The Art of Photography With Stanley Aryanto
A podcast where you can learn, be inspired and fall in love with photography all over again. My goal for this podcast is to help you to find hope, purpose and happiness through photography. Whether it’s to 1. Learn the journey, passion and stories behind other photographers. 2. Get inspired and motivated knowing that we all struggle at one point or another. 3. Learn and progress your skill further through these world-class photographers’ experiences and mistakes. As you see these extraordinary photographers on social media, sometimes it’s easy to think that they’re an overnight success. For that reason, we often expect expensive gear and YouTube Videos will get you there in a week or two, whereas in fact most of these photographers took years to get to where they are right now. Many of us didn’t realise is the hard work and sacrifices these photographers put into building their craft. So if you been feeling down because you feel your progress is not fast enough, or you have lost your creative mojo, perhaps some of these stories can be an inspiration to bring back your passion. I’m also wanting to be able to provide a platform for photographers to be able to share their stories past the 160 characters on social media. Photography is more about the journey, it’s a part of our life. If you’re like us our main purpose for photography is to be happy. Whether it is through: 1. The Wicked Hunts chase and capture unique moments that we see in our life. 2. The memories we get to capture and leave as a legacy for years to come. 3. The journey and challenges to get the photo that we can be proud of and get appreciated by others through social media, awards, publication or other monetary exchange. Social media following and true fans should follow as a result but the main purpose of photography is not to get those likes and followers on social media. https://www.instagram.com/thewickedhunt
Thursday Jan 26, 2023
Thursday Jan 26, 2023
Hey Wicked Hunters, I'm so excited to share this week's podcast with someone who's a master in storytelling. Subodh is a photographer who left his job to pursue his passion for photography. In this podcast, he shares how he came across many challenges to staying afloat during the pandemic. He thought he had to let go of working on his passion for photography. But during the toughest time, Subodh finds the courage to push on and pivot to stay true to his purpose. Subodh is a master of storytelling both through words and photography. A true inspiration. You can find more of Subodh work on:
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to see connect with Stanley Aryanto, you can go to the following:
Don't forget to let us know your favourite part of the Podcast in the comment below and subscribe
0:00 Need, something else shows up? You know, that's how light works, you know, if you're true to what you do, and especially after COVID, I realised, you know, I said, the COVID story is a long story. And I literally thought that's the end of my whole journey, you know, the photography, end of it, let's go back to work, because I'm done. But that's when something happens. You know, a number of things have happened in COVID Unexpected jobs, some unexpected awards, I don't even participate in photography competitions. But during that time, there was no option I had to participate so that I can earn some money out of it and sustain myself till the COVID goes away. So I won awards, I got unexpected jobs from really big, big corporate companies, which kept me afloat, and then came NFT. And it completely changed the game. So whenever you feel that's it, that's the end of it. Just know that it's just a passing phase, and it will be okay. So yeah, follow your passion, everything's gonna be okay.
1:03 Here we go. Hunters, welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast, where we share artists journey, and how they find hope, purpose and happiness, true photography. And today, we have somebody who's very, you know, very iconic in the NFT world, and he is someone who have such an incredible work, both in all kinds of genre, and I am so honoured to have him here, because, you know, he runs a lot of Twitter spaces. And for those of you who are not in Twitter, it's basically a place for us to voice hang out around each other. And he got one of the craziest story. So this is one of the reasons why I want him here to share some of the story in, you know, not only to intrigue you, but also in hope that you can draw inspiration from where he had gone through. So let's welcome to both Shetty both how're you doing Welcome to the Art of Photography
2:03 podcast. I certainly. And hi to everyone listening. So nice to be here. It's always interesting to get a chance to share your story because that's what we do. You know, we are storytellers, and they can never be enough that we can speak about our journey as well as our art. So it's good to be here.
2:23 Ya know, like, absolutely. And I think you're really good with storytelling is something that, you know, every time I hear you talk, I always try to learn and pick up the way you tell a story. It's just so, so intriguing, and really keep you on the edge. So I really enjoy that. So hey, no doubt
2:45 that he said that because I was keep wondering if I make people bored in my spaces with my stories, you know, because sometimes I go all over the place because I am a guy who's very curious. And I'm not a guy who just sticks to photography. I go everywhere, you know, I am into cosmic stuff, you know, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Carl Sagan and all that. I'm towards the other side. I watch a lot of podcasts, including all this Joe Rogan stuff. So yeah, I go everywhere. So I bring everything to the table. Wherever I can connect the dots. I'm like, oh, yeah, that makes sense. This makes sense. So sometimes I wonder if my storytelling is all random. But I'm glad that makes sense.
3:22 Well, it's, it's interesting, right? Because a lot of people have different kind of take to it. But I'm, I'm very similar to you. I love hearing like, I get curious very easily. And I love to explore. So when you should, you know, tell a different thing about a totally different thing about the initial story that we were talking about, I actually get really intrigued about it. So I don't know if it's just me, but I'm sure you know, a lot of people are on your space. I'm sure they are really enjoy it. But um, you know, you you made a lot of success in the NFT world. And I can say that you're one of the person who helped shape the NFT world right. Now, before we kind of get into that. And, you know, like your amazing photography, not only in wildlife and other genre, just tell us a little bit about who is both, you know, and how did you get started with photography?
4:20 Third, no, I'm, I come from a corner in India, which is South India, there's a small little town called Manipal. So that's where it comes from. Manipal is known for its educational universities and everything. It's spread across the world, including the place I'm right now in Dubai. So even in Dubai, we got a Manipal University, which comes from my back door. So yeah, it's very famous place for education. That's where I come from. And as far as you know, my photography goes, I came to Dubai in 2009 in search of a job at that point, I had no photography in my life. So I came to look for a job because just to go uh you know, find something which is worthwhile came to the why and I had a pharmaceutical degree. So I got into this pharma field and I used to be the pharma business and yeah, eventually device is a beautiful country city with a lot of wonderful cityscapes and Burj Khalifa and whatnot, it's very well organised and very much ready for photographers to explore. So in between all that, you know, there was Facebook, which is quite new at that time, and in Facebook, I would see that photographers from Dubai are posting pictures of Dubai in a very beautiful way. And yeah, we all know, you know, photography versus our eye, there's a difference. Because in photography, there's editing this blue hour, this golden hour, which is not that vibrant in our normal life, you know, we just see it in real way. So that photos really got me I'm like, Wow, man, these people are creating some standards. And I think I shouldn't be creating the same because they're all next to me, you know, this all wonderful structures. And that's how I began photography, I got a camera, and it was just a Nikon three, one double zero, which is the most basic camera can buy. Because it's not so sure, because there have been phases in my life, where I've got a guitar, for instance, before photography, I got a guitar, I'm like, Okay, I'm gonna learn music and I failed miserably. And I realised, I should be more careful because that guitar was very expensive one, and then it's of no use, because I can't play the guitar. So I'm like, I'm not gonna do the same mistake with my photography. So I got a very, very cheap camera with a kit lens and explored the streets of Dubai, shooting all the cityscapes and everything. And then I realised, okay, there's something in this photography, which clicks for me, you know, I have some kind of an eye for it. Because I would always, even in my real life, you know, whatever I do, even right now, as I speak to you, there is keyboard in front of me, there is mouse in front of me, there's the airport in front of me, even when they're on the table, I like to keep it organised, I don't want it to be scattered all over the place, that compositional thing is always in me, keeping things in order. So that's exactly what I did with photography, I was trying to create a order in those chaos. And I realised there is something called composition, which comes to me naturally, and I took it took advantage of it. And we may hit Facebook today. But Facebook is where I got all the encouragement. During my beginning days, there used to be a lot of photography groups, and I would take my, you know, beginner style images and post on the group. And they would give me feedbacks. And I learned a lot through that process. And I realised that, you know, it's a bunch of people who are creating all these things for nothing but happiness, you know, just for the sake of feeling good. And I realised this is a nice place to be. And that's how it all began. Eventually, he wants you in every picture I took during those days in the beginning, this would be 301, double zero, then I got a wide angle lens, I would pop up a ND filter on it, and 1000 which is like crazy, high amount of nd I wanted everything to be a five minute exposure, nothing less would do. So that was my initial phase. And then I eventually started getting bored of it. I'm like, Is that the end of my photography? I'm not connecting to it anymore. So then one of my friends told me into street photography, I said, No, I'm not interested. I don't want to do streets. Because Dubai has two sides. One is the Burj Khalifa and the buildings. Other side is the old Dubai with real people doing real things on the streets. People mean, he said, Come over, just try streets once, maybe you will like it. And I tried it. And that was the life changing moment, I would say in photography, because I completely quit the cityscapes and got into street photography, meeting people talking to them, having some tea with them taking their portraits, you know, everything is a chaos and in between that you're finding some gems that really clicked for me. And that's how my photography began. And then eventually you start meeting the right people connecting with a small bunch of you create your own small little group and then you start going out more and more, it becomes something that you look forward to, you know, you pretend to work for five days during the week, just looking forward to that two days of weekend when you can go out and shoot again. That gives the boost which is incredible, I'm sure in every photographer understand. Yeah, no,
9:07 I totally it's like a getaway for us. Right? It's a way to be free and be ourselves and be able to express ourselves. Now that's that's really interesting. I don't think I've heard that side of you know, of the long exposure part so you're really intrigued with the really extra long exposure creating that really smooth scene and then you turn into street photography and that kind of sparked your your idea. I mean, your your love for photography. Now. What are you know, like, I guess when you say you tried guitar before, and I'm sure as someone who loves to explore everything, right? I'm sure there's a lot of things that you like to try in the past. So what make you stay in photography, like what what is different compared to guitar and other thing that you have? pursued and try and, you know, want to be good at?
10:04 Yeah, I mean, one, there are a couple of things, you know, if I have to again, go back to those days, when I got into streets, what made me connect to the streets is the stories that comes along, you know, because you don't just meet a person, you meet a building you I mean, not made, you see a build, take a picture that's about it, there's no conversation, it looks great, it gets a lot of whatever, Marie shares and everything, but still, you're not communicating anything really interesting there. But in case of people, every time I point a camera, you know, even before you point a camera to a person, there will be a small conversation, can I take a picture of you, this and that, and then there'll be some jokes, and people usually get nervous. And all those little things which you navigate as you get to the point where you take a picture, that's very, very interesting for me, because I get to learn a lot. And I come from India, and in Dubai, it's a mix of India and Pakistan, and all kinds of nationalities, Egyptians and whatnot. You know, everyone, there are 170 nationalities in UAE. So you have a chance to communicate with so many people, and sometimes you you you can make a picture, without even knowing the language, you know, if it's India or Pakistan, I can talk in my language, Hindi, and they will get to know what I'm trying to say. But there are certain times when you meet a Chinese, they don't talk a word of English, how do you communicate, I still want this picture. That navigation, you know, makes it a lot of fun, you know, do you just realise that humans are humans, you know, it's, it's so much fun. No, you explore the psychology and how it all works. And at the end of it, you know, you bring a smile on their face, you have a smile on your face by the end of it. And even eventually, as that thing progressed, and I realised that I love people, I love to shoot people, but they're still in my mind, maybe just another face, you know, I liked long exposure of city that accepted to STS, maybe there's something else I need to do, maybe I still not found that real side of my photography. And that's how I realised that I should travel and travel to the Himalayas, my very first trip was to the Himalayas, and in India, and when I went to the Himalayas, it's my first time seeing all the snow peaks and everything. I took all my wide angles, and ND filters and everything, because I thought maybe this is the real face of my photography, where I'll put a nd take a picture of this Himalayan peaks, and I'll be so connected. But then I realised you went to Himalaya, I was interacting with people more, I was enjoying meeting those locals more than the mountains. I enjoy seeing the mountains, I love that lack of oxygen, it makes me feel more alive, weirdly. But what really connected to me was the locals, you know, the people on the land. So again, I realised people are my strength, you know, I need to do this more and more and more, and it gives me wings, you know, because throughout my life, I don't know how it works in your country. But in India, we are always busy with study, study, study till one point and you get your degree and then you go out and start working. There's no real exploration happening there, you know, nowadays is changing. But before during our times, I feel I'm not that old to say during our times, that is the 1990s There are still no such concept as to ask you get your education, you're also travelling and exploring none of those things. You just study, study, study, and you get a degree, you're into job, and then you just live that normal life. But here, it gives me a chance to explore the world for the first time and all because of just one little thing in my hand, which is camera, which gave me all the excuse. And I began travelling like a lot, it is literally a viral infection. Now once I took the flight and went to Himalayas, I'm like where next? You know, and I still had a job, full time job. And I would still make sure that I find excuses, take some leaves of the job and get out and make this travels happen. I went to many, many places in India, Sri Lanka, and Nepal, one after the other, I started taking off places from my from my bucket list. So yeah, this connects connecting with people and excuse to travel to a new place, meet new people, and understand the culture, you know, it completely changes your perspective towards the world. I think that's what keeps me going. It kept me going to the extent where in 2017, you know, 2010 is when I took photography 2017, seven years of managing photography, and my corporate job came to a standstill in English like either choose this or choose that you can't do both. Now we know it because it won't justify either often. So that's when I gave up on my full time job. And I in 2017, I became a full time photographer, I put up my own company in Dubai, which is quite expensive to do and quite a risk to take. And since then, I've been doing photography workshops, which again is an important factor which keeps my photography going because I know that whatever I create, it's one thing to just put it on social media this and that getting the likes and followers and whatever. But also at the same time you're creating a bigger impact which is inspiring others to take up the same passion because a lot of people have cameras. It's not a big deal. Everyone has a camera now, but making them step out of their comfort zone, making them travel with me so that I can show them what I see how I feel, why it's so important to capture these people that is a catalyst, which keeps me going. And that's why I do photography workshops full time, that's my full time job now. So as such kind of motivation, there's nothing that can stop it. Yeah, wow, that's, that's
15:20 inspiring. And, you know, like, I totally can resonate with that, you know, having to being told that the only way to succeed in life is to go to school, get a good grade, and then you go to a good university and get good grades, get good job, get married, buy a house, and you die, right. And, honestly, like, I didn't know any other way of life until like, when I was 30. And that's when I left my career as a mechanical engineer. And, you know, I didn't even know what I was doing. But I, I know that it's not what I wanted to do. And I know that I love photography. So I totally can resonate with what you meant, you know, especially. And like, when you look at the Western culture, it's a little bit different, right. And they're encouraged to explore and take a gap year before before the, the before they full time work and stuff like that. So they can actually figure out what they want to do in life, whether they like that lifestyle, or whether they like the nine to five, which nothing too, nothing wrong with it at all. But I think the worst thing is when you do something that is not you, right, and just have that, that conflict within yourself, but really love what you shared there. And one thing that I really admire with you is the storytelling, right? I said this earlier, now you normally you do storytelling through words, but also through your photography. Now, I want to get into a little bit more of that. So when you go out there, right, whether it's on the street, whether it's the building, whether it's the wildlife, or the landscape and travels. How do you translate what you see? And how do you translate that into a frame that tell us story?
17:09 Yeah, that's a very interesting question. Because storytelling is always debated. In photography, even now, in Twitter spaces. There's always every second day that someone comes up and says, Your photo should do the talking. Artists should not add descriptions. I'm like, No, you have to add your descriptions. Because, you know, because we are storytellers, what's what's this? You know, what's the point, you know, without any story, just a beautiful image is common, you know, it's everywhere. What makes the picture special is the story which comes behind it, because it's the artistic emotion that comes along with it. So when I think one of the common mistakes that people do, even I did before, and I learned from that, through experience, is when you're telling, trying to tell a story, don't just tell the story of what's in front of you, you know, if I'm taking a picture of, for instance, in order to do a quick example, one of my NFT was a wildlife image of a lioness with her cups, you know, it's a single frame with one lioness and three cups next to her. My story could have been here is a lioness in Maasai Mara, in Kenya, sitting on a termite hill and watching the sunrise or whatever, that would be straightforward, because anyone who sees the picture, that story is there, you know, they will, they can read it, it's common knowledge. So you don't have to tell something which is already there. Tell something beyond that, you know, tell what you feel about it. Take it around, you know, in a different manner. For instance, in that picture, my story was about Lion King. You know, I connected the Movie Lion King, which we all know the Disney movie, in that movie, lion is the king and lioness is completely ignored. Because it's a lioness. It's all about the king what he does, and blah, blah, blah, fighting with his brother. I don't know the story exactly. But it's all about the lion as the hero. But in real life, when you see wildlife photography, when you see these lions and real, it's never about the Lion King. You know, it's always about the Queen, because she's the one who hunts, who brings food for the whole family. She's the one who protects the kids. She's also the one who manages to keep lion in check. The King is kept in check by the lioness because they can misbehave sometimes. So it's all run by the Queen, and no one talks about it. So here I had a chance to tell that story that Disney had some in no like knowledge of how the animal world works, they would make this lion is the real king of that movie and not the lion acid as a whole. So that's the kind of narrative doesn't have to be always straightforward. Here is this thing and that's about it. Take it in other direction, tell what you feel about it. You know, as I'm shooting. I'm always thinking, you know, my mind is such I told you I'm a very, very curious guy and always thinking in different different ways. Even when I look at a lion or a cheetah or a leopard when I'm shooting them. I'm thinking of their mind, you know, like what they should be thinking right now. I'm never looking at a straightforward picture. I'm always looking in different different ways. For instance, a fly comes and sits on the face of a leopard I keep in mind The thing I keep looking at its eyes, what's its reaction to the flight as it walks around its face? What is it thinking right now, you know, that's the kind of thing I'm building in my head. And if I put that picture out tomorrow, I'll maybe talk about the flight and the leopard together, rather than tell it that we're sitting in a bush. Now, that's very boring. So I always take it in different different directions, a whole image description of a leopard, where I didn't talk of the leopard, I just wrote about its tail. Because the tail of a leopard is always it has its own language, it's always moving with its thoughts. And you can always see, when it's more curious, it moves in one way, when it's very bold, it moves in another way. So I wrote a story just about the tale of the leopard. I didn't even talk about the leopard itself. So those are the things you know, storytelling is very important. It's your narrative. And your job as a photographer is to tell the story, otherwise, how will you be remembered? Not by your 10,000 likes, not by your 1 million followers, you will be remembered by your stories.
20:57 Yeah, wow. That's, that's very profound. And it's really good to share that. And I think it's, it's a new perspective as well to kind of think about it from a different perspective. And I mean, I myself learn from that a lot, being able to look at a scenery, something that could happen, but tell it from a perspective of a different, different, different way, not only what you see, and that's really cool, I really enjoy that. Thanks for sharing that even for
21:26 instance, when I went to Everest base camp, I had a bunch of pictures which I created, I posted them on Instagram, and this and that. And during that time, again, the same thing came to my mind, okay, I went to Everest base camp, what do I say I brag about being in Everest base camp? What do I do with the storyline, and I was thinking about it. And as well, as I was walking to Everest base camp for those 10 days, I have to look at the people around me, like I said, you know, I look at a flight sitting on a leopard. So here, I have like 100 people in front of me. So I observe each one of them what's going through their mind, there's a small kid walking the Everest base camp. This is a two year old male who's walking the rest to Everest base camp. There are a lot of investors wanting to rush Basecamp. I'm thinking of all their stories, why they are here know what they're trying to do what they're trying to achieve. So I wrote a story about that, you know how it's not about me making it to Everest base camp. It's about why any one of us take that journey, whether it's Basecamp, or whatever it could be whatever the face of your life, why do we take that journey? You know, I wrote a story about the why of why we travel, and what it means to each one of those individuals. So the stories can be taken in many, many ways. Rather than say, I went to a rich base camp, and I made this image, I can take it in my own direction, my own emotions. So yeah, we have the subconscious of thoughts. In always, we're thinking, there's a second voice in our head, each one of us have that voice. Just note the note down those voices. Because every time you start giving some thought to that voice, you're hearing the story line, which you're building, as you're noting them down, you know, most of us unconsciously forget what our second mind was saying, you know, when you're pointing your camera at whatever it could be pointing it your mind. Second mind is always doing the other narrative in your head, if you just give it some thoughts, and put a mental note to that you have a story right there. That's the other side of the story, then what you're looking at?
23:15 Wow, that is so much value, right? There's so much wisdom, and I really love that. And, you know, just going to that storytelling, and you know what you say about the second mind. We talked you talked about how they are the obvious and they are the thing that that come into the story, right, the secondary and tertiary and the things that not necessarily been the main focus, not the the main, grand, grandest, most obvious thing. Now. We know that, you know, in this world, in this era, right now, there is so many different types of distraction, right, our phone is keep buzzing, and then somebody's calling and, you know, we got our, our iPod, our iPhone, and you know, some people you have even like multiple phones and all this stuff. So how do you kind of separate that separate? The, you know, like, kind of isolate yourself in in this moment, so that you could hear and listen and explore what's in front of you?
24:24 Yeah, I mean, I do deep space photography. And in deep space photography, we have a term called signal to noise, which is how much of signal and how much of noise are you capturing? So I think that's the same thing here. You know, cut the noise, you know, there will be a lot of distractions, whether it's NFT side of the world, you see how many dramas run there every single day. I don't indulge in those dramas. I read them. I move on this AI conversation going on right now. What is AI whether AI is art, or is not art. I have my opinion. If I have a space, maybe I'll talk about it. And that's about it. Beyond that. I don't go are, you know, going into every tweet and commenting on everyone and trying to prove that they are wrong? I am right. The moment you start doing into getting into that business, you're wasting your time, you know, your time is valuable, and your energy is important. So yeah, just trying to avoid all those nonsense we know even Instagram, there is a real nowadays, people are doing all kinds of shit on that Instagram nowadays, know, wonderful artists are lost their track, you know, they're doing whatever it takes to get that little followers and views and million, whatever. So I don't even give a damn I do my reels, but in my own way now very classy way in a very cinematic way. I said, I will never get into that business of me walking with the camera, and then the transition happens. I am like, I don't need all that, you know, that's not the kind of artists that I am. So you have to just choose your poison, you know, and choose your path. A lot of my friends say you're missing out on Instagram by not doing really, if you keep posting your wonderful cinematic videos, no one cares about them. If you put all your images, no one cares about it. I'm like, doesn't matter. I don't care. If it's 100 people liking my image or 1000 people liking my image doesn't matter. Whoever connects connects, or doesn't doesn't, I'll just let it be. You know, that's one of the things I do in my life, or just as being stoic. If you can't control something, just let it go. Don't break your head over it, you know. So I think that itself solves half of the issues. Otherwise, yeah, there is a lot of things. there's Twitter, there's Instagram, there's a little bit of Facebook, there's vero now new software, social media. And there is what WhatsApp and telegram and how many things are gonna manage. If you put if you intelligence into all these things. Even I have my friends, you know, I'm sure I hope he doesn't listen to this. But if he doesn't, that's fine. But we, me and him, we were both photographers. And before, you know, before I came into nfts, and everything we used to, during especially COVID days, we used to have a lot of wonderful friends. But we disagree on many things. And we used to have a lot of arguments on WhatsApp, very passionate, not like we are punching each other on face. It's just opinions. And it could be about COVID. Or it could be about vaccine and whatever. And we would argue a lot to and fro to and fro to and fro could go on and on and on forever. And now I realised that while I was doing that, it's a waste of time. Now, whenever he sends me something like that, I just have a common response. You are right, even though I don't believe in it. I just say you're right. And that's it, then what what else is left to say? He's right, nothing to argue about. So I just let it be, you know, now I learned that style of just letting it go. If you want to think you're right, you're right. Enjoy the madness. And let's move on, you know, so Yeah, time is very, very valuable. And I'm trying to now figure out ways to not waste my time on noise. Stick to the signal, signal to noise is very, very important. That is incredible.
27:51 And yeah, like, you know, there is there is a saying that, you know, in order to win the war, sometimes you have to lose a fight, right. And then sometimes you just have to let go and, and sometimes letting go is the best way to win. So that's very wise of you to kind of share that. And I really
28:11 love something. We all have opinions. And we're all passionate about our opinions. But it doesn't mean you could just go and bounce everywhere your opinions, you know, just give it when it has to be given. If you just go around 100,000 times running around with your opinion, then you're just being a joke, you know, so just keep it to yourself. It's okay to not always have everyone agree to you, you know, it's okay, we are humans. And there's always agree to disagree which happens. And most often. The moment you stay away from this madness, you have more time to do something else. People ask how do you I have so much of time to run spaces? How do you have so much time to go out and shoot and to make all this photography trips? That's exactly because of this reason? And I don't I use my time for space because I save that time by not arguing with someone else outside. So why don't you start saving time somewhere? You can invest it in the right place.
29:04 Yeah, that's absolutely important, right, focusing on the right things in life that give you the energy and give you the positivity. And that's great. And I think one thing that I want to get into a little bit deeper is what you said earlier about the social media, right? How the social media kind of drive that attention and drive, how people are putting out content and are and how people are consuming it. Now, I know that the social media is, you know, with everything that happened is one of the biggest source that creates impostor syndrome, one of the biggest source that create this lack, right because what people see on social media is it's never it's almost never like what it's in real life. It's the highlight of everyone's real right. I mean, even peep when people share The struggles like I do share a lot of my struggles on social media. But even that, like you don't know what I had to actually go through behind the curtain, you know, just to share that one thing, right? So what what do you what do you have to say for people who are kind of hitting this wall of imposter syndrome and, you know, searching for followers and looking for ways to, to get more exposure, because I think there are two different view of this, which is, you know, it's important to get the exposure and get your, you know, social media kind of have the engagement and so forth. Because a lot of times, that's when you get your sales, or that's when you get your next opportunity. You know, there aren't a lot of opportunity associated with the exposure you get on social media. But at the same time, there is also the negativity behind that, where it actually bring down, you know, the way you feel even the way you react to the world and behave as a person. So how do you have anything to say about how to find a balance and how to treat social media from that sense?
31:18 Yeah, I think I would be the last person to talk about social media, because I never followed I like I said, I never followed any of those norms of social media, and Instagram, there was a time when, as tax, you know, I have my own friends who used to use certain apps, which would create hashtags for them every single day, depending on what's the most happening hashtags. They would say, use this app, use this hashtag. I'm like, I'll not use a single hashtag, I don't care. No, that's my way. I don't care if they like me, or if they don't follow me. I just don't care. And that's the reason my Instagram is still below 20,000. You know, like, it's taken eight years, nine years to reach that 20,000 Because I'm not never pushing it. Well, my friends, maybe they have 100,000 followers, who cares? You know, I don't give a damn, you know, that 19,000 is also we know how Instagram works, you know, 556 1000 of them would be fake profiles. Maybe I have, let's say 10,000 actual followers, that's enough for me, you know, that's my little crowd. I'm happy with that. And, you know, I really don't care much. I don't use any of those hashtags. Like I told I don't do any of those trending reels, I do it my own way. And I never get into, you know, you had to post it this time of the day, you have to put post at this time of the night to get the maximum reach. I'm like, I don't give a fuck, I will post whenever I want. You know, I don't care. So that's been always me. And that continues to be me. Even in Twitter. There's a lot of algorithm things people talk about don't retweet too much. I'm like, I'll read it. 100 people every day, I don't care. Don't go to it too much. I'll record record with everyone. I don't care. So yeah, I mean, I just don't care. That's been my way. Even Twitter. I'm surprised. You know, it grew very fast. I came in January. And today, it's what December, almost 910 months awkward. So I never expected all these things to happen in Twitter, I just came in thinking, okay, and other social media, and I'm just gonna be me, you know, again, I'll never put any hashtags. And never do anything time based or anything that helps the algorithm, I'll do everything it takes not to feed algorithm, I'll do whatever I want. That's all you know, I don't care about algorithm and everything. We have spaces on this topic where people discuss, and I'm the bad guy there because I say do whatever the hell you want. Don't care about the algorithm. If the shadow venue, they'll bring you back not a problem. So yeah, that's been my way. I'm the last person to talk about social media and never let it really influence me too much. And, yeah, you had to just create your own piece with social media, if you just chase, if you look at others getting 1 million views or 10 million views on tick tock. And if you want the exact same thing to happen to you, you're wasting your energy, you know, just do good work, keep posting them up, and enjoy the process, rather than worrying about things you can't control. So yeah, I don't really I'm not the person to talk about social media at all. Yeah, well, I
34:08 think you have talked a lot about social media and I think that's very important to have. You know, I personally still believe that it's important to have the exposure but I think it's important to have that mindset as well of sticking to your own thing and not diluting your value right I think that is I see that a lot of people like you say a lot of good creators are no longer an artist in social media because the reels is you know, more and more people get attracted to
34:38 reels. The world is growing.
34:41 There you go. And, you know, and and it's I think it's okay to have that in social media. But, you know, when when you are an artist and you do too much of that then are what what are you doing right, you weren't that's not the reason you're here. It's different, you know,
34:57 disclose that in the difference. There are two kinds of creators, one who just lowers and likes and reads. And maybe that's their, that's what you need, do whatever it takes, then there's other kinds, who doesn't give a damn, just does whatever he likes. And when I see Instagram or any place I go, whether it's vero or Instagram, or even Twitter, you know, I know that I create a portfolio everywhere I go, I don't like to post random things, my selfies my whatever, you know, my cat, my car, I don't need all those things. I'm a photographer, and I'm going to stick only to that my voice and my language, then I'm a guy with a tattoo on my hand, which says religion, photography. So I need to take that thing seriously. So I treat it that way I can like my religion. So wherever I go, I make sure it's my portfolio and whatever people, if they visit Instagram, they'll see a clear portfolio of mine, what I do is exactly what I show. And beyond that, knows, even now I'm talking not talking to you with the camera on because that's me, I don't like to put my selfies. I don't like to do any of those self indulgent things, you know, because I'm not that guy. For me, it doesn't matter. You like my work? That's my signature. And that's about it. You know, beyond that, I can't help it. You know, and same thing with Twitter, I keep a portfolio. Same thing with vero, I keep a portfolio. So I like to keep it organised. So that another kind of photography photographer who's on social media, so if you're the first kind, if you want all the followers and likes and reach and algorithm and everything you care about, then of course, you need to play the game, which people are doing on social medias. But yeah, it's it's it's your path, you take your path, my path is this, I don't care about all that.
36:34 Yeah, that's incredible. And I think that's one of the most important thing for us to stick to is, you know, whatever feels right to us, and whatever was, you know, our own path now, you know, just kind of take it back a little bit, you know, you talk about this photography, talk about the storytelling, and how you can impact people and all this stuff. Now, if I were to ask you a one liner question, right? What is your mission in photography, like what you're hoping to bring to the world through what you've captured in the form of photographs?
37:13 Yeah, I do all kinds of photography, as you know. And wherever I do, there's always a story that I stick to, you know, whether it's wildlife, with wildlife, I'm trying to, from my own style, you know, I'm trying to create an awareness and make people appreciate this wonderful creatures, every time I speak about them, I speak with a lot of passion, I always mentioned, what's the problem happening in this field of wildlife, you know, when it comes to these animals, and I can kind of stress on how valuable they are, how little they are in this world, and how we can maybe do a small little thing and create a difference, et cetera, et cetera. So there's that, you know, I'm always I love wildlife. And from my childhood, I have been loving them. And I bring all that passion to that field. And with my portraits, I always like to tell the story of people there, you know, mostly, it's about what I learned is what I try to preach, which is when I have to travel to these corners of the world, and meet these people staying in the most humble way, and at the same time, most happiest people I ever come across. Because what I see in Dubai is miserable, you know, the people have so much of money, they're driving a Mercedes and whatever in a Lamborghini. And still, they're not happy to concede in the face. But when I go to this corner of the world, and people have literally nothing, and they're still the happiest people. So I try to communicate that, you know, there's some learning, that's my learning from these places. So wherever I go, I find those books, you know, as to what makes me go there again, and again, because I'm not a person who's ticking off all the countries in the world. And that's not my mission. I've seen some photographers do that. It's cool. If you want to visit every country in the world, that's incredible. But for me, it's always about going back to the same place. You know, once I go to a place, it's not like, I'm done, I've visited this place, it's over, I'm done with this place, I go again, and again and again, because I like to go into the depth of that place and understand the real, more and more depth of the stories behind those people and how they live and what they do. So yeah, these are the narratives that I've played with. And I think overall, you think of a broader perspective, after 50 years, what what is that I'm trying to create is just a beautiful narrative of how beautiful the spaces are. And those spaces may be very limited. Maybe I'll have 15 places explored in complete depth, rather than how 120 countries explored in 50 years. I don't want that attack, I just want those few places explored very, very well, in every sense possible, you know, so, yeah, for instance, I go to the Similan village, that's a bunch of villages around and so whenever I go, I was trying to create pictures of people and tell their stories. Then I started exploring more towards the Buddhist side of it, you know, because they're all Buddhist. And there are monasteries, first trying to understand from the monks side of life, you know, what they do, how they stay. What is their prayer rhythm, this and that, that I was trying to explore for some years now. I want to go back and explore the wild side side of it, you know, because they have snow leopards in that. So you need to go in certain times to find those snow leopards that adds another layer to that place. Every single time, you know, I try to keep on building on the same thing. So I want to be that guy who has taught maybe 15 places in absolute depth and created a nice long story through many, many years of visiting, rather than be the guy who visited 120 countries.
40:27 Yeah, that's, that's a really good thing. You know, I, I was in the same place. You know, before when I first started photography, I've been to I think, 27 countries. And after no 28. And after I started photography, for real, I've only been to an extra one country because I noticed the same way it's more interesting to go into that then all of these places, just going to the popular place, right? It's just, it's, it's incredible. When you see people just go to the main attraction, take one shot, a selfie, and then they go home, they like, don't look at the other place. You know, they didn't even go around the corner. And it's incredible. And yeah, I can totally resonate with that. Now, you know, when I want to talk a little bit about Nepal in the Himalaya, and I know how passionate you are about it. But one thing that I never heard is that what what really what really pull you about the Nepal in the Himalaya region that makes you really love that area compared to any other world? Because, you know, there are a lot of beautiful places around the world. Right. There are a lot of interesting culture everywhere. beautiful mountain tops as well as the landscape. But why Nipah? Why what keep pulling you into Nepal in the Himalaya region?
41:55 Yeah, that's a terrible question. Because I really don't know. I just don't know sometimes there are things which you can't explain. I think Himalaya is one of them. You have been to Pune. Basecamp. So you know it. So you know, my I can, that's my curious mind. I told you I look into Cosmos a lot. I look into a large number of things. And there are many sections of things that I will look into in much depth. And one of them is Himalayas. You know, if I look at my book cabinet right now, I think almost 50% is photography books. Other 50% is Himalayan books, you know, people who have climbed this wonderful mountains, I have, I've read almost every book possible in our field. And I don't even have a place to store those books anymore. Because that's how much I get intrigued by these mountains. Because the first time I saw it in my life, as I said, my travel photography began with Himalayas. The first time I put my eyes on it, I knew that okay, this is gonna be something very, very interesting for my future because I knew right then that I'm going to be coming back to this place over and over and over again. Because I don't know what's about it, you know, even when you go to Everest base camp, or you go to Annapurna base camp or any of these base camps, which is hard track, you don't really know if you think it's like you see in movies, people running around with full energy. No, you are, you are tired, you know, you are dirty, you are smelly stink like shit. So let's start painting and you know, everything is weird about that place. It makes you feel like what the fuck I'm doing here. But at the same time, I feel alive. You know, being in between all that madness. I feel good about it. So that's what I like about that particular place. It's a suffer fest, but at the same time, it makes you feel alive. I know. You're laughing a lot. I don't know what stinking part was funny, I guess. I don't know. But yeah, that's what makes Himalayas what it is, you know, lack of oxygen makes me feel good. And also, you know, like, one of my idols, you know, when it comes to I like people who live their life to the fullest without giving a damn and technically like, they know that life is so valuable. One of them is Reinhold Messner, if you know, Reinhold Messner, he is the first person to climb all 14 peaks, Himalayan peaks 8000 metres without supplementary oxygen. So I read a lot about him. Maybe I have some 20 books from him right now. Sitting in front of me as I speak. I read all of his books. I've seen every documentary that he has made. You know, these are the people who really make me want to go back to Himalayas because their passion is very contagious. And when you read the books and exactly why they go back, is exactly what you go back. I want to see everything there they have seen. So yeah, just a lot of things. You know, I said, it's very hard to explain. If you've never been to Himalayas, you'll never know. But once you go there, as I said, it is sufferfest but you'll enjoy the suffering of that place, you will come back much smarter and wiser. There's a reason why Indian monks and Nepali Buddhist monks go to the mountains to do their meditation. They can do anywhere but they still go to the extreme Himalayas, because there's something about that place which cannot be explained.
45:00 Yeah, I know it, I can, I can tell I can I can feel the same thing when I was in Annapurna. It's just something about the place that it felt magical. And the reason why I love a lot is that it always reminded me every time I go hiking, it always I always asked that question. I was like, Why? Why? Why am I here? Why do I put you through all this struggle, but as soon as you came down, you have a shower, and you just go, what is next? Right? What's the next mountain to go out to? And when you say that, it's just it cracked me up? Because it reminded me of that moment, every time you go up, and you look at this big wall in front of you, and you can't even see the summit, because they're so high and you go like, what am I doing here at 10pm at night, going into this mountain with all this crap behind me. But yeah, there's something about, you know, the achievement behind that there's something about the peacefulness behind it. And it's, it's, it's, it's, you know, one of the stories that I tell from one of the piece that I just released, it's about the freedom you get when you get out there, and it feels like, you know, everything just doesn't matter. So I can, you know, yeah, really
46:18 also, another reason for that is because, first of all, you're in a complete remote place, especially when it took off base camps and everything, you're cut off completely. There's no internet, there's nothing, you know, you just have you and maybe a guy who doesn't talk much. So you're not talking to him a lot. He just talks once in a while. So you're it's just you and the mountain and maybe a beer or a chai in your hand. And you're sitting there in the middle of nowhere. So these are the moments which we are missing right now, you know, because we're in such a fast life, social media, they send that phone buzzing all the time, in that place. You just realise that your phone, you're holding the phone, but it feels like useless. And because there's no internet, you don't know what to do with that phone in your hand. And then you throw it away and just look at what's in front of you. And just you look at lost in your thoughts, you know, you you get a break that your brain requires. And it starts processing things which have been lagging behind in the RAM. So yeah, it's like a nice reboost to your brain, and it helps you clear a number of things. So yeah, when I always say, you know, doesn't matter what the question is, you know, Himalayas are always the answer because it will give you answers for questions, which you didn't even know you had. So you know, that's what they do. And yeah, like, for instance, when I was in Annapurna base camp, like I told like you also said it's a suffer fest. It is the hardest trick I've done. An Irish base camp was hard, but it was okay. But Annapurna was absolute madness, you know, and I was not in my best form at that time, because I just came back from a trip to the US. I went to New York and all that things, and I came back and immediately, I went to Annapurna base camp without even trying to give myself a break because I just wanted to go to Himalayas, maybe because I saw New York and I really wanted a break from that city. So I went all the way to Himalayas. Annapurna base camp, it was bloody hard. It was raining all the time. It is not really comfortable. You know, I was wet from head to toe, every single day of the walk in six days is completely wet. And it was really, really hard. Same thing again, I asked myself the same question what the fuck I'm doing here. I could have been staying in Dubai and relaxing my warm home. But I was there anyways. So it happened. It is the best camp the first once it is the best camp for the first time when the rain stopped. And everything was visible under Pune in front of you. Extremely gorgeous. And then it was just a small break of 30 minutes and then it started raining again. I'm like shit, okay, now I need to walk back. You know, you know it walking down is harder than walking up to the base camp. So I'm like, I need to go down with all this rain again. My mind was like, please get rid of this place, you know, if you want to. And I was like, Can I call a helicopter get to get off this place because I don't want to walk again. So he sat down recently quarters right now in this weather. I'm like, Okay, let's walk. And I told my guide, how long is the walk to reach Pokhara which is the city we need to go to the city at the end of it. It takes for four nights of walk, you know, like every four nights, your stay in the mountains. And then finally you reach a point where you can go to the city. I'm like, No, I'm not going to stay the walk for four days in this rain. Let's do one thing how much is the kilometres he said almost 38 kilometres of walk to reach to the point where you can take a car to reach the city. I'm like, Okay, let's walk from now. It's seven o'clock in the morning. We will not stop for a single second. No food. No nothing. We are water bottles. We just keep bringing water. Are you up for the challenge? It's like no, no one does that. 38 kilometres in a rain downhill. You can't do that. I'm like, let's do it. And we worked nonstop. You know, I have that phone screenshot in my phone. I burned like 1000s and 1000s of calories. You know, maybe it was crazy. I never burned so much calories in my life. So 38 kilometres. We walked from seven am to 4pm nonstop, not a single break. We just kept walking because I wanted to get out of that place. You know, there are those instances also in MLS. It's not like always romance. So yeah, but that's what makes it interesting. So as soon as I came back, I reached my hotel in Pokhara. I took my shower, I felt good again. And then I came to the reception of the hotel. And the hotel had a number of maps of Nepal, you know, of all the base camps. I just came back from a base camp where it was. I had to walk 38 kilometres to escape. And now I was looking at this posters on the wall, and I'm like, which is this base camp? This amount of sleep? I'm like, Okay, this is my next one. When do I come back? So that's the mattress.
50:43 Yeah, no, I heard that story before. And, you know, it's just crazy. And I know how frustrating it can be when it's raining and all that stuff but doing 38 kilometres on the way down all the way to, you know, from Annapurna base camp. That's 5000 5000 Plus, right, and it's just crazy. Yeah, no doubt you burn all that calorie man, you got all the rain, you got going downhill all the gears, of course you burn all that calorie. But that's Yeah, that's really cool story, you know, and it's true, right. And I think this goes back to what we say earlier, a lot of times people don't see this struggle, about, about the journey. But I think what I noticed from, from the way you approach life, the way you approach your journey, is that you have a way to still enjoy the journey. Even if, you know, there are challenges now, you know, I know that is something that's very difficult to do nowadays, especially looking at everyone else's successes all the time, right? So for the listeners who kind of in that situation where they're like, Okay, I want I'm in a and I want to get to where I want to go next, right, which is my dream, whatever that may be. But this every time I hit a journey of challenges, I feel discouraged. So, you know, how can people enjoy the journey to get to where they want to be?
