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A chance for a free portfolio review...


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I went and looked at the subscription fees just out of cynical curiosity.   Science Fiction Writers of America once sold its mailing list to some dodgy thing and had a whole lot of protests and promised never to do that again.   This wasn't that bad in that photographers have to volunteer to give up their emails. 

 

Emerging photographers is a nice way of saying wannabees.   I may resemble that, but I'd rather take a class with Don Gaitan whose work I do know and who is in and out of Managua. Or ask you guys for another portfolio review where you're not paid by stringing me along. 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Rebecca Ore said:

Emerging photographers is a nice way of saying wannabees.  

 

Wow! That hurts. There are lots of people out there who actually are emerging photographers. People who've got a few solid clients, a couple of good publications, or perhaps work experience in a high-end, big market studio. For them, reviews like this one can give clarity - a sense that the few mentors or instructors they've had were right or wrong. These reviews are valuable for another group too - photographers who've been working insolation for years or even decades, know they need a mid-course correction, but need somebody to turn to.

On the other hand, we are all "wannabees." Every time we upload a photo - there's an implied message ... an announcement to the photo buyer/editor world that says "look what I've done! what do you think?" Indeed, the think I love the most about stock photography is that in a very real sense, each upload is a fresh start and a new chance to engage the photography world.

 

We can all be better and Alamy is doing this small thing to help a few. I see it as okay and wish all of those emerging photographers my very best.

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2 hours ago, Brian Yarvin said:

 

Wow! That hurts. There are lots of people out there who actually are emerging photographers. People who've got a few solid clients, a couple of good publications, or perhaps work experience in a high-end, big market studio. For them, reviews like this one can give clarity - a sense that the few mentors or instructors they've had were right or wrong. These reviews are valuable for another group too - photographers who've been working insolation for years or even decades, know they need a mid-course correction, but need somebody to turn to.

On the other hand, we are all "wannabees." Every time we upload a photo - there's an implied message ... an announcement to the photo buyer/editor world that says "look what I've done! what do you think?" Indeed, the think I love the most about stock photography is that in a very real sense, each upload is a fresh start and a new chance to engage the photography world.

 

We can all be better and Alamy is doing this small thing to help a few. I see it as okay and wish all of those emerging photographers my very best.

 

Check the prices for joining that organization.   The thing is that I've been in academia and SF and have heard enough about people who make more money for weekend seminars that are "so encouraging" than the people have ever made from being professionals.   I've been a second reader (unpaid) on a senior writing project where NOBODY taught the woman what Point of View was and how to effectively use it.  The person who set me up for that wanted me to encourage her former student.  But what I saw in the student was a budding journalist, not a budding fantasy writer.  I find it cruel to play with people's ambitions if I'm not convinced they're realistic.

 

Alamy was probably paid to offer this opportunity to harvest emails.  Science Fiction Writers of America was paid to sell its email and address list of its members.  We jumped down their throat for that.   SWFA's website has a "Writer Beware" section publicly readable about all the scams that try to fleece wannabes.   If I'm remembering correctly, this was some sort of scam website that would promote fiction to movie people.   I had an agent for that, and had some nibbles, but no options.

 

Many of us have problems with "imposter syndrome."  Many wannabes of the more exploitable sort have wildly inflated self-opinions.  Fearing you're doing a crap job and trying to do better is a good thing.  Believing you're an unrecognized genius, pretty useless.

 

Anyone I listen to needs to be someone I recognize as having done a better job than I'm doing, or someone paying me if I do the work they want.   I can look at y'all's portfolios.   I can figure out whose advice to take seriously even if it cuts and whose to ignore because it flatters.   If I'm wrong in that, then that's my limitation.  

 

Maybe Alamy paid for the portfolio reviews.   Nicaragua has some photographers that top me quite handily, and some of them offer classes that are bus rides away.    The photographers also have a Facebook group, if I want to rejoin that.

 

Given the Internet, none of us are working in the sort of isolation any of us not in metropolitan areas would have been working in when I was 20.    I moved to NYC at that age to be in a community of poets, writers, painters, and performance groups.   Here is not as isolated as Clemson, SC, was.   The Nicaraguan photographer's group includes someone who was the set stills photographer for Miami Vice.  I've run into a visiting woman pro when I was photographing in Leon.

 

The SF world makes a distinction between people who self-publish and don't go further to people who have some commercial successes to people who have so much commercial success that other people are frothing at the mouth jealous of them.  If someone is actually selling work in the arts, they're ahead of 99% of the people who don't.  

 

And before I submitted to Alamy the first go round, I had to ask myself if I wanted to spoil a pleasant hobby by trying to turn even semi-pro.  Mheh.   Still don't know.

 

 

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Rebecca, as far as I could tell, there was no charge for that portfolio review. You applied and were either accepted or not. 

 

Review or not, the combination of stock photography and science fiction writing is one of the most unique and interesting I've ever encountered. People like me - who write recipes and photograph food - are a dime a dozen. People who write science fiction and shoot stock photos are a much rarer breed.

 

Sorry to change the topic.

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They're going to be collecting the email addresses of those who apply.   It's like making a donation to Amnesty International, who also sells addresses to a range of other similar (sort of) organizations eager for donations.   But AI made zero effort to connect me with a local Amnesty group while selecting me to donate even more to them.    At least Alamy isn't selling all of our email addresses (it isn't spam when you have established you have an interest in the organization). 

 

Did poetry for around a decade, made some money from giving readings and worked in publishing, then worked for a weekly newspaper in rural Virginia, then started writing SF.   Now, I'm working on a non-s.f. novel that's flavored with tech research.   Taught some, too.

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Emu, there's a mountain of good PR with the emerging and commercial photography crowds - groups that Alamy is anxious to charm. It also fits in with their efforts to reach out to photography students.  I'm also pretty sure that Alamy would argue that portfolio reviews would improve the quality of images coming in.

 

In my experience, every time I've sat down with a knowledgeable person for a portfolio review, my work has gotten better - it's something I recommend to all who want to improve.

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47 minutes ago, Brian Yarvin said:

Emu, there's a mountain of good PR with the emerging and commercial photography crowds - groups that Alamy is anxious to charm. It also fits in with their efforts to reach out to photography students.  I'm also pretty sure that Alamy would argue that portfolio reviews would improve the quality of images coming in.

 

In my experience, every time I've sat down with a knowledgeable person for a portfolio review, my work has gotten better - it's something I recommend to all who want to improve.

 

  I guess on this one they failed to convince me they had any expertise in regards to Stock, which is why i pretty much dismissed it. 

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2 hours ago, Brian Yarvin said:

I've sat down with a knowledgeable person for a portfolio review...

 

The trick is finding someone knowledgeable.    

 

I suspect that the best portfolio reviews would be from long experienced photo editors. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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11 hours ago, meanderingemu said:

 

  I guess on this one they failed to convince me they had any expertise in regards to Stock, which is why i pretty much dismissed it. 

 

Three photographers getting portfolio reviews is a tiny drop in the Alamy's photographers pool.

 

The cost for a portfolio review otherwise is 40 pounds.  Membership is almost 100 pounds and includes a free portfolio review annually.   And that organization is strongly UK focused.  

 

One of Alamy's partner in Mexico has different styles of photos for Latin America than what's common from the Anglo Saxon eyes.  If I'm trying to see people instead of "locals," I need to be following what people here are doing, and that's over on Facebook, should I decide to rejoin that. 

 

 

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