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Warning: 7 Reasons Why You Should NOT Listen To Anything We Say

Ninja

We’ve been writing on this site for nearly 3 years now. As I looked back over all the advice we’ve given, I asked myself an important question: “Why should anyone pay attention to anything we have to say?”

The more I pondered this, the more worried I became. You see, it turns out there are a lot of reasons why you should NOT listen to us. So I figured we should come clean and tell you guys the truth…

1. We Are Biased

Yep, I’ll admit it. We come complete with a set of biases. We have leanings, opinions, and deep-seated beliefs that colour how we look at things. They even influence what types of articles we write here. As much as we can attempt to look at issues from different perspectives, we will always have some bias.

2. We Are Newbies

We’ve been photographers since 2005, started shooting “jobs” in 2006, and went full time in 2007. Long story short, we could easily be considered newbies, especially given that we look at photography as a life-long pursuit.

3. We Have No Formal Education

It’s true — we never went to school for photography. Or even took a night class. We could have learned everything backwards and upside-down for all we know.

4. Our Experience Is Very Limited

We started off shooting weddings, and then migrated to portrait photography. And that’s all that we’ve done on a serious professional level. There are many, many areas of photography that we have very little to no experience in.

5. We’ve Only Worked In One City

Along that point, we’ve only worked in one city. We don’t know what it’s like to pick up everything and start over again where you don’t know a single person. We don’t know how different things are in a small town, or a massive city. We only know our medium-sized Canadian hometown.

6. We Don’t Keep Up With The Photography World Very Much

Compared to many photographers we are practically hermits. We hear little tidbits of photography industry news every now and then, but in general we’re not very up on the latest hot products or the biggest celebrity photographers du jour. (Note: this also applies to pop music, which we seem to be a couple years behind on.)

7. The Industry Is Changing Rapidly

It seems like things are completely different than when we started our careers. And in a few years, they will be even more different. This industry is changing crazy fast, and what we experienced back at our beginning is not the same as what a new photographer will experience now.

 

 So, Is There Any Reason To Listen To Us?

 

Well, maybe. Let’s give it a shot…

1. We Love Photography

We think about this crazy art form all day, every day. There is practically nothing we do that we don’t ponder how it might relate to photography. Obsessive.

2. We Love Teaching

From the very beginning of our careers we’ve had a strong desire to share what we’ve learned with others. It’s just our way. Every time we come across a new insight, we try to figure out the best way to explain it so someone else can benefit. Teaching is as important to us as photography itself.

3. We Love Photographers

And we mean photographers in the way we like to define it — anyone who loves photography, regardless of how long they’ve been doing it. Whether they are full-time pros, or never make a cent, it doesn’t matter. Heck, even if you’ve never picked up a camera in your life, but are thinking about it, we love you, because you want to capture something that you find interesting. It’s pure creation, and that’s awesome.

4. There Is No Truth

Forgive me for getting a bit philosophical here, but this is the big idea of all this rambling (finally, right?).

There is no single “truth”.

In the end, nothing anyone says is right or wrong. What matters is how you feel about an idea, and whether it rings true in your heart, for your work, and your business. That’s the bottom line.

So for everything you hear us—or anyone—say, do just one simple thing: take a second to think about it. If you like it, great. Keep it. If it doesn’t feel right, leave it, and keep on looking.

Being true to yourself is far more important than listening to what two silly ninja-obsessed photographers say anyway…

Lauren Lim

Hey friend, I’m Lauren! I’m a photographer and head ninja here at Photography Concentrate. I’m downright obsessed with photography, and love sharing it with super cool folks like yourself. When I’m not shooting, or writing, you can find me cooking (and eating!), traveling, and hanging out with wonderful people.

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Discussion

18 Comments // Leave a comment

  1. I love, love, LOVE this post! I have doubts, everyday, about my validity as a photographer, mainly because of those 7 reasons you listed up there. But then I read your 4 reasons why we should listen to you and I realise they apply to me too! Thank you for reminding me that it’s ok not to be a 25-year-experienced-multiple-photography-degree-holding-running-a-huge-business-that-everyone-knows-about photographer. The fact that I love what I do and love sharing it with anyone that will listen is enough.

    PS It’s post like this that keep me coming back to you guys. You rock!!

  2. I think its a great perspective to have that EVERYONE you meet is biased. I take bits and pieces of advice from many different sources and decide what works and is true for ME. :)

  3. Seriously…even your ninja jumps are awesome. I’d blow my spleen if I did that.

    BTW, heard about this great, new up and coming band from Canada..you should check them out. They’re called nikelbak or something like that…

  4. +5. You’re honest! For all the articles I’ve read here on Concentrate I’ve never once doubted your intentions for writing the piece: Passing on your _love_ for photography. – that alone is worth a read.
    I can’t even imagine how much steeper you guys have made my photography learning curve, and I am very grateful for that. Thank you.