52:12 One day? I think I'm not an expert again, of this, because it's very, very much, it's up to each individual to choose their happiness. So my way, you know, is my way always your way, it doesn't mean it has to be the same way for both of us might, what I say may not resonate with someone else. So it's up to each person, each one has their own, you know, priorities and life and family and loved ones and etc. So yeah, it's totally different, you know, I can't preach because, you know, for even for a single example, is I'm not married. So if I say something, people will say, yeah, that's easy for you, because you're not married, I'm married, I have two kids, I can't do the same thing. So it can be different to different people. But yeah, you need to find your own peace, with how you can create that balance and feel good about the life that you have. You know, for instance, I was in Tajikistan, and it was one of those craziest, the craziest roads, you know, there, the place is beautiful, but the roads are horrible. It's next to Afghanistan. You can you're always next to Afghanistan, there's just a small river, which divides you and Afghanistan. It's it was at the peak of Taliban when I went there. So people are a bit scared to come, but they still came. So we are going through that journey. And you know, at one point, the road is so bad, so horrible, that you just your bones feel like they're all broken, you know, and one of my friend who was there, he's a corporate guy, and he has a job in Dubai in a luxurious place. And all that is taste. So he came on that trip. And he is not used to this things much. He likes adventures, but not this kind of adventure, it was a little bit too much for him. Because at the end of the night, you stay in a small little house. And it's not like a five star hotel. So everyday are struggling through the journey. I enjoy that. But he had some problems and happens in between the journey. We just stopped for a smoke and we both were smoking in a corner. And he's like, I don't know, I think I shouldn't have come on the strip because it's too hard for me. I told, first of all, just look at your surroundings. And you're standing right here having a smoke. Look at look in front of you. There's Afghanistan. And look at the right side. There's Himalayan mountains upon mountains. And you're here, you know, what are your colleagues doing right now? They're smoking in Dubai, of course, in their office, but what are they looking at the same blocks of city and the same stupid office they have to go back to what's next nine days, you're free, you know, you're in middle of nowhere. How many people should I visited this place which are visited right now? Maybe 5% of the world's population, you are the lucky one. You know, enjoy that moment. Because you are lucky enough to be here, you know? So that's how I put things into perspective. Whatever happens, always see it as one of those. You know, we have a chance to travel if you have that chance alone. You're already lucky enough compared to 80% of the world because others would love to do that, but they don't have the means or freedom to do that. So I think we're already lucky enough that we have this passion, we travel the world. And that's enough blessings, just count those blessings, and you will feel good about it. That is such
55:13 a good advice. And, you know, I think, going back to what you said earlier, it's about, you know, where do you put your focus on? And just hearing what is the story that you tell me, it seems like, you know, your your friend at that time was in a really good place, but his focus was on the negative part of it, and not the positive part of it. And that really changed a lot of perspective for a lot of people just shifting that tiny bit of perspective. Right. So, yeah, that's, that's a really good, you know, a really good advice. Now, you know, one of the thing that I'm interested in is, you know, you're I came across you in the NFT world, and you are, you know, one of the voice in NFT. World, a lot of people hear your wisdom and follow your wisdom now, what, what draw you into the NFT in the first place, and what made you stay in the space?
56:07 Yeah, that's super important for me, because NFT has not been one of those things, which has completely transformed my life, at least, in terms of my passion. Because I came, you know, as I said, I do workshops for a living, and my workshops are travel workshops, and need to travel to a place to do whatever I do. And that's my revenue, you know, that's my income. And that's all that's my sole income. That's the main thing, I don't do anything else. Even if I get commercial jobs in Dubai, I would just push it across, you know, to my friends, I would say you do it, I don't want to do this job, architectural, or whatever, you know, event photography, and never like all those things. Because I've quit my job with a very, very particular team, which is I want to travel and I want to take people along with me, and that's about it. So I do that full time. It was great. Till COVID came in, you know, when COVID came, we all know, world shutdown. And then travel stopped and my sole source of income came to an end. That was the biggest hit. And when you think of it, I stay in Dubai is such an expensive place. And travel has stopped. Everything that you have earned is now disappearing, like super fast pace, you know, like Dubai, it doesn't take much time for money to operate. So it's going through that really, really rough phase in my life where things are going really south. And I'm like, What the hell do I do now? 2020 is gone. 2021 is still the same. There are so many rules to travel, no one wants to travel because there's so many paper works and this and that. So they're just not really working. And I'm like, That's it. I'm done. What do I do now go back to Job, put the tie and suit and get back to work. That was almost a situation though. I didn't want to do that. So that's when NF T came into my life. You know, it came a little bit late. I wish I entered you one more earlier. But one of my friends who's into NFT He kept telling me because he knows exactly what I go through every single day. I mean, every single weekend we go together to shoot and that guy always says come to an empty come to an after you are going through this tough time. I think NFT is your answer. You know you can earn some money and pay your rents and at least take some break from your your hair start turning white what's going on with you. I'm like no NF T's this NF T's that it's a bubble. The typical bullshit that people say I used to believe all those things. So at the end of it, he finally convinced me one fine day he just said, please open a meta mask and come to an update. That's it. Today's the day. And we finally opened the meta mask and he convinced me to come I came in to Twitter, nothing I know nothing about Twitter. I know nothing about nfts I just entered with one follower being my friend who pulled me in. And then eventually I started interacting with people and I realised that the whole community thing which people talked about is actually true. You know, the people are different in NFT. At least during those days in the bull market, people are very, very active and very, very friendly. And everyone is trying to pull each other up rather than push each other down from like, Okay, this sounds interesting, this better than Instagram and all that. And finally, I came up with a collection and first Genesis collection, which was all my email and portraits, some of my best works, I put it out at a very affordable price. And within the first minute of launching that collection, one of my collectors just happened to collect it within the first minute of dropping it. He bought a pitcher at 0.5 at the end. During those days, it was like almost $2,000 I was like $2,000 for my pitcher. In the minute of dropping, I was like I had tears in my eyes because there's something which I never experienced before someone was valuing my work, whatever money money is secondary in that place. Someone valued it, you know, within a second within a minute of dropping. So I realised you know eventually as things moved on, I realised that this place is absolutely brilliant, you know, everything that I thought the illusions that I had was all wrong and yeah, since then I gave myself 100% to it. And it's been wonderful you know, after that have launched many many collections sold out many many collections, and no doubts That that is paying my rent, it's been my all kinds of things in all the bills that I have, it has helped me float through it. So it's been wonderful. Yeah, I think it's a blessing, which came at the right time. Otherwise, by now I would be back to work, maybe giving up all my dreams.
1:00:17 Wow, that's what a journey isn't it and, you know, you come in there and you know, you know, coming from somebody who think it's all, you know, all the objection that everyone can come in, don't want to come in from and then you finally convince come in and know you're here with, you know, one of the biggest boys in the NFT world, you know, sharing your wisdom and your stories in there. And I think it's just incredible. Now, for, you know, for for, for the people who cannot like jump in here and think like, okay, you know, NFT is just a money making scheme and all this stuff. Is there, is there, what's the future of NFT? For you? Like, is there anything that you are excited about the technology itself? Is there a culture a community? Or is there is it only solely about, you know, selling your art and being appreciated for for your work in a different
1:01:14 form? Yeah, it's multi layered. I don't even know how to get to this point. Because future who knows the future, you know, none of us know the future. So NFT is the same. Who knows? Right now, it's not just about the money. But money is important. And as a full time photographer, money is very, very important to stay alive and to follow the passion. So I appreciate the NFT space for the money it provides to everyone offers and puts a value to our work, you know, other than if you look at before, it is all about, come and shoot our restaurant will give you exposure come and shoot our wedding will give expert What the hell what we do the exposure, no one takes that for a bill. So yeah, that was the world we came from. And now here is a place where I have even collectors who always say bump your price. And sometimes throughout my journey, they always said increase your price, your work deserves more money. And they made me push my value all the way up, because they themselves forced, you know, it's one of those places where the people who are buying are not bargaining. They're either saying go up with your price not go down. So yeah, that's a very unique place to be in. And as far as future goes, I don't know, you know, I am just as I told you, I just go with the flow, whatever the flow is, I just go with the tide. So I'm sure you know, there are a lot of wonderful visionaries in nfts, a lot of wonderful collectors who have a great vision to what they want to do. So I'll leave it to them, I just go with their guidance. So I'm learning every single day, I'm no guru there. I'm just a student, every single day absorbing the space, learning something new and spilling it out to those people who don't know, so it's all learning from each other, which is happening there. So who knows the future, I hope it's bright. And like everyone says, we are just no tapped 1% of the potential of NFT and blockchain, there's a lot more to do. You know, I stay in Dubai. We see it here every single day, the wise adopting new and new ways to government. I mean, it's including new and new ways to adopt blockchain right now. If you lose your passport, and if you go to complain to the police, it becomes NFT it becomes it goes into blockchain. I don't know what the complaint becomes a part of blockchain or whatever. So there's a lot of things happening, real world uses to come you know, so I think there's a lot to do. And we'll just be there when it happens.
1:03:38 Yeah, no, that's incredible. I know your work is incredible. And you know, you're right. The two things that really were really struggling from the artist is you know, exposure people think that exposure will give us something and at some cases it does you know, the right exposure can give us benefit but in most cases it doesn't bring any benefit back apart from people you know, liking and following you. And you know, unfortunately we can't we can't you know, put a foot in a table from follows and likes and the other thing is the value of money how people are valuing it right? I think in collection in the NFT world, a lot of people value it more as as an art as an emotion as something that they they connect with well as in the real world. It's more like a commodity right? It's more like yeah, you just buy a print you know, like print is a print and of course there are people who really care about the art as well. But most people are just like, Okay, well you know, your photo is great, but IKEA sell it for 20 Exactly. What what I paid $500 for, for your friends. Right and that's, I think that is the biggest difference that you see in in in in the NFL is that wins Somebody appreciate you are they appreciate your art not, you know for what it is not not that it's jpg, not that it's, you know, how many pixel against how many pixel at 300 pa PS? DPI, right, but it's about the emotion, the photograph that connects from there. So
1:05:21 yeah, so that's a huge scope. Apart from that, you know, which is brilliant, and they're appreciating our art, which is brilliant. At the same time, look at where NF T's have taken us. You know, like, when I visited New York with my parents and my sister, we went to Times Square, my sister was like, this is Times Square, the biggest, greatest billboard in the world. Some of the best things are exhibited here. I'm like, Oh, that's so nice. And then we came back, that was in 2018. And in 2020, you want and this year, somewhere in this year slicker, if you remember, they slowly got a platform and ft platform, they display it works off their artists on Time Square, the same time square. So my image was there as well. And I sent it to my parents, my sister, my relatives that my told my sister, do you remember he said, The best of the best in the world gets displayed on this billboard? There is my work right now, you know, so that's NFT, I would never be on NFT. Amen. Sorry, on the Time Square, if not, for NFT NFT opens up that door, you know, it brings the world together. It has a great influence. Right now, it was exhibited in Miami, before that was exhibited in Venice, right now, like as having the exhibition in a beautiful place in Rome. So how many places you know we are going along within that one year span? Imagine this is just one year of work? Not even one year, nine months of work? So where did it take us in five years from now? So we've been given this time to Instagram, we have been giving this time, same amount of time and value to Facebook for all this years, where has it taken us? Maybe it has taken us some places. But still, this as NFT has done all these things, within nine months, it pays our bills, it gets us exhibited across the world, it connects us to the world of amazing collectors and artists coming together. So and it's just the beginning. It's just the tip of the iceberg. Imagine what would happen in the future, maybe who knows, our pitchers will be on boots Khalifa.
1:07:15 under percent, we're excited about that? Well, so both it's been, you know, such a great conversation with you. And you know, hopefully one day, I can bring you back in here because there's so much to talk about, you know, you, like I say, just as such a good people to talk to. Now. One thing that I always ask my guests when they come into this podcast is that if there is one advice that they could even, you know, they could give their younger self or people out there if there is one advice that you can only give out, what would that advice be?
1:07:53 I think I'll keep it quite generic, because that's the truth. Follow your passion, everything's gonna be okay. That's it. Whenever is the end of it? Yeah. When everything that's the end of your journey, something else shows up. And that's how life works. You know, if you're true to what you do, especially after COVID, I realised, you know, I said, the COVID story is a long story. And I literally thought that's the end of my whole journey, you know, the photography, end of it, let's go back to work, because I'm done. But that's when something happens. You know, a number of things have happened in COVID Unexpected jobs, some unexpected awards, I don't even participate in photography competitions. But during that time, there was no option I had to participate so that I can earn some money out of it and sustain myself till the COVID goes away. So I won awards, I got unexpected jobs from really big, big corporate companies, which kept me afloat, and then came NFT. And it completely changed the game. So whenever you feel that's it, that's the end of it. Just know that it's just a passing phase, and it will be okay. So yeah, follow your passion. Everything's gonna be okay. All right, well,
1:09:03 thanks a lot for that support, then, you know, for people who cannot want to check out your work and you know, your NFT and you know, some of these incredible stories behind the moments that you've captured, what is the best way to find your work as well as to connect with you.
1:09:21 I wish I could save go to my website. That would be very cool. But one of the Chinese companies stole my domain name. So I don't have my website right now. So that's over. So you can go to usual stuff, you know, Twitter, so worth chatting with. And then there's Instagram support city, I'm sure you can just link it up wherever you post it. So if you don't follow me, it's okay. Now with the 100%
1:09:44 I will definitely put all the links on the description. So you know, for people who are intrigued and want to see more of your work, they can do that. But look, it's been really good conversation. Really enjoy your passion behind Now, not only the stories, but also the, I guess, the passion behind your passion in photography, it's just so much energy when you, you know, when we talk about all of this, and I really enjoy that, you know, it's a really fresh breeze off air, you know, to to get that. So that's great. And, you know, thank you very much for being here. I know you're, you have a lot of things happening. So that's, you know, I really appreciate you putting aside your time to be here and
1:10:33 know when you chose the best day possible today, the Twitter space are down. I don't know what Elon Musk is doing. But sometimes he goes crazy. So he's blocked all the Twitter spaces today. So I think it's a good day to take a break. So the perfect day to be here.
1:10:50 All right, well, fantastic. Well, well, we can this hopefully you get a lot of benefit from there. There's so much wisdom and there are a lot of good storytelling that man I just could hear it for days in and day out. Now. If you haven't already followed suit both please do check his work out like you know, his work are incredible. A lot of his wildlife is absolutely stunning. I actually when I first saw suppose work, it was more about the wildlife. So I thought he was a wildlife photographer until I came across some of these other work. So do check him out. He have a passion in photography. And he showed that in many, many ways, and I really enjoy that. So thanks a lot for being here. Thanks a lot for listening and tuning in if you are still here. And don't forget, hit to hit the subscribe button if you want to hear our next artists. But also leave a quick review. Let me know what you want to hear more of let me know what some of the things that you enjoy from this podcast or if you have a certain artists that you want to hear in this podcast. But with that being said, well, thank you very much for being here. And I'll see you next week. So both Thank you very much for your time and your wisdom and yeah, I'm sure we'll come across in an adventure someday, somewhere along the you know, around the world. But with that being say, I guess we'll see you around in Twitter spaces.
1:12:18 For sure, Stanley. Thanks so much. Take care
Transcribed by https://otter.ai
Friday Jan 20, 2023
Friday Jan 20, 2023
Hey Wicked Hunters, I'm excited to have multi-international award-winning photographer F. Dilek Uyar. Dilek was born in Çanakkale. After completing her primary and secondary education in this city, she entered Gazi University, Faculty of Law in Ankara Turkey. When she graduated, she started her master's degree in Labor and Social Security Law at the same university. She is still a lawyer in a company in Ankara. She also teaches photography classes at a university in Ankara.
For 5 years, she has spent most of her time on photography. She likes taking travel, street, and documentary photos. She likes telling stories of people she meets during her travels and cities with her photos. For 4 years, she has been working on social responsibility projects and trying to photograph socially important issues.
As a woman photographer, lawyer, and mother from Turkey, she made many speeches in Universities, Photograph Associations and as a TEDx Speaker, she touched on the significance of being a woman and saying yes to change. She also takes part in social awareness projects.
Her biggest aim is to increase social awareness and recognition of her stories and continue inspiring young women in her country.
She joined many international and national exhibitions and won over 200 awards. She is still a contributor photographer for National Geographic YS and National Geographic Turkey.
You can learn more about Dilek's work on:
NFT - fdilekuyar.eth.co
Website - https://www.dilekuyar.com/
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to see connect with Stanley Aryanto, you can go to the following:
Don't forget to let us know your favourite part of the Podcast in the comment below and subscribe
0:00 I risked my life I risked my children's life I go to the hospital and take photos, or one month after 100 year, when we all died, people will remember these times from our photos. This is the power of photography, which photography your writing history, can you imagine you will be the part of history with your photos. This is something being immortal in my opinion.
0:36 Hey, weekend is Welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast, where we share photographers journey and show how photography has given us hope, purpose and happiness. And today we have someone who's very special. I've come across her work, a documentary artist who is passionate about sharing the world story and going to her photos, it's taken my breath away. I have heard a few times, you know of her sharing some of her story, as well as speaking some of the issue in this world. And I just want to be able to share her voice to more of you out there. So today, let's welcome Dilek Hey, Dilek how are you? I believe you are from Turkey at the moment, right?
1:25 Yes. Thank you so much. I'm from Turkey, and living in Ankara, the capital city of Turkey. And thank you for your kind in like,
1:37 oh, yeah, 100% You know, I really enjoy listening to your story, I really enjoy the photos that you have taken, right, they are so full of emotion. And I believe you have some approach project as well, which you know, we're going to talk about a little bit later to, to evoke emotion and to share and help share a message to your photography. And I think that is fantastic. Now, before we go through all of that, could you just share with us who is Dilek? And how did you start photography in the first place?
2:12 I'm Dilek, mother of two. And actually, my profession is law. I'm a lawyer in Turkey. And I always believe that people should have some hobbies in their daily life to take a breath during the hectic routine of daily life. And I was a skydiver before starting to take photos. And I was always saying that Skydiving is my passion. And it's my love. I can't forget it, I can live it and I can find another love. But with some health issues, I should have the site give a decision and stop making skydiving and I try to find something to focus and to make me feel good. And just take a camera at that time because it was so popular in Turkey 12 years ago, people were getting cameras and starting to take photos up to that time I never into photography, actually. Even when we go to somewhere I don't like I never like taking selfies or taking photos of the places I visit. But I decided to get a camera and when you let me know unless you thought that you know everything. And in the beginning of my photographic journey, it was same. I was thinking that just taking a buying a brand new camera is enough to take some good photos. But I get a good camera at that time. Then I realised that it's not enough. But I still don't realise at that times the importance of the people behind the camera. I was just thinking the camera is okay. I just don't know how to use it. So I went to a course to learn how to use the camera. And then I started to understand that the people behind the camera is one of the most important thing, not the camera. And photography is not just clicking something when you're just walking or travelling around, it's something special. It has some power. And I've fallen in love photography and I started to force myself to learn it in the best Today, and my journey starts in like that to add few years ago, Oh, it wasn't easy as a woman photographer from Turkey as a mother from Turkey, because our priorities are determined before you should be a wife, you should be your mother. And then you should work in your daily professional work, the hobbies and that the kinds of things are not important. And you don't need to make something like that. Actually, so many people think we're saying, Why are you making something like that is nonsense, and something, etc. But I try, I also tried to change something. And try to show that if a woman wants to sexist, she can, instead of all the difficulties that she faced, and I've worked at, I've worked a lot, I fall down, but that I get up again, and I've worked more I work more and, yes, right now, I'm happy where I am actually.
6:21 Wow, that's such an inspiring story. You know, I can relate to you because I use Well, I was born in Indonesia, you know, where the culture is very similar. I feel like the main purpose for us to live is to go to school, get a good grade, so we can get a good job, get married, get a house and die, right. Exactly. So you know, when when you share that I really can relate to them. Because I know exactly how the pressure from not only the people around you, but the culture right. So that is incredible. And you know, I feel like for you, it's much more, a lot more challenging, right? Because like you say, You're a mother of two, you're a woman. And you know that that makes things a lot more challenging. Now, when when you first pick up a camera, so I love this, I love how you share that, you know, a good camera is not the thing that take good photo, and hopefully the people who are kind of in the beginning of their journey starting to understand this, right? Because I really wish I know this a lot earlier. Now. What? What makes you love photography. So you say that, you know, you're looking for a new hobby after you're skydiving, which is fantastic. I always wanted to be a skydiver, by the way, you know, so you picked up your camera, you started to learn photography. But what makes you fall in love with it, what makes you stay and keep taking photos and going through telling, you know some of the most powerful stories that you have told to your photography.
8:13 I was living in a big city, in good conditions in in a good social status. And my holidays was in five star hotels at that time. As a lawyer I was earning good and my husband also earning good. And the people around me was just focused on getting some new clothes, new houses, new cars, and something like that. I was living in a society like that. And earning money means at that times, is just getting in buying a new house new clothes, new and brand, bags, shoes, etc. But when I started to take photos, I was visited the rural parts of Anatolia that I never been before. And I see how kind people are there. How they open all the life and all their houses to you how they make guests to their dinners to their breakfasts. And that's really make me surprise. Everything was different from the life I was living in the big city and everything started to change in my mind. A good photographer once said that you can even say that you are seeing and understanding the world. Before taking photos, this is so right I understand it after I started to take photography. And I see that the things that we want to improve that we want more, make us less actually. Because I saw this in Anatolia, people were so polite people were so kind people were so humbled. But we all forget bad things in big cities, in my country, and touching the people's story, touching their life, listening their stories made me so happy. I was also interested in literature, and I was writing some stories, and writing some papers on some important names, web pages in Turkey before and I realised that photography is writing a story, actually, you're writing their story with your one frame, one single frame. And then we read the stories or novels written in past times, we can understand that, oh, they are reusing these things, they were living in that way. So they are also a part of history. But if it is a novel or a story, you can think that that writer is imagining that things. But if the topic is photography, people believe that people show the reality. And I decided to tell their stories with my photos, because with the technology with the time, so many cultures, so many traditions are disappearing. We need to document all that things and tell them stories. My travel photography journey started like this, because I love this, I feel myself that I'm finding new treasures. When I visited that parts of Turkey, I never had a chance in a five star hotel before that makes me fall in love in photography. Wow,
12:45 that is such a cool story. And I definitely can relate, you know, I was someone who really care about the materialistic things and I would earn fine money to be to be able to buy more stuff. And you're you're absolutely right, you know, the less we have, the more we appreciate things and make it's funny because the less people have that, it seems like the Kinder they are and the less selfish they are, which exactly what you say, now. I really enjoy the way you tell a story to your photography, right? They are so powerful, they speak to you. Now, when you go out there and you start travelling and you look at this different culture, this different point of view, and you capture them and tell that story through your photography. What are some of the things that you look through? What are some of the thing that goes to your mind, so that you could tell you know this story in such a profound way?
13:54 I would totally in Antalya, our culture is so rich, so colourful, so contrast and you can imagine the philosophy between so many things. For example, when I went to moolah Promacta first, I see that people woman are building some six cars on their heads. Not just because they're, they believe Islam, that scarfs was so different and they were putting fresh flowers on this scarves. And I asked them what all of you putting that fresh flower because in other parts of Anatolia, I never saw something like that. And then they answer me and they said that because they want to smell like fresh flowers to their husbands. And that makes me I can explain the I have feelings that I feel when I first hear that this was so unique, this was so special. So cayenne. And this is how Anatolian people look to the world actually, they don't have money to get perfumes or something like that. But they find something special like this. People should hear that story. That's why I started to take their photos, for example, and tell their story. Wherever you go, somewhere, when you try to communicate them, you can understand their story. If you can't become one with them, if they can't share their story with you, you can understand them. And if you don't understand them, you can't tell their story in a proper way. When I go somewhere to take photos, I never get my camera in the beginning and take photos, I started to talk with them. I started to understand with them, they I share my story, they share their story and after understand what they are leaving what they feel how to be a person in that place, then I'm taking photos and maybe that's why my photos are a little bit different from the other photos because I can understand their story. And if he can't understand someone's story can tilt.
16:50 Yeah, that's incredible. I really love that I really love that approach. And you're right, most of us kind of go out there and bring our camera and take a photo. Because it looks appealing. It looks good not to tell the story. Right? Well, you know it, the story might come afterward. But I love your approach. I love your approach on understanding the story and understanding what is the best way to share that through your photography. And I think that's just so powerful. Because, like you say, you know, if you don't understand this story, then how can you capture it in a way that tell their story? Wow, that is just incredible. That's incredible, I'm sorry, that it just really take, you know, my breath away. And I really enjoy that. And, you know, that's I mean, I really can see that, you know, I really can see that through your photography. They really speak they really have an emotion and I could just imagine that, you know, you understanding what they're thinking through what what the emotion that they have before they that you capture these photos, right? I mean, coming from a landscape photographer, or you know, Astro photographer, and nature photographer, I don't get that as much right. But that is such a great lesson to learn. Thank you for sharing that.
18:13 Thank you for giving this opportunity to me actually. I love landscape photos, I still photo graphy also macro and wide love, but they are not my cup of tea actually. Because I love listening to people's story I love touching their life, and the way of touching their life is taking photo. Because I'm not just touching the button of my camera, I'm talking with them, I'm sharing time to them and they are sharing their times. With me. That's why I love photography.
19:00 Wow. It's you know, it's I really enjoy listening to you talking because you have I can hear the passion, the love for the people and the love for photography from your from your story. So that is just incredible. Now, one thing that I'm wondering right when you when you come across this. So for example, you know, coming from a nature photographer, or an astro photographer, I would think about, you know, what are the different places and think about, you know, how it could have looked like, where the landscape is where the light is. Now, one thing that I'm interested in, right is how do you pick your destination? Do you have a certain criteria, a certain thing that interests you, or do you just kind of travel and see what what story you can tell from there.
19:58 It's changing time to time actually because, for example, I was know, that woman wearing some interesting scarves on mulatto, Magda, and I go there. There are some photography places in all around the world, you know, also in Turkey, and we know that places, but the challenging thing is going that places and taking some different photos from the photos that taken before, that is the most challenging one, because it's not easy if people go there and take some good photos before. But I love challenges during all my life. And also sometimes I'm trying to find some places, which will sweet my topic. For example, I decided to go a city in Turkey, for to take photos. Before going there, I'm making some readings, I'm trying to understand what is popular in that city or in that town? What are their traditions, and then when I go, that's the I'm trying to find that things, every part of Anatolia, I have so many different things to photograph. So probably I will continue taking photos in my country. And it's easy to understand their story to be one with them. And that makes me more comfortable while taking photos. Because if you want to have tourists in a country, it's not easy to understand the whole story, you're just taking photos, just like a tourist and you can jump into the deep of distorted debuff to cities deep of the people. Some I love taking that kinds of photos. And usually I'm trying to find the local people who will help me in that areas to show and to also explain their culture deeply. I'm choosing the destinations or the place like that.
22:24 That is incredible. Yeah, I love that. So when you you know, go to this places like and you know, to your photography, you have taken a lot of photos that have a profound meaning to it right? There is such, there is a lot of message behind your photography, at least from what I have seen. Now, do you have any some sort of mission or any purpose that you're trying to achieve from this messages? Or is it more about just the storytelling and just so happen this, you know, the impact that you give from the photo, you know, kind of just turned out that way.
23:08 Actually, before winning natural thermal photography, photography contest, I was just taking single photos and trying to tell the stories of the cities or the people I visited during my travels. But after 2017 I decided to also make photo projects, make documentary photo project because sometimes just a single photo is not enough to tell a big problem to take attention to a important social issue. So I started thinking, What can I do? Because I believe the power of photography, I believe that I believe how photography can reach the millions if the photographer use it in a proper way. We see we saw these examples in art history. So my first long term project was with cancer patients because I want to take attention to the importance of early diagnosis. I I believe that if you're if someone is afraid of something, they can be careful. But if you make advertisements and saying that everything will be great, you will be healed. Everything will be great. People stop afraid of that illnesses like cancer. So I want So, tell the story of Zeynep. She was one of my main model in my project. She was healing too. And her story was so heartbreaking and so emotional. But then unfortunately and unexpected, Lee, we lost her. Cancer made a metastasis, and we lost her. And I understand how things can change quickly. And from her story, I wanted to broke people's hurt, I want to make them sad, because I believe that if they become sad, they can get Doctor controls. Early diagnosis, if they have some problems, the doctors can get that in early stages. I've worked with cancer patients. And then COVID comes our lives two years ago, you know, and everything was like a science we film. We were watching from our computers, from our televisions, what's happening in China while everything was so far, and it was like, We will not affect with these things. And then it becomes the whole world's reality. And after World War Two, nothing affected whole world like that. And I can stop myself to take the photos of that times, because as a photographer, I can't change the history, but I can show it. That was my motto. So I tried to get permission to go to the intensive care unit to go to the hospitals to go to the streets to take the photos. But especially in the beginning of the pandemic, there were no vaccine, even they were not trained once. Proper treatments for COVID No one let me permission. But then I use the power of social media I made. I wrote some tweets. And first of all Ankara municipal to hear my voice. We were all in lockdown in Ankara, but they get permission for me. And I photograph the disinfection periods of all public transformation areas or the other places. And then I get permission from Gaza University, hospital, I risked my life, I risked my children's life. But I go to the hospital and take photos for one month, not just one day, just for today, I went that hospital every single day for months, just to make something different and stroke because after 100 year, when we all died, people will remember these times from our photos. This is the power of photography, with photography, your writing history, and can you imagine you will be the part of history with your photos. This is something being immortal in my opinion, I may be die, but people will remember my name with that photos. And this is so important for me. I get all that risks, and I photograph all the parents all parts of I choose photos in all parts of the hospital. And that project Mr. That's in almost all photo contests. So I'm so happy with that project and after NatGeo my point of view to photography is changed also and I also tried to take attention to these social importance issues and take photos of them. I've worked with seasonal workers children because you know with COVID Our children started education from far away from laptops from computer but the The economical situation is not same in every part of Turkey and so many children don't have internet connection, don't have laptops, and they couldn't get the education they should get from the government from their country. So I made a photo project to take attention to that. unequality actually, something like that.
30:27 Wow, that is incredible. What a story. So I'm just trying to, you know, put my thoughts together here. You know, that's just so incredible what you did, you know, I saw your, your project, your photo series around COVID. And it's absolutely incredible right? Now, what, what going through your head, what makes you want to risk your life, I know that, you know, you, you, you you want, you kind of mentioned about leaving a legacy, being able to be part of the history. But in order to do that, you're not only risking yours, yourself, but also, you know, like you say, risking your daughter. So
31:11 how, actually, both of them.
31:15 And you're doing it for a month, right? So what was that month look like? Like, just take us through, you know, the day in the life of Dilek. During that one month, when you were going back and forth to the hospital to document this incredible pandemic?
31:35 Actually, it wasn't easy, but I couldn't stop myself. And you can't imagine how many? No, I heard during the wall permission process. Everyone's saying, No, you should stay at your home, you're a woman, you should take care of your children and stay at home. And normally, it's hard for me to want some thing from someone and to ask some help from the others. But I couldn't stop myself because I was seeing that how COVID affecting the whole world. And I couldn't stop myself, I couldn't think anything. And I was good. I was willing to close on me going to the hospital, taking photos during the whole time. And during at 5pm. For Turkish time, I was leaving the hospital coming home, taking the cloths on me in front of my house, putting them in a bag. And then with the clean cloths in me, I was going home but also I was putting some scarf on my hairs because I don't want to affected my children if my hair gets some wires or not. I was washing my clothes with hot water in ocean machine. Also making a shower with hot water. And I wasn't coming together with my children, not just one month, after one month. The doctor suggested me to live separately with my children for one month too. And you can't imagine how hard it is how hard it is. I love being close to the people. I love being close to my children. I love hugging them. I love touching them. But I couldn't make this and I was just sitting in front of my computer making some Instagram talks or something like that. And I was so curious. I realised that I'm checking my favour almost all the time. And I was thinking that I get infected and I will gonna die. And I was just praying for not infecting my children. It was easy while I was in hospital, but it wasn't easy while I was waiting at home and thinking if I infected or not. And I get 20 kilos during that period. I was just eating I was just eating. And during my pregnancies. I didn't get that weight actually. But the full periods really affected me so much. Oh, also emotionally, too. But thanks God. I didn't affect it. I'm not in that period during the Wu COVID times I never effected. It's surprising. I'm lucky, I guess. Maybe that's why I go that gut, maybe God chose me to make that project because being one month in hospital and being so close to the patients was not easy, actually.
35:24 Yeah, wow. That's, that's incredible. You know, I saw the documentary on I can't remember what what TV station it was. But I saw a documentary on how hotel what are the different routine that the hotel have to go through when they accept people for quarantine, and it was in it was crazy. So that's why I was very interested to hear what was that, you know, journey like for you. And, you know, doing that for a month and a little bit more. That's, that's just crazy, you know, the amount of dedication that you put in there. It's, it's unprecedented. And I admire that very much. Now. I'm still curious, right. So you document all this incredible photos, and events that had happened during probably going to be one of the global event one of the, you know, an event that affected globally, like you say, you know, ever since the World War Two. Now, when you when you kind of, you know, put all the when you kind of put all the intention together and you tell yourself, I want to document this thing, I want to be able to go into these places where the people are infected, where the people are getting affected in the most, how do you go about getting that permit? Because like you say, you have come across a lot of nose. And I could imagine, right, what people thinking when they hear this was like, Are you crazy? Like no, is they home? So what? How did you end up getting that permit and being able to actually document this event?
37:22 First of all, I was just sitting at home in the beginning of first COVID. Case detected in 11, march in Turkey. And I was in hospital in May. During that two months, I was trying to get permission. But first of all, I didn't think going on the hospitals and taking some photos, I was thinking that this period will end in a few weeks at least. But I was just sitting at my home trying to see something different. What can I show that home? I made something I made something different, actually. But it wasn't enough for me. There was a war outside. And I can be part of that historic historical times. So I get calls with so many people. But the only thing I heard was No. First of all, they were saying that you are not a journalist. And even the journalists are coming here and taking one or two days, but you want to stay and take photos so many times so it's impossible. And it and when I talked with someone they were saying, yes, taking that photos can be a good idea. But our hospital has some public relation. Ship departments. And there's a guy he is taking some photos he can take to Yes, anyone can take photos but taking some good photos is something different. So it wasn't easy. It wasn't easy. But finally, while I was making an Instagram talk at that times at Doctor heard my voice and he said that Mr. Like you can come and take photos if you want in my hospital. I'm taking photo I'm trying to take some photos, but I'm in the beginning of my photography journey. And I can I open the doors to you and you can teach me how to take photos. I said okay, but it was incredible. Everything was done. becoming so easy. I wasn't used to that everyone should send me no. And I want the hospital. We talked with the director of the hospital, he was so kind to, and he said that you can start now. And I said, No, I didn't come with proper clothes to take some photos. I'm viewing sweets right now. So, okay, I will come together and start everything started in that way. I, after all that periods I find a way to take photos. And also I wrote a paper to governments. Because I want to take some photos in government hospital and Institute hospitals to and people liked me. They said that they will never answer you. system because, you know, so many people writing papers to them, but they never answered. After one month, they answered me. In that paper, I explained, who am I what is my aim, what I want to do with that photos. And they led me to take some photos still in city hospital. And after working in Gaza University, hospital, I went to city hospital to take some photos, but it was just for two days. And it wasn't enough to take some really strong photos. Because when you're a foreigner in a place, they all get nervous, and you can't catch the natural body language. At the time, being in one month in Ghazi University Hospital was so important because they use to me, they get used to me, they stop seeing me, I become one with them. And they just forget me, they were just thinking there's a crazy woman taking all the time. So they stop thinking at me. They stop worrying about me also, because in the beginning, when I first go to hospital, they were a little bit furious and worrying about me because I could infected myself too. And I can go into hospital as a patient. But they understand and they see how I'm obeying the rules and don't making something stupid at the hospital. So yeah, I become invisible. Oh, and get all that photos.
42:47 That is such an incredible story. And you know, what I love about it is that you you persist, right? You don't give up, you keep going, you keep knocking on the door and eventually door open. But once the door open, you know you you do it the right way you follow the rules and making sure that you're not adding the problem, you know, adding to the problem. And I admire that very much. Because, you know, it's hard to be out there and documenting these things, you know, all these incredible events, right? But doing it in a way that doesn't create more harm to the rest of the people. I think that is just incredible. So massive congratulations for you, you know, you highly deserve to get the award for that. I mean, it's just such an incredible story. So we you know, moving on from that we talked about earlier before the podcast and us, you mentioned it yourself that that basically, you know, once you won that award with the Nat Geo, you started to look things differently starting to work more on a longer term project and looking through the different ways that you can get that you can share the voice of issues that is important. Now, share with us, you know, with the audience, what are some of the project that you are working on right now? And what is your mission behind that?
44:26 Right now I'm working on a project to take attention to climate change because climate change is one of the biggest problems that the humanity and the world faced right now. And there are some harmful effects of coal mines to the environment and it's affected the Climate change also And we should find some alternative energy sources. This can be changed from the geographical station of your country or your location. But there are so many alternative station but especially after the war between Ukraine and Russia, the cool months become more important, aka, some, I want to take attention to that point, and make a long term project to show all that things deeply. And I'm working with them right now. Oh, I went to some coal mines for five times. And I will continue going there and taking photos. It's not an easy project for me. Also, it wasn't easy to get permissions again. Probably I always love something challenging. Because when you make something like that, you also inspire the young ladies in your country. This is important. For me, being an artist is not just taking some good photos in my opinion, being an artist is also inspiring the young generations with your stand with your thoughts with your speaks with your stand with your also behaviours. So I'm trying to do my best as an artist. I'm trying to be a role model to them. So yes, it's not easy. It's not easy for me to do take photos in cool minds, because I don't like I have some claustrophobic problems. And I can stand in close areas in dark, but I'm going in crude minds. Can you imagine how it was challenging for me also. But yes, some good photos are coming. I was so excited, especially after some shoots and I sent them to some photo contest and seeing that they are choosing as editor pique and shortlisted in some context is also making me happy. Because I didn't finish the project. Right now. I just send some of them as single photos. But what I get was so helpful. So I'm so hopeful with my new long term project too.
47:50 Wow, that is incredible. Yeah, look, I used to be an engineer and I used to work in aluminium refinery. So I know how difficult it must have been for you to get, you know, permission to get in there. Especially to take photos. I know, mining companies doesn't like people doing that, right.
48:11 There are three kinds of mining companies. One is under the control of government, one's private. And also there are illegal coal mines, they don't have any permission. If someone see and find that cool ones, they destroyed them. I find some two illegal coal mines. And I will go there and take some photos soon. It will also be so dangerous for me because being in an illegal coal mine means also risking my life again. And just one month ago, an explosion happens in one of the biggest coal mines that I was, I was planning to shoot to. So it's not easy. Yes, I'm risking my life again. But something good cannot happen. If you don't take risks. In my opinion, comfort zones are our most barrier, in my opinion, when you take out of your comfort zone. Something good has happened. In my opinion.
49:31 That is so great. I totally agree with that. And yeah, like just you know, rules and regulation to keep the mind safe. The is probably what's making them illegal. So going to a coal mine that's illegal, going to be a lot more dangerous. So please do take care of yourself when you go out there. I know how dangerous it could be, you know, being an engineer working on there. And yeah, it's just so many hazards and so many things. would go wrong in no time. So make sure that you take care of yourself. But climate change is something that I feel, you know, I feel powerful. I feel Yeah, powerfully about because I feel like there's there is not enough urgency around that. And it's, you know, I used to live in Canada, I see how quickly ice caves and glaciers disappearing within the short two years, two and a half years that I was there. So just imagine what's going to happen in 1015 20 years, right? We're not even talking about decades here, we're talking about years. So I'm so happy that you're doing this, you know, in, in a sense that to bring more voice out there to bring more awareness out there, but make sure that you are safe, because we love you. And we want you. We want you to be around. So yeah,
50:59 thank you. I'm trying my best. But, yes. Let's think positive things and fingers crossed.
51:11 Yeah, fantastic. All right. Well, you know, it's been a pleasure, we're coming to the one hour mark is such a pleasure to hear a lot of story from you. And, you know, when you finish the project, perhaps you could come back to the podcast and share a little bit about that project about, you know, the impact that it has been give it has given? I think that would be amazing to hear. But one question that I always ask my guests, you know, and you say to yourself, I, as a as an artist, we have the responsibility to share our vision to share our voice with the younger generation or with the rest of the world. So if there is one advice that you could give, either to young, younger yourself or maybe to your daughter, or maybe to anyone in the world, right, just the one advice, what would that one advice be,
52:06 um, that choosing one advice is not easy, actually. But if I should choose just one, I can advise them to work so much, and not race with the others, but race with yourself. You should be a better person. Before the person yesterday, just raise with yourself, not the others. And don't keep, don't leave working work so much. Because I believe that if someone works so much, he can succeed, she can succeed. Just
52:51 wow, that is such a great advice, especially, you know, in photography area, or in the artists area, you know, the artists, community, you know, there is a lot of competition, there is a lot of people a lot of impostor syndrome, you know, people are feeling that their heart is not good enough compared to other people. So, I believe that this is such a great advice. And it's such an important one too. So thank you very much for sharing your wisdom, your story, as well as your insights right? To all of this unique experiences. Now, if this, if the audience want to find more about your photography about the project that you're working on, or simply just want to get to know you better, what is the best way to find you?
53:46 My web page is one of the best way to find me. Also, I have an Instagram page and twitter account. They can find everything in that three platform error information about me.
54:03 Fantastic. All right, well, you know, we'll put that under description. So if you want to find out and get in touch with Dilek, then feel free to do so. But thank you very much for being here. Dilek it's been such a pleasure. It's been a great conversation. I love hearing your story. I love hearing your wisdom and I am sure that the audience out there will get so much value from this. So thank you very much for your time and I very much appreciate having you here.
