One of the highlights in 2017 was definitely the 2-days workshop – The Wedding Story, held in June, through the platform of Nikon School Singapore. Together with another experienced photographer Cole Kor who masters different kind of skills and strengths, we had the opportunity sharing what we know and our passion in photography with 19 participants. We’re very thankful to have the trust and interest of our participants and Nikon School in making the two days a fruitful sharing journey to all.
In the two days, i tried to explain the ways i have certain visions in different situations and how i combine ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ skills together in photoshoot. Nowadays, technology advances in unprecedented speed: we can and will get better and lighter cameras or equipments. So it is important to have some soft skills that cannot be replaced by technology — human touch and personal attitude. It’s probably fair to say that you need to guide the souls of the muses that you photograph, in order to have works that make resonance to the souls of your audiences. If the viewers pause for a few seconds by looking at your photo, you are probably nearer to creating an artwork that connects with viewers. And so, keep working on it, harder.
Although Cole and i talked quite a bit on how we see and create, we also encouraged the participants to listen to their inner voice, know their core, find their own strengths and characters. It’s about ‘way finding’. There is no point to drop your full time job for photography if you are lost with yourself and even more in a wedding industry that is heavily driven by ‘trends’ and money. Because, trends come, and go. If you stay true to yourself, you will walk further, and happier. And to top up on this, i like how Cole told the group: “don’t fix yourself in just a specific style, because you are more than that.”
Here is one of my favourite quotes by Steve Jobs — “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever.” And all these, come from your inner self.
I also told the participants that i like to work in paradoxes and outside comfort zone. It can be the struggles / in having limitation on gears / in between getting a perfectionist’s shot or managing the muses’ comfort / in fulfilling an artist’s vision or clients’ wishes / etc. The process towards getting some of the works that you might be proud of might not be always be pleasant or comfortable from the start.
I taught the participants about investment too! Don’t get me wrong, i’m not good in finance! But i always believe in the right investment. Personally, i like to invest in good health and education, then only consider about gears or other stuffs. So, in photography, i would definitely first invest on good shoes / good pillows / good workshops (i have attended plenty good ones!). And do remember that living in moments and enjoy your life are so crucial to make yourself rich with ideas and feelings in the pursuit of photography.
Special thanks to the following:
Nikon School Singapore
Gown provider – Alisha & Lace Singapore
Makeup artist – D’Secret Professional Makeup & Hairdo
Models (real couples) – Adeline & Leon, Livia & Adrian, who went through bad weathers with us the big group.