Richard won the NZIPP New Zealand Professional Photographer of the Year 2011 award which is an amazing achievement. He’s another photographer that has his 50mm 1.4 permanently attached to his camera body 🙂 and he’s also the first person on RAW to tell you what marketing doesn’t work, so make sure you read it.
How did you get started?
Christmas of 1998 in London…. I visited the International Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition at the Natural History Museum. I wasn’t really at all interested in photography back then but after 2-3 hours of being absolutely blown away, i walked out of that place knowing full well what I would like to do with the rest of my life. I then enrolled in a 4 year degree in design at university I never had any huge breaks. Everything has been on a steady curve upwards but no huge steps…… accept of course being awarded New Zealand’s Professional Photographer of the Year. Apart from that my biggest leap (of faith) was breaking away from the graphic design freelance work in and out of agencies and just doing the photography.
What sort of photography do you mainly do?
Weddings take up my summer and commercial/portrait in the winter. I’d go nute just doing one thing ( :
What gear are you using?
My Nikon has almost permanently a 50mm 1.4 attached. Otherwise I use Bowens and Interfit lighting which is setup for outside of studio use. So my camera setup is often pretty light weight, but I’ll fill a car or two with other equipment.
How are you marketing yourself?
All online mainly. Google is the new yellow pages. Next is word of mouth and simply talking to people. Flyers don’t work, Adverts don’t work. Get out and meet people.
Whats your favourite photo you have taken?
My Favourite shot is a shot I took of my baby daughter. She’s not photoshopped! Her eyes were actually this huge! It was taken whilst she was sitting in the shower so a beautiful diffused softlight created by the surround. She’s my pride and joy and I just simply love this shot of her.
Advice for new photographers looking to go pro?
A: Just don’t give in. If it’s your passion you’ll keep working for it. Understand we are creatives and that means our work is ‘subjective’. Not everyone is going to like what you do and you have to be fine with that. You’re going to be knocked down, but just keep going.
B: Have confidence in what you do. Not everyone see’s the world as you do. In fact a small percentage are lucky enough to be able to appreciate things in a visual creative way. Appreciate yourself and your own work.
C: Nurture your industry. If you’re starting out…. keep in tact the industry that you wish to step into professionally. Have confidence in your work and charge people for it.