54:36 Thank you so much, Stanley for inviting me to this podcast and giving this opportunity to me thank you so much.
54:46 No, no worries at all. And you know, like I love having a female in my podcast because there are a lot of male photographers out there and it's proven to be more difficult finding female coming to the podcast and like you say, right. You know, so I believe that's important to you know, to, to speak their, their voice as as a female or a male, right, whichever you are, but we know that the male are a lot more dominant in this in this in this niche. So thank you very much for being here and for having that courage not only to voice your messages, but also to actually go out there and knocking on doors and doing the things that most people don't want to do to share the social issue. I find a lot of inspiration for that and I admire you for that. So yeah, fantastic.
55:48 Thank you. Thank you so much.
55:51 All right, well, we can't do this thank you very much for Lucy listening in and man, that was a great podcast it's just so much wisdom so much great stories behind that. So make sure you check Deluxe photo there is so many great gems and when you go to her photo, you can feel the emotion that she tries to tell to those photographs. So let us know in the comment or in the in the review how you feel about this podcast. If you enjoy this particular episode or any other episode, don't forget to subscribe. And let me know if there is other photographer other artists that you'd like me to have an interview in this podcast. Well, with that being said, we can hunters. Thank you very much for listening, listening. today. I'll see you guys next week. Keep creating and keep shooting. Until next time
Tuesday Jan 10, 2023
Tuesday Jan 10, 2023
Hello Wicked Hunters,
Happy New Year to you and we're kicking off the new year with Tomasz - Founder of Frames Magazine. Tomasz Trzebiatowski is a photographer and independent publisher. Aside from FRAMES, he is also the editor-in-chief of the FujiLove Magazine for users of the Fujifilm X and GFX camera systems. His photographic interests lie predominantly in fine art, music, and street photography. He is also a classical pianist.If you want to learn more about Frames Magazine, you can go to:FRAMES Magazine: www.readframes.comFRAMES Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/framesmagazine/FRAMES Instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/frames_magazine/
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to see connect with Stanley Aryanto, you can go to the following:
Don't forget to let us know your favourite part of the Podcast in the comment below and subscribe
0:00 Trade started parallel with COVID. Now, when it comes to steps, you know, I had the vision and I made the decision myself is it's just gonna happen. So step by step learning what was there to be to be learned and overcoming any kind of obstacle which was there, you know, like looking for printers day by day, step by step, I was following my plan. And the only thing which was kept me going was my very clear vision.
0:34 Here, we get hunters Welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast, where we share artist journey and share how photography has given us hope, purpose and happiness. And today, we have a special guest from someone who not only passionate about photography, but he built a platform where photographers can share their photography with more people out there. And you know, as artists, that's how much we love to share our photography. So I'd like to welcome Tomash from frames magazine, and he built this community as well as you know, the publication. And it is one of the reason why I want to bring him here. So too much how are you? You know, thank you for coming into the podcast. I'm so excited to talk with you.
1:25 Yeah, thank you so much, Stanley. I'm excited myself. Thank you so much for inviting me over and yeah, very happy to, you know, to talk about whatever your listeners would like would like to know, you know about the story about about the magazine, so on. And Greetings, everyone from snowy, snowy Switzerland. That's where I'm based. It's finally getting cold over here. And also the the real winter is taking over. Yeah, getting ready for Christmas.
1:54 sounds incredible. You know, most people I'm here in Bali, and I used to live in Canadian Rockies for two and a half years. And most people think Bali is paradise, but I'm missing the winter so much.
2:07 Especially if you're living close to the Rockies. Yeah, it's like a similar surroundings in a way, you know, to to some parts of Switzerland or the other way around to Switzerland is similar to some parts of Canada. So yeah, 100 Definitely. Yeah, I would prefer to be sitting in valley right now to be honest.
2:27 Well, you know, it's really cool. Like, I come across frames magazine from my mentee, actually, he, he introduced me, it's like, Oh, you gotta check out this Facebook group and the publication. So I got into there. And now it's just, I was just blown away by what you are doing in the, for the community. So before we get to all that, right, we're going to talk a lot about, you know, what, what you're doing, what your vision, what you're planning and so forth. But before we got all that, you know, tell us a little bit about yourself, and what attracted you to photography and what keep you from, you know, keep doing this? Because we all know, photography is not the easiest profession to earn from.
3:14 Yeah, well, so I don't even know where to start, right. Like, every time somebody asked me about, tell us, tell us a little bit about yourself. You know, the problem is, the years are passing. I'm getting older. So this little bit is getting bigger. But yeah, okay, let me let me try to put it in a nutshell, you know, I am a educated musician, classical, classical pianist, you know, so that's what I started. That's what I learned. And that's what I still do. up to these days today. You know, I'm still working part time at the local college of music here in Lucerne, Switzerland. So I was into, you can say, into arts, you know, forever. I mean, I was into into music. My father was introducing me to, you know, paintings photography as well, you know, so the kind of art in general was was over, always around. But it wasn't until I was I was 25 I will say, when I really discovered photography, you know, I was busy practising the piano, this takes a lot of your time, you know, but, in in the year 2000, something special happened. I I got the chance to travel to Antarctica, as a musician, as a classical pianist. You know, I went on a on a cruise on a two weeks cruise and I was supposed to play you know, for the guests, make some music. And that was when I for the very first time in my life, you know, both had both a camera photographic camera and my own camera, because I thought you know, going to Antarctica it's a good enough reason to have a camera with yourself right? So that's, that's when I bought my very, very first camera and In the beginning, you know, I went on the trip, I came back started learning about everything. What's involved, you know, digital, this was a digital cameras, camera, right? So I learned some analogue photography before from my father, he was he was into it, but my very own camera was digital. And if I remember correctly, I think it was three megapixels camera or something like this was Canon PowerShot G two, I remember, remember exactly what it was. But anyway, I was hooked. You know, I came back, I immediately got excited about capturing what I see in front of me on, on images on on, you know, on photographs. Yeah, rest is history, you know, and I keep going to today, I somehow have this passion have this bag in me that I love to translate to capture to interpret what I see in front of me in a photographic way. You know, it's just, it excites me to these days. So, so far not able to stop I am not planning of stopping anytime soon.
6:12 Yeah, wow, that's, that's an inspiring story. And, you know, I always enjoy hearing where they first come across photography, and a lot of time, it's about the landscape, the travel or capturing a moment in itself. Now, I can know that you're a musician. Wow. That's just incredible. I know, I always wanted to learn piano, but I find it too difficult. I don't have the finger coordination. So I, uh, wow. I didn't admire that very much.
6:42 Yeah, and you know, and just to add to this, maybe where I draw this inspiration still to these days, it's very often for me about this. This interaction between music and photography, you know, being out there photographing, I don't listen to music on my headphones, you know, like, when I photograph some people do to get into the zone, right? But, but I very often sing about tunes, or, you know, remember in a specific pieces, you know, of music in my mind when photographing, and it kind of it kind of, you know, inspires me in the moment, or, like, changes the mood of how I see things. And also the opposite. When I play piano, I very often think about music and kind of sink in, in a way of, you know, images, colours, you know, see particular scenes, right. So it's kind of as what's the word symbiotic, you know, kind of experience, I mean, music, photography, it's, they fuel each other, in my case, and I'm really enjoying this process.
7:55 That's really interesting. I know, I've come across, you know, how music can change. And this was in, in an example of post processing, how to edit how to, you know, approach your photography, once you have it there. And a friend of mine kind of introduced it as like, man, you should try to listen to different music and see how you feel about your photos. While you listen to that. So I'm actually quite intrigued about this, right? Since you're, you're an actual professional musician, as well as photographer, how, when you when you go out there, and like you say, right, you go out there you you see a scene that you want to photograph? How do you pick the music to connect you to that scene? And you know, once you pick that, do you ever change kind of the music to get a different perspective of the same scene?
8:51 Yeah, so in my case, just like I mentioned before, it's a bit different. So I don't actually listen to music. When I photograph I don't I don't, you know, have any kind of headphones or I don't choose tracks. It's rather in my case, it's it's rather some engineer. It's kind of but it's, I imagine it, then it's a very natural process. I don't like three plan. You know, I will be thinking about Mozart, you know, whether it's something that happens in a in a in the moment. It's a very, what's the word? It's like a mutual influence kind of mechanism. On this
9:28 moment, ah, yeah,
9:28 it can also happen that I, you know, let's say I come to you or, you know, I go into, I don't know, Indonesian mountains. Right. And, and the scene itself, provokes, or like, you know, resonates in a special way with a certain, you know, something comes to mind. And in my case very often connects to a specific genre or even specific piece of music, you know, and then I kind of keep going down this rabbit hole. Right, and kind of very special artistic effects are like, you know, impressions a very special reaction start occurring. And it's like a spiral. Kind of
10:11 Yeah, I mean, you know, when I say play the music, I'm not saying in a literal sense, but you know, in your head can opinion imagining, yeah, that's yeah, that's, that's really cool that you do that and, you know, it's something that I, I'd like to explore as well to get that creativity going. So tell us a little bit about your photography, what is what is your photography and what you're trying to achieve, like, what you photograph and what you are trying to achieve when you are taking those photos. So
10:45 I, you know, it's kind of difficult even to myself to always to put the finger or like to define and I know, it's, you know, applies to many photographers, like, for, for a long time I was, quote unquote, like, we do very often searching right for my own style for my own. Today, I don't define it anymore as searching, even though I'm still I'm, I'm reacting to too many different things. And it's mainly I think, in a visual way, in a, you know, I'm reacting to shapes to lines to shadows to, and it does not matter so much. In my case, if it's a landscape in front of me, or if it's a piece of furniture, or if it's a human being or an animal, you know, it's kind of a you know, in any given sin. So my photography, predominantly, when I find time to do it, these days, I'm also getting frustrated, you know, these these days with, with so many tasks, and I'm really trying hard to plan my photography time, by my own photographic time. But when I, when I go for it, you know, I, I am this kind of photographer, I go out in there, I go out there and I and I started observing, I started observing the surroundings wherever I happen to be right. And I'm kind of looking for, for those special people know juxtapositions of lines of light. So in the meantime, create the images I create, and I can share some with your viewers at some point, if it's possible, you know, are kind of abstract, I like black and white a lot. So the kind of abstract, but they're not really abstract, because this is a representation of the real world in front of me. But it's very often, you know, small fragments of buildings, it's not the entire scenes, it's not the entire landscape scene is a, it's a very tight crop, or is a very tight, you know, part of the scene or is a very, it's a, it was a corner of a building with some cracks in the wall, you know, and this creates this new life by itself in itself, you know, this new kind of being, which I am fascinated by, so, you would have to look at a few images, it's difficult to define, but I am basically in some way. Yeah, fascinated by any kind of visual creations, you know, being the nature creations or human being creations, and I'm documenting those little details.
13:15 Yeah, so I actually, you know, the reason why I asked that question is because I saw some of your photograph. And the way you frame your photograph is just incredible, right? I think there was one photo where it was it was, it was a glasses or something like that. And then you play with the shadow and the highlights. And it turns out, totally different than you know, the way you sit. So it's incredible how you observe, and you look at what is in front of you, and you create something that is totally different, you know, out of it. Now, one thing that I'm interested, you know, like you say you'd like to do landscape, you'd like to also do a lot of this abstract, as well as intimate photograph of wherever you go, you know, whether it's a glasses that you wear, or the buildings around your city or the nature. So how does the, you know, share with us the feeling that you get when you capturing those different moments? Is that does that spark the same type of emotion? Or is it different and give you a different satisfaction altogether?
14:28 This Excellent question. I mean, I have never been asked this question, but it's really excellent, because I just love you know, thinking about these kinds of things and talking about it. But it will not be the easy answer, of course, because it's so personal. And so, you know, it's happening on such an intuitive level. But I love this challenge of trying to put those things into words. So thanks for letting me Yeah. Yeah,
14:54 I really do enjoy asking a really hard, you know, thoughtful question. I love to make up So I
15:00 absolutely love it. You know, that's, that's what it's all about, you know, when, when you really get into photography, right? I think you asked about the emotions Yeah, or emotion I'm experiencing. On one level, this is definitely some kind of a similar emotion, you know, when I'm in the landscape or if I'm on a, in a parking lot, you know, and looking at some lines on the, on the floor and cracks, it's on some level, it's a similar thing I am. And I can basically getting goosebumps, you know, it happens is like, you know, where I, where a certain set of elements in front of me, starting or falling into place for me, you know, for for what I am kind of reacting to, and those elements, those lines start, start creating this, this, this new form, or this new, you know, kind of scene or so, it can be, you know, a range of mountains with sun rays, and, you know, shadows of trees, but it can be also a couple of stones in the parking lot, you know, on a on a white line, you know, whatever it might be my emotional, this great question, how would I, I think I would just, I mean, the simplest words, I would, I would describe my emotion as excitement. Because, you know, he's getting goosebumps is like, I think his fascination is purely a fascination I get about the surrounding world, you know, and on a deepest, deepest level, I think it's some kind of thankfulness for that I am able to experience this kind of fascination. You know, so many people work, we know it, so many people walk their, their streets, you know, the, you know, the cross the same, you know, cross, you know, crossing the look at the same buildings every single day. And they just ignore them, because, but I keep looking, I can be walking, you know, I spend most of my time at home, of course, and walking the same streets every day. I always keep looking, I always keep discovering different stuff. Because I look so close, I've tried to look, I'm not even trying, it's just happening. This is who I am, right? So it's difficult to explain. And then when I noticed this thing, this one thing and you know, when I just have to grab my camera and start experimenting, and you know, working, so people are looking at me, it happens, is it some kind of a weirdo, you know, because I always my camera down on my knees or whatever it might be, you know, looking for, for those elements. So I think it's this combination of fascination with those visual elements, but also kind of like a, what's the word great gratefulness for, for being this way for being able to notice those things? So it's quite a big pointer. It's quite a deep emotion. I mean, it's quite a Yeah, to be honest, it's quite quite a big part of my life.
18:05 I can totally resonate with that. You know, like when you find something that really intrigued you, and it really not only make you grateful, being able to enjoy that moment, but also energise you, and I think that's that's what passion is, right? And that's why we love doing this, because it energises and makes us excited, like you say so. Now,
18:27 you also you also use, like, excellent where I was missing these words energising me. Yeah, absolutely the same. It's yeah, when this moment happens in the morning, let's say my whole days, like, on fire, I'm energised is perfect. But you also described it in a perfect way here. Exactly.
18:47 And that's, that's really cool. I mean, you know, I think a lot of us feel very similar emotion. Now, one thing, you know, I'd love to go into some of your, what you've done with the community. But we're just one more question before we get into that, that really fascinates this, about your approach is that so Okay, as a landscape photographer, for example, like you know, I travel I do landscape and adventure and it's, it's a lot easier to get drawn or to see the things that you know, attract your eyes, right, because it just there it jumps on it. There is an aurora boom, it's you know, attracts your eyes, there is an ice cave, there is a mountain it's right there right. Now, what you do in some of your photography is totally different though. Right? It's, it's something that is, I'd like to say the grandest thing in the grandest detail in the bigger scheme. So in the big big world, everywhere, everything where most people are looking for that big thing. You look for the small detail that actually is very intriguing, very powerful that can create an evoke emotion like what you do. Right? So what? What intrigues you about those smaller detail? Like, you know, what intrigued you about the shape what intrigued you about the cracks, like what attracted you, like, you know, what attracted you to the smaller details, like it attracted us to the mountains or the stars and so forth?
20:27 Well, so, yeah, very interesting, because but, you know, it's the discovery kind of thing, because, let me give you an example, if I have never been to Indonesia, right. So if I think about going there visiting you, and you know, you may be showing me some amazing places, I can already feel excitement, because I haven't seen it yet. It will be new to my eyes, it will be new to my senses to everything, right. So automatically, I will be also photographically triggered, I mean, this is I would love to capture it, you know, in the way I am experiencing this place, right. But I think what I learned, and when I say learned, part of his part of it is, of course, in some way planted in ourselves, you know, we, we have this dose, we have this interest, we have this passion somewhere there, it's I think it's in each of us somewhere there, but it doesn't serve us every single time. So, you have to kind of practice it, you have to once you realise this moment, you have to you know, so you asked about those little details, for example. Why should a little detail a crack in a straight, you know, creating some kind of shapes creating some kind of pattern, whatever, which I have never seen before? Why should it excite me less than a, you know, line of, of a range of mountain range, which I have never seen before. It's just, it's just a different element. It's a big, big landscape scene. But this is a small thing here somewhere hidden, you know, at the corner of my street. But by itself, it's a visual representative, it's a visual. It's a visual, I don't I'm looking for a word, you know, it's a visual. I mean, it's an image, it's a sin, which, which is out there in front of me. For me, it becomes almost equally exciting. Because I have never seen it before. Wow, look at this crack, look at those lines, what's this, and look at those mountings. So for me, it kind of the line got blurred, I can't differentiate anymore, I don't have to I'm and I'm happy, I don't have to because I get excited about this few stones on the street. And I get excited about the mountain range in Indonesia, which I haven't ever seen before. So I think it's, it's working in a similar way. You know, what I also want to add is very often when, you know, pointing a camera at something, or photographing something in particular, you know, being again, this mountain range, or some kind of object in front of me, and I probably, many of us have the same feeling it's, of course, we pointed the camera in a certain direction at a certain element. But I feel like what's coming into this final photograph is also everything else, which we are experiencing, you know, with our body with our senses, smells, you know, touch, wind, whatever it might be. So it's all around me, which inspires me and tries to I'm trying to convey this feeling, you know, which is living inside of me, you know, based on all of those elements and essences, I'm trying to convey in this, you know, four by three kinds of frame, which I am, which I'm composing. Yeah, I could go forever and always, but you can sense it's kind of, it's a big kind of experience. It's a very complex experience. But I can have it exactly in a grand, amazing scene, you know, of one of the, you know, most exciting landscapes in the world or whatever. But I can have it also in my bathroom, right. Yeah, that's, yeah,
24:25 that's incredible. And I think, you know, a lot of photography personalities anyway, because of the social media doesn't appreciate that smaller detail doesn't appreciate that point of discovering something new, you know, and I know like a lot of, for example, like a lot of people, a lot of people that wanted to learn from me, they say it's like, well, you know, I can't travel like you do, but you just show how you could have the same excitement for the same passion and energy and energy From the things that could be around a corner of your house or even in your house, and, you know, like, the word travel doesn't necessarily mean you have to fly to the other side of the world and really love
25:13 Yeah, we tend to forget that some of the most famous, most respected and, you know, photographers in the history of photography. And you can really start with names, of course, like, like Cardi B song, he was walking the streets of his town, right? He was not travelling to Venezuela, and you know, Fiji, and wherever he was walking the streets of his town, and he's in the history books, because he was seeing things around his neighbourhood. Right, and capturing in a way that we just, we start drooling when looking at those images. And he was for sure excited about the things you know, so just take the camera, start walking your street, but start looking, you will see things which you have never noticed before, because you you were dreaming about travelling to Japan or to Korea or China, you know, so yeah, photograph, photographs are everywhere, right? Photographs are really everywhere, and you can start also crafting your own visual language, just on the streets of your of your own neighbourhood, you know, you will be really surprised. So, yeah, I think I
26:31 really, I really, really love what you just said there. Because, you know, I think the social media and not just you know, because now we're in the attention, time, right, where everything has to be fibrin, and ground and all that stuff. So we forget the small details that make a big difference. And you just, you know, kind of show how even the smallest thing could make a big difference in your photography. So I really enjoy that. Thanks for sharing that. Too much. Cool. So, you know, so when I come across your community, you know, your, your magazine, I see something different, you know, it's not the type of things that I came across, in, in normal photography. World or, you know, place and I'd like to hear a little bit more about what inspired you to start frames? And what is your vision and mission with the frames magazine?
27:37 I think yeah, so we are starting to touch on this on this community aspect, you know, of my activities. And, you know, like, in a nutshell, what we have been just talking about for the last, you know, 20 minutes you can see how excited I'm getting how, how, how happy I am to, to, to keep sharing those ideas, you know, I don't know now with your listeners on a, you know, at home with friends, when we're having coffees, and you know, I get the same I get, you know, energised exactly and excited and I think at some point, you know, in my life I do, I realised that I have this urge to, to share this excitement, to open people up to you know, to inspire them to, to exactly to start telling them you know, about the possibilities, you know, which are endless when it comes to working on your own art, you know, exactly in your own surroundings, you know, to do, to unlocking to to unlock their potential potential, you know, artistic potential, and so on, so forth. So, at some point I realised, I, I'm also enjoying it, and you know, and I also realised that people really start reacting, you know, to, to my own excitement. So, I think that's when it all started that I realised that I, you know, I'm, you know, I open to, I started a Facebook group, basically, yeah, I think it was the very beginning of frames, you know, I started a Facebook group and started to you know, interacting with other members, you know, talking about the photographs, sharing mine, and so on and so forth. So I think my passion to photography got combined with this urge with this need to, to interact with other people and you know, and kind of growing together because I also learned so much, you know, from from other members, it's just, it's just amazing and, you know, and it's an ongoing process and that's how it started the community, you know, the groups on internet and then in the end, I also felt like I wanted to give those people this outlet, you know, to present their work in a in a printed fashion which is, you know, you would again, think today in the world. to social media and all digital, I wanted to also show them because I also print myself quite a lot, you know, and I was always really happy, really fascinated with how the images, you know, end up looking on paper, or you know, or when you hang them on your wall. So I wanted also to show them this, you know, not everything is happening on your, on our computer screens, try this, try showing to, you know, send me your images, maybe we can print them in my, in the magazine, and so on, so forth. So, yeah, you know, just, I guess these are those elements, you know, passion plus this edge of connecting, you know, like we are now you know, like, again, now we are connecting with your community, you know, to to your podcast, it's just amazing what, and of course, technology is helping us today in a crazy way. I mean, we you are in Valley, right? Yeah, I'm in Switzerland, people listening in New York, it's just crazy. We forget how thankful we should be to, you know, when I think about my parents life, the first few decades, such things didn't exist. It's just insane. Right? So yeah, we are blessed, and then we should be really thankful. And then I think I'm kind of, yeah, using those channels to, to, to connect to spread the love, you know, right to to photography.
31:24 Yeah, that's incredible. You know, I, I love seeing photos on the screen and social media. But when I print those photo, it's a different feeling right? When you can see it and touch it and see it on your wall, I have a few on my wall here as well, you know, and it's just a different feeling. And I really enjoy it. And I know exactly how you feel. So I really like the idea of printing your photos in magazine and so forth. And I think that's really cool. So, you know, once you kind of build that community, and you come up with this idea of, you know, what, maybe there is another way of getting people out of the computer, even for just you know, a few minutes or you know, an hour or two and going through some of those art in an old fashioned way where people have more time. Because I think one of my biggest problem about consuming art in social media is not the screen itself. But the attention span, like people seems to just scroll and stop appreciating you like, oh, yeah, cool, or, you know, nice, great, you know, but it's, they never really stopped, right? Because there's always going to next note, there's going to be next notification. Next, pop next, whatever it is right with the technology. But when you look at it in an old fashioned way, you kind of switch off and you know, when you look at an art in a magazine, or in a printed fashion, you have the ability to kind of isolate yourself in the art itself. And that's what I love about it. So, when you come up with this idea, right? Oh, you know what, we should share these magazines and stuff like that. What? I'd like to hear a little bit more about what it did journey on getting to where it is right now. Because right now, you're on what fourth edition?
33:27 This is 10th edition we are working on has had a crazy time. socializations Yeah.
33:35 So and so how do you go from you know, having simply just a community of people who passionate about photography, to having a 10th edition quarterly edition. So that's almost three years now you're coming into the three years mark, and that's just incredible. So how did how did that journey go? And what are some of the challenges that you came across to get to where you are right now.
34:04 You also needless to say, you know, translating an idea to reality, it requires certain steps, you know, determination and but, you know, division of the printed photography magazine was pretty strong in you know, I had it in me for for for some more years, you know, and the whole frames magazine story started actually when the when the pandemic, you know, hit the world. I had more time, right, more more time at home, but also I felt and you know, after having some conversations with people, I felt it's a, funnily enough, I mean, not the worst moment to try and to do it because, you know, people were looked at homes so we couldn't travel and photograph as much as we would like. But we at the same time, or even more, we were then we are looking for some sources of inspiration, you know, for some to keep us here on this on this is, you know, our levels of excitement and artistic you know, you know, having those influences. So, yeah, great started when, you know, in parallel with COVID Now when it comes to steps, you know, I had the vision and and I made the decision myself is just, it's just gonna happen. So, step by step learning what was there to be to be learned, you know, and overcoming any kind of obstacle which was there, you know, like looking for printers, learning how to, you know, translate the digital files into a right print profiles, you know, and sending them to printers, and then looking for distribution, day by day, step by step, just, you know, I was following my plan. And the only thing which was, you know, which kept me going was my very clear vision, I just, I just pre visualised this, this magazine in my hand. And step by step I was, I was just going after it, you know, and it was not always the easiest thing, of course, in the beginning, you know, you have to pull it off, you have to organise everything you have to make, make sure that you are not going bankrupt. Along the process, right, this is a printed magazine, they are completely different costs when it comes to printing. And, you know, my vision was also going really for the, for the best possible quality, which I, you know, I could possibly afford, you know, and the photographs had to look just beautiful, you know, we are giving each each photograph in the magazine, it's dedicated page. So it's, that, that ties nicely to what you were talking about before, you know, we want people looking at the photograph to slow down, right? We, you're looking at one image at a time, it has space, you can concentrate on it. So you turn the page, you know, and it starts speaking to you, because there is exactly, there's no distractions and no notifications popping up from the printed pages. You have to sit down somewhere, you know, find your corner, you know, have a glass of wine, maybe or you know, have a coffee, just be careful not to spill it and you start enjoying it but enjoying an image one, one in one photograph at a time, right? And it's a big difference. So you can start this. And of course, the format is bigger than on a, let's say, on an iPhone or on a phone. Right? So it's a completely different way of interacting, interacting with a photograph. Yeah, so yeah, step by step, you know, and yeah, many hours, many sleepless nights. And here we are. So but today, I'm really really happy with it. And so and so seems to be many other many, you know, of our subscribers and readers. So, it's possible. Yeah, it's possible just and, and it absolutely applies to everything, what what your own, you know, personal vision might might be, you just have to, we tend to think about the goals right? Very often, we have a goal. And we, we fixate on this goal, but you know, like with with every other goal when when you want to walk from point eight, A to Z, or that right? There is B, C, D, E, F G on the way which you can skip, nobody can jump so far right? You have to make 26 steps from A to Zed is it 26 Either way, but no. Just make your small steps. Keep making each step you know at a time and you will get to your goal. That's it. Wow, that's my This is nothing. But this is nothing you know, it's nothing. It's not a huge discovery of myself, you know, but I also had to learn it. But today I know if I said any other goal for myself, I know it will take time, effort and those steps and that's it. The problem is so many of us give up after B because it feels difficult, it takes a bit long, you know or maybe there's something distracting. And then we get frustrated because we don't get to the goal but the satisfaction of getting to the Zed point is huge. And you know the feeling of accomplishment and you know believe in yourself and in your vision. And then you look back and look at those Yeah, exactly. Like you know asked me about all those small steps and they were there. I didn't you know, send out a few 1000s of magazines that first week I did it right. But it needs this time and those steps along the way. No other no other way to achieve it.
39:58 That is so inspiring. That is so in aspiring and you know, I guess with this again the era of right now it's all about instant right? Everything is instant you you you buy from Amazon, it's their next day you you look at, you post something you get likes right away and along the line, I think we we forgot something very important in our life that the process the journey to get there. And this is so inspiring, you know what you mentioned here? Because, well, first of all, you started a physical product during pandemic where it's very difficult right to go out there physically. And most people are studying virtual stuff, and you study the physical stuff. Second thing, I have printed photo books myself, I've you know, I have searched for not only a good quality, but an affordable one to be, you know, to so that it's profitable, and all that stuff. And I know how much effort that comes, you know, the search, the discovery, the different bits and pieces, and you know, where you try to show the importance of the quality to the printer because they just print it, right, they don't understand art. So when I saw your, your, what you do and what you put together, I was very intrigued, because, you know, I know how difficult to put that together. But you know, hearing your story here is just incredible. Because you're absolutely right, we have to go to the A, B and C and D and you know, so forth. And maybe you skip a letter, but you can't skip, you know, 10 letters that well.
41:45 And also, you know, and one one last thing, I mean, we tend to forget, or like get kind of maybe scared or discouraged by by exactly by the process itself. But we tend to forget that this entire process is also an enjoyable thing. It's not like it, okay, depends on your approach, but it I was not suffering, I was enjoying this process, I was enjoying the challenges and efforts, you know, sure, if I will be suffering physically will be different thing. But you know, if you have division, you if you want to bake a cake, you have to bake the cake, you have to look for ingredients, you have to go shopping, you have to start mixing them, you have to bake it, people are usually enjoying, right. So it's the sales, we don't forget that the process itself might be NT usually is an enjoyable thing if we are working towards the goal we are excited about. So but somehow we have this nature that we often get discouraged by the amount of steps, right? Because we think oh my God, so many things to work on, that each of those things, each of those steps is enjoyable, if it's something you enjoy doing. So don't let those you know, like little steps and dip the entire process and timeline. discourage you it's Yeah. And I think
43:17 that's, that's very inspiring. And I want to I want to kind of elaborate on and touch a little bit more into that, that that what you just mentioned there. So, you know, like a lot of us really, like you say we want you we have a goal, and we have this vision and we want it to happen right away. Like everybody wouldn't happen right away, right? It's just your nature. That's that's okay. But you say something that's, I think, very important, right? That along the line, there are process, and there are ways to enjoy the process. And you know, one thing that I want to get your take on is think we can recognise that not everything that we need to do from A to Zed is going to be enjoyable, but you manage to find the good and enjoy it anyway. So one thing that I'd like to get your opinion on or your wisdom on is how can people do that? Right? When they going when they have a vision in mind when they want it to go to that? And they're currently at A or C or you know, G how do they enjoy the each one of the step, the journey to get there so that they don't give up so that they don't get discouraged so that they keep going and push themselves forward to get to their goals.
44:41 So I think the well this is, again, a great question, not an easy answer, because you know, everybody functions differently and so on so forth. And every project is different, bigger, smaller, you know, but okay, if we if we if we like to break any kind of process into those steps you're starting at a Let's say you get to be, first of all, you have to give yourself a really strong pat on the back that you have to be because you know, 90% of people don't get to be really like nine. Most most of the people working on similar maybe are dreaming about similar projects or goals. They don't even start. It's a bit sad. I would love to encourage encourage those people to to you know, to go on and but it's the fact because most there are so many I'm unconvinced, there's so many amazing ideas in the world, they are not even getting started on. So nobody gets makes it to be. If you make it to be you should celebrate. You know, let's say you want to make a photography book. So what you did today, you took a piece of paper, you wrote seven ideas, and you sketched the cover of your book, you should celebrate 90% of people didn't even do this this step. And I think in turn, it will encourage you to okay, what's the what's the C step? And suddenly you are at F and K, you know, people saw a really Yeah, celebrate little steps along the way. Tell about them. Tell about the yo yo your family, your friends, you know, whatever. You know, I sketched my book today on a piece of paper looks amazing. I'm so excited. Yes, you should be. Because you 99% of other people dreaming about the book didn't sketch them, their book on the on the piece of paper, it's huge. I tell you, let's think about it this way. And if you manage, and you know, every next step, when you accomplish it, it will fuel you, I guarantee it will inspire you to go on. And in a way, okay, this might be the point you were asking about. And in a way, every next of those steps gets easier. Because you start believing in yourself, you start celebrating it, you start getting more excited, you start getting closer to your goal, you know. So then like you say, maybe you can skip one letter, but you can skip you know, 25. But if you get closer to the goal, you get even more excited, right? It's like we are running a marathon and you see the goal. You can be exhausted, but you will keep running right. So yeah, that's it. I think that's it, you know, but and I think you are going to we're going to actually ask me about the end at the end of the of the podcast, you know, to the disk device, so I will keep it so I will keep it to the end of the episode.
47:56 Yeah, that's I mean, that's, that's perfect. You know, it's, it's something, I really, I'm very thankful that you brought that up, because I feel I went through that period of, you know, never, always focusing on the lack, right, you get to be you get to see you get to D but the thing that I think about is that, yes, I get there, but I still have all of the steps that I haven't got there. And I think most people kind of stuck on that bit. And it discouraged them. So 100% I'm so grateful that you brought it up. And I think it's very important that the listeners out there hear this because it is very true. You know, like, like you say you you build up a momentum from your little wins. But you really need to reward yourself from from doing that. And a lot of us forget that the small steps are a big MC are the one that makes a big difference. So very well put, you know, I really enjoyed that. Thanks a lot of time, you know, for putting that true, but you need money that you say that, you know, you're saving, there's less wisdom, where can I come into the one hour mark, and we're gonna get to your wisdom right now. But one thing that I want to touch before we get into that is that now you're developing an app right for your community and for people and you have also you putting together a group of photographer and you know, in the form of photo club, right. So just give us a little bit a little bit background on how do you feel that the app and photo club can help you. You know, deliver your vision through through this through this platform. Because at the end of the day, all of this is just a platform, right? Whether it's a Facebook or Instagram, but the way we We use it is up to us as human being as Creator as a visionary. So, what have you got envision? And how do you vision people use the app, as well as you know, being part of the club can help you reach that vision.
50:20 So, yeah, just briefly, so everything ties, you know, into, to back to this idea of community. And because because I think about frames as a community, you mentioned it also few times. We were working on mobile photography app. And it might sound now a bit contra intuitive, you know, coming back to the idea of, you know, photography belonging on paper, but just to make things clear, of course, frames photography, we know printed quarterly magazine is the is the kind of main pillar of everything, what we are, you know, about, at Francis about this is we are the most proud of, you know, the printed magazine, the idea of mobile application started kind of in those, you know, weeks or months, where, where Instagram was getting some kind of critique, and maybe still getting, you know, from the photography, photographers community, you know, when it comes to the algorithms, or the idea that they now prefer, you know, maybe showing more video in the app than then still photographs. I'm still, you know, actually, to be honest, I'm enjoying Instagram a lot, you know, and I'm also getting connection over there. And in my personal feed, you know, Instagram feed, everything is actually looking pretty, pretty nice, you know, I can't play but I can imagine, maybe based on your location, geographical location, whatever it might be, your Instagram is maybe behaving differently. So anyway, I, of course, I heard about many complaints about from photographers about Instagram. And a week, you know, I came up with the idea of creating a, quote unquote, proper photography app. I mean, Instagram is a great photography app, but it's not per se, a photography app. I mean, it started as a photography app, basically. But what it is today is, is a social media platform, right? Kind of photography heavy, maybe now more video heavy, I don't know, what we are creating is a friend's photography app. And it's a purely and really heavily oriented you know, photography oriented photographer oriented application, we will be having things like portfolios, you know, photo series in it, you will be able to share, you know, you will be able able to export, export your your foot portfolio and share it with with whoever you want via email, you know, or via special link and so on and so forth. But everything ties back to again, to community, the idea is to gather enthusiasts, you know, photography lovers around this app, you know, to be able to also look at people's work and look for people we could be potentially, you know, featuring in the printed magazine, you know, we will be also having a special fit in the app, you know, where we'll be it will be a kind of like a again, like a kind of like a magazine. But you know, of course different from the printed magazine, it will be more informative with articles not on gear, we are not going into gear, there's enough technology and everything is there are some great great platforms out there right. But we will be covering you know, photography, photography, ideas, thoughts, you know, portfolios, conversations with photographers in the app itself. So next to your portfolio, your photo your you know, friends and people you follow their, their work right. And their their feeds, you will have this in app magazine, which will be inspiring you again, so you will have two sides sharing your own work following other people's work but also getting inspiration from from photography related content. Nice things the thing to mention I can mention earlier today is that the application will be completely free of charge. So this is again a nice one a nice bonus here. And at the same time yeah, we are you are right, we are launching what's called a friends photography circle. This is a membership kind of club, you know, you can think about it like as a as a you know, think about your local photography club, does that still exist, where you really go in there and meet friends you know, and start discussing photography, having guest speakers, you know, this will be happening in the, in the friends photography circle, of course, mainly online because we will be international. But we are thinking also about you know, having meetings in the future we are thinking about working towards a friend's photography book, yearly yearly photography book. But again, what's the most exciting about it is, you know, we'll be making friends around the world and you know, hopefully meeting each other in the future, you know, working on exhibitions together and so on and so forth. So, yeah, if I can mention, if it's okay with you, you know, just quickly, it's, it's still possible to, to, to join to apply, you know, to reframes photography circle, you can visit our website, you know, drop me a message to the contact form, and I will, you know, share all the necessary details here. But yeah, many things happening. Yeah, definitely, towards the end of this year.
55:24 Yeah. Wow, that's, you know, I really love that. And I think one of the things that really intrigued me about the app that you're putting together, when you have it as an idea, still I saw, you know, on the on friends Facebook group, is that, how you're focusing on the immersion to the photography, right, instead of just a scrolling app, like to say, an attention grabbing app, right? You have this the immersion into one photography, with the story with the interaction, and I think it's great, you know, you mentioned about that, like, you know, portfolio and, you know, the interface and stuff like that, and you put it very well there, you know, that it's, it's, it's good to have, I mean, we love the you know, the entertainment part of Instagram and Facebook, and that's what they're moving across to right. But at the same time, we also miss that time where we can connect to a deeper level. And I think that's something that we really miss in this new era. So I really enjoy that. And you kind of couple that with the photo club as well, photo circle, you mentioned now, just quickly, actually, you know, like, before we get into that, I might, I might ask you this, the last question first, and then we get into that now. So it's been really great conversation, I really appreciate having you here. And you've dropped a lot of wisdom, a lot of new perspective, which I think it's really important in our life, right perspectives. Now, what is that one wisdom or one advice that you would give either your younger self or anyone, if they ask, you know, like, Tomash? If there is one advice that you could give me, what would that be?
57:22 Yeah, so most probably will be the one which I kind of talked about already, but let me like, rephrase it and kind of put it into in a in a shorter, you know, form is, if you have a dream goal idea. You know, you are really, you know, striving to to achieve and, you know, keeps you awake at night, and so on. But you feel a little bit stuck on, you know, maybe overwhelmed with with the whole concept of this of this goal and and make a quick reset in your head and go out and tomorrow, make the first step, make the smallest step towards this goal. Because it can it can really, like, trigger the avalanche. You know, like, I know, and I know it myself and exactly is is the younger me. I was, you know, maybe not courageous enough, maybe doubting my own ideas, and, and some of them never came to fruition, of course, you know, but I learned this lesson and and that's what I apply today. If, if you have an idea or a goal, you have a goal, which of course you believe in, you know, it's a viable goal. But you kind of feel a bit stuck and overwhelmed, maybe scared to go this path, but you really want to want it right, make the first step. It can be one email, it can be one sketch on a piece of paper. But it's one step. You know, it's like avalanche and snow avalanche in in the mountains. A little ball of smoke or you know, a little what's the flake of snow can trigger a huge avalanche, right? Just just make this step and make it tomorrow. Or even better today, right? And you will you will reach your goal. You know, you'll be so much closer to reaching your goal. So that would be it. I think I didn't keep it really short. But yeah, I
59:25 know, my point. Yeah. I love that. I love how you use the, you know, the analogy of small flake can make and can create an avalanche and I think that's what we're working towards right and being patient to keep making that. Keep trying that small flick until the avalanche happened. That's, that's that's what we want to keep doing until the goal is right in front of us. So thanks a lot for the wisdom. Donation. It was it was incredible. You know I really enjoy that I really enjoy your perspective and the way you see photography and new world. So yeah, like I guess one thing that I want to get to understand why you know the listener might be interested about this as well is share with us a little bit about the photo club when they join you know, what sort of experience they will get to be to be part of the friends community. And you know, how how, how it can help them to appreciate either photography or even improve their photography at one point or another.
1:00:39 Yeah, so maybe before I mentioned really a little bit in detail what it's all about so just to clarify, I mean, frames magazine when you become a subscriber to frames magazine you are becoming basically a you know, a member of our community. You can also become a member of our community without subscribing who just consult for us on Facebook let's say yes, we have a group and but of course, I encourage you very much to have a look at the magazine it's a different experience you know, it's a printed magazine so when you become a subscriber, you automatically get access to some you know, digital content as well, which is accompanying the printed magazine and is our basic offering and this is what what we are all about. Now the friends photography circle, you know, and it comes up three years after when you know, frames was actually born. It's this most in depth, you know, group of photography enthusiasts, you know, it's something for those people who who really, absolutely want to, you know, study you know, follow learn from from those best photography sinkers, you know, and talkers and, you know, gallery curator, curators, photographers, we will be having this kind of environment within this, you know, friends photography circle. So, when it comes to elements of this, of this of this club, we will be having meetings with those guest speakers, so exactly photographers, museum gallery curators, you know, add other editors and so on so forth, we will be having self curating meetings of the group when we will be looking at each other's photographs, you know, and kind of curating them towards this yearly goal of of publishing a friend's photography book. So being a member, you are kind of guaranteed, you will get your image into this book, right, but we will be working on it together discussing those things, we will be having an open weekly frames cafe, so is a virtual place, which you can pop in once a week, you know, every week, and start making those friends you know, and start making those other enthusiasts from from other places in the world discussing we will be popping in there. Also some guests, it's kind of like a virtual cafe. So, and then of course, we will be having some kind of critic photo critic sessions you know, like being them from from those guests, you know, from the you know, our guest speakers, they will be looking at our photo add members photographs, right, but also discussing them with with each other, right. And then in the end, we are also planning of Yeah, it would be the jewel in the crown, yeah, to, to organise if maybe a few on location meetings of frames clap, you know, in different in different locations around the world, you know, and ideally, also with one of those acclaim photographers, you know, to join us on those meetings. So, again, as you can already feel this is, again, about community, of course, we will be providing our members with all those, you know, lectures, talks, you know, presentations, critiques, but we really want to make sure that friendships are being formed that this photography passion is what starts connecting, you know, and forming new ideas within the club. So the friends photographer, circle will be a club, which will be evolving, naturally formed by ideas and you know, input from all its members, it yeah, pretty sure will be an amazing experience, you know, and, yeah, we'll be lovely. If you some of your listeners, who would, you know, as I said, just drop me a message to the website, and I will be more than happy to serve some more, some more details.
