, she *also* has a higher end digital SLR, but her point was that while the camera can improve things a bit, the quality of a photograph is more about the eye behind the lens than about the quality of the camera.

This has definitely shown true with my husband and I. While I think I do get some really great pictures *sometimes*, any time he and I go out and take photos of the same subjects, he always comes back with a higher number of good/useable ones (and with fewer taken). We use the same type of camera too.

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