That Annoying Event Photographer

Recently, I was given the opportunity to photograph the Geekfest Top End 2019 event held by City of Palmerston on 13 July 2019 to kick off the Palmerston Youth Festival. It was such a fantastic event which obviously took many hours of planning and execution to ensure its success. People of all ages came down to enjoy the myriad of activities on offer and so many meticulously pieced together costumes were paraded around Goyder Square to transform the venue into a burst of colour!

While running around dual-wielding my cameras and photographing as many people as I could, I was always grateful to the majority of people who would wait for me to take a photo, jump out of the way so that they were not intruding into my lens or intentionally walk behind me to allow me to capture the photo I had planned.

There are also wonderful people who would occasionally step up to me to ask if I could take a photo for them which I always love to! Sometimes I get handed and extra mobile phone to capture photos on the mobile device as well and I almost always oblige unless I am in a hurry. To all the patient, understanding and wonderful people out there, thank you for allowing this annoying photographer to do his thing. I know it can be especially annoying if I am standing in your way just to capture a photo.

My job as a photographer, especially one who has been hired by the event coordinators, is to capture photos that not only reflect the mood at the festival but also to create memories for those attending. By supplying my employers with good media, they are able to use such photographs to promote and plan any future programs on a larger scale which in turn usually benefits the general public, i.e. you.

During the cosplay awards at Geekfest, I had to take up a central position to photograph the awards so as to capture both the awardee and the recipient of the awards. In a small room that had the awards presented on an elevated stage, this meant that I had to stand in the aisle right in the middle of the seats. I had to stand back a fair distance so that I was not shooting upwards into the people on stage. During the ceremony, a gentleman came up to me and remarked, “Can you move aside? You have just been standing there all along! I want to take a photo on my phone”. He had good reason to be annoyed as I had indeed been standing at one spot which was blocking the view of at least 3 or 4 of the audience. Initially baffled, I then smiled and stepped aside for him to take his shot and then continued shooting. A few moments later, I overhead him telling someone beside, “Yeah I have already told him off”. At this point I must admit that my face lost a bit of love. I turned to him and politely mentioned that I have been hired to photograph the event, something I assumed my bright yellow media vest might have communicated on my behalf. The gentleman was not having any of it though and I continued photographing without saying anything else.

To everyone out there who gets irritated with the annoying photographer who is blocking your view, please understand that we have been brought into the event for a purpose. My credibility as a photographer is dependent on my ability to deliver the required photos. Especially with award ceremonies, it is counter-intuitive for me to constantly change my position. Firstly, photographers tend to look for a central location to capture everyone on stage. Secondly, if we were to constantly move about, it would turn into “Where’s Wally” where the awardee and recipient will have to hold the award together and look for the photographer amongst the crowd. This is why we usually stay rooted at one spot during award ceremonies.

So if you ever encounter and annoying event photographer like me, I implore you to attempt these strategies instead:

  • 1) Try to move yourself instead so you get a clearer view

  • 2) Try ask me nicely if I could step aside for a second so that you can get your shot

Sometimes all it takes is to say the exact same words with a smile and a ‘please’ and it changes everything. No one has to get angry and everyone gets to go home happy isn’t it?

And now that you have made it to the end of this blog post, I hope you forgive me if I have ever been in your way.

If you like to see the rest of the photos from Geekfest Top End 2019, head to https://www.shootingspreephotography.com/gfte2019





My First Greek Engagement!

 

Last week, I was given the opportunity to photograph my first ever Greek engagement party. I have photographed a few Greek weddings so I am familiar with how intense things can get. Actually, being Indian means that I am VERY familiar with such weddings!

Anyway, this post is actually about the gorgeous couple, Maria and Spiro. I was pleasantly surprised when Maria contacted me a few weeks back to photograph her engagement ceremony. She was kind enough to ask me if I had ever photographed a Greek engagement to which I denied. Maria was amazing as she went through the timeline of events with me and even shared photos from a previous engagement ceremony to give me a better understanding of the event. She also shared some photos of her room to give me an idea of the scene. Honestly Maria, you couldn’t have made it easier for me!