1:04:34 Fantastic. Yeah, that's, that sounds like an amazing club to be in, you know, like, just listening to what you share and the community that you have on Facebook is, you know, very, very lively, very engaging, and you know, on the other platform as well, as well, as you know, you're creating your own platform. So that's very, all very exciting. Well, too much. You know, thank you very much for being here really thoroughly. Enjoy our chat. and getting to know you better. Now for the listeners who want to get to know you know, the frames magazine yourself as well as the the photo club where the the circle that you're you're putting together for 2023 Where is the best way to get in touch with you.
1:05:20 So the absolutely best way is just to visit, you know, the frames website. So you can go to read frames.com You know, and then follow the links in the menu, you will, you will find the links to all all the different exactly elements of our platform magazine and the club. You know, there is also many, many articles on the website itself, which we are you know, releasing every couple of days, there is a there is a new piece. So read frames.com. And I think it's the number one, I mean, the best, the best place to to get started with frames.
1:05:55 Fantastic, yeah, we'll, we'll put some of the link on the comment on the description below. So don't worry, it's all gonna be there. So go to that I'll we'll also put the link to the Facebook group, if you want to be part of the community as well as the the way the contact form in order to get in touch with Tomash. If you want to get, you know, to join the photo club, it's, it sounds like an amazing experience, you know, especially with what we've been through in this recent years, you know, I think it's more than ever we people are realising that, that passion is very important because we it's like a wake up call, right, we finally understand how important our time is that there is no guarantee it's going to be tomorrow. And we never know when it's going to be too late, you know, so? Yeah, I think more than ever, we should focus on our passion and pursue that so well, so much. Thank you very much for being here. Thank you very much for being part of the podcast, sharing your journey, sharing your wisdom and well we can hunters, hopefully you enjoy that. That podcast, that conversation, a lot of wisdom dropped there. And don't forget to say hi to Tomash if you enjoy this, you know, give him a sense of appreciation. And please feel free to contact him go to the website and check out what he's been building. It's an absolutely incredible community as well as you know, if you like like Tom, I say if you don't want to be a subscriber yet, then it's okay. Go to the Facebook get involved. Because I can tell you it's a really good community. Well, with that being said, you know, we've been here for a little over an hour now. Thank you for you know, hanging out with us and you know, chilling and I always think about this podcast, like a chill in a coffee coffee cafe. So it's, it's it's great to kind of just hang out with you. Well, thank you, Thomas, for being here. And yeah, we'll we'll keep chatting and we'll keep connecting.
1:08:08 Yeah, Stanley, thank you so much for having me. It was really great conversation and everybody. Remember about your first step today.
1:08:17 That is a great advice. All right, we can just don't forget to hit the subscribe button and also leave a review if this is something that you enjoy. But with that being said, I'll see you guys next week.
Thursday Dec 15, 2022
Thursday Dec 15, 2022
Hey Wicked Hunters,
This week I'm excited to chat with Kristin Piljay, Kristin Piljay has been an internationally-published photographer for over two decades and has travelled to many places in search of knowledge, beauty, and adventure. She tends to wander off into the wilderness of the mountains, desert and forest, but she can also be found occasionally in cities.
Starting as a portrait photographer in the 1990s, she eventually became a travel photographer for Lonely Planet Images stock agency and some of her images have been published by Lonely Planet, Mountain Sobek Travel, Pearson Education, Microsoft, Condé Nast, Cengage Learning, Oprah Winfrey Network, Hearst Corporation, Aerial Dance Festival, Redbull and BBC Travel.
For those who want to get to know Kristin better you can go to:
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to see connect with Stanley Aryanto, you can go to the following:
Don't forget to let us know your favourite part of the Podcast in the comment below and subscribe
0:00 All these tweets about artists saying they can finally make a living at art and artists actually making money because like the kind of the whole thing with the stock photography, where you people are paid like one centre for centre, whatever for their art or their photo or video, it was just so insulting
0:25 Hey wiki hunters Welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast, where we share artists journey and share how photography given us all purpose and happiness. And today we have somebody who I've met through Twitter, and it's pretty cool. Actually, I haven't chatted with her too much, but just going to some of her photograph coming in trade. And I want to have her here in the podcast and talk about her journey. Good morning, Kristen. Welcome to the Art of Photography podcast, or actually, it's even in your place, isn't it?
1:00 Well, yeah, I can say good morning, because it's good morning. There's always good morning in the NFT. World. That is true.
1:06 It is always good morning. That is so funny. I remember. I asked this question while back it's like, is it GM or GM? Like how do you you know, which one do you say is like, it's always a GM. By the way, listeners, you know, in the NFT world or in web three world, GM means Good morning, I, it took me I think about four months trying to figure that out. That was so funny. Very excited to have you here. So before we get started, just tell us a little bit about who you are and what got you into photography.
1:41 Well, um, I am mostly like a travel and nature photographer. But I've actually done a lot of different types of photography. But it all kind of started when I was a child. And I just I had, I'm 57. So I, you know, I remember what a pocket camera was some people in who are older will know what that is. But it was like kind of like this, like oblong kind of rectangular like little thing. And I and I had one of those. And I was an exchange student in Germany, when I was in high school. And I had an aunt that gave me he's like, Oh, you seem to take good photos. He's like, you can borrow my SLR camera. And so she lent me this camera. And the funny thing is that it was a it was totally manual, but the light metre was broken. And so if you can believe it, I just guessed to what to set. To set it, I actually looked at the film that I bought, and it said, you know, like, if it's sunny than the US like 125, and then F 11. And so that's what I would do. And I kind of just guessed, and the thing is, is like, I don't know, I was shooting negative film. So there's some leeway, but like, it seems like that my photos like when I would get them developed, they were like, you know, they were exposed properly. So but that, so I travel, I was in school in Germany, and I travelled around. And then when I came back and showed people my photos, they were like, Oh, you have a good eye for photography. And so when I graduated from high school, I asked my parents to, I said, I would like to have like my own camera, because I had given that one back to my aunt. So then they got me a canon. And that's when I started, you know, I don't know, just kind of experimenting. And when I would travel, I kind of mostly would shoot whenever I would travel. And then eventually, I couple years after that, like in my early 20s, I started taking photography classes. So I learned how to develop film, like black and white photography, and then developing it in the dark room and everything. And that was like a lot of fun. And just doing the assignments that I was given. But early on, I actually started photographing when I was doing black and white, I photographed food. And I did all these kinds of interesting, like kind of still lifes with food. And my parents don't have some of those, like on their walls. Some of them were like milk and cookies, that kind of an or like milk and eggs and that sort of thing. And and I guess I started when I moved to San Francisco in the early 90s, I started shooting more portraits and I still was taking photography classes and I was working in an office and somebody asked me if they if I could take photos of them and their boyfriend and so I started doing portraits and then like kind of word spreads. And so then I started photographing people's kids and then like even somebody's wedding, a wedding or two and that sort of thing. So I and after headshots and I kind of started that's how I started doing, like more professional photography. And so I did kind of start out more with portraiture, but then when I would travel then I would just photograph and I would travel. And I guess I started doing travelling Like more travel, travel photography, like, around the year 2000 2001. And I started shooting slides, and I actually was accepted by a stock agency. And that started, like my experience with stock agencies, which I'm sure is most people know, are really like, it's really kind of horrible right now. But like back then, it was a little bit different. And it was all like slides, and even the agency, I went in person in San Francisco, and would like to deliver my slides. And, and I had some sales. I mean, it wasn't anything huge. But then I swear it was super quick. Even just like a few years after that, like the sales decreased and the prices decreased. I don't know, it seemed like when it started with digital photography, because like I was excited about digital photography, and I switched to digital in 2004. But once it became, it seemed like it became easier and more accessible. And people started shooting more photos. Because like when I used to shoot slides, I used to like, look through my slides like on it, I would look through my slide with a loop, and also look at the exposures because you had a bracket your exposures, and I would sit at a table and I have a light box. And then I would just toss the ones on the floor that were bad like that I was gonna throw away, which seems like such a horrible waste. So I'm kind of glad that I'm not doing that sort of thing anymore. That threw away like all this film all that like chemicals and developing and just throwing like all these slides away. So that's kind of how I got into that sort of photography. And then later on, I actually worked as a photo researcher in textbook publishing. And that actually was supposed to be a part time job. And then I wanted to basically be a full time photographer. But I was never very good at marketing myself. And so I kind of stuck with the stock photography thing. But through my work in working for a publisher, as a photo researcher, sometimes they needed photos to be photographed specifically for some of the science textbooks I was working on. And so they started hiring me as a photographer, so I started shooting for the textbook publisher. But like professional photography was always like a part time job for me. So I always had like another main job. And unfortunately, like I kind of wanted like that just to be a part time job, the photo research and, and to be mainly be a photographer, but I ended up it ended up being reversed. And I got more and more work as a photo researcher, and, and not as much work as a photographer. And then just because of the way the business changed with textbook publishing, and also stock photography, I started doing less and less photography, and I didn't shoot for the publisher anymore. And even the photo research was going to overseas. So I, I kind of, I'm at the point now where I work as a project manager and textbook publishing, and, and then I work for slike doing social media marketing on mostly on Twitter. And then there's still the photography, which started I started making more money finally, again, on photography because of NF T's. Because I mean, like the stock photography, you can actually if you look at my sales, and the stock agencies that I'm in, the price is just getting lower and lower and lower. And recently, I actually had some sales. And they gave me one cent like the agency, two cents, and they gave me one cent. And I'm like, Are you kidding me?
8:48 No, 100% You know, like seeing the market kind of move that way? I mean, you know, I think I, it took me a while to understand that, you know, that's not how you make money to stock photography. And it I only know this when I was talking to Paul, this guy, actually the one on the first person that I interviewed in, in this podcast, and I asked him about, you know, stock photography, is it worth it? And you know, the way he approached it is the way you approach it back then it's not it's not going to the stock size sites, but actually going direct to the consumer, the people that are looking for it, you know, whether it's an agency or the actual company, and that's how it's being valued a lot more compared to stock photos. But you're right, you know, and nowadays it's so hard because iPhone, take a great photo, right? Yeah. So then it's not necessarily I mean, we all know that in order to be a good photographer. It's not just the camera but you know, from that the mindset kind of shift, you know the value kinetic Freeze. So from someone who been shooting all the way back from the film era, you know, to the digital era, and now I could say to the mobile phone era, how do you see the value shifted along this years? And what do you think about that?
10:19 Well, it's really actually disappointing that the value shifted. And I mean, it depends on the type of photography to so like travel photography, I mean, I mean, just kind of, if you do photography, where you're using models, and you're doing setups, that's actually a totally different thing. But if you're actually shooting things like, lens, you know, kind of landscapes of travel, not kind of really complicated landscape, but the kind of there's also just the really, like, Oh, this is a nice landscape to show a place you might want to travel to, or, I mean, that was the kind of photography that I did. I mean, I did other things on my own. That was kind of separate, like, kind of more artistic and stuff, but like, the main thing, I mean, like when I first started doing travel photography, sorry, photography, that wasn't also travel. I mean, anatomy, I, some of my most popular images were like a bowl of potato chips, you know, so I actually kind of was like, sort of a little bit upset about that, and like, like my beautiful landscapes and sell, but like this bowl of potato chips keeps like being sold. Although recently my most common on Alamy, that is, has been sold in the past, like two years is this photo of a tree growing in a rock what's called root root wedging. So I've worked on I was working on science textbooks and finding political science textbooks. And I needed to find a photo of root wedging, it was so difficult to find it. And then I went on a hike and I saw the perfect root wedge in photo. And so I took a photo of that. And then now people are using my photo probably in geology textbooks or other things to deal with that to illustrate it. So I mean, there's lots of photography that's like that, where you're illustrating something for like a textbook, or they just need a photo on an apple or something like that. But I mean, like, I mean, I just can't imagine if I could take like a better Apple than, like a lot of other people have already photographed in apple. But, you know, at some point, like, it was kind of new, and there wasn't as many, but there's more and more people in that. And as for equipment, I mean, I can take actually really nice photos on my iPhone. And so, and people can actually have the same phone and take like crappy photos too. So I mean, like, there it is, has, to me, it's more, I mean, there is like a certain quality, if you want to enlarge something. Yeah. Or if you want to make a lot of the do a lot of editing to it, and that sort of thing. I mean, there is like that quality that is not quite the same, but I mean, like they're getting better and better. I mean, like, when I was doing a shoot of some light themes in the Redwood Forest recently, I would actually test the scene with my phone. And then I would shoot with my camera, and my camera had looked really awful like in the viewfinder, because like the phone was like processing it. And then also when I would get the raw photos they was I'm like, oh my god, I have to make this look like my phone.
13:15 That is funny. And you're right, like, you know, the phone are incredible nowadays, right. And it's with the AI and the processing, you know, it helps a lot, even though it has a small camera. And I feel like that's what and the other thing that you said was also 100% Right? You know, just because you have a good camera doesn't make you a better photographer. Just because you have a an iPhone camera doesn't make you a bad photographer, it's a lot to do with who you are as a photographer and the way you interpret the scene. But I think people kind of mindset with that, that with people with everyone being able to take a photo nowadays instead of you know, doing all the settings that kind of take away a lot of the value, the precede value, I suppose. So that was really interesting. You know, I love hearing your story that you know, you started all the way from the film trying to figure it out and we'll do it your digital digital. So you can share you know how you got started in photography and you know, some of the things that you have photography of photograph over the this years. But what I want to hear about your excitement, why what type of photography make you really excited or what, what makes you got into photography in the first place that you know make you stay there on to a point that you want to go to school in photography and learn more about it.
14:51 You know, it's kind of this odd thing, but it's almost like a compulsion. Like some people say it's a passion for them, but for me like I feel like I really want to, like if I see something, I want to capture it, like, I can't just be like, Oh, that's cool. Like I have, I feel like this, this urge to like to preserve it. And I don't even know if it's like to show other people or just like to have it for myself, maybe it's both. But like, for instance, I also another thing that I did in the past was I, I did, I used to be an aerial dancer. So I did like kind of trapeze and circus stuff, and like, aerial silks. And I have some friends in Seattle that have an aerial dance company, and I used to photograph their shows. And and the thing is, is like, when I photographed the show, I felt like I can't, couldn't really watch it, because I was so focused on the photography. So then when I started on doing started doing was I would go and visit them, and then I would shoot, I would, I would just watch once a watch a show. And then I would do a second watch a second show where I would do the photography. And I thought, Well, that's good, because I'll prepare for it. But then the show that I was watching and not shooting, I just felt like oh my god, I'm missing all these like shots. Like all these moments, even though I knew that, like I was gonna like watch it like the second day, like I just like, if I if I actually just watched the show and wasn't shooting it for some reason. I would just be like, I like missing out somehow, you know, like that. Anything. And just recently I was in Portland, I took a it was like an aerial tram there. And there was like, it was beautiful, clear day. And you could see Mount Hood. And I took a photo with my phone, because that's my phone. This was a camera that I have with me all the time because I don't carry like my equipment around all the time. So I was there for another reason. And so I was like, Oh, that looks great. And I took a photo of it in the background, but with like the foreground of a tree with like autumn leaves on it. So then whenever I was going back, it was sunset. And I was like in the tram, and I'm looking at the sunset and the lighting on Mount Hood. And like, oh my god, I was just like, I couldn't like wait, I was like Fran was gonna miss it, you know. But I mean, the thing is, is like I could have just enjoyed it and looked at it, I couldn't really photograph it from the tram. Because there, there were things in the way. And also the windows were dirty. So I was just like, chomping at the bit to like, get up to the top so that I could run out and like go and take a photo, which I did get it. But it was just on the verge of almost being too late, you know, a little bit too dark, it would have been better if I was there just a few minutes early, but it's just like, I don't know, I just I guess I always feel it's just like a compulsion of wanting to capture a visual moment, I guess.
17:43 Yeah, that's, that's interesting. I also felt like that at times, and the, you know, what you just mentioned about, you know, take having the phone with you. And taking a phone with taking a photo with a phone is a good example how, you know, the best camera that you could own is the one that was the one yourself, yeah, that you have. And that is such a good example of that saying, and going back to what you say about the compulsion about experience, and it's really cool to hear how you approach that photography with the aerial dance and you know, performances where you want to experience it, but you also want to take a little bit and you combine the two by doing different things. And it's, I find that it's interesting. I want to ask you, how do you balance between, uh, trying to just enjoy the moment right to just being there and let your eyes and your your body enjoy the experience, whatever it is that you have, versus taking your camera out and actually enjoying it to your camera, because at the end of the day, they're two different experience but what you said earlier was 100% True. It's it's, it's not easy to be able to have a connection with nature, for example, or the Milky Way for my case, and you know, continuously taking photo there has to be a balance so how do you do that when you go out there for example, for your travel photography or from some of your other photography
19:28 Yeah, that's it's kind of Yeah, I agree with you and sometimes I think to myself, maybe I should just like take photos less and not do that. I just can't I just can't just do it without like I you know, I'll just be carrying a bunch of like equipment because especially like in landscape photography, you know, like I end up like climbing like a mountain or something because I like to do that sort of thing. And it would be easier to like not bring like photo equipment with and admittedly when I go backpacking, I don't bring a tripod like I'm kind of focused I'm just like the trip. But I do bring my camera I try to bring something as live as possible. It's one of the reasons I switched to mirrorless because I was tired of lugging my Canon gear around. And I actually didn't go for full frame. I have a Fuji fuji film, I went for the crop sensor because it had smaller lenses. So I was like, I don't want to have a tiny camera with a giant lens, just like my old lenses. I have my Canon, you know? So. But I mean, yeah, I mean, I torture myself for photography, like dragging tripods around. I even went into this, like tiny this, like the slot canyon that you can barely walk through with a tripod monopod would have been better, honestly. But like, so yeah, but I just wanted, I wanted the shots. And so I wanted to it's I guess it's not it's the compulsion to capture a moment, but to create something out of the moment. You know, what, like, it is I don't know, if it's a compulsion for others. Have you heard other people say that, that it feels like that, like, you just have to do it.
21:06 I mean, I felt the same, you know, ie, I used to do that. And when I first probably the first two years of my photography, I was I was like that, you know, every single moment, I want to capture it. I literally have my camera, which I have a five d mark for so it's really heavy, right? Massive camera, and I would take it everywhere, even just for for a dinner or for lunch. But I decided that I want to, you know, it separate myself from the people and the actual experience. So I started to step back a little bit. And yeah, it's interesting that you mentioned that, because I haven't heard people mentioning that. But I know that, you know, it is in us, you know, we love photography. And photography is about moment, right? So when there is good moment for power, it's only natural that we want to capture it. It's in our blood.
22:08 What if there's people in that moment, actually taking photos actually changes the moment to I feel like that it does. And although I kind of I used to take the photos, more people, and then I kind of It wasn't intentional that I kind of veered away from that. And then until I was hardly photographing people anymore, like when I was doing travel photography, I always had a lot of people photos in there. And then I kind of shifted and then it became like more of nature and animals and and I kind of actually kind of missed that. And I kind of feel like maybe I shouldn't like, and I forget to do snapshots. Like like when I was travelling in Iceland, I travelled a bit with two friends that live in Europe. And and both of them if it wasn't for them, it I probably would never I wouldn't have any pictures of us or them. I mean, maybe I might take a picture of them. Like if they were kind of like a person in the landscape. Like my one friend had a red jacket. It was awesome. And so she was like my red jacket person and all these like landscapes. But like I wouldn't think of like doing like a selfie or asking someone, hey, take a picture of us together. Like, it's not that I don't want that I actually nice to have it like when it's over. But like, I don't even think about it. Like I'm always like thinking about like creating like a scene rather than just like taking a picture of us.
23:29 You know, I know exactly how that feel. I think about a couple years back, you know, someone asked me it's like, Hey, can you send me your your portrait or a photo of you and I was like trying to think I don't have one. Like literally, I went through all of my photo, I don't have a good photo of me looking at the camera. Every one of them is from my back. So I know exactly how you feel. And yeah, it's interesting to be you know, a landscape, or you know, a travel photographer, because most of the time you're in the back of the camera. So it's really cool hearing your story, really hearing how you transition across, you know, from the film to digital, you actually learn everything, you know, the settings, you actually get thrown into the settings because the Otomo Diem work on your favourite first camera or your camera at that time. And I find that really cool. Now, when it comes to doing photography as a way to make a living, is that something you always wanted to do? Or do you always try? You always you only want to do that part time to preserve the experience of being a photographer itself?
24:49 Well, that's interesting question because yes, I my dream job was as many people have the same dream job of like being like a National Geographic photographer, like Travelling the world and having like assignments and like doing something really super interesting. And that was kind of always in my mind and like, I know that I could create kind of, even just for myself have like an idea and do a shoot like that. But it's, I just kind of, I don't know, I just kind of never have done it, I guess I kind of was afraid. I know, that was one thing that I didn't take a lot of risks, and always had like a backup job, and never tried just to be a photographer. And I did work in photography, because I was like, as a photo researcher, and then I was doing a lot of photography within that job also. But to just be a freelance photographer and try to make money and I actually never I tried to be a commercial photographer. I never had the guts to see like, say, like, I want to be a fine art photographer. I just felt like that was just like, so unattainable. I mean, but I know there are people that do that, but I just didn't have it in me to try for that. So and I have gone through periods of time where I was shooting, I was trying to shoot for stock, or I was just shooting for like the textbook, you know, I shot food. One thing that I really one of the best jobs that I've ever had. The super interesting was I was for the textbook publisher, I photographed the dissection of two cadavers for an anatomy textbook. And that was really interesting. And I often will say that that was one of the best jobs I ever had, because it was just so fascinating. And it was very lucrative too. And I, I even thought to myself, maybe I should be a Cadabra photographer. But I don't know if I always want to do that. And be around all the familiar formaldehyde. And I don't think there's that many calls. I mean, only for like, kind of like textbooks and that sort of thing, like medical books or something. But, but it was a super cool experience. And so I did have some interesting things. But if you only start to it, and somebody that I met recently, actually is a photographer in that, and I said, What kind of photography do you do? And he says, I do photography that people will pay me if somebody pays him and he photographs and he doesn't photograph in any other way. And I'm like, I mean, that's fine. Like, if you have a technical skill, you can do that. And like and I actually had gotten to a certain point, probably about like, maybe nine years ago, where I just felt burned out because I was just I would photograph and people pay me like the textbook publisher, or sometimes I did. I actually photographed marijuana for like a dispensary like America where that was interesting too. Or like products I did like products and stuff like that. But I kind of got burned out a little bit because I just was shooting just to make just because someone was paying me or I would think that I might make money like just doing the stock photography. And so then I started doing some long exposure photography. Just like for myself, I did some self portraits with long exposure where I was a ghost accom is that my ghost photos. And I really love my ghost photos are some of my favourite photos I've ever taken. Although I feel like other people don't like them as much as me. I mean, like some people, my friends seem to really like them. Like people that know me. But other people are seemed kind of lukewarm about, like ghost photos, but so, but those kind of were photos for me and I kind of like sparked like, kind of some creativity. Like I was just shooting photography. I was just shooting just to create something to be creative. Not like because I someone was paying me.
29:00 Yeah, that's incredible. So is that how you got out of your burnout? That's how I got off my burger. Oh, that's fantastic. And that's, that's really interesting, right? Um, we I haven't heard anyone who got into photography because they want to make a lot of money. Right? Even the people who decide to do photography as a profession, they started it because they enjoy photography, you know, they and they just want to do more of it. But over time, the money aspect cannot hit you and you know, you become burnout because you you stop creating for yourself and so forth. So when you had this burnout, and then you find a way to get out of it. What did you learn? Like how did you stop? Stop it from happening again so that you don't get the same burnout you know, in a year two years or five years and so forth.
29:56 Well actually, that kind of stopped because I stopped I stopped getting paying jobs like doing photography for the textbook publisher, and I kind of just didn't, I just didn't do that anymore. And then I just basically then just was, that's when I kind of veered more into landscape photography, because that's what I just felt I just did what I felt like doing. And then I put those in stock agencies and if they sold and that was fine. So I kind of stopped pursuing kind of more of a commercial photography, and just shot what I felt like shooting. And yeah, I also didn't make that much money from it either. So and then, of course, the stock was just putting in the stock agency. So
30:38 yeah, that's fantastic. Yeah. So you basically just, you know, do photography more for yourself. And stop, start, you know, doing it for everyone else. And
30:48 I mean, it goes through phases, it's like, if something like for instance, I'm going to Florida next week to visit my parents, but I love to photograph the birds when I go to Florida. So I feel I'll feel excited. Like, I haven't been shooting since I got back from Iceland. Well, I have like 1700 photos, I need to like, you know, go through and process. So like, that's time consuming. But I'm kind of like in a resting phase right now. And I'm not, I haven't been with only been like, a little over a month since I was back. But I think that like, you know, when I go to Florida, I'll I'll do some photography of birds, because I always like, like to photograph the birds there. Oh, that's fantastic.
31:27 Yeah, it's really interesting. You know, it's, it's funny how it kind of worked that way with photography and careers. And sometimes you can hit the wall because you stop creating and being genuine about what you want from your photography. So thanks a lot for sharing that. So one thing that I'm curious, he told us that you are part of the soyka team, you know, doing their marketing. But in the beginning, you told us that you weren't very good at marketing. And now you gotta jump into marketing, right. And I know that as an artist, like I was, I was struggling with marketing law, I think I am still struggling, but I am much better, you know, at least I kind of know what I'm doing. But it's just like, you know, the struggle with myself, doing marketing is just very difficult, because I'm more a creative person, you know, a sailing sort of person. Now, how do you transition across, because we know that if you do want to make if you don't want to sell your photography, if you do want to make money from your photography, you need to be able to market your photography, your art out there. And we have seen this over and over again, where people who have incredible images, but not a good marketing skills, aren't able to sell their photograph versus people who have, you know, a decent photograph. They're like, nothing crazy, but it's, it's, it's good. It's not superb or excellent or, you know, crazy beautiful, but they are able to sell. So what have you learned from this experience, so that the listeners can take, you know, pieces away from that and apply it to their own journey?
33:19 Well, I think for one thing, it's easier to market somebody else's art than your own. And that's like kind of known. And so that's why the NFT space on Twitter is so nice, because people are always like, are helping each other. And when I first entered the NFT space, I only had like 68 followers on Twitter. And if I would tweet something like nobody would see it or comment or anything. And, and I was able to, like early November, to basically like January 1 To go from 68 to 800 followers. I basically build up my followers and kind of just jumped right into the NFT space. And I kind of I don't know, I became good at Twitter, basically. But all I did was I just interact, I was really excited. And I was excited by like, everyone's photos that I was seeing on there. And so I was kind of very hyper tweeting. I tweeted like crazy. I like retweeted everybody's work and was excited and like said all that I just kind of interacted with so many people that it's just and then I started doing those like art threads where I remember the first one I did was on New Year's Eve and I thought oh, probably because I saw other people do them. And I thought well, maybe I'll get more followers and more like, you know, interaction by by doing that, and I did it. I put a photo of a lone tree that was my own and I said share your loan trees with me. And I thought oh, it's New Year's Eve. There's no one's no one's didn't even respond. It was huge. I mean, there was like, I mean, I think that there was like, I don't know how many retweets but like eight 100 likes and like, it just exploded. And I was like, whoa. And so then I kept doing that. But the thing is, is like, whenever I was doing those, I was kind of trying to save something and retweet on almost every photo that somebody put there. And there was a lot of there was like hundreds and hundreds of them. And it was very time consuming. So basically, I got to that point from, by being on Twitter, almost like 16 hours a day or something. I was basic on Twitter, like almost an entire day, because my work is slow in the winter with my textbook publishing. And so it was kind of like, you know, like, November, December, and I was just kind of on Twitter, like a lot, and interacting with a lot of people. And I was kind of successful at building my own Twitter following. And so with sloka, I took silica from 2500 I, whenever they were hiring somebody, I applied for the job. And then they decided to give me a chance. And then I think at the end of January, I think there's like 2500 followers. And then by maturity, we hit 17,000. But we hit 17,000 In September, but I think it was in the first few months that it got to like 10,000 pretty fast, probably within like two or three months. So I kind of just did the same thing for Flickr that I did. So my job for them, the marketing is kind of just like operates mostly just operating the Twitter. And yeah,
36:24 so yeah, that's cool. That's really cool. And I
36:27 think the key is to interact, it's just said, it's very time consuming. I mean, for me in the NFT space, it was being in being, it was very helpful to be in a collective, because I was involved in being a collective in like May. And I got to know like a lot of photographers in that collective like really like more so than just kind of in the space. And also in like chat groups. And it being in spaces is important too. But like that's like, so time consuming. And I often will try to do that and then work at the same time. And it kind of doesn't really work because I don't pay attention to the space. And I don't pay attention to my work. But I have done that I tried to be doing that like many times, but so it was kind of a little bit frustrating. But it was basically just another thing. That was important. When I first started entering the space, like when I was a beginner, I felt like lost. And I kind of like dug around and found information even just what like Good morning means and friends. And like all this kind of like lingo that people used. I kind of had to figure out on my own and I could ask people but nobody offered, no one came up and say, Oh, you're new here, like, let me help you. And the thing is, like once I was kind of got used to it and learned it myself, I actually when new people would come in the space, I would actually help them. And I discovered I really liked doing that. And, and I kept doing it. And that's how it was like kind of I mean, I don't know when you entered the NFT world on Twitter, but like, it was kind of so many people and just kind of wild in like November, December, January, February. Yeah. Last year, beginning of this year, so, but yeah, 100 So that wasn't necessarily I learned that I learned that I really I enjoyed helping people, it made me feel like I had a purpose because I'm kind of some sometimes I'm struggling with that, like feeling like kind of having a strong purpose in life.
38:37 Cool, thanks a lot for sharing that. Yeah. I mean, you know, it's, that's, that's really cool, you know, just trying to figure it out. And I know, NFT is really difficult space to get into a lot of people, it's a difficult concept to learn and to understand as well. So, you know, you figuring it out and to helping the people who can jump in there and onboarding, I think that's a really cool thing to do. Yeah, you know, thanks a lot for doing that because that's really helps open up the world. NFT now, we starting to get into the NFT world here and you know, the listeners out there might have heard of it might not have heard of it. But there are a lot of scepticism behind the NFT right. Is it real? Is it a scam? Like what is this? So I'm quite interesting interested to hear what who you are into the NFT world and what do you think about NFT?
39:39 Well, I'm glad you asked me that question because what pulled me into it like when I entered this went on I found this little community I found the community on Twitter what pulled me in was in like to hear these like success stories. That is what pulled me in. And I was like I want to be part of this because I want to be part of some One thing that is going to change this because I really felt like I wanted it to change, it just seemed unfair. And, and so just, it was basically people's stories that and I was just excited, like I, I saw a lot of, there's a lot of astrophotography that I saw in the very beginning, like the Milky Way photography, and I was just like, so wild by that. And I was like, ah, you know, and I kind of was just seeing everyone's beautiful work, it's just kind of was exciting. And there was like this kind of, I mean, I as since we're in a bear market, as you know, like, it's not the same anymore, but, but there's people still excited about it. And, and still excited about photography, because I mean, you can't just put photography only in NF T's I mean, I actually made some some money, like a hell of a lot more than I did whatever I was, you know, from stock photography. So I mean, that's like, kind of, and it also inspired me to try new things like I got a drone this summer, and I flew my drone in Iceland, and I actually really love love that. And I really want to explore that. And I also, I photographed the Milky Way for the first time, this like summer also. And I still haven't processed it. I mean, I kind of started but I kind of felt like a little bit lost. So I, but I'll see, you know how it goes and then figure out how to do it properly. But it was a crater lake.
41:33 Beautiful. Alright, to lations on your first meal QA will go on. I mean, I'm an astro photographer, and I teach Astro photography as well. So when whenever people say I just take my first Astro photography, I got really excited. But how is that experience? I know he kind of I'll bring it back to NFT. But I just don't know, how is that experience being able to capture the Milky Way for the very first time?
42:00 Well, what was interesting is like when I we, I've seen, of course, I've seen the Milky Way, but not actually not I've not been in situations where I've seen it that often. And so I have this memory of it, but I didn't photograph it. And it looks. It was a beautiful night, very clear at Crater Lake. But it's not as distinct as it is in the photos. It's kind of like the roar Borealis, it's the same like you can see it with your eye, but it's not. And I did see that in Iceland on two different trips and photographed that. And it looks it's more dramatic whenever you actually photograph it than it is when you actually just look at it. And so that's how I feel like it is with like the Milky Way photos. And I actually met somebody that I met off Twitter. And we actually photographed together because she was travelling to Crater Lake. And she mentioned it and she's actually experienced with it's r1 I don't know if you know r1 But like, yeah, so she, I kind of learned like a bit from her kind of watching what what she did also, so but I do want to try it again. But it is feel like that it's it's it's rather complicated. Just I think the postprocessing even more than the shooting part. But if it wasn't for her like so it was kind of amazing. But it was also like really uncomfortable, because it was a wind picked up. And it was like really freezing. There was still snow. It was June but there was still snow, where we were and it wasn't cold actually like temperature wise where we were at the parking lot. But when we went to the area where we needed to shoot it from, it was just the wind picked up and it was just like freezing. So it was kind of my first experience was like kind of uncomfortable physically, because then you have to keep waiting and like doing these really long exposures. So and she did really super long, she did some that were like five minutes disabused, like these ones that were super long. And then, you know, shooting like, several photos to later piece together as a panorama.
44:21 Panorama. Yeah, that's really cool. It's actually not complicated at all. And I could you know, once you know, the ins and outs, it's not complicated at all. And, you know, that's, that's why I teach the astrophotography because a lot of people are thinking it's complicated, but it's actually pretty simple once you know the step by step process. So yeah, we can, you know, if you have time, I'm happy or you know, we can do it some other time. I'm happy to help you with the post processing or whatever question you have. Sorry, I just got excited. That
44:58 is exciting. I wanted to I didn't, I was interested in that and wanted to, like, try to do it myself. So I guess that kind of like makes me feel like, okay, I should make go back and try to process those photos that I that I took, I can't
45:12 wait to see it, I can't wait to see, it will be great. So when you get into the coming back to the NFT, right? You got there because you felt like there are more value to your photography, instead of people paying three cents for your photograph, you actually get something that worthwhile, right, something of value. And we know that money is important. But as an artist, I think there's something more important behind that the fact that our art is being valued for what it is, it doesn't matter what genre it is. And that was, you know, how I felt. Now, when you when you come into the NFT world, and you know, what we have right now? Do you have? How does your expectation, you know, or you know, what you imagine it to be versus the reality, what was some of the goods and Bad's within the space that we need to improve upon, you know, because we want to bring more people in this space, but there's so many, I suppose, scepticism negative talk around it. So, I'd like to hear a little bit from your perspective, especially working from one of the platform, right, you will get a lot of exposure to this, in terms of, you know, people saying this or that and, you know, different people opinion, what are some of the things that you see are a good point, and they are some of the things that we could improve upon in this space?
46:43 Well, I mean, What initially attracted me to it was also that like, there's a problem with a caste Samar addressed this in one of her early NF T's where she liked the Hawaii photo where she released that because people kept stealing it, you know, because, as a photo researcher, a lot of times authors of textbooks think, and I think just people in general, they think that because something on the internet, like you can just use it like, oh, yeah, it's like everywhere, like, you know, but I mean, that's not true. I mean, there's like, you know, you have to get permission to use it, unless the person specifically says that anybody can use it. And, and so people will just steal things off the internet, and just use them as they wish. And so, I mean, she sold that NFT for like, I don't know, like 100 Aetherium. I don't know what that would have been at the time, like a huge amount of money. Like, I don't know, like $300,000 or something like that. But she released it to the world that anybody could use it, although she wanted to be credited. And I kind of was really, like, inspired by that. I was actually very inspired by her because I heard her story, I watched a video of how she came into the NFT world, and, and how she had no work because of COVID because of like, she wasn't able to do like the photography workshops. So I think just kind of like solidifying ownership, like saying, okay, like it's kind of like this mark like this is I am the creator of this piece of digital art, like, you know, I think that is good about NF Ts. And also, I think in the future too, like, if you purchase when I first started in selling NF Ts, I was selling photos, my first things I sold photos of were went redwood forest, and if someone bought an NF t then I would donate money to save the redwoods organisation. And that is I see someone recently that has, like there's other and other other people that have fundraisers where if you purchase an NF t like 100% of it will go to like as a donation. I mean, you can just ask for donations but I mean it's actually common if you do donation sometimes if you do some donations to something you can times get like a physical product or some kind of product in return for that like as a thank you and NF Ts can be also used for something like that. And I think that there in the future there can be a lot of various uses for it not just for art and I am not very involved in the kind of like the profile picture you know, like the apes and punks and all that like I I'm not really involved in that so I don't really have much knowledge about about that aspect of it. And I think that's what most people who aren't involved in it that's what they think about because that's what's like in the in the media because those are the ones that are have gotten, you know, for so much money and people hear about so that's what they think NF T's are that they're only that. Yeah, that's a really good
49:59 point. You know, I saw, I know what you're talking about with Cassie Mart, early campaign, and it was I think it was one of her. I think one of the biggest one that she had I know she, you know, she had a crazy sales even before that. I mean, she said she's phenomenal photographer, and just so inspiring. But yeah, for the listener who kind of don't know, the context, basically, that Hawaii photo has been stolen over and over again, where it's been reposted, and been used as a licence item without her getting paid. And she would show this crazy list of, you know, disputes against them. And, you know, at the end of the day, she say, put that as an NFT. And she got, probably, you know, all her all the worth of that whole photo over the lifetime of it and even more, right, and I think that's, that's so empowering, that is just so empowering to the artists, you know, the fact that we need to share our photograph out there, but most of the time, when we share our photographs in the internet, it would get stolen. And nothing is solved some of that problem. I know, it's not 100% there yet, but we're still early. And like you say, you know, with the donations and charities, you know, I see going forward where we, you know, it all just happens seamlessly through the smart contract without people being there. And that kind of cow cut a lot of corruption. And, you know, basically people stealing away from it, because it goes directly to the people. Of course, at the end of the day, you know, people aren't one behind it. So there's always a chance, but it cut a lot of that down. So that's, that's what's really cool about it. And I love that you brought that up. Well, thank you very much for being here in person. And it's, it's great to have the conversation with you, you know, hearing your photography journey, also, how you got into the NFT. And a little bit about the NF t as well. Now, one thing that I always ask my guests on every single podcast is that if there is an advice, one advice, whether it's a life advice, photography, advice, whatever advice, it could be, that you could tell either your younger self or someone else in the space in the social media in your community, what would that advice be?
52:30 Well, I would say to myself and others also is, well, I wish I would have taken more risk in trying to pursue photography. Now not just as like, say, like an artist, but as kind of like my dream, kind of National Geographic photographer. I mean, not specifically just for National Geographic, but that style of story, like kind of a photo story, but just just doing basically not settling for just any job. And just because it was more secure. You know, I mean, I guess I was actually lucky that I had a job that was related to photography. And and now with silica that's still my textbook job is not really is related to photography anymore. It's project management. But it used to be more photography and photography was involved in it. So, but I feel like I wish I and it's not like I'm still around. So I mean, I can still change. And I have been inspired recently by all of the, you know, like the Twitter photography community, I feel inspired to try new things. I'm actually interested in trying like more like I always have done very realistic photography, and I actually want to try kind of changing things. I mean, it's just art then I mean, I mean, it's art, it's photography and art, like digital art combined, or even even learning even learning like 3d. If I can, I don't know, just to kind of experiment with things. Because I always was like shooting something as it was real, very real. That's how I've always like, done it. But yeah, I think like, at least try try more. I mean, try. Take, I mean, not unreasonable risks, but I feel like I wish I would have taken more risks in trying to pursue like my dream career.
54:24 Fantastic. That's such a great advice. I know how that feel. And you know, I've been there I used to be an engineer and you know, literally drop everything to become a photographer. So I know exactly how that feel and seems like you're in that journey. And I know a lot of other people who are in the journey as well, to get there. And like you say, right, it's it's important to, to get out of to get out of your comfort zone and to change to do something that makes you happy. Whatever it is. I think that is our big purpose in life so thank you very much for sharing that advice. That is so beautiful. Now for the listeners out there who I know that you have an NFT project on Slaker as well like a collection there and you know you have beautiful photograph as well. So for the people who and listeners who want to see more of your work who want to get in touch with you and connect with you, what would be the best way to connect with you?
55:30 Um, I would say probably like on Twitter or like my website like I have a website, wander wander less photos.com And so I can be contacted through my website or on Twitter or Instagram like any of those or Facebook even, like all the usual places
55:51 fantastic. Yeah, we'll include that in in the description below. So if you want to check out more of her work, you know, she what, what she's doing in any of these spaces as well as in a photography space, and all this beautiful photograph or from her travel, you know, I encourage you to give her a visit and say hi in social media. But thank you very much for being here. It's been such a pleasure talking to you. I enjoyed you know, having that conversation and listening to your to your journey. I really do appreciate having you in the podcast.
Sunday Dec 04, 2022
Sunday Dec 04, 2022
Hey Wicked Hunters!
So excited to introduce the 50th episode!
Today I will be talking with Paul Zizka - our first guest who became part of The Art of Photography Podcast.
Paul Zizka is a passionate explorer who shares his journey through his art and photography.
He uses his journey to create a positive impact by inspiring and helping other photographers who are looking to follow his journey, as well as spread awareness.
