I should have written this post a while back, but never really got motivated enough as we should really support each other and not point out what annoys us, but then every time I see something that annoys me, posted by another photographer, I remember this post is well and truly overdue. I may or may not be guilty of some of those things too, but it does not change the fact they are annoying when done to a fellow professional. So without further ado.:
1. Photorecycling. It’s a process specific to photography profession, when a mainstream tog spends too much time not shooting, realises they have no photos to post online in order to stroke their egos, so they recycle some old shit, post it in 101 forums and garnish it with an irrelevant to them question that requires you to talk about yourself, and in turn boost their own shit’s visibility. Examples of the said traction hooks: “Who’s still editing?”, “How do you guys deal with not feeling good enough?” (The flood of “darling, you are amazing follows.) Zzz..
2. Free training. People offering free training are the marmite. I for one am allergic to marmite. It makes my palms sting and the only way of stopping this feeling is bitch slapping the said free training giver, reminding them they will at some point have to feed their family too, so please stop shitting on other trainers job.
3. Kepttogafers. We used to have kept women. The said kept women got bored of filing their acrylic nails and decided to get a job. They were already good at selfies so photography seemed to be a legitimate upgrade of their skills. Well done. A MK4 is much better than a trout pout.
4. Pity parties. Whilst you are whining about the terrible world we live in, and all the competition down the road, many others are getting better. Many others are improving their skills, watching endless YouTube tutorials. Doing online workshops. You will soon be selling your gear to them. Make sure you bubble wrap it when posting.
5. Getting hung up on props. “Where is this basket from? Where is this blanket from?” It does not matter. It really doesn’t. You still shoot up the goddamn nose and use two lights positioned opposite each other. No amount of Roses and Ruffles is going to fix this shit.
6. Asking for advice to then totally ignore it. Same thing goes for deleting said posts in various online groups after 30 people took the time out of their day to help you out. Don’t waste my time. I have kids, I have a life. If I write more than 5 lines of text and you delete the post. Trust me. I am not going to write again. It will take you 2 years to figure out something you could have figured out in minutes.
7. Offering half-assed training. If you don’t want to share your “secrets”, don’t train others. If I am paying for training, I want to know everythinggg.
8. People who want to be the authority on the subject of photography marketing and business, and want you to pay them to teach you how to get more clients, when the last time they themselves managed to secure a photography client was in the same year Brian Adams lost his virginity.
9. Telling others to up their prices. Not your business, focus on your goddamn prices. Value perception is not a number. We need to believe in our shit ourselves in order to charge what we are worth. Maybe they are doing just fine. Maybe the struggle is not the price but the marketing. Maybe they have 5 kids to support and need every penny they can get. I charge half of some people’s monthly salary for a shoot and I still get people telling me to up my prices. It’s how you structure them, not about having a £3k package no one ever buys. So go look at your own shizzle before you open your mouth about mine. Which should actually be a paragraph on it’s own.
10. Copying. Seriously. Stop this shit. Get inspired, give the originator credit, they will be pleased you like it. Don’t rip the image, then post it everywhere pretending you never seen the same one before and then enter it into a flipping competition. It’s the equivalent of having sex with your neighbour’s husband and sending her a selfie whilst you are doing it. Uncool. There is a lot of things that have been done countless of times in similar form, to the point it’s a staple in photographer’s arsenal. There are also those who recreate an image element by element, copy everything except for model’s hair colour and then go as far as believing they invented it. Don’t be that dick. I swear I’ll unfollow another person who posts an image of a newborn in a matryoshka, kids stuck to the wall with a tape, Bennett’s kid on a wooden horse with a galloping shadow, any more babies on a shelf, or anything copy pasted from Natasha Ince’s page. Find your own path and if you struggle with creativity, give people credit.
11. *This is a bonus point. I am not sure how I feel about it, but I avoid those feckers like a virus. The Social Media Model Togs. They are not the ones who always photograph models, don’t be fooled. Miss Mwac described them perfectly:
They must pretend to have it together.
They must pretend to always be positive.
They must pretend that they are always cheerful.
They must pretend that they never get upset.
They must pretend to have all the answers.
In short, they must pretend that they and their life are perfect.
Yuck. I can’t even.
And what’s worse…I worry that people who read these things BELIEVE them and try to emulate what they see, and when they can’t because no one can, they too, find themselves pretending.
I don’t know about you, but to me, nothing about that is beautiful, because it’s not REAL.
They are one of the reasons a lot of potentially great photographers give up. Surely they will never be this capable of making it all work. They are great at the social media game, at editing, at parenting, their social life is booming. Well, lemme tell ya. They don’t exist. Just ask their kids when was the last time they sat down together to play a game. No one can be amazing at everything. The more one part of our life is blooming, the more something else is failing. Simple maths.
Some of us do annoying shit more than others. I am a regular fixture on the “I want to punch her in the face” scene, which doesn’t make any of the above points less annoying. What’s good is being aware of them. Then if you know that something IS annoying and you carry on doing it regardless, well my friend. You are just a Togdick.