Greetings from overseas! I am in Vietnam and will be back in LA next week. In the meantime, here are the answers to last week’s Q&A on Facebook.
1. Sheila C.: What is the most essential thing that motivates you to pursue photography?
Loving it! I feel REALLY lucky that I have the opportunity to do what I love.
2. Jayce A.: I’m getting married in Manila in November so I started to look for photographers there. I encountered some wedding photographers that don’t shoot RAW. Should I still consider them or I demand for it?
If you look at their final images and like what you see, I would still consider them. Photographers have different preferences and I don’t think it should matter how they shoot. One of my favorite photographers Hilary Maybery shoots in jpg and the quality of her work is fantastic! I would totally hire her for my wedding.
3. Jamie G.: Where is your favorite place in Los Angeles to hike and why? Where is your favorite place in the world to hike and why?
Griffith Park Observatory is my favorite place in LA, as well as in the WORLD to hike! The trails are wide, it is the perfect mix of city vs. nature, and my dog can come with me! She loves it too.
4. Mawiyah J.: How do you recommend handling bad weather? Cancel or find an indoor locale?
Most of the time I still shoot and improvise. I love to improvise! I think rain actually makes for great photos. One time I had a scheduled engagement session in Marin and it was storming that day. I asked my couple what they wanted to do and they said, “Let’s go for it.” The photos turned out super cute, and it was one of the most memorable days of our lives, right Mona & Leo?! :)
5. Lagrima L.: What kind of situations do you recommend photographing for practice? I like to photograph family events (mine) for practice, but I still feel very blah.
I recommend any situation that you are not familiar or comfortable with. It pushes you to get out of your comfort zone, and that is when you grow!
6. Hicham C.: I’m from Morocco and I would like ask what is your most used lens, and what do you prefer – Photoshop or Lightroom?
50mm f/1.2 is my most used lens (I love it!). I prefer using Lightroom, but will occasionally open a photo in Photoshop if I think it needs more work.
7. Brittany A.: What’s your opinion on photoshoot collaborations (excluding the typical two photographers shooting at a wedding) where you have two photographers working together? Any tips on how you would work in that situation or just your view of it in general for two photographers to both be shooting and creating the shoot?
I think it can be great to collaborate if the other photographer’s style is similar to yours. That way you are more likely to be inspired and fired up about their suggestions instead of feeling like you have to compromise and do something different. You want to feel proud of the work you put out there. From my experience with shoots like this, even though it is a collaboration, one photographer usually becomes the dominant. Maybe I say that because I am a control freak. Haha. I personally like to have full creative control, or none of it.
8. Tai S.: When you came into this field did people ask you to do it for free, and if you quoted a price they would say “Let me check with my family etc.”?
Sometimes people still ask me to shoot a job for free! When they do, I send them my price list and then you’re right, they usually say something along the lines of “Let me check with so-and-so…” and then they come back with, “It’s not in our budget.” I kind of assume that’s going to be the answer if they are asking someone to work for free!
9. Grace K.: Where did you buy your coconuts for your workshop last week? I must have it again!!
Haha. Whole Foods. Thanks for coming, Grace! I was so happy you were able to attend!
10. Angana B.: Would you ever come to India and shoot an Indian wedding? You have a big fan following here and we would have love to have you!
India is on my list of places to travel (hopefully this year)! I have never been so the answer is a big fat YES. Keep me posted on the wedding, and thanks for following! ;)