If you want to get to know more about Paul Zizka, you can listen to the first interview on - https://podcast.thewickedhunt.com/e/ep2-with-paulzizka/
Today we will ask Paul Zizka how he use photography to create positive impact and chat about his upcoming project The Cryophilia
You can get involved and learn more about the project on: https://www.zizka.ca/cryophilia
For those of you who want to check out Paul's photos, you can find him on:
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to see connect with Stanley Aryanto, you can go to the following:
Don't forget to let us know your favourite part of the Podcast in the comment below and subscribe
Paul Zizka 0:00 really the goal is is to raise awareness of how quickly those places are changing, and how beautiful they are. And I feel like we hear a lot about the vanishing ice and the rapidly receding glaciers. Over the last few years we've seen some glaciers lose 100 200 metres in one year.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 0:30 Hey, wicked hunters Welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast, where we share artist journey and show how photography given us hope, purpose and happiness. And today, I'm very excited to have someone who is in the very first episode of this podcast, and I want to have him back because there's a few different things that he has in the horizon, as well as you know, Canadian Rockies in its prime season for wild skating. And I think Paul's is is one of the best capturing those so I really want to chat to him about it. I've met Paul's has got back into Rockies. And it's been such a pleasure to not only follow his journey, his adventure, but also to learn from him about the creative process about how to give back to the community and about how to help other photographers. So I'm sure you will get a lot of benefit from today. Well, without further ado, Paul, how's it going? Welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast.
Paul Zizka 1:34 Thanks so much, Stanley. It's great to be back. I guess I did okay, the first time around, because you're you're having me over again. Always a pleasure chatting with you and connecting with your community. So I'm excited to be here. Thank you.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:48 Oh, fantastic. Yeah, I mean, like, it's so much has been going on right? Or we had, we had a pandemic and we had everything that's going on and travelling is opening again. But before we started for the listener who haven't really hear about about you and your journey, just give us a quick you know, cliff note because I know that we the first podcast, talk a lot about who you are and stuff like that. But just give us a little bit you know, a cliff note about who you are so that if they don't if they want to hear more about you, they can go to the first podcast,
Paul Zizka 2:23 for sure. I am a outdoor photographer based out of Banff in the Canadian Rockies and I shoot pretty much anything outside. I'm interested in Adventure photography, Astro photography, travel photography, landscape photography. Yeah, wildlife, anything outside. Works for me. And yeah, I've been doing photography full time for gosh, I guess over 12 years now probably and there's nothing else I'd rather do. And yeah, it's that's sort of the gist of it. That's, that's where I'm at in my journey. Yeah, if anybody has any questions, they're welcome to reach out or check out that first episode.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 3:03 100% Yeah, look, you know, when I first moved to Canadian, Rocky, so let's just starstruck with your with your photograph, right? Because I feel like your photograph is, it's like no other, you know, I haven't seen that kind of style, the way you use human element in through your, your, through your adventures, you know, through the ice, the winter, the summer, as well as when you go out through hiking and stuff like that. So when you create this image, what is your thought process? You know, what is your creative process that make you come up with all of these images? Because, like I say, it's not something that's very common, I could say, you know, when I see a photo gets shared on Nat, Geo, or, you know, some of the Rockies account, I know exactly, that's your photo, because, yeah, no one else have that sort of concept. So how do you create this sort of what's your thought process to create this inspiring photograph?
Paul Zizka 4:06 That's a good question, Stanley, I think part of it comes down to, to me there's, for me, there's two ways to approach photography, you can approach photography more from a spontaneous with a more spontaneous approach. Or you can plan things out and pre visualise images and stage things out if you will, a little bit more. So I think, a lot of the photos that, I guess people just have ended up associating me with or maybe at the pre visualised end of the spectrum where an idea will come up in the field, maybe even while I might be at a location with the family in the daytime, and then something will sort of pop in my mind's eye and I'd be cool to come back at that time of year at night with a certain person Doing this doing that when conditions align for a specific type of image, and then sort of make a, make a wish list of everything that needs to happen and then wait for the conditions to come together, arrange the logistics and then go create that image and image that would not be possible to create in a spontaneous fashion, because you're just not going to go to a place like that at that time and found some find someone doing that certain thing in that exact spot. So some of those images that are more like, Can, that are constructed well ahead of time, require a different approach than those images where you know, you go to a beautiful place at a time of day where you know, the light is likely to be nice, and you don't really know what you're going to come up with, which I think is most different. The approach that most photographers most outdoor photographers go with is the sort of tried to align a whole bunch of ingredients that are likely to yield really cool opportunities, but they don't really know what they're going for when they sat out that morning. And I liked that approach to it, I try to bounce from one to the other, because I find that they really tap into different parts of their creativity. So I'll go, I'll go and create more of the spontaneous end of the spectrum for a few outings. And then I'll feel the need to sort of plan something out, dream up an image that wouldn't happen spontaneously, and then try to make it happen. And it just bounced back and forth. And that's sort of been the process for me for gosh, over a decade now.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 6:36 So where does all of this inspire inspiration come from? Because you know, some some of your photograph. I know what you mean, with, you know, waiting for the right moment. I mean, one of the photo that we use for the thumbnail for the podcast was ice climbing on this beautiful thing. It was a glacier. Yeah, I'm pretty sure it was a glacier and Aurora right behind it. And, you know, like, like, you say that things like that is very difficult to come by. Right. So where does the inspiration come from? You know, you kind of share that, okay, well, maybe you're going on an adventure. And then you go to this place, and like, things kind of pop up here and there, right? It's like, Oh, that'd be cool to do this, and that, and this and that. But where does the inspiration come from? Because I know there are a lot of photographers out there a lot of listeners who are, you know, like, well, it's really easy for you to say, but I could never think of it that way. So yeah, I'd love to hear a little bit where the inspiration come from.
Paul Zizka 7:39 For sure, I think it comes from just wanting to keep photography fun, and interesting, especially if you've been doing it for a relatively long time. I just get bored doing the same thing over and over again, frankly, and so I feel like I need to. And that's purely for myself, that's, you know, what the audience may or may not like the result, but just purely for myself, I find that I just get I just lose interest, repeating the same ideas, and I'm sure fellow photographers will relate eventually it becomes it's easy to get a little bit robotic with photography and sort of start microwaving the same ideas over and over again. And then it's just, yeah, then you don't get anywhere on your journey as a photographer, because you're not, you're always staying within the realm of what's comfortable. So I think those ideas come out of just wanting to keep photography fun and interesting. And, and just to go out there and try to play around with some new ideas. And sometimes they work and sometimes they don't work, but I find that for me, it's the only way to keep photography sustainable is to really just get away from what's familiar at least once in a while.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 9:06 Yeah, no, that's, that's a great advice. You know, just keep it interesting, keep it fun, keep it you know, dynamic, and we definitely can see on your photography, because you live there year in year out, but every year you keep coming up with this new photograph, you know, with a different concept from the same place, right. And one thing that I was wondering was like, you know, when people can go to that process and you know, try to think about a different way to create different images and when, you know, to have that condition or line up, it's very difficult to come by, right. So, how do you like I'm just wondering, like, how do you go after that moment, because I know a moment like that, you know, it can be difficult Um, do you just like, drop everything when that moment come? Or, you know, cuz life happens, right life happens, everything's, you know, it's, it would be nice if all we we have in our life is just adventure and we can go anytime anywhere whenever we want but that's not that's not the reality. So how do you make things happen when a rare condition, you know, like the Aurora lining up with the composition that you want or the frozen lake at a certain point, you know, at a critical point before the snow up full on it and ruin the whole surface. How do you chase after this
Paul Zizka 10:43 moment? I would say yeah, you looking at social media, you you'd be, you know, I can see how people think you're looking at each other's accounts that everyone's always in a position where they can drop everything and go, it's just not true. I'm sure for myself and other people, I've got a wife, two little girls and, you know, other life commitments, and I'm just not able to chase absolutely everything that I would ideally Chase. But I think I'm very, very fortunate that my wife is very, very supportive of what I do. And so, and she understands that some of the conditions rely on phenomena that are fickle, right that you don't, you can't really plan a couple of weeks ahead with wild ISO rora, or things like that, that are time sensitive, and that are hard to read and are very, very dynamic. And so I've been very fortunate that ever since I began in this field that my wife has encouraged me to just drop everything and go, at least, you know, within the realm of what's reasonable. If conditions align for an image that I'm excited about, and I'm home, and I'm able to rearrange the schedule, or you know, or we just take a rain check on something we had planned and do it the next day instead, then it's I've had the flexibility to do that. And I think for Yeah, I think, you know, just to expand on that, I think for anyone who's in a relationship and wants to really pursue photography seriously. I mean, we're talking about the ingredients that make that possible. And I think one of the ingredients that is sort of that's not talked about enough, is just having support from your, from your friends, from your family to just go out there and get after it. When, when things are when the timing works out. So I've been I've had an amazing Circle of Support since the beginning. And that's been huge for me.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 13:01 No, that's yeah, that's, that's a really good point, you know, being able to find people that support you in your journey. And, yeah, I'm glad that you're able to do that. Because you know, some of your photos just absolutely incredible. Like, you know, people can look at it and just think, how do you even like, know, that's gonna have it, you know, and share, you know, there is a lot of uncertainties goes with it as well. But you take that chance you go out there anyway. And, you know, you get rewarded by this, this beautiful phenomenons, one way or another. So and
Paul Zizka 13:35 I think Stanley just just to add one thing to that, I think a lot of it comes with being very familiar with the playground that you operate in, right, like because I get, you know, when I travel, I get what I can, I don't know how to read the desert, or the ocean, the way that I know how to read the Rockies, having lived here for 15 plus years and having kept a close eye on why do these things happen? What set of conditions lead to those phenomena to happen, and being able to just anticipate a little bit, whereas I get totally thrown off an environment that I'm not familiar with. So I think a lot of it comes down to really knowing your subject. Really, really try to get to know your subject as best as you can.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 14:25 Yeah, no, that's a really good point. You know, I, I learned a lot from you. And when I met you in chat about the condition in the Rockies, and that really helped me to kind of predict and understand what what could happen and what, what when to go and you know when to wait. So I think that's really good advice. Now, you know, it's been, gosh, I don't think we're about two years I think about a year and a half to two years since I have you last in the podcast. So I know you have some project coming up. I know that travel open up again. So What exciting project, I know what it is. But you know, I just wanted to introduce it, what exciting project have you got into horizon at the moment,
Paul Zizka 15:09 for sure my big project is going to be a project that spans several years. So I'm going like, I'm diving really headfirst into this. It's called cryo failure, which means an affinity for cold places, which I've always had. But and I've always been drawn to shooting ice and snow and the high latitudes and cold places in winter. But now I'm going to do that with quite a bit more effort and intention, and and really, really target that part. That field of photography. And really, there's two purposes to the project. One of them is to document how dynamic those places are speaking more specifically about glacier. So I'm fortunate that I live within, you know, you've lived here, so I live with him, if I left the house. Now, within a couple hours, I can be at five different glaciers, looking at how they change how they've changed since last time, marvelling at the features that are on display that are always always different. So one of the purposes is documenting the changes in the ISE, both locally and abroad as well. And the other purpose is to document just purely the aesthetics, the incredible beauty of those rapidly changing places that are glaciated areas. So that's a project that in a way I started many, many years ago, but now I'm really that's got a lot more purpose to it now a lot more direction. And the idea is that it would culminate in a book and an exhibit, maybe three or four years down the road, a lot of the details remain to be determined. But for now, really the goal is is to raise awareness of how quickly those places are changing, and how beautiful they are. And I feel like we hear a lot about the vanishing ice and the rapidly receding glaciers. And a lot of people have a scientific approach to how they demonstrate that and I think that's wonderful. But I'm not going to pretend I'm a scientist, I'm an artist, and I think I can contribute, the best way that I can contribute to the conversation is really showcasing the changes, and the aesthetics of those absolutely incredible places. So that's where I really want to focus. Let other people do the talk around the science. And I've got unfortunate, I spent a lot of a lot of time close to that ice on that ice on the side under that ice. And so that's where I can bring something new to the conversation.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 17:54 Yeah, I think that's really great. You know, I love I love the cause behind it. And for, you know, for someone like me who never been who never live in winter places like Canadian Rockies until I was there, it was a big eye opening, right? The fact that glaciers doesn't usually lasts more than a year that usually, by the time the summer comes, it gets too warm, and most most likely it's gonna crumble, the fact that the glacier actually receding, and I think you told me about 1510 to 15 metre a year, you know, that's just mind blowing, right. And for most people who are living in tropical country, for example, or in, in Australia, where there is no direct access and see the to see this, we don't feel the climate change as much, right. But when it comes to ice, you know, zero, I stay in tech, one degree, it started to melt, all it takes is just one degree difference to melt the ice. So I love the project that you're doing. And I think I think it's really cool to be able to show that because, yes, the scientific approach is great, but a lot of people are visual. Right. So just being able to show that and see the difference. I think that can tell a lot tell the story, a lot of story behind that. Now.
Paul Zizka 19:27 I think also just to add one thing to that Stanley, I think, you know, there's there's a lot of fatigue that I think there's a lot of fatigue with the scientific argument right now right like people whether we like it or not, I think people are tired to have numbers thrown at them. And and sometimes I find that where where other methods can fail perhaps to reach people photography, because it's so visual can really be The help people connect with an environment or a cause. So I feel like, yeah, I feel like that's why I feel like I'm so I'm so drawn to showcasing those places for people. And we're, you know, and in a way, it's almost like, as someone who lives, whereas a camera and lives really close to those places, it sort of feels that I owe it to the rest of the world to go out and document those places. And the changes are been astonishing, like we are seeing. Over the last few years, we've seen some glaciers lose 100 200 metres in one year. So we're talking about changes that are happening like on human timescales, we're not talking about stuff that happens over hundreds or millions of years this, you can go to the Athabasca glacier, the dome glacier, from one year to another, it'll feel like a completely different place. It's happening very, very quickly here in the Rockies.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 21:02 Yeah, no, that's, that's really sad. And I absolutely agree with you, you know, like, we often say, seeing is believing and you know, sometimes having the number of backing up with you know, the photo can really make a big difference. And hopefully, more people are aware about this. Now, I find it interesting, right? And then we kind of you know, have a chat about this before the podcast, but people like war, people go to Bali because they enjoy the warm the tropical but you chase after the winter, you know, the ice skates when the wild skate? So where does that passion come from? Do you actually enjoy the winter? Or is it do you like to go out there? Because it's just so beautiful. It's is there one or the other? Or is it does it complemental
Paul Zizka 21:57 I do really like winter. Frankly, I find it's a little bit long here in the Rockies. Like I find that I absolutely love November, December, January. By the time you know, when April rolls around, and you're still getting snowed on, I start to look forward to summer adventures, to be totally honest with you. But I find that winter just brings along with it so many elements of magic, like, like the ice to snow. Just I love the silence of winter. So it's not just not just the visual appeal of winter, but I love the silence just there's less people here in the park. For one, you can go to those iconic locations and have a more more of a solitary experience. But also, a lot of the sounds are muffled in the winter, you just go out on a windless day in the winter and just sit there and you can literally hear the silence, right you don't hear anything at all. And that's not something that's possible in the summer. I find that the landscape is all is simplified, it's a lot more there's a lot less clutter. And so I think like photography photographically I think that makes for a very different experience than does the summer. And so I think winter has so so much to offer. Being able to shoot stars at 5pm is pretty awesome not having to wait till midnight as an astro photographer is quite nice. And yeah, I love the winter activities. I love documenting people enjoying winter whether it's on skis or ice climbing or on skates and so yeah, there's there's so much that appeals to me about the winter especially here in the mountains and then I would just gladly swap one month of winter for an extra month of summer but for the most part I'm a big winter lover for sure
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 23:59 yeah no that's you know when like you said the winter just bring the magic in in Canadian Rockies and you know the snow the snow tops it just makes it absolutely different right now I know that you you like to wander you like to explore you like to look for new places and you know from what you say it's what keeps things interesting because you keep looking for the new thing keep things dynamic. Now when it comes to winter it's you know the atmosphere especially in Canadian Rockies can become very extreme and and yet you from time to time again you would go you know solo exploring these things now, just take us through like what goes into your head and what you know what what makes you want to go out there during this extreme conditions.
Paul Zizka 24:54 I find that a lot of the magic in photography happens on the edge of extreme conditions sometimes right in the middle of extreme conditions, but typically on the edge of weather systems on the edge of those nasty periods of weather is when you'll find the unusual in the landscape where I, especially if you go to places that you've been to hundreds of times. I mean, as I'm sure you know, and you have those places that all your listeners have those places close to where they live, you know that you can show up at a place that you've shot three 400 times, and you feel like unless Mother Nature gives you a little something to work with, you're kind of out of ideas, like you feel like you've, you've experimented, you've done it all, you've shot it from a variety of perspectives. So then I find that you're kind of maybe in a way forced to rely on the weather a little bit and go out in dynamic weather, basically. So I find for me in the winter, it's not, it's not hard to find dynamic weather in the Rockies, you see it coming three, four days ahead of time in the forecast, and you can plan around it and rearrange the schedule. And so much of the magic happens when yeah, there's this front moving and or front has just moved out and or the winds are high. And that's when you can go to those iconic locations and see them in a way you've never seen them before. And so I feel very much compelled to go out when the weather is, you know, a little bit more harsh, I suppose. But now that the gear is so good, both the photo gear, the clothing, the apparel, there's no really reason to not be comfortable out there, there's a way that you can shoot and pretty much any kind of condition in relative comfort if you're prepared. And if you have the proper gear. And so I find that less and less as photographers, we can use weather as an excuse to really to not go out there and try to catch the the the edge of that those weather systems.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 27:00 Yeah, no, that's I 100%. You know, when you it's important to have the right gear because it can make or break the experience. And yeah, I love I love, you know how you share that, that passion of yours and pushing, you know, the comfort zone, because, like you say that's, that's when things can happen, and interesting things happen. So, you know, hopefully the listeners are out there are, you know, taking notes, you want to create something unique, go out there when no one else goes out there. So that's incredible. Now
Paul Zizka 27:35 you're sure it's been, I think it's you know, it's something that you hear all the time in photography circles, right, get out of your comfort zone and get out and it starts to get repetitive, of course, but I don't know how else to put it. I mean, it's so it's so important. And I think especially in the age of social media, where it's very, very easy to go and recreate similar images over and over again, that will automatically please a large audience. But for you as a photographer, they don't really get you anywhere, because you can shoot them with your eyes closed pretty much, right? They're very comfortable to you. And, you know, these are the settings and this is the composition and I go to a beautiful place at sunrise and I can shoot something that will, you know, gather mass appeal for sure. But I think you can't keep photography sustainable that way, you have to just please yourself first. And I don't know how you can please yourself first, if you just repeat the same ideas. I mean, everybody goes through a period of just learning and perfecting their technique and emulating the work of other people. And I think that's totally normal, as on your journey as a photographer, but eventually I find that everybody will hit that wall sooner or later, where photography just gets boring if you keep doing the same things over and over again, it's the same in all aspects of life. It just gets monotone after a while. So I think just if only purely for yourself, eventually you just have to find ways to innovate. And that just requires trying new things and getting away from what comes easy to you know, that's
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 29:15 100% you know, true and it's interesting that you say that because I feel like for you know photographers who are already in it for a long time, that phrase get repeated a lot, right, create something different, create something new. Go outside of your comfort zone, but when I first started photography, I wish I had listened to you know what you just said because I never heard that phrase. You know? It's it's so common that people go like you say the immolation is it's more popular where people just go to the popular places right take and a popular time so that they get that popular plate shot and get that one They call it adoption from from the social media user, right? But over time, I think people that's, that's when people can start to realise. So honestly, when I first started photography, I wish I had heard that a lot sooner. So it's really good that you mentioned that, you know, hopefully, listeners out there who are in their photography journey can take inspiration from that. Now, when it comes to, you know, your project, cryo Philia, and you have been to a lot of different places, you know, Canadian Rockies being the most predominant, but also Greenland, Nepal, Iceland, Antarctica, is there any place any, any, any favourite place, or any favourite moment from dos adventure that, you know, if I were to ask you, you know, what was the top, you know, experience from all of these places? Is there any one experience that literally just pop up your head? And yes, this was it? And if there was one, what is it?
Paul Zizka 31:14 There's a clear destination that comes to mind for sure. And that would be Greenland hands down. I, I've always said, you know, if you forced me to move outside of Canada, that's where you'll find me in Greenland somewhere. My I don't know if my wife would be very happy to relocate to Greenland. But as far as photography goes, for me, it's the ultimate playground and it's the the landscape is just vast and wild. And the sense of freedom that you get wandering around Greenland is just incredible. There's so so much to offer to the artist. It's very powerful magnetic plays just like the Rockies and is becoming more and more popular for a reason there's nowhere else like it that I know of. It's it's reunites a lot of the elements that I find the most exhilarating to shoot in photography, like ice and Aurora. And so for me, it's it's really a place that I'm just so thankful, whenever I get to just set foot on Greenland and walk around a little bit and document that place. It's next level for me, I've had many of my most memorable experience of photography have happened in Greenland. With the icebergs on the glaciers on the ice sheet, or under under Northern Lights, the people are wonderful as well. I love the cultural the cultural aspect of Greenland I love how people make a go of it in one of the world's most inhospitable places. And so yeah, for me, I think it's the clear, the clear, standout location as far as where I've been outside the Rockies is clearly Greenland, just phenomenal.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 32:59 Wow, ya know, 100% You know, when I see your photo, and, you know, when, when you tell me about, you know, what, what, where to go and what to look for in Greenland. It become top of my bucket list ago, so 100%, you know, it's just so beautiful. Now, something interesting that you mentioned earlier, you know, like, you love Greenland, for one of the reasons why you love Greenland is the playground for photography, you know, the different dynamic, different ingredients, I suppose, that you could find from that place. Now, when you look for destinations, or adventures or places to go? What is your main driver that makes you want to go to those certain place? Is it mainly driven by photography? or is there other experiences that you look for from this different destinations?
Paul Zizka 33:54 I look, I think for the wilderness first and foremost, Isla, I looked for places that yeah, that offer a lot of space. And a lot of, you know, they're pretty low density in terms of population, and so that the main thing that I look for is just nature really. And so that's the reason that I went to Greenland in the first place, and, you know, Mongolia and those other parts of the world where very, very few people live. And then so that's first and foremost, secondly, would be Yeah, of course, as a photographer, I think just the aesthetic aspect. What what is there? There's always something went wherever you have nature, there's something wonderful to shoot. I'm very much drawn to the high latitudes and really big empty places I like I like emptiness and remoteness. And I think so those are other things that I look for in destinations. Especially now you know that the world is reopening to travel, maybe try to get into those places that have such that are so so special that it's only a matter of time before they become a little bit more mainstream. So while I still have that sense of adventure, and an ability, trying to get to those places that require maybe a bit more physical effort to get into. So that's another aspect that I look at as well.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 35:34 Great question really interesting. Yeah, that's really interesting. And I would have thought ice was gonna be on the top of a bucket on top of that list.
Paul Zizka 35:44 Well, you know, what, I think what tends to happen is the places that reunite all of those factors tend to be the high latitudes, right, where not a lot of people live that are wild, that are beautiful, that are hard to get to. There's, there's there's some that are, you know, what, that in other parts of the world, but a lot of high latitude locations, meet all those criteria, which is why you'll find me often at the high latitudes.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 36:14 No, that's, that's really interesting. Yeah, absolutely. Right. You know, I think one of the inspiration for me to go to more difficult places in the Rockies was that principle, you know, when you when you kind of say like, well, you know, like Rockies have everything, you know, if it's too busy, just go further and higher, and you got less and less people as you get further into it. And I love that, you know, because, I mean, there are time for everything, or the time where you just want to have that the sidewalk, car parks or a spot and just, you know, enjoy just being out there. And there are times where you want to feel that sense of adventure, and you don't want to be, you know, feel go to a place that filled with millions and millions people. And actually, it's, yeah, it's one of the things that I miss about rock is because here in Indonesia, even you know, the highest the higher mountains or volcanoes is pretty accessible that we still line you know, line up. It's like a traffic jam. So Oh, yeah. Yeah, it's a bit crazy.
Paul Zizka 37:21 Yeah. Yeah. It's, I think it's something that's easy to take for granted. For sure. I think and like you said, you know, I'm, I'm, I sound like all I do is stuff that gets me away from people and away from the road, but it's not true at all, you know, I love I love roadside photography, as well. And I don't always have a full day or multi days to commit to getting away from people. And so sometimes I'm very thankful that in a place like Banff National Park, even a habit, even if I have a two hour window to shoot, while I can go go out with Lake Louise with everybody else and still witness a scene that is really beautiful. And see what I can come up with with the camera. It's, it's like you said there, there is a time for everything. And it's just, it's, frankly, it's nice to not have to just, you know, drag all that stuff on your back for kilometres before you take a photo. It's nice to do a bit of a bit of both.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 38:20 Yeah. 100%. And, you know, I think it goes back to what you said earlier, it's about the dynamic, just keeping things fresh. Interesting, right? That's, that's really cool. Now, when it comes to a high latitude, and you know, like, all these black countries, places, extreme condition, you just mentioned that those are the ingredients to create something unique, like that's the biggest opportunity. Because sure, you can go to Lake Louise and find a crazy condition. I think one time I had like, a thunderstorm passing to that. And I was like, you know, incredible, but it's very difficult to find moments like that, right? So all of these new places that harder to get to harder condition give you a lot more opportunity. Now what are taking share with us some of your biggest challenges to go to some of those places and reach to those places and create a suppose a piece of art a photograph that, you know that that's not only a whiteout, you know, because sometimes when it's no, it's just a white up. So how do you how do you, you know, what are the challenges and how do you push past those challenges?
Paul Zizka 39:35 That's a really good question. I think the main challenge one of the main challenges anyways, I think would just be time management, right? When you go out in those places, and you've got to look after yourself, you've got to maybe pitch the tent and cook and see the scene through the camera but also without the camera and so you may need to make sure you Go home with an experience as well as the photos. It's trying to constantly your brains on overdrive trying to constantly rearrange the schedule so that you can accomplish all of that and, and the more that we shoot, and I'm sure everybody here will relate, the more you shoot, the more you realise that good photography typically takes time, it takes commitment, you get lucky with an image on the fly once in a while, but most of the stronger images that we all have, the more that we shoot, they require us just committing that 1020 30 minutes plus to one shot if we're really excited about a possibility. So it's trying to find time for all that in the wilderness when the weather's not that great sometimes, that's that's the main challenge for me is trying to get really good at time management, and really trying to trying to really just assess every scene, every possibility in terms of the return of investment on investment, if you will, you know, like, this is a shot that does this shot, Warren 20 minutes of my time, it's a great shot, but at the same time, it would be worth it if it was like a one minute investment. But if it's 2030 minutes, then it doesn't really quite meet that ROI threshold that I've set for myself. So sort of trying to assess the scenes that way, you know, and then you find a shot that you're really, really excited about, that does warrant you know, 30 minutes. And sometimes there's a shot that, yeah, I'll put the pack down for one minute, it's not an amazing shot, prefer a one minute investment, it's worth shooting. So trying to always like, assess, assess the different scenes, different possibilities that way, I think is one of the main challenges for sure. And another challenge, the other main challenge I can think of I think is just and goes along with that is just being adaptable. I think the best photographers that I know are very, very adaptable photographers, they respond very quickly to the stimuli around them, they they are very quick at bailing on an idea. If it's not working out, if the conditions are not conducive to a certain image, they will quickly turn around and they won't just turn get tunnel vision into wasting 2030 minutes on an idea that's never going to happen. They are very, very quick thinking and they adapt to dynamic conditions, dynamic environments very, very well as, as we should. As photographers, we work with a subject that's ever changing, especially, you know, working in mountain environments in rapidly changing weather, it makes no sense to have to stick to one approach, you have to just keep adapting. So I think that's another one of the challenges out there. And I call it a challenge because sometimes I do very well at it, and sometimes not so much I get, I spent way too much time working on ideas that are never going to lead to anything in hindsight. And so I think being adaptable and managing your time properly, so that you can go home with the images, the experience and still, you know, look after your basic needs out there at the same time.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 43:19 That is incredible. advices you know, I think I'd never heard them, you know, those points being being told that way. And the time management, especially I know, we kind of have that running in our mind when you're out there. But when you say it out loud, and when you you know, put it that way. I've become more conscious about about it now, you know, and I think that's a really great point. Thanks a lot for sharing that. Paul. It's, it's a great piece of advice. Now, you know, you you do a lot of workshop, right. And you've been taking photography for a long time, and you have a lot of thought, a thoughtful approach to photography. And I think that's why you, I feel that you are such a great mentor because of that. Now you have a few kind of like photography trips, you also do like a virtual mentoring, as well as, I think a mentorship that you just opened up as well. Now, I'm curious, you know, out of those whole thing, what are some of the different aspects that most photographers are missing in their in their photography journey that make a whole lot different to their photography?
Paul Zizka 44:45 Oh, wow. That's an awesome question. And I think one of the in a way I think a lot of what and I think that comes down to like, it's the same. Same question as asking you know what, what What takes a photographer from like, Good to Great or photo from good to great? I'm not saying I'm not saying like, I'm great. And I've got it all figured out, but just looking at other people's work that surround me, the other people I shoot with. And I admire what takes them to the next level. And I always come back to the intangibles. And what I mean by that is like, everybody, sooner or later will have the math figured out behind photography, right? Like, this is what I do with, this is what I do with the shutter speed, the ISO, the aperture, eventually, that becomes second nature to everyone. Some people pick it up in one day and other people pick it up in five years. But eventually, you get that under control, you don't even think about it. In a way, same thing with the composition, composition, I think it's very mathematical. You know, it's it's the way that you rearrange the geometry and the shot. In a way it's not, it's not quite as sort of academic, or I suppose like, it's not, it's a bit more intuitive, I suppose, than the exposure triangle. But it's still kind of like something that becomes second nature a little bit after a while. What takes people to the next level, and what a lot of people are struggling with, I think, is commitment, and intention. And I think, by commitment, I mean, through doing mentorship, and workshops, I think a lot of people are just like, they really want to take a different geography to the next level, or they want to make a business out of it. But when you dig a little bit, you realise they're not that ready to make sacrifices. And I think it's like, that's like everything in life, you can't eventually you have to make sacrifices to move on to the next level. Once you know, all the math, once you know your camera inside and out, you know how to assess good light, good opportunities out there, I think and you have you have your vision, you even have your style of photography, I think eventually you have to make sacrifices, and you have to really commit you have to want it more badly than everybody else, I think, especially if you want to run a business, right? So I think that's something that's something that I find went through mentorship workshop that people are missing. The other thing is, intention is I think, just really working with purpose to tell your story as clearly as you can, knowing what you want to say with the camera. And being very intentional, working with a lot of direction, a lot of purpose and being very deliberate about about all the micro decisions that go into making a photograph. Why why do you do everything that you do? That leads to a photo, I think you look at the photographs that great photographers take. And you notice that the breathe a lot of intention, Oh, I see why he or she did that. That's clever. I love that they did this with a composition. I love that they chose those settings they chose to you know, use a filter or dis lands over a dat lands, everything is done for reason, I think and I love to see that in other people's photographs. And those are the harder things to teach. I think like as someone who does a lot of teaching and mentoring. It's not hard to show people the exposure triangle or even composition, those things can be taught but trying to get people to work with commitment and intention. That's the real challenge. I think as as someone who likes to teach, it's really, really trying to get people to work on those aspects, those more intangible aspects of photography.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 49:02 Wow, you elaborate that so eloquently. I love it. And I totally love it. It's very true. You know, it's, you know, I mean, people thing, like shooting manual is so hard. It's not like it's it's a three step process. You know, it's not that hard. And it's only up or down. You know, if one goes up, the other goes down. It's not that hard. And even a lot of how you say even the composition can be mathematical after a while can be rigid because there is a formula to it. But the thing that makes a big difference is that consideration, how do you mix between your gear and the settings and the composition and putting that together? And yeah, I love that perspective. And, man, that was that was a really, really great advice. Thanks a lot for sharing that poll. And, yeah, it's one of the reason why I want you back here. You know, you have a perspective that no one else has, you know, it's always it's always a big eye opener when I listen to you and your your advice and your, your wisdom. So that's really great. That's really great. See, I'm
Paul Zizka 50:29 glad, I'm glad you can. I'm glad you connect with that. I figure, I figure you would, you know, I think I think a lot of people. And I see that in workshops, because people, I'll go over to someone hunched over a tripod and say, what are you working on and their settings are perfect. The composition is, could be very good. But they still feel like, they still feel like they're missing something, right. And sometimes it's hard to put your finger on it. And sometimes it's just, yeah, just just working with direction and intention and making sure that you're going home with the most compelling rendition of the story that you can get.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 51:19 Yeah, that's amazing. So you know, we're coming into the hour mark. And I know you have another commitment after this. So I want to try to keep it within the leaner the hour. Now, one last question that I have for you is, so for the listeners, you know, you this this advice that you just gave, I think that is one of the most important thing in photography right now. Like you say, it's really hard to get there, because it's not, it's not tangible. It's not, you know, there, there are no formula to it. So for the listeners out there for the photographers who feel like, okay, I got the composition, you know, I know my composition, I know, my techniques, my settings, I know my camera, I know my post processing, but it's just like, it's never Wow, it's just like, it's great. It's good, but it's not Wow. Right? So what advice would you give to those people? What sort of exercise? Or how can they approach photography differently, so that they can apply what you just, you know, what you just said earlier on your wisdom, to their photography.
Paul Zizka 52:34 Two things, I think, look at the photography, look at a lot of photography and look at the photographs of people you admire, look at what they do. And instead of scrolling past 500 shots a day, when you see a shot that stops you in your tracks, just take like five minutes to really deconstruct it and think about why it makes you feel a certain way and why it's so impactful to you and why it works so well. And sometimes it takes a while to figure out what's going on behind the scenes and the mechanics of it. But once you're once you figure it out, then you get used to analysing images from other people. That way, I think you can get so much out of it. So once you see an image that you really, really like that you find is really powerful. Take time to stop and try to list out in your mind. What did they do that is just so cool. Try to put your finger on it on what's the wow factor? What's the the the intangible in that image, or the tangible could be the composition, a choice of settings. But what is it that makes that image so compelling. The other thing that I would highly recommend people do is just getting out with people that they may, that people get out with people that you admire, get get out with people whose work you respect. And see how they go about approaching a scene and just see even though you guys all went to the same location at the same time, just pay close attention to what they come up with when they post 510 days down the road. And just make a mental note. And I think that will really impact the way that you assess the scene, the next time you go out. And I'm not saying just start emulating your friends. But just like nobody works in a vacuum right pick and choose ingredients from other people's strategies that you really like to form your own sort of approach to photography. So get out with other people who see the world differently. We all have a different view of the world. We all work differently as artists and look at a lot of photography that you really like and instead of like hating like and moving on deconstruct Hawaii that day. Marriage works so well for you.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 55:02 That is great advice. And I love how you say, you know, be you, you know, like, everyone is different. And you could use the same exact techniques, the same exam in the same exact shot. And I feel like, that's what makes your photography very unique, very different. Because, you know, you put a lot of you try a lot of this landscape photography, with your passion with hockey, for example, with wild eyes with your love for going to extreme temperature extreme places, looking for that unique, unique conditions. And that's, that's what makes it different. So I think that is such a great advice that you share there. And yeah, we're just very grateful to, you know, hear all of this wisdom from you. So, Paul, it's been a great, you know, having having you back here having another conversation with you. So, let us know a little bit. Where does cryo philia go from here and let the audience know, if they do want to find out about this project or about your workshop? What is the best way to get in touch?
Paul Zizka 56:23 For sure, I think the website might be a good starting point is just my last name cisco.ca. Because then from there, you can quickly hop over to the cryo philia project, or you can check out the workshops, or the latest work, et cetera, you can have sort of everything in one place. Otherwise, we have separate social media accounts for the cryo philia project. So it's easy to find on Instagram and, and Facebook everywhere you would expect. Yeah, so I would say just hop on the website and take a look and see if you. Hopefully you like what you see. And yeah, I'm always you know, I'm easy to find online, always looking forward to connecting with fellow photographers. And really, Ron, we want to thank you, Stanley, for just the just the work that you put in preparing, I think, for these types of podcasts because they have, you know, the questions are always very thoughtful. And the conversations have always been great. So I'm really, really thankful for the experience.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 57:31 You are welcome. And a little bit, you know, behind the scene fact, I actually don't prepare a lot from this. I just been curious. Because, you know, being curious, make me ask this weird question that is interesting.
Paul Zizka 57:48 Your back, I think that's a great skill to have as a, as an interviewer, I think is just seeing where the conversation leads, and taking it in the most interesting possible, most interesting direction possible. And so you've definitely developed that skill. So thanks for that.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 58:05 Appreciate it. Thank you. Yeah. So you know, with your project, how can we get involved? And you know, for people who want to get involved, or for people who want to support your project? What is the best way to contribute or to get involved with with your project?
Paul Zizka 58:23 I would say just for, I would say, just providing feedback, providing feedback, how do the images make you feel? You know, as you start maybe following along under one of the accounts, let me know how the images make you feel. Other people read the comments, things feed into one another, I think just trying to generate that conversation around the images is great. There's a lot of talk about and a lot of arguing about the science and the numbers and the math and in the statistics. And those conversations in a way are already happening, which is fantastic. But there's a lot of fatigue, like I said, relating to those conversations. And so if you have some feedback that pertain to more like more of the visual, then I'd love to hear
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 59:13 it. That is that is I think that's great, you know, because different things appeal to different people. So yeah, if you if you have anything, it when you go to the social media and the website, if there is anything that you can think of it as anything that speak to you more than the other, please do let Paul know, you know, so that he can take that and do more of that and you know, think about what other ways he can do to you know, reach more people so that is fantastic. Thank you so much for doing this. You know, I think this project is so important. When I when I go to the Rockies and start exploring the ice scape is such a heartbreaking fact to know that. Geez like in I'm getting goosebumps right now. But in about 10 years, a lot of that would would go away. Right? And it's it's really sad. It's really sad that a lot of the icebergs gonna break off and you know, melt it with the rest of the water. So, yeah, I, I admire you for doing this and I love that you're doing this. All right, well, we can handle this hopefully you get a lot of benefit a lot of wisdom and hopefully you take a lot of notes from there. You know, these are some of the advices that you would pay hundreds of dollars if you want to work directly with Bose this guy and you're getting it three years. Thank you very much for doing that poll. But yeah, with that being said, thank you for for Thank you very much for listening in. And if you haven't subscribed, hit the subscribe button. And we do appreciate any feedback coming from you. So leave a review on in Apple podcasts or even email us you know, if you do enjoy this, it would mean a lot well poses God thank you very much for being here again, for sharing your, your project, as well as for you know, giving us all this wisdom and advices on how we can move forward, but also how we can find hope, purpose and happiness to our photography.
Unknown Speaker 1:01:21 It was such a pleasure, Stanley. Thank you.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:01:25 Fantastic. All right, we can do this. I'll see you guys next week. Keep shooting and keep creating
Monday Nov 28, 2022
Monday Nov 28, 2022
Hey Wicked Hunters,
Welcome back to The Art of Photography Podcast. This week we have Eric Pare and Kim Henry, who revolutionise light painting and portrait photography.
Photographer Eric Paré and contemporary dancer Kim Henry have built a lifestyle combining passions for performing art, photography, travel and light painting.
Exploring the world with their light-painting tubes, they create unique imagery mixing light-painting and landscape photography in magnificent locations, sharing every single tip about their techniques along the way. When they are not on the road, you can find them performing studio photography in Montreal where they capture dance using 176 cameras on a full 360° system.
Mixing studio and outdoor photography allow them to continue pushing their limits while keeping the balance between those two complementary aspects of their art. Their work has been featured on CNN, MTV, BBC and TEDx, and they have worked on large-scale campaigns with Audi, Apple, Adobe, HP, ESPN, Intel, Canon and Microsoft. Some recent projects brought them and their team to Coachella, Panorama, CES, SXSW, Xposure and the Olympic Games.
You can learn more about both Eric Pare and Kim Henry on:
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
• Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
• Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
• Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
• Website: https://podcast.thewickedhunt.com
• Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to learn more about The Wicked Hunt Photography by Stanley Aryanto:
• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thewickedhunt/
• Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thewickedhunt/
• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/thewickedhunt/
• Photo prints: https://www.TheWickedHunt.com/
Don't forget to leave a review on the podcast if you enjoy this conversation. It would help us to get found and help to inspire other photographers.
Kim Henry 0:00 And it was it was not a big success. But when we saw those big tools, those big plastic tubes are like, Oh, I think there's something there.
Eric Pare 0:08 So on that night, where we were like, oh, there's something so cool to play with. We're like, what do we do with this? Are we going to keep it as a secret, or we're going to reveal it. And now 10s of 1000s of people are doing this.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 0:24 Hey Wicked Hunters. Welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast, where we share artists journey and share how photography given us hope, purpose and happiness. And today, we have someone who is an innovator in the photography industry, someone who actually I followed a long, long time ago. It's such a privilege to have them here today, and being able to hear the story behind not only their photography, but also the innovation behind it, because trust me, it will blow your way. Blow your mind away. So today we have Eric and Kim. How are you guys doing?
Eric Pare 1:06 Hi. So good to be with you today. Tonight for us in mourning for you. We'll start right away. I had a question for you. Okay.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:17 Oh, right away. I love this. This is great. I thought I was supposed to be the one asking question.
Eric Pare 1:23 Do you speak? You speak Indonesian, right? Yeah, I do. I know one word. Okay. And I have no idea how to pronounce it. But I want to tell that word to Kim. Because this is one comment that always come from Indonesian fans. The right to Kim. So if you saw that, Karen
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:44 Kerim gramme, what does that mean? Yeah, it's actually mean awesome. Oh. Yeah. It's like, oh, grand is like, oh, it's like, awesome. Yeah. Yeah, that's, I mean, you guys are doing really awesome stuff. 100%. You know, when I first come across your work, one of the thing that really intrigued me is just the way you do slide and how you like painted right behind the portrait behind your subject. And I thought it was something that I had never seen before. So when I first saw that right away, I was like, wow, like, that's incredible. And I have I have made a few attempts to buy the tube and everything but I've never followed through with with it. So you know, now that I've gone on a podcast with you, maybe that's my incentive to actually make that happen. But, look, it's so incredible to see how both of you work together, you know, as a as a photographer, and dance and before we can move forward with, you know, all the different question. Tell us a little bit about how did it all get started? You know, how did it all get started for you, Eric as photographer and how it kind of transpires with Kim and you know, half of two different work of art meet together.
