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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Fun is Just Good Business...

Johann and Kyoko. Photography: Living in Pictures 
Thank you Natasha, Shelton and Black Tulip For The AMAZING Photo shoot last night! You Guys made it such a wonderful experience. Thank you from the bottom of my heart :)
- Johann Nogueira.

If you are going to undertake photography as a profession - even on a part time basis - it should be enjoyable for you. That almost goes without saying. Once you stop having fun, enjoying the creativity and the many other enjoyable aspects of photography that coincide, much of the reason you started the process initially is lost. Sure, every business has its stresses and challenges, but photography should be fun - for you. But what about those whom you photograph? Should it be fun for them? Absolutely. And that, my friends, is just good business, if nothing else.
Tash and I were honoured to have our friend Johann Nogueira and his partner, Kyoko, in our home for a meal last night. Johann is without doubt the most entrepreneurial person I have ever met. He is just plain smart, heading a very successful company called Nogueira Alliance. He has been a friend of Tash's since they first met about two years ago. He has also recently been working on the Living in Pictures (the new business I have joined my wife in) website. As of this writing it is  incomplete, but we are very happy. Very happy indeed. And very grateful.

Johann is one of the nicest fellows I have ever met and his girlfriend Kyoko is simply delightful. It was a joy to create some portraits of them last night over a glass of wine, more than a few hearty laughs and even a little bit of guitar accompaniment - if you want to call what I play 'accompaniment'... Anyway... Johann works in many corporate fields, but his approach and style is casual and friendly. Nevertheless, every business person needs to have a professional portrait of themselves taken for their Linkedin site, Facebook, their own website - among many other things. In this regard Johann is certainly no exception. The only problem is, he has never enjoyed the process and so has shied away from it. That being the case, the few portraits portraits of him have not represented the Johann I know. More than that, they don't represent the Johann he himself knows.

A photographer who specialises in people photography needs to do more than just light and shoot. His or her job is to find the person they are capturing - not just in shape or form, but in character. How do they do that? They do that by being more than just a person with the camera. They do that by being communicative, relaxed, humourous and thoroughly at ease with themselves and the entire process. There is nothing more unnerving than leaving something important in the hands of someone you in whom you are not entirely confident. Yourself - your portraits, wedding photographs - any of those important events and representations of yourself, are very important. So not only should you be skilled at what you do technically, you need to be skilled at helping the person be themselves in that moment. By so doing, you enable yourself andyour subject to find the person that needs to be captured and presented to the world. That is as much a part of the skill of capture as lighting, composition, lens perspective or any other aspect of photography itself. As much as any technical skill, it should be learned and honed.

The fun we had last night captured Johann's attention to the point where he asked if this is what we do at every shoot. Tash and I just looked at each other and smiled. "Yuhuh!" we said laughingly. For the photographer, that is not only a great job, it is also just plain good business. If you deliver an enjoyable experience along with a quality product, your chances of success are thus multplied. 

Thank you Johann and Kyoko. You were so much fun!

1 comment:

bmbr said...

And good business should be fun...

Absolutely bang on.

The Life, Times and Images of photographer, Shelton Muller

Images on this blog are copyright Shelton Muller