Hassles in fashion photography

By Albert Pedrosa

IN THE recent workshop that I conducted for PCCI in Makati, the students asked me why I chose fashion photography over the others. I told them that I like the pressure. The idea that I will almost always call it quits every time fuels my passion to even play harder. Above all, it’s the satisfaction that I get producing artworks with style.

Behind every fashion photo you see is a mix of beauty and style. The problem that arises in and out of the set is as simple as a missing memory card to one of the creatives deciding not to show up. There’s weather if you’re shooting outdoors and equipment failures here and there. But in the middle of the chaos, a work of art is brewing.

Every genre in photography has its own obstacle to cross. Just like underwater photography where they have to deal with all the technicalities of diving before they can even start shooting. The level of mastery in diving needs to be achieved before dealing with finding what to shoot and the difficulty of lighting underwater.

I chose to do fashion photography because it’s something close to my heart. I like the style and emotions that are communicated in every shot. It brings you to a different space and time. A dimension that existed only in your creative imagination and with your camera, subject and the rest of the creatives in the team, the image reveals itself.

When finally you’re shooting, you don’t think about the hassles of setting it up anymore. All the frustrations and self doubt disappears and replaced with joy in your heart. You’re finally dancing in your playground and everything becomes surreal. You’re in the zone and nothing else matters but the shot.

Tomorrow will be another day. The next shoot will pose a different challenge and you have to go through all the hassles that come with it. You will be disappointed but you will remind yourself again that this will pass and all will be well eventually. Not without the urge to make it work and the prize of another artwork and the joyful experience of doing it all over again.

My challenge to my students during the fashion photography workshop was to shoot the subject in style and capturing motion. It’s about finding ways to shoot it differently.

Excuses will console you and make you feel good again. It is not your fault and you deserve this and that. It will become your hiding space away from the pressures of moving forward. It’s a dangerous culprit that you will encounter along your journey.

Find out what drives you and what keeps you in the game. No matter what genre you’re in, the farthest you go is how much you are willing to do. Speed is never the issue, it’s always how much you can take and still continue to move forward. The belief that in the end of it all, you will succeed.

Keep on shooting, everyone!

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