Eric Pare 3:14 Okay, so I think you already know that's the reference so many photographers, I was travelling with a point and shoot camera. You heard you heard that before? Right?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 3:25 Yeah,
Eric Pare 3:28 I got super lucky because as I was very interested into photography, I wanted to become professional. But where do you start? Like if you have no one? Like no, none of your friends? And that it doing this as a profession as a business? Or how do you start and I was super interested about photography, and I had a point and shoot camera, and I was travelling, and I was taking pictures of plants, birds and stuff. And just been lucky. I had a friend and agency and he called me one day. So how can you do that? That gig with us taking pictures of product? And was like, Oh yeah, I bought my first DSLR like the cheapest one I could find just because that that's what I was thinking was a good way to get started. And I killed them. Like my first gig was so great, because it was something that was kind of easy for me with the small experience I had. I think I've been lucky and I did a great job with it. So then I got another one one and then I've been able to buy my first full frame which was a five D one back there. So it's a long time ago. And and then yeah, I've continued to do progressively for a year or two. But it's the passion started to fade out because we're just taking photos of products. I was doing personal projects where I felt Like it was not bringing anything new, so kind of faded out. My, my professional is programmer. And that Job was giving more liberty, I was able to travel and do programming, but photography, not that much because I had to go to places early in the morning. And I was like, oh, not too sure if it's for me. So I got quit for a few years, until I got contacted to do a project in 360, with cameras and programming. So I had to cold the whole system to connect all of the cameras together. And that changed my life. Because this is so cool. And the first project I did introduced, you were just live events actually, in people's jumping, not the most creative things, but I felt like there was something to dig into with this technology. So after one year of going on tour with the that system was only 20 Something cameras back then was like Okay, let's try to see what we can do as an art firm with this. So I set up just a small system with 24 cameras in the studio. And this is where I met the year old kid Henry.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 6:29 That's a good segue. You are a dancer how Okay, okay, thank you. Yes, I can't, I can see how you guys work really well as a team.
Eric Pare 6:50 I felt like I spoke too much. So I wanted to give you the ball.
Kim Henry 6:57 So if I can, like, fill the gap from before we started working together and what brought me to that place, let's say. So I was a gymnast for many years, like I did competition. And then I decided to study dance. And I was doing mostly like, very high athletic, acrobatic stuff. I was fascinated by details, but also like, Yeah, high intensity movement and stuff like that. And at some point, I got injured, and I got like a surgery. And I was, at that point, I was actually wondering like I was reconsidering my career as a whole. And interestingly enough, like that, let's say that constraint became like, actually a new opportunity to, like, see a new perspective, a new way to, to see the movement and to see dance and to approach dance differently. So I became fascinated with more minimalistic dance during the time that I could not actually move. And during that process of, yeah, getting interested in like state of presence and minimalism, and what was actually like, how could i Master my body in those very subtle ways. This is where we met. He was doing light painting with dancers in 360. And like, painting is like long exposure time. So the person has to stay still and not move for very, like, a few seconds. And that was exactly where I was at. At that point, I was looking for a way to. So it became like, kind of a dance of stillness. So how to fulfil the body, in stillness. So
Eric Pare 9:08 what she's not saying is that she changed the project because she was so precise. Sure, so perfect with this stillness, something I've never seen before. It wasn't my beginning. It was just a few months old with this technique. And I've never seen something like that before. She she was so good with this. And she became the face of that project that we did in early 2013, nearly 10 years ago, actually. And so that project took life. It's brought a lot of new opportunities for me, but I didn't know her. She was part of the project, but I worked with her for one hour and that was it. So after one year of surfing on that project, I decided to contact her back to see what what's next. Where do we go from here and, and then we started really to work together. So long, much longer story. But we started to travel together and to create more. So I'm not taking pictures of Kim we are dual, we work together. She's a big part of the creative process. So many of the ideas you see in our images come from her. And yeah, it's been a while now.
Kim Henry 10:30 Yeah, yeah. So it's super interesting how, as you said, like, are two very different paths and expertise actually meet in that art expression that we made like ours?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 10:44 That's incredible. I it just got me excited to have both of you here. And I was so happy when Eric, you know, say that, you know, you're gonna rock him in there. Because it's like to have my passion, you know, that I have in life kind of collide together, you know, dance and photography, that is just incredible. And I love hearing that story. Right? It's, I mean, when it comes to photography, we see it over and over again, that we love it from the, for the creative part of it, but many of us cannot lose that. lose, lose sight of that, throughout the journey, because you know, whether we're looking for that followers, the numbers or you know, try to make money off of it, and that kind of fade away. So I think it's really important to understand to remember why you can get into it, and what's the biggest purpose? So that's incredible. So I could say that is so talk to me a little bit about the 360 project, like what is that project? How did it come? Why? Why did the project what what was the project there? What was the main purpose of that project?
Eric Pare 11:59 So the first project was for Chevrolet cars, and it was during a tailgate for a football game in Quebec City. And I was hired to programme the system to connect all the cameras together, and, and show and push the final video on social media. Because back then we were pushing your videos directly to Facebook. So the folks were coming in the centre of our structure, they were jumping, we're triggering the cameras, and then they were able to share the image. So it was x experience experience or experiment. Expert No, not experiment, but if it experience for the users with a brand, okay, yeah,
Kim Henry 12:50 so at that point, it was really, it was not artistic. It was like a brand paying for a really nice, cool experience for the attendees.
Eric Pare 12:58 Yeah. But there was so much to do with that kind of system. And just this is what I've been pushing for for the past 10 years is to see what we can do with this. And that's how I grew up because back then was was 20 something cameras, and now I'm had 176 in one structure, but I have 400 cameras to haul and the reason why I have that many cameras is because we've been doing so many projects, and sometimes we have to ship cameras to different country to make projects. So in the end, like I'm here with tonnes of cameras, and tonnes of creative projects, mostly interest Exede, which also 3d scanning with a different kind of installation. But my playground is really the 260 it's it's an all theatre that we turn into, just create a playground, with no windows just pitch black. And we have the subject in the centre of the rig. And then I do either like painting or we do dance movements, we experiment. And we try to improve the technology because we also teach how to make that kind of system, how to use multiple cameras together because the software we did back in the days, it's still maintained, it's still developed today. And we power up tonnes of agencies and companies studios working with that kind of technology.
Kim Henry 14:29 And in our case, like what is interesting is that it's a very like complex setup. It's a lot of technology and there's a lot of work behind it obviously like for the software and everything but it's it's really how to put all that technology like how to use it for the art how to apply it for the vision like the visual, the artistic vision.
Eric Pare 14:55 So, if you remember in 2013 When we were We're working together after a sequence we were going outside of the rig. And we're looking at the playback on the one camera. So we couldn't see the 360. Right away, we had just guess what it would look like. And we were editing from one camera just to see if the light was good. So we're scrolling on the one of the 24 cameras just to see if it was okay or not. And then it would take hours to download all of the files, and maybe some were good, maybe not. And now we push the button and have full result is really within a few seconds, fully calibrated and, and ready to do view. So yeah, we, we worked a lot on that we have a team here working on the software on the hardware, so we have technicians and and now when we go in the studio, we can play without thinking too much about the technology is it going to work or not, it is working, because this is what the team is, is there for.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 15:56 That's, that's incredible. And so you guys are literally the grandfather of 360 cameras, then
Eric Pare 16:04 I don't want to say that, I don't feel comfortable with that. Because other companies were there before me, there are a few other ones. But the way I use it is the way I want to live my life. And I'm lucky to have access to this. And I work for this of course, but like I made the choice to have that, that permanence to do and we're not many and currently to that kind of thing. And but I want to keep doing this because I feel like we're into something quite unique, super interesting. And every time we go there, we know that there's something else to to experiment with something else to discover. Yeah, that's cool. Same with with photography with one camera, but when you have unrealistic 66 that you can start to think about other ways you can trigger the camera to make different kinds of sequences and, and play with the with the time and space in 3d. So it's endless. It's mind blowing, it's
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 17:09 like when you get a camera, like you have one perspective and you get to you know, like, if you have a 360 camera, then you have so many different perspectives that you can play around with.
Eric Pare 17:20 Yeah, but that's a good point. And that's how I learned like painting you truly, because back in the days, there were not there were no tutorials and like waiting for me was just like writing your name with a flashlight. It was not interested in that. But the technique I crafted was to do everything in one second because I wanted to have a very sharp subject. And as I was building this, I was doing trial and errors, but I had access to 24 angles. So I learned faster because of that. So when you have one camera, you see the result, but the result of just four with five degrees difference is totally different. And having access to all of those files made me learn so much quicker than that is glad for that. But it's very helpful for me.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 18:06 Wow, that's actually so cool. So I have a few questions for QA as well. But before we get to that, I'm interested on how you tell me that you know, the first thing was the point on shoot, and then you get into the 360 project. Now, where does the light painting came in? Like, at what time you go like, you know what, I'm gonna start doing this really cool stuff with the light painting and create, you know, circles and you know, sparks and pattern and all these incredible stuff that I have never seen before.
Eric Pare 18:40 Yeah, and it makes sense. Once I explained the reason why because I had no interest with like painting, as most people refer back then because I didn't know any like printers doing professional work. I found a few while researching for that. But prior to that, like like I think we're just making like growing hard to notice at all. However, as I was saying, I was in a very small studio with 24 cameras. It was so small and I had experienced with strobes likes to do lightweight softbox these big things, but I couldn't use that because it was too big. And I was lighting up the whole rig with my with my lights. So I had to find a way to use very concentrated light around my subject. So I took a flashlight and I started to draw around around my subject and it worked. And then I started to get more interested and I found really good light painters like there was already something back then. So some very inspiring artists and I worked with with one of them and he's actually in Montreal, Patrick fashion which is one of the best painters in the world. We don't hear much about him now because he's not very active on social media, but Is is so good with this. And I saw him working. And he was doing like a one minute exporter and crazy light. And it was like, Oh, that can be something like there's something there crafting the light by hand. It's so different this is this is so different. So from that point, I was not behind the camera, it was with the subject in front of the camera. And I wasn't interested to do super long exposure, because I wanted to have a very sharp subject. So this is how I came up with that once again, exposure technique. But then how did we bring that outdoors that happened with him a few years after a boss, I'm passing the ball. Yeah. Do we go there?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 20:41 Yeah, let's go.
Kim Henry 20:42 Yeah, so we were back. In 2015, we were teaching light painting in studio. We've been teaching since the beginning, basically, but and every time like we were, every time we would do a workshop would ask for people to like, would try to get some new tools and different stuff the day of so we could actually show people that we can do like painting with basically anything. So flip flops, Apple and things like that. And a friend of us, we were in in San Francisco, and a friend of us actually recommended us to go to a place called Tap plastic, because we could find some plastic stuff and acrylic. And we got there. And then we're like, was it for four feet, four feet long plastic to make for like, fluorescent to cover fluorescent lights. And we're like, oh, that could be a really nice tool. It's a very big tool, because we've been trying maybe a few months earlier to bring like painting outdoors. And it was it was not a big success. Like, we were not satisfied. Everything was very visible. And we didn't have like high quality. So we just leave it at that for that moment. But when we saw those big tools, those big plastic tubes are like, Oh, I think there's something there. So we took one thing, yeah, just one, we only bought one we bought like other stuff for the workshop. And we did that. And it was it was super fun. But that night, we went out on the beach with that same friend. And we just started with the same flashlight that we had the same. And it was actually good. Yeah, it
Eric Pare 22:33 was exactly the style, you know, of us working outdoors at the blue hour with one circle. This is exactly what we created that night on the first night trying something with that long do we define that style that is much more popular than anything else we've been doing in 360? Because this is accessible. This is how we created a community. It's by teachings on that night, where we were like, oh, it's something so cool to play with. We're like, what do we do with this? Are we going to keep it as a secret? Or are we going to reveal it? And we decided to just share everything. And that was a good decision. Because it's it's got to be easy. It's accessible. It's not expensive. And now 10s of 1000s of people are doing this. It's so cool.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 23:23 Yes, that is the right word. It's so cool. Because like, I'm getting goosebumps right now just like hearing you get like you're you guys explaining this, but like, like, I looked at it and what's really cool about it is you know, with with with light, as you can experience, you can create a smooth or like a sharp thing, especially at night with photography. And you create that and you create the dynamic you you can use an even like you create, like with the tape to create a different pattern and then you have sparkles on the you know, the outside. It's just so cool. Like, you know, like, we always think How did you come up with that and it's so cool to hear the story behind it. So, so then now I can call you guys the grandfather of the tube light painting then is that right?
Eric Pare 24:25 I will never claim that I invented that. Okay, some people do but like PT has been there forever. And some people we found after afterward that some people were especially German people were using similar tools but did nothing the same way. But we found one picture that is very aligned with what we do and in dates from way before we were there probably in the 90s Okay, and I have to find that photographer. It's a it's a music album and the cover is with the tube picture and I don't want to reveal that show now. But we'll come back when they would with the answer. But yeah, so I never claimed that I invented that. But clearly, we made it popular. And that's super satisfying. Can we read something we just received? We just receive a message? I think it fits well with the topic.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 25:19 100% Jump in.
Eric Pare 25:23 So yeah, I was thinking,
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 25:25 is this the Indonesian? Is it Indonesians as well.
Eric Pare 25:29 So so someone on Instagram shared our work, and I just replied, thanks for sharing. And she she replied with this. Okay.
Kim Henry 25:39 My pleasure. I love you guys work and have learned a lot from you. You inspired me to light pain to do light painting to begin with. And I followed your journey for many years now. I am always impressed with each new creation, you and Kim come up with. Fun fact, I met my partner while I was like painting on the beach because he was doing the same thing. And we bonded over both having followed you and learned from you. I can't emphasise enough how cool I think what you do
Eric Pare 26:09 is it's so much more than the it's making people connect and become life partners.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 26:18 What do you want more than this? Wow,
Eric Pare 26:21 she made my day for sure.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 26:24 That's incredible. And this is why I love having people on the podcast this because this kind of stuff you wouldn't hear otherwise. Right? And it That is incredible. You know? That is? That is so cool. So like, you know, I got a funny question for you. And you know, Erica, earlier in, in when we first can chat here in the podcast, you can assess like, Well, I'm very technical. And then Kim is the creative one. So I'm just wondering, how much of that, you know, from the photography? How much how does the creativity work between the two of you? How do you come up with the concept and you know, the pose and the lighting and the landscape? Because you do think about that, you know, when I see your photograph, you think about where you put it, you know, where, whether it's at nighttime with the stars, or remember, you're posting something with the tail of the Milky Way, and you're like, I don't know where the Milky Way is, but the tail is still pretty beautiful or something like that. So how does that creativity work between the two of you to create this masterpieces?
Eric Pare 27:44 For me, it's trial and error. I know you try a lot of things. And so sometimes you see all of this is working. So then you jam on that and then gets you other ideas. A lot of my work is based on constraints. Okay, so as I was saying, on 360, if I use like painting was because of the constraints, and I impose myself a lot of constraints, like I'm never using a flash outdoors, even though I know would be easier to freeze my subject, I don't want to go there. Because I feel like there's so much more about using a single source of light that you use to light up your subject have the trace of light, it feels like everything blends well together. So I I keep my thoughts on that. So there is that constraint that is helping the the creative decisions, the the overall identity that we crafted over over the years. But then can keep keeps challenging me about things that I'm like, It's not possible. Don't even think about that.
Kim Henry 28:47 And I try it anyway.
Eric Pare 28:52 And the best example is one day, she was like, Oh, I can I could like take sand in my hands. And then you do the circle. I was like, No, it's a long exposures not going to work. And of course, that's super pretty because she she's good with that kind of thing. She's super precise, to start to release the sand one hand after the other while I was doing the circle, like perfect timing, and she got it the first night. We try that.
Kim Henry 29:21 If I can add to that, I think we're both very curious people. And we both really like challenges. So we'd like to push or the limits of what we think is possible. And yeah, we always use constraints. So let's say I usually say as a joke, like, I like plans, sometimes we plan thing, but what I like even more is to change plans. You know, like when the plan doesn't work, or doesn't seem to work then how do we adapt, adjust and come up with something and play with what is here in front of us. So I think it's a I don't know if it's a philosophy, but it's a way to approach our creative life. And life in general, I'd say
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 30:08 100% 100% I think that is a lot of how, you know, like, I, when I hear Eric is like, very logical, it's like, well, we try this, it works. And then we kind of just, you know, change it up. And then it's just like, Yeah, you know, let's just try something crazy. Yeah, I can see how you know that dynamic really works.
Kim Henry 30:28 But I'm also very analytic, like a, like, joke, as I'm very like, up in the air. And, you know, but I'm very analytic. And I like to, and I'm usually the one who, when we do something, let's say almost by luck, and we're not sure how it happens, then I'm the one who tries to dig and understand and like, figure out what what we did. So we can actually do it again. Maybe you're just so I'm pretty nerdy as well.
Eric Pare 30:56 Yeah. And that's very helpful for me, because there are so many details that I don't see. And she's, she knows, like a lot of things that it's just too much for me. And that's, that's also why she's helping a lot in when we have, like corporate games here this to do, like we get hired by brands to do stuff in 360 and work with dancer sometimes. And she always like, finds the little things that we can improve. And like she does creative direction here, things that I'm so clueless about. So, super lucky that she she sparked up this whole story.
Kim Henry 31:35 Yeah, so I guess once again, it's like, complementary strengths that we put underneath.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 31:41 Yeah. Wow, that is really cool. So now I kind of want to ask a few questions for Kim. And, you know, you mentioned how you were a dancer and you got injured and and then you, you have to explore a different a different technique or different way to express yourself to dancing. Now, when I see this with photography, like, like what Eric mentioned earlier, they're just incredible. Because, you know, it's so sharp or for that long exposure, you can see a very good details on yourself. What are some of the techniques that, you know, that that you can share? So the, you know, the audience who are, you know, attempting to, to do what you guys are doing can get the same result? How can you stand still, for that long, you know, such a long time. With such, I could say, quite complicated poses as well, like, you know, it's not just like standing up, right, you have like your hands here. Really, really elegant. poses?
Kim Henry 32:55 Um, good question. Well, I guess the first thing is communication, I, Eric needs to let me know, like, we have a way to communicate that, in order for me to know when he's about to trigger, and when the exposure ends. So that's one thing. We, when we teach, we always say people, we always tell people to hold their breath, because that's a very technical aspect, but it helps because even like the movement of the lungs, like, when you inhale, I'd say it's going to create movement in the body, which is enough to make the person's blurred. But more on the like, what practices I think are helping me to achieve this. When it comes to, like, it requires a lot of focus, like to be able to sustain focus and concentration for a long period of time. So any meditative practice helps in that regard. Also, like while we shoot I do body scan to make sure that my my limbs are like, at the same place not only at the same place but also that my body is still vibrant and alive and full of energy if that makes sense. Because otherwise like when you stay still for a long period of time, like the body tends to like get stiff a bit so yeah, and I train so like so my body and muscles are able to maintain like a position for for a bit because we don't think about it but let's say even just lifting the chin for a minute you can already feel like the weight of the you know the head that is heavy. So, so yeah, I don't know. It's a it's practice. And between, I'll say, like, whenever I can also, I will move between poses between like,
Eric Pare 35:11 I thought you were chasing mosquitoes
Kim Henry 35:14 that also different circumstances. So yeah, I just do like a reset of my bodies in my state of mind whenever I can. So I'll like move it and like shake it off to make sure that I stay like, present.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 35:34 Nice. Yeah. Yeah. So like, you know, you train your muscle and you know, so that you can have the strength basically, to keep it still. And then you also relax and come back to it to kind of reset. So yeah, that 100% That, that that's really cool.
Kim Henry 35:49 I'll add to that I train my mind as well, because we shoot in like harsh conditions, sometimes, like cold, high wind mosquitoes. So I yeah, I think I think it requires, or at least I developed an endurance. Like, in that regard, as well.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 36:14 Cool. Yeah, no, that's awesome. Let's get to learn. And I'm sure the listeners can can learn a lot from that. Now, one thing that I'm interested in is to hear you know, it's been a long journey for you guys. You've been doing this for a long, long time. Was there? What was the hardest time that you have to come across? Was there any time where you maybe you almost quit? Maybe you you start? You know, not enjoying what you do? Or whatever it may be? Do you have any some sort of struggles that almost, you know, a struggle that that probably the biggest struggle that you've ever come across during your journey?
Eric Pare 36:59 Can I take you Yeah, no, never. I've never had that. No, never thought about quitting never had any big struggle with having fun. And you can see, like, based on the result, it's a game we're playing in. It's just too much fun. So I definitely think I'll grab that
Kim Henry 37:19 one. Well, I think the fact that we have many pillars in our creative journey, like we have 360, we have the outdoor light painting, and we also have like the dense performative, outdoor art, I feel like it's a matter for us. Of which one do we put more energy and efforts in, because we don't do we don't do one thing for a whole year, like we go from one to the other, it's like a, we're juggling with those different techniques, I think, and I feel like they all feed each other, meaning that when we work hard on a project, let's say 360, then we'll discover something and we learned from it that we can apply to outdoor light painting. So it's, it's kind of I feel like it prevents us from getting
Eric Pare 38:26 from getting bored, though. So it's a very complete technique because it like we have to keep in shape. And you all know that if you train every day, you're going to be happier because it changes you your brain Okay? And just doing this, this kind of work is training Okay, when we walk for an hour and sand dunes with a heavy bag, just to reach the final point like looking for that perfect Dune is quite challenging. And this is what I really like about this I actually prefer being being like on a trip because I feel like I'm more active now we're in the studio for two two months and I'm not as active right by we have to post process the images that's that's cool. And it's kind of a it's kind of a vacation because we can slow down the pace here the studio, but then we're going to go back in vacation into in two weeks on the road because this also feels like vacation. So when a vacation is the vacation from the other vacation. You don't get bored.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 39:37 Oh yeah, that's awesome. It sounds like a dream life.
Kim Henry 39:42 Well, I feel like well, two things I was thinking about. The first one is the fact that yeah, like we say that like painting is a lifestyle and I think that's a bit but Eric just explained like we we know that in order to achieve what we want to achieve We need to be disciplined and take care of our bodies of our mind. So have a balanced life, which means that we don't work all day like we work really hard. But we also like, kind of impose time to like, Take breaks and like do other stuff. And also, what was the other one? Oh, yeah, he always he always says that. We're still at the beginning of something. And I think that that kind of links to what do they call it? Like, the beginner's mind, something like that, you know, like that approach of curiosity and of feeling that we're not at the end of the journey. So we're focusing on the journey itself, which makes it like kind of, yeah, helpful.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 40:50 Exciting. Yeah, it's always exciting.
Eric Pare 40:54 I have to just make some precision here, just to clarify, because, like, we're talking with all those, like, beautiful journeys we have, and everything looks perfect. And it kind of is, and but it's might seem to be impossible to reach some time. Because, and because we're also paid to do this. It's crazy. Like we were paid to, to have this vacation and vacation vacation. But it didn't arrive. We can one day, and this is by doing that kind of work for years. And so there was for me, too, is 10 years of trials and error before getting the first bucks from from a creative work. So you have to be dedicated. Of course, it's taking a long time, but it's really worth it.
Kim Henry 41:50 Yeah, yeah, I think exactly. It's not like, it's not easy. It's not like your success story. It's it's like, it's also, there's, as you said, like a lot of work on like both of art, like different paths and common one. But I really feel like the way we individually approach our work and our art, artwork is similar in our dedication, and in our way to focus on what we want to focus on, which is the positive, the excitement, the like, the possibilities. But we do have setbacks, and we do have like, it's yeah, it's not always easy. I'll say that. But I feel like it's a conscious decision to like, does that make sense?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 42:50 That is incredible. No, I love that. I love that so much. Because, you know, like, one quote that really stuck with me this year was whatever you focus on become your reality. And I know like going through, you know, all of this journey, I'm sure there must be a lot of struggle that you guys go through, but it seems like you don't focus on that, like, given se, you just focus on the beginner's mind, you know, it's like, oh, well, you know, it's, we're, you know, it's like seeing it's like going to the beach for the first time you're excited. And you know, you always just focus on that next new exciting things like what you can came up with, what sort of innovation you can do with your art and so forth. So I think that's a lot to, to, to learn from, to be able to always enjoy the journey through our you know, even the hardest time and to a point where you guys don't even feel it. I think that's really cool.
Eric Pare 43:51 I forget about the negatives. Just like my guts to go against running away.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 43:59 That is awesome. That is so cool. Yeah. So I have a just an interesting question here. You know, Eric, you're very technical. You love photography. And Kim, you're very creative. You like dance. Now? How much? How good are you on doing each other's shows? If we were just for fun thank you know, sup your role and have Eric do the posting and the dancing and the photography?
Eric Pare 44:35 I have one most I have only one post. But yeah, we have a few pictures where we switch roles. Just because why not? So it's good for us to play both roles. We learn more by doing this. And that's something we we always mentioned in our workshops is to try to do both roles, because once you understand the challenge of the subject of the model and see due for you to just to get better at directing?
Kim Henry 45:04 Oh, yeah. But yeah, I enjoy doing the light painting, I think I could probably get away with the framing habits have something that makes sense. But to change the settings during the blue hour at the speed that he does, that would take me a while, that's for sure. He runs like back and forth every few minutes to change the settings. And
Eric Pare 45:26 yes, and I handle three cameras on the field, okay, because I always pin what I do. I'm by myself, yeah, handling three cameras, two different focal length one film me, and I run the largest settings. But I'm used to that because of the multi camera systems. So I'm just used to to handle love technology and things like that. It's part of the fun. But yeah, but I'm sure you'd be good with with one camera, if you can focus on this one and just like, set the right composition and setting, you know.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 46:02 Wow, that's cool. So now I want to talk about you know, your Kim, your latest project. And I've been seeing this in Twitter, I think I saw it for the first time. I think about a few weeks ago, a couple a week ago or something like that, right? And actually, I'm not, I'm not gonna say too much about it, because it's gonna give it away, I'll let you ship it first, and then I'll say something about it.
Kim Henry 46:29 So my latest project is called timeless. It's kind of the continually of what we've been doing, or what we've been doing for years, let's say, because when we were travelling, we would arrive on location very, like, early, like, late afternoon. And then we would shoot dance photography. So sunset, dance and stuff like that. So we can we could actually connect to each other. And I could connect with the environment, which for me is very important my process. So So time is is is my baby. It's basically like, What can I say? Can I see what I'm saying everything.
Eric Pare 47:21 But it's all about the textures. The first idea you had was to, to use mud cracks, because we've been working on cracks and some desserts. And you were very interested in that texture. And you wanted to experiment with having that on your skin and combine both. But that didn't work. We we played with this in studio for a few weeks. And then we went to replicate that in the field with the real mud cracks, but we couldn't find any. So then the product evolved into other things. And we started to experiment with different textures like salt.
Kim Henry 47:55 So different matter, different, different way to immerse myself in the environment and connect with the environment. Be it sand dust, but it's all started with clay. And I think it's whole in line with my fascination for, like presence and like state of attention and intention of the body in connection with nature. So that's, that's how it started.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 48:29 Wow. Yeah, that's cool. Like, I really can feel that, like, you know, the emotion. And you know, when I first saw, I think Eric was sharing one of the photo from that, and then I just can feel that emotion and you know, with how you use the sand and use that dynamic with with your movement, because there was a lot of movement in that in that in that photo. Ironically, but not gonna steal oil. There's a lot of movement. So yeah, that's, that's really cool. Thanks a lot for sharing that. Sorry. Yeah,
Kim Henry 49:01 thank you for asking, Well, what I'm trying to what we're trying to do with that is to kind of encapsulate really, like, short moment of ephemeral performances, because that's what we do when we're outside. Like, I'm not posing per se, I'm really performing dancing, and we don't actually talk Eric is there you take pictures, videos, but it's really like it's a short moment of performance that we're trying to capture basically.
Eric Pare 49:36 Yeah, I don't direct her because I have no idea how to do that. So I'm going to give her some indications like can you turn 90 degree because the sun it's better on that direction but that's that's about it and the rest is all her ideas and her way of moving song. I'm just here behind the camera, taking pictures, but that's mostly her her thing
Kim Henry 49:59 like Once again, that could exist if it were not from that collaborative process because it's a very personal project. And I wouldn't do it with some somebody else and Eric because I trust him. I know his vision I, I trust his artistic input. So, so yeah, I feel like it's my performance. I kind of it's a very vulnerable state when I perform. But obviously could not exist if he was not on board with me.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 50:38 Oh, yeah, that's, that's really cool. So just to kind of understand a little bit about the process. So you know, you kind of get into find your location. And basically, it came you do your dances and your movement? Is that right? And then Eric was just there to observe and then take photo whenever you feel it feels like it's a good frame.
Eric Pare 51:01 Burst Mode, I just
continues to burst mode. I have no idea what I'm doing. Love that.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 51:20 So, Erica, I was still wondering when you take photo of that, do you? Like do you know what Kim was? Yeah. Do you know what Kim was about to do? Like, or have you ever seen the movement? Or is it like, absolutely new, just go like, whoa, okay, that was cool kind of thing. Or it's like, okay, you know, this is where she can usually take his and so forth.
Eric Pare 51:45 Alright, so I never watched movies, okay. But I used to back in the days and sometimes I would ask my friend, if you can we go to watch a movie and I don't want to know what that would be a lot of surprise. Okay. And sometimes I feel like it's like this with Kim. Okay, so I'm behind the camera. I have no idea what's going on. I know it's going to be a show. Okay. And I'm the lucky one, assisting this wonderful dance show. And I get to click the button. And that's about it. But yeah, it's always fun to the witness. I feel very lucky to be part of this.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 52:23 Wow. Yeah. No, that's cool. I I'm much the same. Actually. When I steal movie, I hate watching trailers. I just go like, that looks interesting. And you know, I want to watch it. So yeah, that's, that's really cool to hear. Well, guys, we're kind of hitting the one hour mark. And you know, it's been so much fun. It's so much pleasure to hear to have you here and to hear your story. Now, before you go. One last question that I always ask my guests. And both of you can give me one each right. I saw Eric's getting tense.
Eric Pare 52:56 What's that question? I know. I'm not
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 53:03 awesome. Well, you know, just you just say this earlier. You just say that you like surprise. So here's the surprise. If there was one advice that you know, you could give to an audience or to your younger self, or you know, to anyone in this world, whether it be photography live or whatever it may be, what would that advice be?
Eric Pare 53:30 Yeah, so I'm going to be okay, I guess I'm saying that to myself, just because I doubt that, but everything's gonna be okay. Just keep doing what you do. Should I give?
Kim Henry 53:45 To my younger self? That's a good one. Let me think, I guess, I guess I would say to not take things too seriously. To connect to the playfulness, and to the curiosity, and yeah, probably like to trust your intuition.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 54:18 Yeah. Wow. That's really great advice. So have fun, and it's all gonna be okay. That's perfect. It's so simple, but it makes sense. Like, where are we complicated ly so
Kim Henry 54:30 yeah, but not not in the sense that not in I don't mean this in a like denial way. Like it's going to be okay. You're not going to face anything, but just to trust that you actually have the tool to face whatever you're gonna have on the path, you know?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 54:48 Yeah. Wow. Now that's that is a great advice. All right. You guys really appreciate your time here. I really enjoy having you here. So much fun talking to you. You guys are just You know, such a great human being, hopefully I get to connect and actually meet you guys in person one day. But for the audience who want to get in touch with you who want to learn more about what you do, because I know you guys are teaching and sharing so much knowledge on, you know, to paintings and all this stuff. And perhaps for those of them who want to sign up to your workshop, what is the best way to connect with you and to find you.
Eric Pare 55:26 So we rarely do workshops, while we did a lot in the days, but I think we do two per year. And it's always organised with bigger organisation. So we don't do any by ourselves for the moment. But we teach everything online on YouTube for free, never charge anything for, for tutorials, all of the knowledge is there. And you can find all of the links from tube stories that TV
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 55:54 by and fantastic and I'll be sure to put that you know, that link on the description as well as both of your social media so that you know people can connect, connect with your work more and see more of your work. And if this is the first time of you. For listeners, if this is the first time that you heard, Eric and Kim, man, you're in for a treat, just just go into social media trust me, you know, I'll buy you ice cream if you don't
Yeah, no, no, but if you if you guys get intrigued with the with the with, you know, with their work, it's the other way around. You guys buy me ice cream, so I'm ready to eat a lot of ice cream. But um, yeah. Thanks a lot, guys for being here. I love talking to you guys. There's just so much fun. Perhaps one day, we'll have you back. And we'll have we'll cover a different topic. But it's been such a pleasure. You know, I follow your work for a while. And I've seen what you did with photography with lights and innovation that you put in the space and how you share a lot of this with the people. And it's it's just been an honour to be able to actually talk to you guys, and have you guys in my podcast sharing these inspiring stories. So thanks a lot for being here, guys.
Eric Pare 57:22 Thank you, Stanley. We're super happy to be part of your wonderful podcast. Yeah, it
Kim Henry 57:26 was a pleasure. Thank you so much.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 57:29 Fantastic. Well, weekenders thank you for very much for tuning in. Hopefully you get a lot of gems from that. And if you haven't already done so make sure you check out both Kim and Eric as well as their work. Dances and Kim's latest project is something that are quite enjoyed. Actually, there's so many emotions in just a stillness. So make sure you check it out. But with that being said, if you enjoyed this conversation, make sure you leave a review on on the podcast on the platform so that more more people can listen in and heard about them. But with that being say, keep creating, keep shooting and I'll see you guys next week.
Monday Nov 21, 2022
Monday Nov 21, 2022
Hey Wicked Hunters,
Welcome back to the art of photography podcast with Stanley Aryanto. This week we welcome a celebrity photographer all the way from LA.
Walid Azami is a photographer & video director based in Los Angeles, California. Originally from Kabul, Afghanistan. He has worked with people you may recognize like Jennifer Lopez, Mariah Carey, Madonna, Ricky Martin, Mary J Blige, Wendy Williams, Bernie Sanders, and many more. His work has been featured in magazines such as Rolling Stone, Glamour, Allure, and Teen Vogue. He’s known for holding the client’s hands through the entire time, creating dramatic images, and evolving the experience and creative process for everyone on set. He invests his time empowering the community of photographers, creatives, and visual artists with amazing business/life advice through his platform.
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
• Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
• Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
• Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
• Website: https://podcast.thewickedhunt.com
• Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to learn more about The Wicked Hunt Photography by Stanley Aryanto:
• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thewickedhunt/
• Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thewickedhunt/
• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/thewickedhunt/
• Photo prints: https://www.TheWickedHunt.com/
Don't forget to leave a review on the podcast if you enjoy this conversation. It would help us to get found and help to inspire other photographers.
Walid Azami 0:00 value yourself. Because without your work, you can't launch pretty much any industry without the work of a photographer. Without a photographer capturing those, the community will never know who you are what the food looks like, that's photography, that is the value of what we do. Now, we, you need to charge for that, because what you're doing is they're not doing you a favour by calling you you're doing them a favour by lending your talent.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:37 Welcome to the Art of Photography podcast, how are you?
Walid Azami 1:43 I'm good. Thank you so much for having me that I have really appreciate it.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:47 Yeah, no, it's, you know, I love you get in touch and I look at your prom, your profile your portfolio, and I was just intrigued. So it's a lot of my audience, or a lot of my guests are, you know, from the travel landscape, and I have a few people from portrait, but you know, never from the celebrity niche. So this is really exciting for me, I never, you know, know what's going on in there. So I have a whole lot of questions for you.
Walid Azami 2:15 Awesome, awesome. Well, hopefully they accept it. And I know that they will. But like, you know, it's something new for the photographers that are accustomed to hearing your podcast. So, you know, maybe maybe we'll all learn a little bit
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 2:27 100% 100% I mean, you know, me myself, I do a whole lot of genre of photography. And I know there are a lot of landscape photographers out there who also love doing portraits, fashion and so forth, right. But we just have like the main thing, which was, you know, landscape or astral photography. So, this definitely will apply to everyone. But before we get started, give us a little bit introduction about who you are, what's your background, and you know, just a little bit about how the audience can get to know you better.
Walid Azami 3:02 Sure, I'd be happy to thank you. I'm number one, my name is Walid Asami. So I'm in Los Angeles. And, as you mentioned, yeah, I do a lot of celebrity, but I also do a lot of commercials and big brands, domestic and international. And I've also started to branch out to directing music videos and commercials, and now creative directing, too, and then also mentoring photographers in their careers. And I'm very interested in landscape photography for what that's worth too. But I've been shooting for maybe about 12 years. And it's been a very rough road. I think, like most photographers listening to this podcast, but I just, you know, my goal has been for the past six years, still continuing my photography career, but then really designating a big chunk of that, I would say, almost like a third of my energy into making sure my peers do well, too. And whether it's from my mistakes, or my big accomplishments, I think there's something that I can teach people and make sure that nobody ever takes advantage of photographers, and that they do well, and that they get the compensation that they deserve to. So that's pretty much a little bit of a lowdown on me.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 4:16 That's incredible. Yeah, that's love to hear that, you know, I think, you know, as a photographer, it's really important to, or as an artist, I shouldn't say photographer, because this apply kind of on the board is that we are we are stamped with this notion that you know, it's we can't make money from photography and you know, it doesn't produce it doesn't make a living basically, you know, like the starving artist mentality. And we know that it's not true. Because you know, like, there are so many different photographers already have made it and there is a lot of mentality I think behind that. So I was curious, are you were you I'm born in grew up in LA itself, or what's a little bit of your personal background?
Walid Azami 5:08 Um, no, definitely not raised? Well, I guess somewhat raised in LA. But I was born in Kabul, Afghanistan. So I'm a total war baby. And that sense, refugee, and America never took a photo class in my life. Never ever, like not even one class. One time, actually. I did at the junior college, take, like, try to take an intro to photo class, but I'm on week number two, I quit. Because the way that they were moving at that speed, and I just thought was like, Oh, my God, you want to tell me about the history of this. I just want to know how to do it. And so I just didn't show up anymore. Terrible student in that way. But yeah, that's my background. So I didn't come from a family that had photography and its blood, I didn't have any special connections. Just a lot of hard work some luck, and lots of hard work again.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 6:05 That's incredible. And so what did you you What did you study in, in, in college or university? Where did you get into or you ever go into college and university or you just throw yourself through into photography right away?
Walid Azami 6:20 No, I was going to actually become a teacher. And not because I really, really wanted to be a teacher, I actually think it's the most important job in the world I really do. Besides being a good parent, is that but my mom was a teacher, my aunts were a teacher, my grandfather was a teacher. So really, that does run in my blood. And I think that was the most, at least on paper, like the most free job like the freeing, liberated, independent job, it's really not these poor teachers, they have to work, especially in America, it's really hard for teachers. But my, my, I was a history major. And then my specialty was the Israeli Palestinian conflict. So I just became obsessed with that story, and really dug deep into that one. And then after that, I ended up working with Madonna right afterwards, completely different 180 degrees. But I will say, though, that my history was what really helped me excel in that office, because Madonna would be, hey, we need we need to research this one thing for the World Tour. And people could not research. I don't know why people couldn't research and I was like, just wait, just wait, I'm about to kill you guys with like, the 17 books I pull because of this, you know, so it helped me in that sense. But no, I never study photo, that is incredible kind of fall in my lap.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 7:51 What is story? You know, I think this is what, actually, you know, just the other weekend, we went for a catch up with a few friends. And he mentioned this notion that, you know, everything we do in life is an admin at administration to get to what we want to achieve. And this is exactly it, right? A lot of people nowadays, especially with the instant gratification, we we don't want to put into work, we don't want to do this admin and we just wanting to get the result. But without this administration work, you're never gonna get there because you won't have enough information knowledge. And this is a really good, great demonstration of the day just show that you know, you the the study that you did have nothing to do with photography, but yet, it is what opened you to the world of photography. Now. I'm quite interested. How did you come across Madonna though, like, you know, like the teachers? Were you working for her? Or you know that because that's a pretty different niche. Right. So that's interesting to hear.
Walid Azami 9:02 Yeah, I know. And I know that when I say that a lot of people are like, Well, great. Somebody, somebody just opened the door for him and and lucky kid at the time, and you know, and life was just easy. It actually wasn't easy. And here's the thing is that now I had, and I still do a small list of people that I really wanted to work with. One was like director, documentary director, Michael Moore. Another was Bill Clinton. Not not not anymore, though. But just like at the time, it was important that was like, I really want to work with this guy, because I thought he was going to make a lot of positive change and everything. And there was some other people too on that list. But on that list was Madonna. And why I really, really liked her as because visually, I was a fan of every single person that she ever brought on her team. And I watched because if you think about you know her age Now watch the world likes to make a really big deal out of her age. But the last I don't know, like 40 Somethings, 30 Somethings, 20 Somethings, 50 something, even 60 something, they all have a significant part of those younger years, with her being the soundtrack, Michael Jackson, you know what I mean? Like you to some of these people. So I had a chance to really watch her, break the mould and everything. But all that to say that she was always on my list of people that I wanted to work with. And I am I will say that of course, I worked really, really hard. My parents taught me a lot of hard work and honest hard work. But I also very, very much subscribe to manifestation and law of attraction. And so I, you know, I Okay, I'll say this, socially, I'm supposed to say, Oh, my God, it was such a surprise. But it wasn't. And neither was like, some of the other people that I work with because I, I am such a good manifester that, I don't know, I've always just knew is going to happen. Is that crazy, but it's just how that happened. And it's not just Madonna, it was like, Bernie Sanders was like that, like, Jennifer Lopez was another one. Like, it doesn't have to be like a long time being it's like I really, really focused on it. I mean, where is my, it's not here at my desk right now. But I I journal, like, several times a week, like a script. And I kind of write like a make believe of things that in this world that hasn't happened yet, but I believe that they've happened like in a parallel universe. And I, so I always played with manifestation. So so she was on that list. That's a very long answer, but I'm sticking with it.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 11:55 No, that's incredible. I love that. And it's, it's a couple of things that I have a question with, based on what you're told me is the first, you know, you have a list of people that you want to work with. And I was, I'd love to know, what makes you what makes them to be on your list, what make you want to work with, you know, work with them, basically.
