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Photography and Virtuous Cycles

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Uncle Frank, Sep 2, 2005.

  1. I delight in capturing special moments, whether it be the smile of an innocent child...

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    ... the drama of nature...

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    ... a golden landscape...

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    ... or the glory of a simple flower.

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    But, for me, the most awesome and rewarding challenge is in shooting a wedding... not just the formals, which can be redone, but the ephemeral magic moments.

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    It's not an assignment to be taken lightly, because the bride and groom (and most dauntingly, the mothers-in-law!) entrust you to create a gallery that will become a family tresure. I view this as Mission Critical photography, and didn't dare to take on the role of prime shooter until I had participated in half a dozen weddings as a casual participant or assistant.

    My first prime assignment was in April, and the groom is the son of my best friend, who passed away over 25 years ago when Cody was just an infant. The event was a joyous occasion, with a lovely setting, beautiful participants, and gorgeous light.

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    And it started a virtuous cycle for me and the participants.

    The bride, Nici, who acted as her own wedding planner, used the gallery as a reference to land her dream job as a professional Wedding Coordinator for a top end facility in the Phoenix area. The gallery also became my reference that helped me secure my second prime assignment, which I completed last month.

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    And now that gallery has landed me two more weddings... one in Arizona in November (yes, at Nici's facility), and another in San Diego in the Spring of '06.

    There's good karma at work here :rolleyes: .
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 3, 2005
  2. gho


    Feb 7, 2005
    Wow, congrats on your new wedding photography career!

    Hey, you're a Pro now :D 
  3. Frank, this is truly a showcase of your incredible talent as a photographer. Well done my friend.
  4. eng45ine


    May 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Great story, Frank. The one thing that I have learned from you since I became a member of the Cafe, is to be more concerned about doing something the right way then to be just satisfied just to be doing something. That is a recommendation that my Dad gave me years and years ago..."anything worth doing is worth doing right". The passion that you apply to your photography is evident in each of your captures and in the narration that you offer about the shoot itself. I know that your wedding shoots will truly bring joy to the couples and thier families for years to come. Good luck in your endeavors, Frank. :smile:
  5. Gregory, thanks, and congratulations on your cover!

    Gordon, I'm flattered, but I'll have to rev up my efforts if I hope to keep pace with your well deserved commercial success!

    Frank, I see the same passion in your work. I'm sure you'll have a great career in photography after your retirement from the fire department!

    Thank you all for your kind words and encouragement!
  6. Realy nice, Frank, and a great reminder of what is important, as well as a good lesson for all to learn, no matter what age or stage in life.

    Now that you have gottent this rolling so well, all you need to do is to get some Hummers to show up for some of those Candid shots you do. Think about what a trademark you could get from that :wink:

    Oh, yeah, from the few that I have done in the past, you should have "mothers-in-law" in BOLD :wink: , daunting they can be. Takes people skills the equal of photograhic skills to get the entire job done.

    Congrats, big guy....
  7. Ah, that turned a grumpy afternoon upside down. I didn't realize you were doing more weddings.

    Can't say I am at all surprised. Love your work.
  8. patrickh


    May 4, 2005
    Thousand Oaks
    Great series Uncle Frank - an impressive portfolio. Best wishes on your new metier, you are clearly heading for success and we all travel with you thanks to your gift of sharing. Thank you.
  9. Bill, Ed, and Patrick, thanks so much!

    It's great fun to share my passion for photography with folks like you!
  10. Very nice portfolio you assemble there, nice, sharp and colorful picture all well compose, I hope one day to be as good as you.
  11. Merci, Gilles. I'm sure you will be more quickly than you think.
  12. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    A wonderful selection of outstanding photos!

    Your techniques, knowledge, artistry and skill, all achieved by hard work and dilligence, are a testament to the man behind the camera.

    To me "Uncle Frank" is synonomous with execptional photography, and I have found that the person you are is as fine as your photos.

    I'm proud to have your aquaintance.

  13. Commodorefirst

    Commodorefirst Admin/Moderator Administrator

    May 1, 2005

    Superb shots and most importantly, superb thoughts.

    It has been your thoughts, and words during the past few years on several forums that have instructed, educated, and in general, made me strive for excellence in my photography. Photography during the past three years has rejuvinated my early youth interest in 35mm, and has given me a new artistic outlet in addition to my current music etc.

