Events with Richard Bleil
Today was interesting. I saw a bunch of six, seven, and eight year old’s beating each other up. And I saw an uninvited guest in my yard. And I shot them all.
Okay, clearly, I don’t mean with guns, so what could I be talking about if not photography? The guest in my yard was, as it turns out, was a ground hog. A rather large, and extremely quick ground hog. I’ve seen him/her before, but never did he let me photograph him. S/he lives under the ramp to my back door as far as I can tell. I have been putting peanuts out for her/him and keep moving them out a bit in the hopes of getting Jerri (as I have been calling him/her as I’m not sure of the gender) out in the middle of the yard so I can take dirty pics.
Today, as it turns out, s/he was nibbling on the leaves of a bushy weed. I’m not sure if s/he saw me or not, but s/he didn’t run away. So, quietly, slowly, I grabbed my new phone, and snapped off half a dozen pictures. Of course, I shared them on my social media page.
I was also asked to do my first photography gig. The request came earlier in the week, but the event was today. If you don’t mind me doing a bit of opining, the even was a self-defense course for children (yes, roughly six through eight, but that’s a guess). The idea is to teach kids to protect themselves from people on the internet, that try to get them into cars, and how to protect their private information. I will never understand the people that make this kind of training necessary, and the harshest punishment is not harsh enough for them. Today’s class was escaping. They kids learned how to break out from duct tape, zip ties, trunks, and so forth. And I was asked to photograph the class.
Yeah, there’s nothing like ten kids escaping from trunks and zip ties. All I did was push the shudder button and even I was exhausted.
My understanding is that, in photography, the photographer owns the rights to the photos that they take. They will, as I understand it, charge a small fee for their time but then will provide the photos (often with “watermarks”) to the client, the idea being to get their interest. However, if the client wants to use any of the photos, they then have to buy the license for the photograph rights. If the photos are “thumbnails” or watermarked, these rights purchases will include higher quality photos, or removal of the watermarks. My friend took her own photos to a photography store to make prints of her photos but couldn’t convince them that she actually took the photos, and therefore owned the rights. My camera allows for (and I have set it to do so) putting copyright and contact information in the meta-data for the photos. I’m thinking of charging my friend for the license to use some of them. It would be a token fee, actually, just so I can claim myself to be a professional photographer. I’m not exactly sure, but I’m thinking about charging her as much as ten dollars for all of the photos.
Before going, I printed a bunch of photography business cards. Now that I’ve had a gig, I’m debating leasing space for a studio and going into the photography business. The biggest problem with this, though, is that there are currently so many people trying a photography business. I have multiple friends who have or have had photography businesses. I guess the advantage for me is that I don’t need it for survival, so any income I can get from it would be fine. Well, unless I leased a place in which case I would need to make enough money to cover the lease.
Either way, it’s fun. Parents of these kids will get pictures from today, which may drum up some more business. I also have a ren fair coming up, and I will be taking photos there on my breaks. And yet, I’m still humbled.
Even with the great day of photography that I had today, my friend posted several nature photos today, reminding me of her skills. She took pictures of birds in her own yard, and I kid you not; they deserve to be in a nature photography contest. A few years ago, she took a picture of a buffalo that, frankly, was one of the most moving photos I’ve ever seen. If she published a book of her work, I would buy a case of them. But, I can learn, I guess.