Walid Azami 12:23 No one's ever asked me that question before. So thank you. And I never even thought about that, really, until you just asked that question. I really admire people that want to change the world, even if they've negatively accidentally made like a really, but people that impact like, that's one thing to be on stage and to go, Oh, look at me with beautiful lights and beautiful costumes and all that. But it's another but how many artists do that now. I mean, there's a lot of artists that have incredible shows. But how many of them change culture. And I don't think any of them really have changed culture in that capacity. Michael Jackson will be another one. You know, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, these people change culture globally. And so that I admire that like some of the people that I've worked with, like Bob Proctor is an author, he's become like the father of like law of attraction, he changed the way and entire culture, he introduced law of attraction to so many people, now, the world is catching on to it, at least the Western world finally is catching up to so to me, anyone that wants to change, make an impact, I'm always going to be a huge fan.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 13:37 That is incredible. You know, I think I'm a big, big believer on purpose in life and finding that you know, the purpose and not just, I mean, it's also important to do stuff that, you know, just doesn't have purpose. But at the end of the day, you know, we want to look back at our life and see what we've done, you know, how far we make a change, whether it's true, the smallest thing, you know, in our life, or the bigger thing, but you know, that what you've done is very important, right? Being able to push that positivity to the world. And basically, you know, expose them to your photography and the way you story child to that. So that's incredible. Thanks for sharing that.
Walid Azami 14:24 Thank you for asking that. I think even you know, like, if I can just even add to that. It's like, yeah, it doesn't have to be celebrity doesn't have to be like a big, big author. It could be like, for example, you have large part of your audiences, like they're landscape photographers, but if you are exposing that landscape to the world, and you're able to show the beauty of a place that people normally may not have thought about, that's like a huge service, they think you've added to mankind
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 14:51 100% And you know, like it's, one of the things that I do in this podcast is not having people that have big followers or You know, like they are famous, but also people who just have really get great inspiring stories. And like you say, that's really important to like, just spotlight them right. Now, the second question that I have based on your previous answer was like, it's really interesting how you brought up manifesting and journaling and all this stuff, right? And I know there's a lot of people out there that literally it's like, you know, this is this is, you know, a bullshit basically is like, Oh, I've been doing this forever. I say, it's like, I want to get rich, I want to get rich, I want to get rich. But yeah, here, I am still not selling a single print. Right? So, right, give us a little bit insight of how you manifest and how you manifests in a way that you can actually make what you've think about or what you've manifested, come through.
Walid Azami 15:58 Give me Give me an example of that. Or, like, oh, do I do it?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 16:02 A little bit of both, as I suppose you can give a little bit example, or actually give us? Yeah, just like how, like, how do you do it? What's the difference between those people whose who have manifested, but haven't made things come through from their manifestation?
Walid Azami 16:20 Sure, um, well, I think that what it is, is that I'll start off by by saying this, there is something bigger than us. And it doesn't matter what you believe in what religion or if you don't have a religion, there just has to be something bigger than you. And that's where I really, I just hope that everyone that is listening to this podcast, is like, they believe there's nothing whether you call it God or energy, or Buddha or Allah or Mother Nature, whatever it might be. So there's something running this whole show. But the other thing too, is I don't have a course I don't have a book, I don't have an ebook. I don't have a workshop and manifestation. So when I see this, there is no gain for me. But just to see our hopefully, one day see how it benefited someone's life, if they've, you know, heard it. So much of my success has come from Law of Attraction manifestation, they kind of overlap, a way that it's about feeling. That's the biggest thing. So I used to be one of the worst students you will ever meet. But I was one of the best daydreamers in class, I would sit there, and just daydream. But what I didn't know is that as a student in the public school system of America, I was failing, I wasn't failing, because I knew how to play the game and turn in every homework, and every extra credit and everything. I wasn't the best student, okay, but I had personality. And I would, like try to charm the teachers and everybody and just try to be funny when I could, and all that. But what I would do is spend an immense amount of time, an immense amount of time daydreaming to the point that I don't even remember sitting in the classroom. And I just was like, Oh, my God, oh, my God, I have to like now be friend a nerd. Because I didn't I have like two blank pages. And they have two full pages, front and back. Right? So and I'm like, hey, everybody come to my house this weekend. I'll get pizza, let's compare notes, you know, and try to figure this out. But in that process, I didn't know what I was doing was manifesting, I was truly feeling what it would feel like to do this. To the point to the point that one of my one of my fears, I remember consistently in high school was, okay, so if I get an award, if I get invited to an award show for a music video, and they only give me two tickets, like who am I going to invite like, I used to sit there and worry about it. And it was a really real, real fear. But I did get nominated for for Soul Train Music Video of the Year, I did only give, you know, I only had one ticket. My horrible agent at the time used it and didn't tell me about it. But that's a separate story. But it's like it comes. So true. I guess. Okay, so your listeners are like, Yeah, okay, great, great work for you. How do you do it? One thing that I do is called scripting. And scripting is like, Oh man, where's my actual journal somewhere in a bag or something? But I sit down for maybe 15 minutes, and I'll sit at a desk I'll go in a coffee shop just somewhere comfortable and I will write five things. So this is like truly Okay. Five things that I already have in my mind. I may not physically have At the moment, but it is coming for me it is coming to me. And so I'll write five things. And I will write, I'm so grateful that blank, I'm so grateful that five times, then I will take those five things. And then write almost like a like a journal like a diary, journal, one, two pages, something like that. And then I will use those five bullet points in a story as if it already happened. So for example, I might say, I'm so I'm so grateful now that I finally have the beach house that I wanted three levels on the side of a hill, not across the street, but the side with the ocean, right. And then I'll just say I have that. But for me to really believe it to really feel it. What I will do, then as all after I list those five bullet points, and I'll write like a journal. And I'll say, I'm so thankful now that I finally have my beach house that I wanted. And it's amazing. It has like the Spanish tiles that I really like, which makes it very uncomfortable in the winter, because you have to wear socks all the time inside the house. But but in the summer, it's amazing. And the only part I don't like is when my friends come over, my family comes over, and then all the footprints are there. And I have to mop it up afterwards. But I'm so thankful I've that many people in my life because we get to go downstairs down the grace steps made of wood to the ocean, and we get to swim and come back up to my house and barbecue. Like I write exact things, right. But then I'll actually I'll write those five things as if it happened that day. So I'm so thankful my parents could do it. And I'm thankful my sister brought my nieces too. And they got to, and I'll just sit there. And it's actually kind of sounds dorky, but it's actually fun for a minute, and you're just pretending you have it. And the idea is that you write it until you feel it. And then you just leave it alone. I will say I'll give you one quick example. Because I know you have other questions too, is here's an example of scripting, just one of many that have worked out for me. And the past three years, I had a job where I was photographing for a new startup clothing line. And the owner decided to decided to go to Bali, and go on vacation. And, and that's amazing, right? Amazing for you. But if you have a brand new company, why would you leave all of us alone for your first ever photoshoot? Very bad decision as a CEO, it was a disaster. The lady at his company had designer awful the the agent for the models complained and said, We never want to work with her again, the models complained, I complained the assistants all separately complaint and I told the CEO of this company, you know, I, I really like you. And if I didn't tell you everything that happened, I would never be a good person, a friend to you. And I kind of missed the beginning of the story. But the beginning of the story was basically that I wanted to still do photography, I still want to direct but I wanted to start creative directing. I wanted to work from home and I wanted to work maybe 15 or 20 hours a week. That's it. I didn't want to go to anyone's office. But I wanted people to start trusting me as a creative director, the shoot now the shooting happened in real life. It was a disaster. So I told the CEO how bad it was. And then he's like, I appreciate you telling me everyone else kind of complained and said she was awful. And then I sent him the pictures. And he called me like the next day or so. And he said, you know Walid, considering everything you said, considering everything everybody else said. These pictures are phenomenal. And you guys were up against a lot. And it's phenomenal. And I'm really curious, I have this weird idea. Just think about it. You can come back to me a different day and think about it. Would you be open to being the Creative Director for the the startup company no more than 15 or 20 hours a week and you can work from home? That right there is an example that happened within two weeks of me writing it in my journal. Now I know all your listeners at this point are like, Who is this guy? This is? This is crazy. That's like one example. That's how I do it. It's about feeling and that's like one example of it actually working.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 24:37 That's really cool. And I mean, I just remember I just got into Lena and this manifestation and meditation and I think the difference I mean if we take away you know, all of this spiritual aspect is it's all about making you believe in yourself. And you know, when you feel it, then you can believe that it already happened and therefore it's more likely that you will work towards, you know, I mean, a good example that I always use is like, let's say you need to get something from the grocer, and it's about to close in five minutes, and you're an hour away. You're never gonna make an attempt. Right. But if it's like five minutes away, and it's almost close, you know, in five minutes, I was like, Oh, maybe I could go really quick. Maybe I could not tell them. You know, it's that is the difference. It's the signal that telling yourself and that is, I love how you share, you know, the journaling, the scripting that is so powerful. Now, yeah, to segue back to, you know, photography. Yeah, yeah. This is really cool, right? Because most people in photography, you know, I know, like, most people gonna be like, What does manifesting have to do with photography? Most people in photography, they have some sort of goal, whether they want to make money of their photography, they want to capture, you know, a certain image. And I believe the only way to make that come true is to believe in the journey to believe in their in their self, right to believe that there is one day they will be able to get there so that they keep going. Now, that's it. I want to, I want to ask you a little bit from your experience and your journey. What are some of the hardest struggle that you have come across that almost make you give up this journey? That almost give it all away? And you know, take the easy route? And how did it all unfold for you? Hmm.
Walid Azami 26:44 Well, your podcast is asking questions that generally other podcasts don't ask, which I mean that in the most complimentary way. So I appreciate that. What made me almost give up? Well, let me just be really honest. Not this past year. But there are good years and bad years. I think that a lot of times people are like, oh, did you almost give up? I almost give up three times a month. Not gonna lie to you. So if anyone's like, Oh, my gods like, so I'm not crazy. I'm not alone. Well, you were crazy, because this is what we want to do for an occupation. So there is a little bit of crazy, but it's like a fun, crazy, you know, I wanted to give it many, many times, because I think to myself, we need health care. And we need long term retirement and we need stable income. But then I also think to myself, like after you have like a mass, like you have a big win, that could be a massive job. That could be a beautiful photograph that you're just like, staring at it for a long time. The high of that. I don't do drugs. But I would imagine it's like the high that you would feel if you have a powerful drug. And then that right there pulls me right back into it. But the things that have bothered me, that have made me put the camera down, I've now decided to try to be an answer to that problem. So how people treat artists and photographers, well, no, we are photographers, artists. How people treat artists has really angered me how people treat marginalised populations. I'm sure it's like this around the world, but I just have experienced in America, they they make if you're a woman, if you're Brown, if you're black, if you're Asian, they make you feel that just having the opportunity is the paycheck don't ask for money. And so they add in their attitude and the what they say the microaggressions and everything. So for me, it was like okay, well, instead of giving up what a giant waste of my experience, what a slap in the face to all of the hard work that I've done. So why don't I try to be the anti everything that made me put my camera down, you know, because I did for eight months. I did stop photography. I did open a studio and I was like, Well, I guess this is it, you know, like, be thankful for what you've done. But you guys, it's not easy. If it was easy, every single person will be doing it. Who doesn't want to take photos and have people say oh my god, I love the way you see. It's incredibly special. Or, you know, or who you happen to be stumbling on this podcast or this particular episode and you're a filmmaker or you're a writer or what have you. Like it's an immense privilege to have people you know love the way you think. What was the exact question was how do I give up or did I ever think about giving up or none of those
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 29:43 so what you know like what what was the moment and how you get out of it?
Walid Azami 29:48 Hmm. anger anger pulled me out. So for me, the anger was after eight months of putting my camera down and and manifesting nation. Okay, so here's, this is gonna take a little bit, but I promise listeners, it's worth it. Okay, so anger got me really upset when I said, Okay, enough is enough. And I'm going to make sure that I use my experience to help other people. So I started, what at the time, it was called How to photograph. Now it's called Walid Asami, on Instagram. And I was anonymously, helping photographers with tips and suggestions and pricing and marketing and copyrights, and lighting and editing, and all those different things. And I just was like, you know, what's going to happen, no one's going to take advantage of any of these other people. And I'm going to use that experience of the bad in the good. And then that account grew. Now we're like a 50, something 1000. And it grew and grew and grew, because people are like, what is this because it's like, legitimate information that's really helping people do better. And now my name is attached to it, just because it's easier, you know, and I want people to know, who I am and, and reference my work, you know, to weigh it against the advice. So it was one way that I beat it was just saying, you know, what, I'll show you, I'll show these record labels that no one can take advantage of photographers anymore. Also, these big corporate companies that you can't just bulldoze over people. And I'm going to make sure that I give my community the tools that they need so that they know how to get out of your name and get out of the way the punch back basically. So I've I have tonnes and tonnes and tonnes of screen captures that people are like thank you so much. Because of you have gone full time because of you, I was able to stop a situation. But the manifestation one, here's a, is it. Okay? If I go into one more example of that, because I want to give this gentleman Yeah, radish, who's no longer with us. But if you've ever seen the DVD, the movie, The Secret or read the book, The Secret by Rhonda burns, the movie is opened by a gentleman by the name of Bob Proctor. Bob Proctor is like the they consider like the father of law of attraction. And I was in my studio when I told you I was in my studios, it was rather large. And I I I had given up photography and the studio was the attic of an old grocery store. So me, I'm watching YouTube, and I'm like how to apply drywall. Okay, and I would just do it, how to fix electrical and I would do it how to fix plumbing and I learned everything off of YouTube. And then nobody really helped me and I was like, I stopped in the middle of all this. And I had to move into the studio because I put all my money into helping my family and I also got rid of my apartment so I can move in and invest in this business. And there were like boxes and boxes and boxes in there. And let me tell you real fast. When it was cold, it was colder in that studio. When it was hot. It was hotter in that studio. Okay, there was no installation, nothing. I don't know what I was thinking, but I did it. And so I was looking. I was looking at these boxes, all my personal belongings and I was like, I need to find the DVD for the secret. I just know there's a message in there for me. I know there's a message in there. And I don't know don't ask me why didn't decide to YouTube the video, it didn't cross my mind. I needed to find the DVD, okay, and then find my DVD player in one of those boxes. And I couldn't find it. And for three days I searched. I really really searched through everything that Mike who was here, you know when something is right there and you're like I saw it just like a week ago now I can't find it. And I gave up and I was like forget it. Just continue building the studio. So you can open this up and start making money. But that's what happens with manifestation you have to want something so bad. And then you have to let it go and release it. You know, and I did but I wasn't trying to manifest it. I was like frantically like it was literally a man at his wit's end. And, and, and I finally found it, or excuse me, I didn't find that I finally gave up when I couldn't find it. That day that I gave up. It was either later that day, or immediately the next day my phone rang. And it was a girl. Her name is Lisa. And Lisa said hi is Waleed there. First of all, I'm very private about my number. And and I was like yes, and she's like Hi, my name is Lisa. I got your number from another mutual friend of ours, and I've been looking for your information. I just found that we have a mutual friend. My boss needs new photos for new book new projects new everything. my boss's name is Bob Proctor. I didn't even know Bob Proctor knew I existed in this planet. Okay, or on this planet. I didn't Not No. Like, I had no connection to this man. And so, in the midst of all this, my students almost getting done. I was like, what I was just looking for his footage. And now his office calls me. And they're based in Arizona. And when he came, I told my producer, Matt, I was like, go all out all out, like make him feel like a king, take out of my money, take out of any department money, make sure there's beautiful flowers and like desserts and like just a beautiful thing, because I just, I was so nervous about this. And Bob came, so we shot some stuff. And the pictures are still being used. And they're widely used still. And I was by the window of the, and maybe Isabelle, my assistant can send these photos, I'll give her these photos to you. But I was by the window. And Bob and his partner, Sandy Gallagher, were in the hair makeup studio. And I was just by myself setting up the next shot. And Bob is a very airy, light, little walk, you know, like a much older man. And he walked up behind me, and he just put his hand lightly on my shoulder. And he said, You know what, lead I photographed with a lot of photographers in my life. And one of the other reasons why gave up too is because I thought I was no longer an artist, and my agent made me really feel like I hit it was gone, you know, that was just a machine. And so he put his hand on my shoulder, and he said, I've shot with a lot of photographers, and I gotta let you know, shooting with you is different. He's like, I, he's like, I've just the way you shoot, the way you see things, the way you direct things like I've never shot with anyone like you. And then and this was like in a YouTube video. So if anyone's questioning it, this has been timestamp many times over and blogged and everything. And he said, I just feel you need to hear this. But you're truly an artist. And so I had like this weird, perfect storm of like anger, I was like, I'm going to help these photographers, I'm gonna make sure that the industry never abuses photographers. But at this other time. At the same time, I was also manifesting literally, a one particular human being on this planet. And he called my office, and he came to my studio. And then he put his hand on my shoulder and said, You're an artist when I thought I wasn't anymore, so please, you guys, please don't dismiss law of attraction and manifestation. That was really the main point of that example.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 37:40 Wow, that was a really great story. Thanks for sharing a long story. I get better at these nuggets. That's great. And you know, like, sometimes when you shorten it, you kind of miss the, the whole sense of it. So I think it's it was great. I love hearing, you know, a lot of photographers out there or? Yeah, I would say a lot of photographers stopped being artists, when they started trying to earn from their photography, right? I mean, yeah. I really don't know any photographers who got into photography, because they want to make money because there are hundreds other photography, jobs or other profession that is much simpler if that's what you're after. Most of the photographers who want to earn money is because they love photography. They love how that makes other field through the storytelling and photography. And they want to do more of that. Right? Yeah. So I feel like an AI. Don't get me wrong, I got there as well, you know, I actually hit a burnout. And that's exactly it's very similar to what you say is that I stopped being an artist instead, I was like about, you know, how do I make money, what people like, you know, what sort of photo photo that will give me the most likes on Instagram and so forth. So your message right there, I think it's just very important that you should never forget why you started, why you get into this business, that you are an artist and that is the thing that you know, make. What you do is beautiful, right? So thanks for sharing that while he that is, you know, a lot of message behind that story and a lot of advice behind that story. That is incredible. Now. So, you know you have turned into you know, from being an artist to making being able to make money from it and doing basically a job that you love. And now you take that a step further to contributing to other photographers and empower them how Help them to, to be out there in the industry without being stepped on. Now, one thing that I'd love to hear from you is how do people value themselves and their work, because I feel like as an artist who cannot get into whoo hoo, trying to transition or even who's been in the industry for a long time, as an artist, we love to get our story shared, we love to have our photography, you know, in this publication, and so forth and show our message and our vision to the rest of the world, right. And for that reason, I feel like a lot of us don't take don't value, monetary, monetary incentive as much compared to being exposed until we really meet the man and says, like, Well, man, I can't really make money from this, you know, this is not working out. Photography is not a good profession and so forth. And I feel like that's when a lot of people kind of give up. So going back to the question is, you know, despite all the feeling of wanting to share our work, share our story to more people out there, how do we value ourselves and say, Well, I do want to share this, but I also need to eat or also need a roof to live in? And how do you connect that to so that photographers who listening right now, whether they want to do it full time as a hobby or part time know exactly how to value their work? And, and sell as well as you know, offer their work to? Basically, you know, anyone like the audience out there?
Walid Azami 41:56 Yeah. Great question. Well, I went on, I lately have been going on a huge tangent about this. value yourself, because without your work, and it doesn't matter if you do landscape or or commercial or portraits or babies or weddings, what have you. You can't launch pretty much any industry without the work of a photographer. Okay? So it's just not going to work. You can't launch a world tour. Without the photos. I just like did something for Tiziano. Ferro, he's about to go huge in Europe, about to go on a major world tour. That's my photo. He released an album this last Friday, two days ago. That's my image. He's on Italian TV shows right now, with my images behind him. Amazon has massive billboards all over Italy, like building size ones that we can send you, you know, copies of those. That's my image. You can't do that without my work. Right. Now, let's talk about what about the personal photography, because not everyone wants to do commercial, you can't tell family history, you can't tell future generations that haven't even been born. If the photographer didn't push the button and perfectly frame people. That's your value. You can't sell your grandma's favourite recipes in your restaurant that you've been working over. And like, you put the kids to bed and you pay them and put them to bed and you feed them. And then you go and you work on this little by little perfecting the recipes. Without a photographer capturing those, the community will never know who you are, what the food looks like. That's photography, that is the value of what we do. Now. We, you need to charge for that. Because what you're doing is they're not doing you a favour by calling you you're doing them a favour by lending your talent. Now let's look at okay, if you said a large percentage of your audience is landscape photographers. Imagine just the way you can represent a geographic area, the way you can represent places that people will go to like the amount of landscape photographers I get jobs with, let's just say unique situations, tours, like wildlife tours, like boutique hotels that just like you can't dress something you can't sell an expensive home anymore. Without beautiful portraits on the wall. The image behind you is as beautiful nightscape with the Milky Way galaxy and all that that you want it to pay money for that and hang that up on your wall. I don't know if that's a wallpaper that's truly your living room. So I just realised that could be a wallpaper but that regardless, it's someone's living room. And it's like we do so much. And even if you do landscape like you're literally selling serenity, your selling piece somebody wants to pay for your art put it up on their wall in their living room. They want to stare at it. They want it to be in the background of home videos and photos and everything. like that they want that art to be a part of their Christmas dinners and Ramadan dinners and Hanukkah dinners and everything else, you have a tremendous amount of value. The problem is that somebody told you a long time ago, that you can't love what you do, and make money for it. And that is one of the most criminal things ever. And then to make it worse, you believe that to further make it worse, you choose to pass it on little by little by little by little complete bullshit. And if you think about it, you should be able to put food on your table, have money for retirement, a vacation, love what you do, and make an impact and enjoy a full time income from it. Because I would say this to any photographer. What if you hated your job? Like, what if you hated your job? And I don't want to disparage any occupations? I won't name anything. But we all would hate to do something, would you charge for it? And they always will say, Oh, yeah, for every minute that I'm there, I will charge for it. So why do you want to get paid? If you hate something? What? Why can't you love something and get paid for it too. But people like me, that are yourself, you know, like with this amazing podcast, we can share our stories with you, we could tell you that we're able to do it, we can tell you that we want to help you do it, like knowledge on us, but execution on you, you have to believe that you have value. And
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 46:35 that is incredible. I love a few things that you say but the one thing that really hits me is the fact that we do the things that we hate and we want to get paid for it. But when it's doing the things that we love, we don't seek as much and that why not? Yeah, interesting. Yeah. I love that. I love that. That is great. So, all right, so Okay, now, you gotta look at you, I suppose, you know, coming through what you just said that, you know, we have to kind of step back and realise, what is this false belief that we tell ourselves, you know what it was? Who told you a long time ago that you can make money from what you love? Which which what you said earlier right? Now, okay, let's say we find that right? Okay, I know, there was this time and then okay, it's not true. Based on you know, the story that you tell that it's very true, you know, without photography, without artistry, life is boring, right? Everything is just black and white. It's just a plain wall with nothing in it. Right? So yeah. So you value yourself you value or your art, your art. Now, the problem that I see a lot of photographers come across is that, okay? Well, you know what, I valued this an X amount of money, and then you go to other, you go to your customer and say, Well, this is an X amount of price, if you want to have this beautiful piece on your home, and they will go like, no, that's too expensive. I was like, I could get an X amount of dollar, which is, you know, probably like 10% of the I could only pay 10% of that from somewhere else and you know, get the same amount of a feel, for example, and I feel like that is one of the problem that we come across in this industry is that we're continuously being compared with something cheaper, and we that really take away our confidence, right before it's like, man, like, I feel like this worth $1,000. But this guy told me that, you know, he only willing to pay like maximum $200. And you know, you saw it somewhere else for $200. How do you overcome that? And yeah, like, how do you go from there?
Walid Azami 49:02 Yeah, that's a solid question. So how you overcome that there's two things that's going on here. And number one, you have not fully expressed your value to your client. Now you never want to say I am valuable. No. They're they are saying to a particular person, I only want to pay $200 for this because in their mind, no, you say your 1000 but I think you're only worth 20% of that you are acting like a heavily discounted item. Okay? So a lot of this is psychology. And I'll talk about in I talked about this in my step Pricing course secret to easy photography, pricing, and it doesn't matter what kind of photography you do, we break down what kind of like how you present your prices, what to ask the clients. How to analyse a situation. If they say this, you say that you know all kinds of scripting and everything your market value and all that. So what I would say number one is determine your value, it should be high, and then portray that to the client. So one example would be, okay, here's an example. I will have a photoshoot on Tuesday. And the client was referred to me. She emailed me through my website, I got the email. And I said, amazing, I kind of vetted who this person was. And then I said, Would you be open to having a phone conversation? Because I don't really just give my numbers out to anybody. And she said, Sure. And we had a zoom call. And I, I asked the questions that I teach in my course. But I also asked these questions. Tell me about you tell me how you want people to feel. Tell me about the goal of these images? Why are you doing it? Why did you not like the other one? What did you like about the past? Shoot? And what did you not like about it? And I built this entire thing, because I can't price something for you, if I don't know what you want. I'm not I'm not a vending machine where I'm just like, here you go two bucks. And that's it. No, what we do is the photographers, you are luxury items, but sometimes you behave like a discount item. So pause a little bit slow down and really get to know them in the process. She said to me, while either I've never had a photographer, inquire this deep about what was important to me why I was doing the shoot. And it really, really made me think thank you so much. That right there. I didn't have to say, hey, hey, I have value. Nope, I just displayed that in the kind of work that I do. Now, for example, if let's just say there's a big Airbnb, let's just say it's a mansion. And they have a lot of property and they want to bring a landscape photographer to photograph for them. You can just say, Oh, I mean $1,200 For that, well, what a disservice. Or you can say, what kind of clients would be there? Okay, what kind of decor Do you have? Like, what's your colour theme? So we're doing more of an evening light? Are we doing morning? What would the mood be is like hard sun? Is it like foggy? Do we want it to be songbird? We want it to be cheery, like all these extra questions, right? That raises up your value because they're like, Oh, she or he is not like any other person that I've interviewed for this job. That's the first part. The second part is that poor people hang out with poor people, rich people hang out with rich people. Both are wonderful humans. However, if you keep serving the audience that says I know you're 1000 But only have $200. They have cousins who believe the same thing. They have neighbours who believe the same thing. They have friends and co workers who believe the same thing. You are going to get stuck in this. What is that thing of the ocean that goes in a circle? If you're weak swimmer, it's like a whatever. It's like it's not a title. It's a it pulls you out. And
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 53:10 I know what you are correct? Yeah, that's right. Yeah,
Walid Azami 53:12 yeah. So it's like this ripcord that keeps pulling you out. Or even like a hurricane, it just keeps spinning around throws you right back into the cheap people, the cheap people, the cheap people. Now, they deserve great photos too. But let that be someone else's problem. That's not your problem, dear listeners, okay. But if you decide to serve an audience that really values, the time, the expertise, your artistry, they hang out with people, they refer people to you, that have the same belief. So if you have clients being now I know, you're 1000, but I only have $200 $300, you are very much in the wrong circle. At that point, do everything you can to leave that little rip current that keeps pulling you in and go somewhere else. That's easier said than done. But oh, you know, like a really short cut way of saying it is okay. Where would your client hang out? Where would your perfect ideal client hang out? If you're doing let's say landscape photography, and you want to sell $1,000 for a massive print, I would really want to be at the wineries you know, and taking pictures out there and letting these people that can enjoy these these little weekend getaway vacations. See you with a camera and ask questions and see the work. Put yourself where they hang out. You don't want to go photograph outside of a Walmart parking lot.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 54:42 That is a great advice. And I love how you give a lot of example for people at different niche and I think that's really cool. speaks a lot about what you probably you know, teach in your course because I haven't taken it myself so I can't really say to it, but yeah, that's
Walid Azami 54:59 kind of what And over these landscape photographers?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 55:03 No, it's really good. Because yeah, like, you know, you really bring it back, you know, your celebrate photographer, fashion portrait, but you really bring it back to like, you know that. At the end of the day, it doesn't really matter what sort of artists, you are the fundamentals the way you think is the same, right? And I feel like a lot of people get really caught up on that. It's like, well, yeah, like, you know, I don't know if that works for me, because I'm a landscape photographer. And like, well, I don't know, landscape photographers, are miniature photographers. And I feel like we we label ourselves. And instead of using that as a string, we actually use that as a weakness as an excuse. So I really love how you can merge all this together and say, Look, guys, it doesn't matter who you are, it doesn't matter what sort of artists you are, this still works. Right. So that is incredible. I love hearing that. And I'm sure the audience will get a lot of value for that. Now, one more question around around the pricing. Right. So excuse me, this is something that I also come across a lot. Is that okay? Well, while he, you know, it's really good advice. I agree with you, I need to get out of this, you know, current and retired and I need to go to where my customer. Right, right. But the problem that I have is that I need that money, I need that money to put my next meal on my table. Right? I need that money to, to pay for the rent for the electricity. I, I don't know, how long will it take to build, you know, all of this, right. And I know that that is one struggle that a lot of artists come through, they decide to bring their price down, they price down the price, the in hope to get that little money, just enough to pay whatever they need to pay. And I believe that is the origin of the belief that we are in that, you know, the broke artist mentality, basically. So what would you what would your advice? What would you what advice would you give to people who are thinking that way? And who are in that situation?
Walid Azami 57:28 Sure, I think that that's important to say that is like the gateway to like, when it just starts spinning out of control faster and faster, and just keeps slipping out of your hand. And that's how you buy really cheap cameras, everybody from photographers who have given up and you buy it used, okay. But I will say this, I don't I wish I you know, that wouldn't be the case. But that's literally Hey, it becomes like a gravestone, or a graveyard of like people who gave up. Um, the one thing is, I will say this, if you're a photographer, I don't care what you photograph. Do not ever, ever charge hourly, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever. In fact, when like in my step Pricing course, you also get like a year's worth, inside this private Facebook group. I have told them that if I find out because I will Snoop because I do care about my students, that if I see you guys charging hourly, you're out of the programme out? I don't like it. Absolutely not. So that first of all, please don't charge hourly, everybody. But what do you do? Well, I'll say this. Sometimes you just have to put food on the table. And that's your only choice. So you have to do what you have to do and take care of yourself and your family first. Assuming you have a tiny bit of a cushion, okay, you have a little bit of freedom to be able to try something new. I don't, I would much rather you go deliver food for people and get tips. Rather than take cheap clients. Because it's a very, very small industry. If you work in fashion, everyone knows each other. If you work in documentary, everyone knows each other. And all that once word gets out that you are the cheap photographer. Good luck trying to find your way back to the top. It's kind of like in high school. We knew the people who were a boy, okay, we knew the people who were easy. And you can hook up with them if you needed to. And you know, the people who were like, Nah, they're not that type of a person. It's doesn't mean it's right. But it happens. And word gets out so fast. Everyone knows, like, you might as well get like this, like this tag on your forehead that says easy, cheap, free photographer, whatever. So don't do. I'm just going to use just for round numbers. Let's just say you want to charge 1000 And please, everyone charged more than that. But let's just say you want to charge 1000 And you're like I'm just gonna grab these $200 jobs and pay the bill. I wouldn't much rather you go deliver food, go drive an Uber, because at least what you're, what you're doing is preserving your name and your brand in the market. Because once you're the cheap one, good luck coming up, it's nearly impossible. I would almost rather say rebrand yourself, get a whole different business name, or go to a different market, you can start high, and you can find reasons to come down. Maybe it's a Christmas special, maybe it's like, favourite clients type of special Valentine's Day. Okay, and I'll give you an example of how you can charge cheaper and still win. If that scares you don't care what you do. Now, this might be a little harder for landscape photographers. But portrait, family, babies, engagement, modelling, restaurants food, do something called mini sessions. And mini sessions are such a stealth way of so many benefits. Okay, so let's just say you have a goal of $1,000 per photoshoot, please, again, everyone aim higher, especially if you're in the United States. But your goal is $1,000 Who's going to trust you as a snoo photographer with their $1,000 as we're going into a recession, so but you still need to grow your portfolio, you still need to grow your network, you still need to make some money. So what I would do is do mini sessions, Hey, you want to do family portraits, great book out at a time in a day and go to a local park and make it special for them. Bring bottles of water, bring your little boombox speaker play music have like little kits of like hair and makeup and hairspray and like the things that people do for their shiny skin that dab that paper, whatever it might be, have it fun, have some snacks, everything, make it an experience, people love to pay a lot of money for experiences. But instead of booking one client in one day and saying okay, I barely got one for $1,000. And that's your whole day. Why don't you do a bunch of mini sessions $400 each $350 each. And instead of one client, you try to fit like five or six. And you actually end up making way more money. You ended up getting more practice as a newer photographer, because you don't have to manage somebody for like five hours, you haven't for 45 minutes, you have way more images in your portfolio, because you have all these different faces. And you get to benefit from these people who so if if you were to take my family photo for $1,000 you hope that I put you on Instagram and I tag you. But if you were to put like eight 910 families there, at least half of them are going to tag you, you're going to enjoy the benefits of their network and it starts growing. So invest in mini sessions. That also means that if they can't yet afford your full rate, and they can only pay the mini session rate, then what happens is they get a little sample. It's like an appetiser at a restaurant you get a little sample, and they will save up. They're like oh my god was such a fun experience. We should do like a half day with a photographer next time, or maybe a full day. And that's how you grow your business. So like a tactical thing that I would do that never charge hourly, ever, ever, and make it an experience too. But if someone doesn't want to pay, you're in the wrong audience, go get another job and treat that other non photography job as an investor. So I don't care if you don't want to drive people around in an Uber. You just say cool today I made $125 That's the Think of Uber as an investor in your company. And now you can start saying, Okay, I'm going to now go sit at the expensive coffee shops and edit my pictures there so I can run into rich people. You can also find yourself a rich husband or wife that way to podcast.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:04:18 That is great. I love that. I
Walid Azami 1:04:19 love that how do people do it? How do people find their you know, their? Their sugar mama sugar daddy, they go to rich bars.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:04:28 That is funny. And yeah, that's that's what a great advice and you know, that's that's just I think that will open up a lot of objections, a lot of doubts that people have, and it just goes to show how much value keep on your course. Right. But one thing that I do, I'd like to kind of follow up on that. Is that, okay? You talk about this notion of okay, go to where your customer is. hang up your ideal customer, I should say, yeah, just your customer, you go to where your customer, your ideal customer hang out and appeal to them in a way that they want to be appealed to, right? Because that's, that's what like you can't I think one way that you were, you put it earlier, it's like you can't, you know, dress all hippie and go to a high end place and try to sell people at the high end place for example, correct, right, you harassed to kind of walk the talk and basically be become one of them or you know, relate to them. Now, one thing that I like to get your, your response on is, once you do that, there is still this one thing that is difficult to break, right? To be able to put your work out there is trust, right? Well, yeah, they may come to you. And then you might you may be the dress and you know, walk the talk and talk to talk or whatever it is. And you go like, well, you know, I'm here and this is, you know, I'm looking fancy. And, you know, I'm this sort of photographer, but they look at us like, Okay, well, you know, have you ever sell, you know, for example, an art with the high end price? Or, you know, what's, what's the value and so forth? Right? How do they trust you? If you just got out of this riktigt you know, and you move into this? The people who just want to bring you down and you know, ask for everything for nothing to this place where people actually value your work. Right? How do you get that trust? And how do you get them to invest on you, and your art? For the amount or the value that you value your art?
Walid Azami 1:06:58 So, so that I fully I want to make sure I understand how do you get people to trust you with their money and their project and all that, right?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:07:08 Correct. Oh, even if you if you just got out of this, like, you know, like, let's because you say earlier, like, leave this thing that like, keep asking for more but doesn't pay anything, you know, go find a different place. Exactly. Cheap town. Okay, we're going into a new city. So but you're nobody there. Right? You're nobody there. So how do you build that trust? How do you get that trust so that people invest on it? Because you know, that first person who believe in you really going to open up the doors, right? That yeah, gonna become your portfolio, they're gonna become your success story. But how do you get that first person to invest and belief in you?
Walid Azami 1:07:49 Of course. Well, here's the thing, what I touched on a minute ago, which was many sessions, so you're new in a market and you're like, hey, normally I would charge let's say, $1,000 or $500. For this quick family Christmas card photoshoot? It's $150. Right? That's a fast way. And like a small investment for people to be able to give you a chance. That's the first one. And the second one. How do you get people to trust you as let them see your work? So walk with a camera? What like, like, people walk their dog, walk your camera, go to a coffee shop, put your camera right next to your laptop. Okay? Invite people for that. You know, they say like, Okay, if someone dresses very sexy, they're inviting. Eyes to like, look at them. If someone dresses very intimidating. They're inviting a judgement. So when you walk in, I'm not saying it's right or wrong. I'm just saying like, it happens right? When you like, it's kind of like the people that fly with their Louis Vuitton bags and like you are inviting theft for people to open your bags at the airport and start going through stuff. So when you go with a camera, you are inviting conversation. And people will ask, Oh, are you a photographer? No, I really have this giant thing for fun, you know, but and so. But people will talk and then they'll see. Get out of the house. Get out of as artists we hide in these little caves. Like as artists if you disappeared sometimes your friends and family may not know for three days that you have been kidnapped. Because we don't see the sun as much we sit in this corner and we stare at the monitor and we work and we work and we work get out and sit at a coffee shop. Go to a cafe and eat a little slower and do some work. Go somewhere. Go to a bookstore go like just be outside let people see you. If your ideal client let's say you're in a new year like okay, suddenly I'm the higher price photographer but what kind of photographer Are you? Are you As a family photographer, where do the families go? They you can be there too, and not be creepy about it, you know. So for example, let's say there's beautiful hiking trails by your house. And that's where people like to take their kids and their dog and they go, you go there too, and you take some beautiful photos, just enjoy nature be just be present. People will walk by, and you will start having conversations with people. Okay? So put yourself again, in the space that they want to be. The second thing is Wait, the exact question was, how do you get them to trust you is? Yeah, yeah, is word of mouth really, really is important. You know, nowadays, we can have the world's biggest stars say, Do you must buy this computer monitor? I don't care. I want to know what the photographer with 700 followers says about this monitor. That's what I really care about. So ask people in your life to help you. Most people. 1% are really terrible people, I will say this 99% of people are really good. They want to help you. They don't know how to help you. So they don't help you. Okay, so I'll say that one more time. 99% of people are really good. They want to help you. They don't know how to help you. So they don't. If you were to actually ask for people to help you and say, Hey, I am new to the market. And I really want to get into photographing for restaurants in the area. Do you know anybody like that could really benefit from a menu revamp or reinvention of their menu? You'd be surprised how many people know somebody who knows somebody. Okay? Talk about it. Ask people how they can help you tell them, hey, you can really help me by connecting me with the HR lady at your office. If she's doing all the LinkedIn portraits, you can really help me by connecting me to your mom group you can really help me by I don't know like connecting me to three people in an email, ask people for help, people will help you and I know that this makes people like really freak out. Like I have that on my course we have a whole script of how you do it and what step and when, but it does help. I'll give one more tip just to like make sure maybe you know different things help different people so a put yourself in their position walk your camera and be asked people for help. See, I guess is the mini sessions that really boosts your portfolio fast. A lot of examples, but maybe I can do a quick fourth one because I kind of promised something off the top my head I think you know what? You help people you know, I said, have people help you. You go help them? If you see so back on the example of Okay, so here's an example. My friend used to have the world's ugliest coffee shop. Not because she wanted that. I was like, Yo, the art here is so ugly on the walls. It is so ugly. It's criminal. Like it's like you almost want to call the police it is that ugly? Okay. But people would hang out there. And I would say hey, Camry your space is so cool. This beautiful little cottage people come here you're near the university. What have you put like different kinds of art that does showcase that upscale the furniture, the the walls, the flooring, everything and it just looks more like a gallery versus like grandma's old cottage. And grandma died five years ago, but you haven't remodelled the cottage yet. Okay, and help people. And maybe like in that case, offer them some porch and say, Can we put this up on your wall, you can have my business cards on the side of your counter. If anyone wants to buy it, give them my card. Or, hey, I really really love your restaurant. Your food is so delicious. I've been driving by your store for four years. I've never wanted to come in because it didn't like your advertisement isn't there. I see that you're a mom and pop business. I know that you guys are doing everything would you be open if I helped you one day maybe like photograph four of your main dishes and just give you something beautiful that you can put on Instagram and Yelp and things like that help that once the conversation starts good is infectious and it just keeps getting bigger and bigger and bigger. I know that's like kind of woowoo stuff but that's truly helped people and then the world will help you back
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:14:44 that's that's I think you know like that is so important. I love how you share that last bit and because help people is you know when you it just takes me back to the Bill Gates story right how when he used to be broke, you know, he, he helped out and and he always say that, you know it does if you don't offer a hand when you're struggling, you're not going to help people when you reach when you make it, right, because that's the nature of it. So, and you know, karma always came back. And you know the other story about always I think Tony Robbins use this story of how he gave like, money to this, to help out this person. And during the hardest time he he was he needed that money, but that person can go and compete back. But in the end, Something opened up, you know, at that exact moment that he needed the money he actually get more than what he gave up. And, you know, there's a lot of other story that you know, I mean, whether you believe it or not in karma, you know, if you do good, it's, it's natural, that good will follow your way. Right. Exactly. So I really love that that. That advice? Well, um, well, it's been incredible. Thank you for being here. Usually, I would ask my audience or sorry, my guess, you know, what is the one advice that they would give to the audience, but I feel like what you just gave right, there is such a good advice, unless you have any other advice that you want to give.