  5. I don’t care what you say on the top part, I’m going to continue reading! keep up your “terrible biased, uneducated, newbie advice”. I’m a fan and a listener! thanks for being so awesome, especially to the little (new) guy/gals in the industry. You guys rock!

  6. This post comes to show that every photographer should build some level of spiritual and mental balance. The concept of the post is really good and original I hope most people will extract the right message from it.

  7. Just when I though I could not adore you more…

  8. What a fantastic post — so encouraging! About five years ago I took a photography class at the local community college to learn how to “get out of the green box” on the Canon Rebel XT my husband gave me. I have always loved photography (my first camera was a Polaroid One-Step in the 1970′s). In the summer of 2010, my photography instructor called me and asked if I would take over his class. He had proposed to his girlfriend and would be moving to another city . . . and he felt that I was the right person to take his place. I thought “Or else I’m the only one standing around with “SUCKER” stamped on my forehead . . .”

    Anyway, I assisted him during the Fall 2010 session and took it for my own Spring 2011. There are days that I feel like such a FRAUD because I’m not a “pro”! But my students enjoy the class, tell their friends about it, and some even take it a second time because they enjoy it so much. I have come to have this philosophy: I teach them what I know, am honest when they ask something I don’t, and go find the answer before the next class. On top of that, I’m their CHEERLEADER — encouraging them to keep on keeping on, because with every photo they capture, they get better and they CAN DO THIS. :D

    Sorry to go on so long, but I will definitely be coming back to your blog — I think we think alike. You know?

    • Lauren Lim says:

      Thanks so much for the kind words Laura! I agree, we do think alike! Encouragement is such a valuable thing for anyone who is learning a new skill, and that’s so wonderful that you’re helping others and being their cheerleader! High five!!

  9. I just want to thank you both, from the very bottoms of my heart, for sharing as much as you do with us. It’s touching that you take the time out of your busy schedules to be an encouraging, positive force in our lives with your posts.

    Thank you.

    Thank you so much.

    • Lauren Lim says:

      Gosh, thank you so much for the incredibly kind words Ilene! We’re so happy that you’re enjoying the site! There’s a lot more fun stuff in store, so stick around :)

  10. I’m so glad I found this blog! Thank you so much for this post in particular, it was so encouraging to me!

    I have always wanted to get into photography (specifically wedding and portrait photography), but was always afraid to step out and really try because I have no formal training or experience and I know many people who have trained for years and turn their nose up at amateurs trying to make a career out of it.

    My husband has formal training and always told me that I have a natural eye for it and could be a great photographer if I really explored it, so he just bought me a Canon Rebel T3i for my birthday! I don’t know much about cameras because Ive never owned more than a simple digital, but I do know that he must really believe in me to get me that kind of equipment!!

    All that to say, thank you so much for sharing your story and journey and proving to me that it’s possible to do what I love and make it a career by being self-taught! Keep teaching! :)

    Hali

  11. That’s just nonsense! We have tooooons of reasons to listen to you! First of all, you WANT AND LIKE to share, that’s just sooo important! Second, you know what you are talking about. You talk like us, like every single normal newbie photographer, who wants desperately to grow and learn, and so, we can understand and relate to you guys.
    I discovered Photography Concetrate recently and I’m in love! :)
    Congratulations, Lauren and Rob, on being so amazing! ;)

    • Agree on your thoughts Ana, I just found out this blog from the search engine when looking for great ideas about photography and posing tips. And I’m glad I found this blog. I think I’m here more than 30 minutes on this blog reading every single article. The content is written in such a passion you just can’t resist to not to read the nest article.

      So there is no reason some one shouldn’t be falling in love with this amazing words on Photography Concentrate. the names says it all.

      Great work Lauren and Rob. you guys are inspiring the new startup studios like Studio Vimukthi who came online very recently after being the number one Wedding photography and videography team. So this will be very helpful to learn the online brand positioning and more…

  12. Love this post. Respect you guys for all the education and learning you keep sharing.

    Thank you Lauren and Rob. Love you guys.

    Salil for Photographique 1138 | Studio
    Bangalore, IN

  13. Hi Lauren,

    Very WYSIWYG post ! Very frank & candid. But this is what we love. Isn’t it so?

    Cheers,

  14. I will agree with the idea of “The Industry Is Changing Rapidly” But keeping up with the trend and studying the customers and their requirements can greatly help for new work.

    This is the first blog I came to really love since we Started Studio Vimukthi recently. Thanks for the great ideas and passionate words on this blog. Makes the reader stick and read more and more.

  15. I’m a big fan of the tone of your blog, very friendly and approachable. Humble and not preachy. Thanks for the post!

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