Welcome to my website and blog all rolled into one. Today is the official opening of Studio J Photography.
To introduce myself and explain what I’m doing here, I’m going to borrow from my 1st Toast Masters speech:
If you came to realize that your greatest aspiration in life would certainly fail, as long as you had to work for a living, what would you do? If your dreams required a good 60 hours a week of dedicated effort and you noticed you weren’t independently wealthy, what would you do?
I answered that question for myself in 2005. My answer was to let those dreams go and choose a new occupation, one where I could do something worthwhile to me. I stumbled upon my 1st inspiration when I discovered Hollywood matte paintings. A matte painting is a large, photo-realistic digital painting. They combine photographic elements with digital painting. They’re generally used as scenes and backdrops in Hollywood movies. Any environment or place that you could imagine, ….. and these paintings took me there!
I knew I would love to do that for the rest of my life.
BUT, there was a problem with matte painting. Matte painters work alone, …. in a cubicle, ….in front of a computer, …..with no social interaction. …….. a recipe for disaster with me. If you put a shy person (even one who was determined to overcome his shyness) in a place like that, what do you get?
……. more withdrawal, a shut-in, a hermit!
Enter my 2nd inspiration: I’d learned through years of photography as a hobby that my favourite photos were always of people. All the images I had collected from great photographers that moved me, that thrilled me, that made my breath catch, were of people. Images with strong emotion, expression; they tell something about who a person is.
My career ambition is to become a talented matte painting portrait artist. Portrait photography in any environments I can imagine and produce. It took me 2 years, full-time, to improve my portrait photography to a level where I can consistently produce images I’m proud of. Now I have a way of making a living at something I love, while I spend the next 3 or 4 years learning matte painting. I think it will take that long because my progress as a portrait photographer will still require lots of time and effort. The training and improvement never ends!
I’m not very shy anymore. The wrestling maneuvers to get that monkey off my back left me with a permanent interest in social intelligence, grace and social skills. ….. how we can build rapport and connect with other people (and the people who are genius at this). Sometimes, I’ll post here about that. Other times, it will be whatever else is exciting, interesting and inspiring to me. That will often be images and something about the people in them.
I have made a conscious effort to combine my professional and personal goals, so that what I do makes me happy. Doing something meaningful, creating something beautiful, connection and involvement with good people.
I would like potential clients to learn something about me because I think you need to know your photographer and get along with them well to produce the best portraits together. I can’t find a better way of drawing out your real personality in images than for us to get to know each other. ….. and it’s more fun when we’re not strangers.