Walid Azami 1:16:32 Number one will thank you for having me on, and your podcast, thank you for having this podcast. Because I, you know, it, this is all part of that positive wave of helping our peers and all of us because like, when you do better, I will do better. And when I do better, the next photographer does better and we rise up together, right, or we think together, too. So I appreciate that. I guess you know what I will just say one quick thing is it's cliche, but edit your circle, more than you edit your photos. So I'm sorry, if if your friends are talking about other people, you're not going to go very far. Like, truly watch your circle, you're not going to go far, if you hang out with people who don't dream big, who don't scare you, because they're like doing something amazing. And then it makes you step up. And if you hang out with crappy people, that is your future, like it is 100%. So it's cliche, it's nothing new. But I swear by it. If somebody in your family, somebody that is blood, somebody that has a coworker, or neighbour, if anybody diminishes your goals and your dreams, you don't owe them an explanation ever, ever, ever. You can step away silently, you don't have to announce it. You Your only job is to save that child inside of you that still wants to create and treat that situation like you're helping a child, get yourself get that child out of immediate path of danger. Anyone that would like what would you do if someone is telling a kid, you're dumb, you'll never make it. This is stupid. Like it'll, it's just unrealistic, you would move that child out of that situation and tell that person to stop, you kind of have to read now you're not kinda you absolutely have to do that for yourself. And just watch people's energy, like people say a lot of things. And then at the same time, if people are really, really supportive of you, then keep them near and, and match that energy to so you got to like feed them and they'll feed you back and forth, back and forth. But cut out the haters let them let them go into like hater Ville, by themselves and disappear. Don't care, family, friends, neighbours anyone?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:19:01 I'm so glad that you give that last advice because that is so important. You know, like, it's been proven that we are our environment. You know, the way we grew up the way who we become is because the environment that we've been put through. So it's 100% True. So, you know, it's all love. I love how you say that because I feel like I used to be there as well. And I know the feeling of like attachment to your family and friends. And you know, I think he just had a little bit to that you don't have to get rid of them completely, but just manage the exposure to them. Right. So that is such a great advice. Wallet. I'm so happy to have you here. You know, it's been a great conversation. I really enjoyed this. And prior to this, I really don't know you kind of reach out and I was like, I don't know who this is. But you know, this always this is why I put down the podcast it's I just love getting to know people and getting to understand their story and their wisdom and their advice that they can give out to the world. So you've done a lot of work, you've done a beautiful photography, you know, for artists and also projects for different famous people celebrate these as well as you know, your personal project. Now, for those of for those people who want to get to know you better, or want to get in touch with you or want to find out more about you know, this course, what is the best way to find you?
Walid Azami 1:20:42 Um, you can always, you know what, Instagram, you can find me on Instagram, while he does me, you can always send DMS, I do get to all my DMs. I just think it's rude when you ignore the DMS. So I do get through all of them. I do respond to all. And then from there, I can guide you to like, oh, you know, that would be on my YouTube channel, or that's like a paid course or that's this blog post. Yeah, them and, and it could be any kind of photography. And it could be any stage of your career. So definitely open to all kinds.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:21:15 That is incredible. Yeah, we'll put all the links on the description. If you want to get in touch and find out a little bit more about what Waleed is doing, as well as how well it helps other photographer and artists, you know, to get out of this starving artists mentality, which I believe is very important. So thank you very much. Well, it for today, it has been a really good conversation. You know, I always tried to cap it on one hour. And I know we go over a little bit. But there is so many more questions. Yeah, no, of course, there's so many more questions that I'd love to that I want to ask you. So you know, perhaps, you know, sometime in the future, we'll get you back. But I really appreciate your time. Appreciate all the wisdom that you give me as well as the audience, as well, as I appreciate, you know, your positivity and you know, the positive vibe that you bring to this conversation.
Walid Azami 1:22:13 Thank you very much. Thank you. I actually had a really well, why don't I say actually, I had a really good time. I'm very conscious not to say that I said, I had a great time. Thank you. And and my assistant is about found I said, let's find the best podcasts so we can go visit. And you know, and yours definitely was right there on that list. So I'm very thankful to have had this opportunity to
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:22:38 do that meant a lot. Thank you very much. Wiki hunters. Thank you for being here. Thank you for tuning in for another podcast. Hopefully you listen and apply what you have to learn today. And you know, even though this was a conversation, Wally, I have given a lot of wisdom, a lot of advice on what you can do if you do want to make your money, when you want to make money out of your art. Whether you're doing a hobby part, you know, part time or full time and you know, it's it's only knowledge is only a potential power. And only it only become your power when you apply. So make sure you you do what what I have told you, right. If you want to learn more about what he does to help more of you out there, then please do check out the link on the description. But with that being said, you know, we do this every month, every week to get other artists into the podcast. So if you do enjoy this conversation, please do leave a review so that other people who are looking for wisdom, inspirations and who are hitting the brick wall and burnout can get out of it through some of these inspiring stories and advices from photographers all around the world. Well, with that being said, thank you very much for being here. Keep creating, keep being creative and go out there and shoot. I'll see you later.
Wednesday Nov 09, 2022
Wednesday Nov 09, 2022
Hi Wicked Hunters,
Welcome back to another week of The Art of Photography Podcast.
José Ramos is a landscape photographer and psychiatrist based in Lisbon, Portugal. His photographic career began in 2004, with a body of work strongly focused on long exposure technique and storytelling. His images are multi-layered, starting with the immediate attention-grabbing landscapes bathed in exquisite light, moving to the symbolic detail of archetypical natural elements, and then completed with the written reflections accompanying each artwork.
José divides his time between his artistic and medical career, strongly feeling that there is a creative synergy between both crafts, where the commonalities and differences of each discipline mutually enrich and foster his artworks.
His photos have been featured in National Geographic printed editions and many other international photography magazines, exhibited in collective and individual shows, and sold as large format fine art prints and NFTs.
You can learn more about Jose:
Other ways to listen and subscribe to the podcast:
• Spotify - http://bit.ly/twhspotify
• Apple Podcast - https://bit.ly/Theartofphotography
• Google Podcast: https://bit.ly/TheArtOfPhotographyWithStanleyAr
• Website: https://podcast.thewickedhunt.com
• Tune In (Alexa) - https://bit.ly/TuneInTheArtOfPhotographyPodcastWithStanleyAr
For those of you who want to learn more about The Wicked Hunt Photography by Stanley Aryanto:
• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thewickedhunt/
• Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thewickedhunt/
• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/thewickedhunt/
• Photo prints: https://www.TheWickedHunt.com/
Don't forget to leave a review on the podcast if you enjoy this conversation. It would help us to get found and help to inspire other photographers.
Jose Ramos 0:00 summing up the purpose is to ever voice trying to convey the things that are important that I really want to share with others. We are all together in this so I think every one of us as kind of the duty I would say to try to enrich the world we are in and photography seems like a beautiful way to do it
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 0:29 Hey, wicked hunters Welcome back to The Art of Photography podcast, where we share photographers journey and how photography have given us hope, purpose and happiness. And today, we have someone who been very inspiring to his voice to me, as well as his photography, he take amazing sunset sunrise as well as photography in general. So today, we have Jose, hey, Jose, how you doing? Hi there, how are you? It's very good to be here. I'm pretty excited. And thank you for the invitation.
Jose Ramos 1:03 And I greatly admire your work. I want to apologise to everyone because of my English. I'm not a native English speaker, but I'm doing my best. And I hope everyone understands me well. And so I'm pretty excited to be here today. And to have a conversation with you.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:21 Oh, man, you're just too humble. Your English is perfect.
Jose Ramos 1:26 Sometimes I struggle with words, I'm very used to my Portuguese, which has a very rich vocabulary. And sometimes I get a little bit lost with English, but I'm doing my best.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:37 Fair enough. Fair enough. So, you know, like, I've been following you for a while look at your photography, and they are just incredible. Like, you know, it really speak to you. Right? It really pops. But before we get into your photography, give us a little bit background about you know, who you are and how you come about photography.
Jose Ramos 2:01 Okay, sure, I could give you the short version or the very long one. So I'll just try to find a balance not to bother our listeners. But I usually say that first of all, long before photography, I was passionate about nature. I was born in Portugal, in a small town in the south of Portugal. So we were quite used to go to nature, I used to do a lot of mountain biking, I always felt these instinctive needs to be in quiet places, beautiful places, forests, etc. And right from the beginning, I've always lived in nature. I didn't have any artistic background in my in my family, unfortunately. But I know that from quite early, I wanted to express myself and I wanted to use art in some way. I used to live literature, philosophy, spirituality. But then I got into music. Actually, as a rock band still in this small own town when I was still a teenager and heavy metal bands. We are we were kind of the outcasts in our town. But already had this need to, to express something. And I used to use music to do this. At the same time, I continued my ventures into nature with no artistic purpose. Then, when I was 18 years old, I had to go to college and I went to medical school in Lisbon. And I found myself all of a sudden, completely overwhelmed with 10s of things to study, and barely no time to devote to music. We used to play electric guitar. And I was really struggling with that because I needed an outlet. Medicine was extremely demanding 10s of mental work and not that much in terms of expression. And as if that wasn't enough, I was in a big town I was in Lisbon and contact with nature was greatly reduced. So it was absolutely everything. A big big angle over of both nature and creation. And my encounter with photography. It was extremely spontaneous. Digital Photography just became a thing. This was probably 18 years ago. Yeah, I'm now 14. This was 18 years ago, I was in the middle of my of my graduation. And I asked my parents to buy me to offer me a digital camera. It was a three megapixel compact camera, no artistic purpose at all. I just wanted it to be as small as possible. I didn't care about megapixels, anything like that. But the interesting thing is that when I got the camera, which I just wanted to capture some snapshots of my daily life, it just made me so starts looking for things that were special things that were beautiful and inspiring. And as soon as we, as I realised, I was starting to venture much more into nature than before I started capturing images. Still, I didn't have any artistic purpose in debt, but the images were just kept on my harddrive, I was starting to feel the pleasure of capturing the beauty that I was seeing and recording it with the camera. And that was until a friend of mine suggested me. This wasn't so long ago, 1817 years ago, to share some of my nature images on online. There were no there was no social media back then we already had photo communities. So I started posting in a website, which still exists today, which is DeviantArt. It had an absolutely incredible photo community back then, every one was there incredible artists. So I just accepted to put one or two terrible photos there. And I was extremely surprised with the community energy. I got comments, I commented on other people's photos, it was extremely clean in terms of energy, there was not the current vibe, numbers and everything else. So all of a sudden, I was finding the creative outlets, which joined both my my wish to express what I felt, and also my love for nature. So it was kind of a perfect combination. It replaced music, it became my favourite form of expression. And so I just got absolutely addicted to it. Then I entered my specialty in psychiatry, when I officially finished graduation. And things just kind of exploded from there. Because I got extremely even more fascinated with photography, when I learned about its power, not only for expression, but also for wellbeing for so many things. And then publications, exhibitions, photo tours, and social media and everything else started appearing. So I just found myself having to kind of divide my time between practising medicine and doing photography. So I just got fully addicted. And we are here today because I'm continue. I still continue to be addicted to photography.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 7:31 That's incredible, man. Like, this is why I love like, you know, this podcast because like, in just six minutes, I know you more than I would have, you know, following you for all this time. And so yeah, that is so cool. You used to play in a band. I used to be a drummer, actually. So,
Jose Ramos 7:49 so that's awesome. What musical style may I make?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 7:54 I used to like a punk rock. That was okay. It's like cool. That's just like the blink 182 sort of a thing. But it's really interesting because you you say you used to like music, and then you kind of found photography and you shift across you still like music or kind of what makes photography take over from being able to express yourself through music instead?
Jose Ramos 8:25 Yeah, that's a very, very interesting question. And I would give a superficial first answer, which would be convenience. And I'll explain why. Because most of the members of the bands, they actually also came to Lisbon to study. We were all 18 years old, and we tried several times to reunite the band and continue rehearsals. But the thing is that doing rehearsals in Lisbon is totally different from doing in our small hometown, where we were the garage of one of them, we just anqing we just hang out there, or virtually all afternoons. And in Lisbon, all of a sudden, we had to book a studio, we had to have a schedule, we had to pay, and we tried multiple times, and it just did not happen. So the thing is, all of a sudden photography gives me something that I love, which is my own space, my own silence my way of doing things of breathing, of taking my time. And even though I lost kind of the teamwork part of it, which is important. I gained a lot with photography. So firstly, it was convenience. But then I felt that I was gaining much more. expressing myself through photography, and the potential of sharing, communicating and discovering other people's work was incredibly it was more amplified. So that's why in a very smooth way photography replaced music in I live.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 10:00 That is awesome. Thanks for sharing that. And it's really interesting how you say that, you know, you can't have the superficial reason to start photography, but you get deeper and I feel like it's a common occurrence, you know, after like, interviewing over 45 people in my podcast, that's kind of what I see, you know, like most people start just just go on a holiday take photo, but they got really into deep on it. And it it seems like photography habits way to do that. Now, one thing that I'm interested in to hear from you is, you know, expressing your you say this notion about expressing yourself to photography, right? So how does that different between expressing yourself to photography versus expressing yourself in the music?
Jose Ramos 11:00 Okay. First of all, I want to just a little compliment to you, because you mentioned that we've interviewed a lot, a lot of people, I was quite terrified when I saw all the big names you have already interviewed. So I congratulate you for that, because it's a very important thing that you are doing for photographers and, and also because I read your very interesting manifesto about the emotions that photography brings to our own lives, including some periods and when you have struggled, and you are clearly one of those that s photography need his life to express something in to get a deeper purpose and meaning. So I just wanted to congratulate you, first of all because of that, and it's good, because I listened to many of your podcasts. And yeah, you always seems to search for these common threads, that people are not doing photography just for the sake of it, which is quite important. So go into your question about expressing myself through music and through photography. Once again, photography was so much smoother and elegant for me than music. In music, you have the craft parts, you need to practice a lot, you need to be extremely obsessive. If you want to play well, you probably felt that we did drums, I don't know if you felt that as deep. Because it's a punk rock. And sometimes punk bands want to be more spontaneous. Our metal band was kind of technical. So it got kind of complex. So you were to spend hours and hours and hours practising scales and everything else. And I just hated it. Because I already had the discipline for the studies. And I wanted for the expression in arts to be something more effortless, more spontaneous. So expressing myself with music, it was extremely empowering. It felt extremely good. It was fantastic when we were playing together when we were giving concerts. But there's something deeper and more profound in artistic expression through photography for me, okay, so probably many people, mostly musicians will feel the opposite. But for me, the whole process, the slower thought process and creating process and the travelling and being in the middle of nature, and thinking about what you want to do. And all the time you have in the world to look at your images and try to understand what they're telling you and write about him. For me. It's a much much richer experience. So music is more like in your face. My visual filling is this one. I'm filling it right now. Please take hits, and you can go into the mosh pit right now insert at all. And photography is kind of a more, I would say existential craft. It's a slower one. And well I like it more right now.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 14:13 Oh, amen. That is That is awesome. I love hearing that, you know. And I appreciate what you said earlier that you know, that's very kind of you. At the end of the day i i look for people who who have inspiring stories and one of the reason why I want you to be here is because the way you you tell story not only through your photography, but also through your words. So, you know, I don't just speak anyone who big have a big following. But you know that what you just said earlier just shows you know why I want you to be here because you really take meaningful approach to your photography right now, it's really interesting how you say that In music, you kind of have to work hard to get good at it. And then you become you burn out, right? You hated what you're doing, because you're just practising too hard. Now, when it comes, I mean, with anything in life, right? If you want to be good at it, you gotta learn. And then you got to practice. And I'm sure you've had a lot of practice a lot of trial and error with your photography as well. So how, how is that different with your experience in music? And what sort of advice you could give for people who are feeling that way, you know, who are feeling like, they've been at this photography for so long they practice and practice and practice and they hit a wall, and they just burn out?
Jose Ramos 15:47 Yeah. It's also a great question. And I love this kind of interviews, not just the typical technical questions, I prefer these ones. Yeah, first of all, I didn't want to send out the message that for me, photography is absolutely easy, because it's not, I have already struggled a lot with photography, not in terms of creative block, because I have kind of a controversial opinion about that. I don't think that there's creative block when our subject that we capture is nature, which is something kind of endless, in its beauty and possibilities. But I think we can F inner blocks. So photography, it took me a long time to get to where I am right now. But it was not as hard and as tough as it used to be music because with music with the practice of the instrument when I was practising, I didn't feel like I was doing something inspiring. And when I'm learning photography, I'm in the middle of nature, or not closed inside my room, looking at nothing and trying for my fingers to move as they should. I'm in the middle of a beautiful forest, taking terrible photos, or in a seascape doing terrible photos, but I'm there. So the act of doing photography is just a small part of everything, just a small part of hiking, of looking at the sunset of chatting with friends while you are doing a walk sharing with your partner. So we just became extremely spontaneous, because I just loved everything about the process, not just the click of the button. But all the process was good right from the beginning. And just like you said, my first images were not satisfying at all. I'm one of the few that still has this whole portfolio online. If you go to my Deviantart, you can see my terrible photos from 18 years ago. And I think it's kind of a small legacy that I have just to show how terrible one can be in the past, and how one can kind of improve, but I still have a long way to go. So if someone feels stuck going to your main question. I would say and probably this is kind of related with my practice in psychiatry, and also with my notions of how photography can have meaning to you. I think that if you if you are genuine, when we're trying to really express something that's inside you, you need to have a purpose, you can just want to share the beauty of nature, this is a very deep purpose. It's not something superficial. But as long as you want to do something and reach something, I think you will always channel all your insight into it. So it will just appear people that are struggling, usually, they feel blocked, because there are some outside expectations from them. For them that kind of overwhelmed them. Beat numbers beat many beat survival beat anything. And all of a sudden, when you start being absolutely genuine towards your goals, your body will react Your body knows it. There's some sorts of this is controversial also, scientifically speaking, and I should only say scientific accurate things. But your body just signals, the stress, it signals the lack of genuine unity. And some people ever very natural talents to enter into some sort of false self state where they pretend to be something but most artists, they just can't do it. So if someone has a big, big creative block, I would mostly suggests for them to stop a little bit, turn out the noise of social media, the numbers, the competition the game and just think about what they want to bring to the table what they need to channel from the inside. And I think this makes a huge difference. Okay, it's easier said than done. But well, I think it's the best advice I can give now.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 20:08 Wow, that is one whole lot of wise words in just few minutes. Yeah, listeners, if you, you know, you probably going to have to go through this few minutes over and over again, if you hit a roadblock or a mental block, because I think what you just say there really hits in the nail. And as you were just saying that I, I was I was, I was thinking about the time when I hit a burn out. And actually, you're right, at that time always Like, going up with the expectation to shoot something that is, you know, that is appealing to the social media mass, right, not really the thing that but not not really shooting for myself. So that's really interesting. I'm glad that you share that, because I think a lot of people might not realise that until either, you know, come across this, several podcasts talking, you know, with someone like you or actually being told. So, thanks for sharing that. And I'm glad I'm talking to you today for sure. Because I'm sure other people out there will draw inspiration from this. Now,
Jose Ramos 21:25 it's my pleasure. And just sorry for interrupting you just a little bit because I just wanted to add something, which is probably also quite important to the people that might be listening to us. It's that I've also been there, I don't want to come across as the guy that knows it all that I'm the psychiatrist. So I'm protected for from all kinds of mental illness. I usually say this to my patients. In the middle of all medical specialties psychiatry, as the the most the most increased prevalence of mental illness problems, okay. So I just want to transmit that doctors also suffer, just like photographers and artists. And I've also been there I've been in the game number, I felt, I wouldn't say burnt out but and successful. And I remember plenty of times of trying to enter what I mentioned as kind of a false self state, where I wanted to emulate something or someone when every image at to be absolutely epic and bombastic. And it just doesn't work. Because that's not how we were, how we are wired. And it's extremely, it's extremely harmful for everyone. So I want people to know that I've also endured and struggled quite a lot with those kinds of feelings. Perhaps I had some extra tools to think about it. So I'm still finding my way, truth be set. I'm currently in the process of trying to reconceptualize many things that I've been doing this is mostly related with the controversial NFT space, which has some very good things along with it, but I'm also in the path. So I haven't found the solution at all. I'm just trying to learn how to protect myself as much as possible to make this path genuine. So that that's the main message. Sorry for interrupting, you can continue.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 23:30 No thanks for having that. I think that's really important to hear that, you know, even the best of us gone through all that. I feel like the social media have this notion that makes people who are in the social media looks perfect, right? But at the end of it, we are just human. Now, you say something really interesting, earlier about, you know, you go into this as well. And, you know, you have this this issue as well. But you know, like you say you are trained, right, you have the tools, but something that I realised from my own experience is when when we look at someone else we could, we could clearly see it, right? It's like oh, okay, you're, you're you're you're having this struggle, this challenge and you should you should do this a, b and c because you should show it from you see it from the outside. Now for ourselves, it's different because we are part of it, we are emotionally attached to the problem to whatever it is like you know, the survival method or sorry, the survival state that you mentioned, for example. So what is your advice to be able to take to be able to recognise your own state and to be able to give, take your own advice and actually implement it as if you are talking to us someone else,
Jose Ramos 25:01 when once again another extremely challenging, but interesting question, the kinds of questions that I like. Because there's a reason why I said it's easier said than done. Because it's all extremely, I wouldn't say easy, but it's more comfortable when I'm sitting in the doctor's chair, and quite difficult when I'm on the other side. So that's why I said that I have some tools to help me navigate it. But that doesn't always make it easier. It's like, it's like diagnosing or treating someone from your family, you just don't do it. Because you aren't attached emotionally to this person, you cannot have lack of biases that will kind of contaminate your, your evaluation. So sometimes it's even harder for a psychiatrist to be suffering mentally, because it will start creating all sorts of theories, it will start triggering lots of alarms of what's going on with me, am I becoming a patient? Will I need medication, and then all the brain process to approach this sometimes becomes harder when it's related with ourselves. So the thing is, most of all, I always try to build back to what I mentioned before, which is the feeling that on your inside, you feel comfortable, you feel pleasure, while you're trading your art, you feel that there's some sort of narrative that is related with you, it's aligned with your goals, it's aligned with who you want to be in this very short life. It's aligned with what you want to transmit to other people. And it's only when I do this, and this is completely unrelated with psychiatry itself, it's only when I do it is that I probably get a little bit more grounded, and managed to look at things from the outsides. I also have some further tools, because I've been doing a lot of research about using psychedelics for treatment of psychiatric illness. And I tried to bring a lot of that also for my creative expression to my photography. And I mentioning this because in the end, we are all so immersed in our own selves in our rigid ways of thinking, in our rigid ways of feeling that when we get out of this huge bubble, and we look from the outside, it's so much easier to fix things. And this is achievable through therapy through medication through other means. But we can also do it ourselves, as long as we are not mentally Hill, as long as it's not absolutely uncontrollable, we can stop and look at our insight, we can meditate, we can think about what we're doing, once again, the purpose. So that's what I had to do with myself, I could not be my own psychiatrist, I had to be used, they're thinking about why it's just they're suffering so much, and what's wrong? And what kind of external forces are being toxic? And what did I want it to transmit with my time spent with art. So this was kind of the path that I was able to, to follow.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 28:32 Fantastic, thanks for sharing that and explaining that. Now. You mentioned something very interesting in the answer the the you know, you in order to get away from this, what they call it the burnout, you are focusing on your purpose, right? In photography. So share with us a little bit what is your purpose? What is photography to you, and why do you take them? Now I know in the beginning, you have an entirely different reason. But now you are here, and it gives you a lot of fulfilment. How does that do to you?
Jose Ramos 29:13 Yeah. Well, photography, just like I told you before, I think I'm still in the middle of the path. I probably will never reach the end of the path because it's all about the journey. This sounds like a little bit of a cliche, but it's the absolute truth. But yeah, the the initial purpose it was just to capture spontaneous moments. And then all of a sudden it became a channel to to express things that weren't inside me. You could ask Why have I chosen nature? Why not go to portrait photography, street photography, documentary, photojournalism, etc. But just like I said, In the beginning, I've always been fascinated with nature. I think there's so much more More to nature than what's immediately apparent. And for me, images have a lot of layers. I know that someone that looks at my portfolio, if someone doesn't spend more than 30 seconds on my portfolio, like probably 99% of people do on social media, because it's everything is so quick and accelerated. But if people look at my portfolio, they'll see lots of Hi Candy, as I usually say, very captivating images, lots of colour, I'm not afraid at all to work with colour. And I know this is also a little bit controversial. But if people look at my images, they will see intense slide long exposure, immersive compositions, and people would think, okay, there's another guy just doing pretty nature images. And that said, let's move on, let's look at something else. But the thing is, be it with me or with any other photographer, his images will always have more layers. And when you stop to look at an image, when you look at the intent, when you look at the biography of the person, when you look at the purpose, you'll see that there's the immediate aspect of looking at it and being captivated. And when you grab someone's attention, and that person wants to spend some time trying to understand what you're doing, that person will see that there are more elements on the image, there are potential symbolisms in the image. And if the person the artist wants to write something about it, you will probably see that there's a story attached to it. So my meaning right now, my purpose is most of all, to grab those subjects, which are extremely important to me, and channelled him as well as possible through nature. I think photography gives me the privilege of being able to get someone's attention in a very beautiful and spontaneous way. And channel, something that is meaningful to me, it can be just the image, someone might choose not to read anything at all about it. And that's perfectly valid. Or it can go much further than that. So my purpose is to captivate to show how beautiful is the ecosystem we live in, and then try to pass the message regarding conservation, regarding mental health regarding purpose, meaning, relationship between mankind human kinds, and the planet we live in, not taking things for granted spirituality 10s of things that are very, very important to me. That's why I say I'm still in the middle of the path, because I can say that I have some kind of branding, and I hate this word branding. I think people should not need to emphasise branding at all, because they are so much more than a brand. But I'm kind of all over the place, conceptually speaking, and I'm trying to channel this message in a more effective way. But while this is a spontaneous conversation, and summing up the purpose, is to ever voice trying to convey the things that are important that I really want to share with others. We are all together in this. So I think every one of us has kind of the duty, I would say to try to enrich the world we are in. And photography seems like a beautiful way to do it.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 33:35 What a beautiful word. Word that is Jose, I think what you say there on that last sentence, you know, to enrich the world, you know, whether it's through your photography, or music, or whatever it may be, you know, or simply just expressing yourself, I think that is an absolute important thing to do. So you know, what you said is just incredible about conservations and mental health. It's all the things that not always been talked about, but it's so important to focus on. Now, one thing that I want to ask you is going back to what you say, right? In order, we don't want to get caught in this numbers game about Instagram, or Twitter or whatever it may be right sales, whatnot. But at the same time, they are important, especially for artists who are doing it full time, right, because they are a way for them to get seen and to share the message. So one thing that I'm interested to hear your thought on is how do you find that balance? How can you focus on the numbers so that it can support you to do more Have what you love, instead of crushing your true purpose, or your initial purpose on why you want to do photography in the first place?
Jose Ramos 35:11 Yeah, that that's very interesting. And I want to do another important disclaimer, which is my income also comes from photography. Unfortunately, in Portugal, doctors wages, they're not good at all. I know, this happens in a lot of countries. But we get lots of invitations to go work to the north of Europe and other countries. And there's absolutely no comparison in terms of income. So right now, I'm kind of splitting my time between photography and psychiatry, I'm doing private practice, only to have time for art. So it's like I care about it. I care about how people view my work, I care about income, I care about how to transform this also into business, and this is a business. So reaching that balance, once again, it's easier said than done. Because when you are really struggling to pay the bills, when you need to put food on the table, you just need to have the numbers, you need to have the exposure, you need to have the licencing you need to have the collaborations, and it can be extremely challenging. And the problem is that most of social media of the social media game, it kind of obeys to preconceived aesthetic notion of what's good, what's of what results, there's this great example of Instagram, Instagram kind of revolutionised, the way that photos should look. Before Instagram, it used to be the classical old school photography, landscape photography, with its strong colours, like I mentioned before, and then all of a sudden, you had a revolution, strongly attached to travel photography, and not to classical landscape photography, even though there's a strong overlap in this, but people who want it to survive, most of them had to adapt. Now the thing is, can you keep being genuine, while changing part of your outputs and your colours and your countries? And the way you edit your images? I think it's possible. I think there's always a balance, because as long as you have some further purpose, they're not just making money for the sake of it. I think it comes naturally. So the way I try to handle all of that is exactly by having something that I need to transmit to other people, and hoping that this resonates with enough people that will get me the much needed income, if that didn't happen. And sometimes I wonder what if I went full time. The main reason why I don't go full time, is because not only I love doing psychiatry, I also feel it's absolutely essential for the arts, just the way I feel that art is essential for my psychiatry. But if I went full time, and all of a sudden, I could not pay the bills, I would not have any problem at all to jump into something that would be a little more profitable, both in the photography field or in other areas, as long as I add enough time to continue being genuine, and creating my arts, because once you stop doing it, then I think it's kind of a rune. So it's probably a matter of balance. And even though I'm against the game number, I understand why it happens. I think we need to play it just don't be too caught up in it. Otherwise, if we all of a sudden start thinking that our value is fully placed in the numbers. That just means we lost contact with our insight, but I obviously like to have comments. I love to have exposure. I like to have followers, I like to be contacted by brands because it's kind of an extension that you are doing work that it's being noticed. But most of all I want the main purpose of being not just to be because people resonate with the message and the rest is kind of a bonus that spontaneously comes
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 39:28 that is really really good way of putting it and I love how you say, you know, the most important thing is about people resonate with your message and then everything else if that fits then it's good. If not, then it's okay sort of thing you know, well as you know, it's different compared to trying to please every single person out there. So I think that is a really good thing to to notice or to recognise when you are a photographer or anyone no matter as a matter of fact, right? It's never good trying to please everyone. Now, one thing that I am, I'd love to hear your thought on, you touch on photography community back then how genuine it was right. And in today's world, I feel like a lot of that genuinely, sort of disappear. It's more about like you say, you know, a numbers game, the exposure. More often than not, we interact with other accounts for the algorithm instead of for the genuine expression of our feeling towards the art. So one thing that I'm interested in is to hear your thoughts about how the community was before, and how do you feel the community is today? And what do you think we can do to make, you know, whatever we have today, a better place a better community a better interaction with each other.
Jose Ramos 41:11 Okay, well, thinking about the community before. And using the example of sites like DeviantArt, like I mentioned, I was in another site, which was photo seek, which does not even exist anymore. It had a very interesting rating system where people had to write proper, thorough comments, detailed comments on each other's images that then would be voted by the community. And people who actually went through the effort to write meaningful critiques, they were benefited with this, because then they could post other comments, they could post their own photos. And the system kind of Fed itself in a very healthy way. The same happened with DeviantArt. Not with this ingenious system. But there was a big, big sense of community there were journaling there, there was journaling, there were very detailed comments, people established very meaningful relationships. There, there was already some kind of a draft of the numbers game, it existed, but it was not as focused as now because right now, it's kind of hectic and frantic, fast machine of media consumption. So when you have more time to look at things, we're not constantly being overwhelmed with stimuli. And social media sites are fully engineered to get not only your attention, but just your short attention, they don't want your long spent attention working because that means less viewing less ads, less profit. So regarding what we could do, I have a good example right now, which is a very controversial example. And you know that I'm going to bring this up, because we we kind of met also through Twitter, which is the NFT space, which, in the middle of all, its big toxicity, it brought something very interesting, which is once again, the focus on the message and the focus on the relationship between photographers, as a community that needs to support itself and beyond the same boat to have success as a wall as a whole, and the relationship with collectors. Because all of a sudden, I realised that mostly regarded with landscape photography. It's not a respected genre of photography. In the fine art gallery world, obviously, some people make it, but the big, big bucks, they are made with other styles of photography. And many people are realising through the democratic zation of the access to the NFT space, the collectors already sent traditional collectors, that landscape photography also has a place in these big gallery world in this big museum world. Where probably we can have a good balance between not being constantly exploited by Microstock, photography website, websites not being exploited by brands who want everything in exchange of not that much. Possibly, we have a place in this whole ecosystem of this all economic ecosystem where if we have a message, if we have something different, that we want to show to the world, perhaps we can have a sense of community, we can have time to interact with other photographers, artists collectors, and that will have the added bonus the Edit essential bonus of getting an income from this. So I would mostly love to see all the websites shifting from a perspective Have not just focused on quick profits and quick visualisation, but on taking the time to be with people and to be with art, obviously, this is wishful thinking, this is probably not going to happen. There's way too much money in all social media websites, probably the voice of the people can make itself heard. It's happening with all the backlash against reels on Instagram. And I think that's, it's good that it's happening. But I don't know how strong of a voice we can have to make that much of a difference. But at least we need to try. And I usually never did podcasts, I just love being this behind behind the camera. And I think that we need to start being a little bit more activists of our own craft, and of the place we deserve. In the global landscape, no pun intended, in the global landscape of the art world. To make things better, and to make interactions much better and out here, most of all,
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 46:05 that was a good point, I must say. Yeah, that's, thanks for sharing your thoughts on that, it is quite interesting how to see your perspective on this whole, how everything kind of fit in, you know, with the NFT with the landscape photography, and with just other photography in general, I think that's, that's quite an interesting take that you have in there. So one thing that I want to get into is that, you know, you kind of do photography, and psychiatry, being psychiatrists at the same time. And I love how you say that, you each each one of them need each other, and each one of them support each other. Right. And I think that's, that's really interesting, because I can totally resonate with that right. Now. One thing that I I'm sure the audience would like to hear, right, a lot of them love photography, you know, a lot of photographer love photography, that's why they got into it. That's why they buy they buy, spend all their money on these really expensive things. Now. If there is a chance for them to, you know, earn back and just get a side income or whatnot, to be able to fund their next travel or to be able to upgrade their next camera. How based on your experience, how would you advise? How would you recommend them to look into being able to find those side incomes?
Jose Ramos 47:50 Well, first of all, if I focus mostly on nature, photography, and landscape photography, looking at the overall situation of most photographers that I know, and I will say, unfortunately, once again, because I would love that landscape photography would be recognised as a type of art, which is worth by itself, in art by other kinds of side gigs. But most of all, as long as you have a good portfolio, as long as you are inspiring, as long as you know your way around editing, as long as you have good quality images to show, you have the classical photo tour route to follow, which is extremely profitable when when done, right. And it has a very interesting purpose specially for the people who live to teach. It's an absolutely beautiful way to practice photography. I'm more of the solitary kind of person that likes to have its own space to do his photography. But for people want to have a side income with their images, as long as they have good visibility. And there we go with the numbers game. If they have good visibility, if they establish meaningful contacts with people, they will probably start being invited to show them to show them those places to show them how they capture those images. And in a very spontaneous way, they will be able to get a good income from that. And even more important than that, even more important than the numbers, the good old technique of taking people to your website where you can show much more about who you are not be totally dependent on social media but use it as a way to channel people into your own place. The place that you were you chose the design you chose how you present yourself and you are not just someone else in the middle of 1 million trade photographers. And when you do that, you get the chance for them to subscribe potentially a newsletter and then all of a sudden we have this privilege access to show to these people. What you really like to do, what are your messages, what you can offer them, and in a very spontaneous way, as long as you put your art into everything, and assuming your artwork inspires other people, I think site income will always appear. The big question is if it's stable, and if it can become the main income, but getting side gigs, as long as you put some effort into it, I think it's, it's doable.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 50:32 Fantastic. That is great advice. And I want to segue to I know that, you know, you've your photo have been published in National geography in, in Spain, right. And, you know, first of all, congratulations, that That photo was incredible. Now, I know that for many photographers, that has been, you know, their dreams, including mine. Now, I'd love to just hear right while I have you here. What? How did you What are your journey to get your photo published with magazine like, NatGeo? And how, what advice would you give for someone who want to have their photo published with Nigeria?
Jose Ramos 51:15 Okay? Before and i Unfortunately, once again, I'm always regretting things, it's kind of like a pattern, I need to analyse this as a psychiatrist. But I was going to say that unfortunately, I lost a huge opportunity to be noticed by NatGeo, which was their website, the your shot photographer, from NatGeo. And I didn't used to pay attention at all to it. And I know plenty of photographers that's kind of noticed by them, and add some sort of special place to not only publish in magazines worldwide, but also to be featured on their huge Instagram pages. So I missed that opportunity. And the way I got into NatGeo, was mostly, it was locally related. So there were these big groups. In both Portugal and Spain where people used to share their images, these groups were kind of scouted by the editorial team of Nachteile. And going towards the guidelines of Nachteile. I think they identified with some of my works, because NatGeo is still one of the few who once again, I know I'm constantly repeating myself, but they put lots of focus on the message. It's not just about 3d images, I would actually go as far as saying that most of my images, they are not natural or material, because they are usually I would say less edited less impactful. They want to be a little bit more immediately related with the perceived reality. And I usually like to give some artistic expression on my images. But some of them they possibly could potentially fit the magazine. And I think that it was along with the story along with the fact that I always put great effort into describing why that image was different white at some meaning, why I captured it, why the viewers can relate with it, that I got the first context to publish with them. And as soon as you get the first publication, then it becomes easier, you have just opened a communication channel. And right now I have the privilege that I can reach out to them when I think I have something different and relevant to show them like a photo of the volcano that I did, like the Milky Way over an Ancient Bridge in the south of Portugal, which has never been photographed before. When I have something that I think that brings value to readers, I contact them and ask them if they're interested in publishing it. If I started bombarding them with every image that I had, probably they would just block me and shut down our email contact. So it's I think it's mostly related with trafficking and adapting the message to the medium where we want to be published. And I also need to do another disclaimer, I've been featured on their visions of the earth section, which is just one single image with a small description. But I've never done editorial work for them because the work with lots of extremely talented photographers with a specific photo photographic purpose to show something and I didn't follow that path. But it's also another very valid pass to be able to be published there. So adapt what you're doing as long as it's genuine. Anyone identify with it to the place where you want to get published.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 55:01 fantastic advice, that is really good way to put you know how people can pursue that path. So thanks a lot for sharing that and congratulation to you. Now we are kind of coming into the last hour, you know, the one hour mark. And one thing that I always ask my guests in this podcast is that if there was one advice, whether it's photography or life advice that you would give to your younger self or to other people in general, what would that be?
Jose Ramos 55:36 Okay, you save the toughest question for for for the end of the podcast. So let me just put my neuron my brain neurons firing and thinking about what could be potentially inspirational. But, well, taking from some of the things I've said during this podcast, I would tell and recommend people to first of all, look after their mental health. And I'm not saying this in that classical paternalistic style, of like, some cliche phrase, but most of all, feel comfortable when you are doing art, feel that there's something you are showing of yourself, which is genuine, and which is good towards others when you are trading your heart, your art, and most of all, don't get lost in the number game and value meaningful connections with people that will bring you way more satisfaction, if I could. And I've said before, during the podcast, that it's easier said than done. And I find myself also caught up in the game of numbers every now and then the main message, I would stream to myself and tell myself to stop looking at the numbers and establish meaningful artwork and meaningful connections. That's the most important and I think that will always bring something good, be it money being well being. I think it's the path to go to choose.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 57:11 That is a fantastic advice. Jose, thank you very much for sharing that. All right. Well, you know, it's been great talking to you. I love you know, just chatting with you. And I hope we get to meet in real life one day,
Jose Ramos 57:26 that will happen we need to make sure that will happen.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 57:30 Yeah, let's go. So for people who want to learn more about you your story, your mission as well as your beautiful photography, what is the best way to connect with you?
Jose Ramos 57:44 Okay, I think the easier way and just like I said before, it's kind of the, the the ideal starting point is to go to my website, which is www dot Josie Josie rammos.com I'm gonna say it in English and not in Portuguese. Or you can go to my Instagram page, which is Jo Jo's there Ramos photography or to Twitter, which is Josie underscore, Ramos. Okay, so these are the best places to find out about my work. And feel free to reach out if you search by Tracy, psychiatrist photographer from Portugal, you'll probably also find me on Google. So feel free to find me in any way you prefer.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 58:31 Fantastic. Thanks a lot for sharing that and don't worry listeners, you will get the link on the description. So if you are listening to this and you're not sure if it's Jose or Josie, you know, just go on the link you'll get you know exactly the exact link so that you know how to find him. Well, thank you very much for being here. Jose, that's how you say in Portuguese, isn't it?
Jose Ramos 58:57 Actually not. It's juicy? Juicy. Okay. It's not easy to pronounce. So I was telling you I prefer to give the the English Americanized version or people would not probably translate it properly to the right characters. So it's using in Portuguese juicy. Is that Is that right? Yeah, that that's pretty pretty close. Oh, wow. Yeah.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 59:24 I used to live in LA right. And all I have a lot of friends from Mexico and basically Latin America, but they think there's pronounced Jose. So it's different between Hispanic and Portuguese. Okay, well, that's good to know. But yeah, thanks a lot for being here. Thanks for sharing all of your wisdom as well as your story. And hopefully, listeners you can find a lot of wisdom, a lot of inspiration from not only the journey but the advice that juicy Is that?
Jose Ramos 1:00:01 How almost I can say it's perfect?
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:00:05 Yeah. All right, well, um, listeners, if you haven't subscribed yet, subscribe yet, make sure you hit the subscribe button. We'd love to hear your feedback. If you do enjoy this podcast and if you know other photographer who you'd love to have in this podcast, please reach out to me on my instagram or facebook, which is or Twitter, which is just at the weekend, and let me know who I should bring to to the podcast. But thank you very much for being here. I know, your time is important. And you have shared that time with me and I very much appreciate that.
Jose Ramos 1:00:44 Thank you for my absolute pleasure. And thank you for the opportunity.
Stanley Aryanto - The Wicked Hunt 1:00:49 All right, well, weekend, as always, I'll see you again next week. But for now, make sure that you keep shooting keep creating and don't forget to stay smiling. Until next time