    As a Music/Fine Arts Educator I always have tried to teach my students not to be perfect, but instead to strive for excellence in ones life, pursuits, and daily activities. As humans we have to remember that we aren't going to be perfect, but we can set goals and ideals that strive to improve ourselves.

    As an individual on the forums you have been kind, generous with your time and as a whole a wonderful example of an individual willing to help and assist his fellow man/woman.

    I recall fondly the time i started lurking at the NT forum over at DPR which I did for nearly a year and a half before I joined in 2003. During a good part of the lurking you and other "educators" posted there and due to your (and theirs) thousands of posts on things and subjects I improved with my CP 5000.

    As I have developed and grown as a photog, I have tried to assist others through the years. This spring, after I finally started getting some good Eagle shots with the 200-400VR and I finally started to get some long lens technique, I found myself helping and educating others at the Eagle nest with their gear, technique, processing, etc. etc. (The only thing I couldn't do was steer some to the Nikon direction It was around 8-1 Canon vs Nikon (me) (The last lady I helped picked up a 20D and 100-400 IS, which is a great startup birding setup) and I continued to learn it isn't all about equipment (it helps) but mostly technique. Canon, Nikon, Oly, Fuji, all can work.

    Those past days over there at DPR, and currently here and some other forums continue to provide me with my continuing education.

    Thanks for being part of my collective experience.

    NOW.... before your head gets to swelled.....IF and When I get into the wedding photog stuff, I hope your offer will still stand in a few years!


    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 2, 2005
  14. Hey Frank - Luv 'm all, but that golden landscape - wow! Bet that baby would look sweet as a 24x36" print...
  15. Ken and Wade, I can't tell you how touched I am by your comments... but you're ruining my reputation. I've worked hard to establish myself as an avuncular curmudgeon, so cut it out.... and thanks :cool: .
  16. Commodorefirst

    Commodorefirst Admin/Moderator Administrator

    May 1, 2005
    Well, I guess I can just blame my post on Ken, he started it! and the lateness of the hour I posted. Looking at the post in the daylight hours, I think jeez what A sap I am. :biggrin:


    So on another note, who will get their next lens lust (you and your quest for the 85 1.4 or me with the 28 1.4) I noticed your post over on the for sale section when I placed mine, good luck. Guess you are looking to improve your wedding bag, while I try to improve the indoor theatre/concert/dance bag.


  17. Chris101


    Feb 2, 2005
    Nice work Frank! There's a very spiritual thing going on here. The offer at the end though is something else!! Email sent buddy!
  18. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    I re-read my post, to be sure and I never said you were not an avuncular curmudgeon! To further expound on this "title" here are the appropriate definitions:

    "From Dictionary.com:

    avuncular \uh-VUNG-kyuh-lur\, adjective:
    1. Of or pertaining to an uncle.
    2. Resembling an uncle, especially in kindness or indulgence."

    From concentric .net:

    "What is a Curmudgeon anyway?

    A curmudgeon's reputation for malevolence is undeserved. They're neither warped nor evil at heart. They don't hate mankind, just mankind's absurdities. They're just as sensitive and soft-hearted as the next guy, but they hide their vulnerability beneath a crust of misanthropy. They ease the pain by turning hurt into humor. . . . . . They attack maudlinism because it devalues genuine sentiment. . . . . . Nature, having failed to equip them with a servicable denial mechanism, has endowed them with astute perception and sly wit.
    Curmudgeons are mockers and debunkers whose bitterness is a symptom rather than a disease. They can't compromise their standards and can't manage the suspension of disbelief necessary for feigned cheerfulness. Their awareness is a curse.
    Perhaps curmudgeons have gotten a bad rap in the same way that the messenger is blamed for the message: They have the temerity to comment on the human condition without apology. They not only refuse to applaud mediocrity, they howl it down with morose glee. Their versions of the truth unsettle us, and we hold it against them, even though they soften it with humor.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 3, 2005
  19. No, Ken... it was a self description... or rather, what I aspire to.

    I must admit that as I get older, it's much easier to be curmudgeonly than it is to be avuncular. It must be related to brain shrinkage :cool: .
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 3, 2005
  20. I was amazed at first

    back when I was a young feller like you, Uncle Frank... at how many wedding jobs I got from referals. Over the years I guess 90% were that way. You'll do great at it because you've got the skill but more than that you like people. And that goes a looooong way in that business.
    As always, good luck with it!
    P.S. That's why its a good idea to pay a little extra attention to the unmarried bridesmaids. One day they're going to need a photographer.. :wink:
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