Saturday, October 22, 2005

Being a professional

I got a phone call today. Abi's record company want photo's by monday morning at the very latest to send to the U.S.A.. So tomorrow and Sunday we'll be working very hard to get the goods. The record company is actually going to pay me. But there's a downer, which I've discovered, I don't get paid until next March. Apparently talking to other photographers this is not uncommon. So I could be working for nothing for a while until the money starts coming in. Meanwhile a nightclub owner came to see me today and asked what I charged to take some photos. I confess I'm not up to speed yet on this one and said £25 an hour. My photographer friends almost died when I told them. Well it threw me, they said I should be demanding £150 an hour plus expenses. What? So I haven't a clue what to invoice the record company for a two day photo shoot with Abi. They pointed out a wedding photographer would charge £450 for a days work. I should charge the same or more. They said "You are the professional here. You charge professional prices or they wont take you seriously."
But I'm not a professional photographer.
"You fucking well are. The record company has commissioned you to take the photos, so you're professional."
Oh shit!
Meanwhile tonight I went to see Thommo and his band. The above picture is Thommo himself in action. I take photos for my friends for free. Don't tell the real professionals though, I'll get into deep trouble.

To give me a head start on the job I took a few photos of Abi on stage last night at the Unity club. This one has been through Adobe Photoshop and I've doctored it a bit. For instance I've got rid of background highlights that were distracting and airbrushed out the bottle VKD she was holding.
I'm really pleased with the overall effect. The picture was taken using a Canon EOS300D with the ISO setting racked up to 1600 so I could use the ambient light instead of using flash. I've found flash is very intrusive. OK I lose a bit of definition and sharpness but the end result is more immediate, more interesting. The picture of Thommo was taken with Flash. If you have any comments I'd love to hear from you. I don't mind if they're negative comments. Because if it's crap I need to know now. If I'm going in the right direction it would be helpful to know that too. I aint gonna burst into tears or throw a hissy fit if you criticise the photos. I will respect your opinion because after all it's you that the record company want to aim the photos at. YOU have got to like them and be moved by them. They want to shift records, they want to make money, if my photos don't aid that mission then I am a liability and I need to know now. Before it's too late.

Meanwhile if you've got more time on your hands than you know what to do with, you'd do worse than to check out this link Everyone knows about bands traditionally trashing rooms. Well here's a new twist, hidden artwork behind pictures mirrors fixtures etc. To be honest some of the wall tattoos are better than the pictures that hide them.

Oh yeah and don't forget... Rock on Dudes


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