So 22 June came and I rocked up as planned to a beautiful Darwin home that was wonderfully decorated. There stood Maria, gorgeously dolled up in a stunning gold gown nervously anticipating the groom-to-be’s arrival. Soon enough the man of the moment, Spiro, rocks up in an equally outstanding suit that got me all envious as far as suit jealousy goes. Before long, the ceremony was well underway and I took to the task of photographing this wonderfully planned and executed celebration of joy between Maria and Spiro. So enough talk and here are some photos from the special day.

So what did I say about Spiro’s suit? Yeah Spiro, you have some serious class mate! I might have to come to you for a styling session. Maria, before you get too jealous, you were gorgeous too in your splendid dress. You probably already know that anyway! But yeah such a stunning couple these two.

Now for the readers, I thought I’d share some information on the unique Greek tradition of bed-making called ‘Krevati’ (literally meaning bed).

This is where the bride-to-be and/or her single friends come together and decorate the couple’s future marriage bed with fresh bedding and decorations, and throw gifts, money and rice on it. Based on my extensive (I lie…) research, if the groom is present, he would have to approve the bed which sometimes means many rounds of bed making. Spiro was nice about it and did not demand a flawlessly made bed. In fairness the ‘bed makers’ did a fantastic job too. I even learnt a trick or two on how to make my own bed (Hint: I should get my wife to do it!) Moving on… small children are placed on the bed followed by gifts and money to promote prosperity and fertility for the couple.

So there’s a bit of general knowledge for those of you who weren’t aware. Now, more photos!

So there you have it… Maria and Spiro, happily engaged! Congratulations to you too once again and thank you so much for allowing me the opportunity to photograph your engagement. Happy loving you too!

 

Australian Institute of Professional Photographers (AIPP) - Accredited Photographer

 

Hey everyone! Hope 2019 as gotten off to a good start for all of you. I spent most of December back home in Singapore indulging in local cuisines and catching up with friends and family. It was no surprise that I returned to Darwin with added bodily baggage which I’m now working hard (OK maybe not that hard) to get rid off.

January is always a quiet time in Darwin so its been good for me to sit back and reflect on how Shooting Spree Photography has grown in the past year. It has been wonderful working with my clients and creating memorable images for them. Earlier this week, I received the fantastic news that I had been accepted into the AIPP as an accredited photographer. Being an accredited photographer in the AIPP is not as easy as paying a membership fee and obtaining the title.

I had to prove that I have been running a photography business for at least 2 years. I also had to submit a portfolio of 20 images spanning a variety of clients. These photos were then to be judged by a panel of 3 judges. I also had to submit references from past clients to the AIPP (no, Facebook and Google reviews don’t count). As you can see, the accreditation process is not a simple one to complete so I was elated to find out that I had successfully completed the accreditation.

Ladies and gentlemen, I would now like to… drum roll please… pronounce you Man and Wi… oh sorry that was out of familiarity. I would now like to present to you, yours truly, an AIPP Accredited Professional Photographer!

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So enough about me. What does this actually mean for you?

(Please note that the following paragraphs have been extracted from the AIPP website)

In this day and age, there are many people who call themselves a "professional". But how can you be sure?

It is an unfortunate fact that in Australia, the imaging industry is not held accountable to the same legal status and regulatory requirements as other Government and state-regulated professions.

In the area of creative services, this can often be seen as a good thing, allowing fresh new people to work in this area without the restrictions and barriers to entry often required by other professions.

But it can also be a problem, allowing anyone to call themselves a professional, without any recourse, any accountability and any attempt to adhere to agreed and appropriate standards.

The AIPP Accreditation Process

The AIPP have addressed this dilemma by encouraging photographers and video producers, to enter the profession by providing a membership pathway ultimately leading to becoming an ACCREDITED PROFESSIONAL.    

Using an Accredited Professional means that:

  • You are working with a professional whose status has been formally validated and recognised.

  • You are working with a professional who you can trust.

  • You are working with a professional whose creativity is constantly pushed and developed.

  • You are working with a professional who is a member of the only recognised professional imaging membership body in Australia.

  • You are working with a professional who adheres to OUR required level of service and quality, a standard we set, regardless of the standards the professional sets for themselves.

  • You are working with a professional who has been through our accreditation process.

  • You are working with a professional who is bound by our Code of Professional Practice.

For more information, you can visit www.aipp.com.au

And because you have been such good readers, here are some photos of NT landscapes for your viewing pleasure