Dear friend, If you want to earn money through your photography, and have really considered to yourself: “Should I earn money through my photography?” I hope this is some advice that can help you. It has helped me— it is only advice I wish someone told me. And of course, your mileage may vary.
A lot of photographers want to make money with their photography. But a better question should be this: “Should I make money with my photography?” In this article I want to share some of my personal experiences— whether monetizing your passion will lead you to hate photography, or whether it will empower you.
Dear friend, I’m currently at Dripp coffee shop in Fullerton, California— waiting for Cindy’s younger sister Jennifer to get out of class, then we are going to have “in and out” burger for lunch. Today is our last day in America before we move to Vietnam/France for the next 2 years, and I think this… Read more about Hanoi Diary #1: Leaving to Vietnam/France for 2 Years
No matter who you are, you probably love being creative. Many of us pick up photography to escape the dread of our day jobs. However the issue is that many of us become less creative as we get older. How do we stay creative and retain that child-like curiosity when we were younger?
Walter Margerison is one of my closest homies in Berkeley. Not only did he get his start in “street photography” via inspiration by skating, he is also passionate about coffee. In his office at Artis Coffee in Berkeley, we chat about his love of film, his thoughts on the Fujifilm X-Pro 2 and Ricoh GR… Read more about Shoot More, Worry Less: Interview with Walter Margerison
For me, I see myself less of a photographer and more of a teacher. My passion has always to empower other people. Being an extrovert, it brings me the most joy to see others fulfill their potential. Do you have what it takes to become a photography teacher? I will share some of my ideas… Read more about How to Become a Photography Teacher
I’m about to move to Vietnam for the next 1.5 years, and France for 6 months— and I’ve been thinking about what to bring and what not to bring for my trip. I know in my heart that I don’t need much, I can pack light, and be happy. But still— there is that gnawing… Read more about Overcoming The Fear of “What If?”
Here are some student photos from my “Discover Your Unique Voice in Street Photography” workshop in Downtown LA. Each student worked on a small mini-project for the weekend, working on honing their individual style and voice. In this post are my personal favorite individual images from them. See all the images below, and if you… Read more about Student Photos: Downtown LA Discover Your Unique Voice in Street Photography Workshop 2016
I recently had the great pleasure of shooting fashion photography for the first time with Suede Brooks (model), fellow photographer Bil Brown (he arranged it all), as well with stylist (Shaina Feldman), beauty (Elaina Karras-Jircitano), and Cindy (creative director, and lighting assistant). I’ve been interested in shooting fashion for a while now— especially when I… Read more about 7 Lessons I’ve Learned Shooting Fashion Photography For the First Time
A few weeks ago, I did one of my popular “Conquer Your Fears of Shooting Street Photography” workshops. I am incredibly proud of all the students’ best photos from the workshop. We worked hard to push ourselves outside of our comfort zones, approach strangers, all while trying to capture “decisive moments.” See all of their… Read more about Student Photos: LA Conquer Your Fear Workshop 2016
(Editor’s Note: Eric interviews Ola Billmont about his process, experiences, and lessons learned in making his new book A Day At The Races. All photos by Ola Billmont) Eric: Hey Ola, long time no chat. Tell us what is going on for you in terms of your photography, and congratulations on your new book! Ola: Thanks, Eric.… Read more about How Ola Billmont Spends His Day at the Races: Interview by Eric Kim
Dear friend, I am excited to share my new book with you: “The Personal Photography Manual.” If you’ve ever wanted to find more meaning, purpose, and direction in your photography, I recommend you to pursue “personal photography.” What exactly is “personal photography”? To me, it is a genre of photography that focuses on yourself— focuses on… Read more about The Personal Photography Manual
If you love cameras and can’t stop buying them (for the sake of it) I hope you enjoy this video on how to cure our illness. Often we think that our cameras aren’t good enough– but it is ourselves which is the problem. No matter how good our cameras are, they will never be “good… Read more about How to Cure Yourself of G.A.S. (Gear Acquisition Syndrome)
When I’m out shooting in the streets, I’m not sure what will make a good photograph. However, I know what I am afraid of.
Dear friends, if I haven’t told you yet– I’m moving abroad for the next 2 years. For 1.5 years, I’ll be in Vietnam (8 months in Hanoi, then 6 months in Saigon). After, 6 months in France (3 months in Paris, and 3 months in Marseille). Figuring out what to pack for 2 years abroad… Read more about What’s in My Bag: Moving to Vietnam/France For 2 Years!
One of my friends asked me: “Eric, what should I do if I’ve totally lost my passion or inspiration for photography” This is what I would tell him:
What is your “style” in street photography? How can you make your work stand out? What makes your photos unique, and what do your photos say about you?
There is a sea of photographers out there. How do you distinguish yourself from the mass of other photographers?
“The Decisive Moment” — a fabled concept introduced by the founder of street photography (Henri Cartier-Bresson). The “decisive moment” is that beautiful fleeting moment– where all the compositional elements come together, and you only have a split second to capture the moment. How can you better capture the “decisive moment” — or better yet, identify… Read more about 7 Tips How to Capture “The Decisive Moment” in Street Photography
Dear friends, Cindy and I would love to share with you our creative project we have been working on for the past two years. We call it ‘Haptic Industries.’ Part labor of love, part creative tsyxploration, Cindy and I have shared ideas and workshopped projects over many cups of coffee. Our dream for Haptic Industries… Read more about Introducing Haptic Industries
If you’re like me, you might have a hard time staying inspired in your photography. Here are 7 tips which have personally helped me:
The photographers I admire the most are the ones who are able to combine their outside interests to make their photography their own. I first met Bil Brown on Instagram, and since them have collaborated with him in sharing ideas about street photography, fashion, poetry, and Japanese aesthetics. Bil started off as a poet, discovered… Read more about Interview with Bil Brown: Street and Fashion Photographer
I recently did a workshop at the studio of my friend Bil Brown, and was blown away with his awesome collection of Japanese photo-books. He re-sparked my interest in Shomei Tomatsu. I’ve seen many images of Shomei Tomatsu before, and was intrigued by his mysterious, surrealistic, and extreme compositions. His photographs had a sense of… Read more about 5 Lessons Shomei Tomatsu Has Taught Me About Photography
Trust; human civilizations have survived for millennia with it. Societies without trust have disintegrated. Trust is the glue which holds humankind together. How can you use trust to help you succeed as a photographer?
Nobuyoshi Araki (more commonly known as Araki) is one of the most controversial figures in the photography world. While he is a rock star and a superhero in Japan, a lot of the outside world sees his work as sick, pornographic, and misogynist. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Warning: Photos are NSFW.
Dear streettogs, lately I’ve been inspired to take things “back to basics”. Often I take photography too seriously and forget the importance of always staying a beginner, and sticking to fundamentals. Consider this an opportunity for me to share some practical tips I’ve leaned over the last 10 years in terms of what I think… Read more about 7 Tips How to Make a Great Street Photograph
Hey streettogs, if you want to learn some practical tips and techniques when shooting on the streets, check out the video above, or read more to see all 15 tips:
Another quick video on how I direct my subject when shooting street portraits. You can see the first version: How to Direct Your Subject for a Street Portrait.
In this video, you can see how I interact with my subject and direct them for a street portrait. You can see how I asked my subject to stand behind a clean background, how I started further, and then started to frame closer. I also tried to get my subject to be more interactive by… Read more about How to Direct Your Subject for a Street Portrait
I often do a poll during my workshops: “Raise your hand if you don’t like having your own photo being taken.” Usually more than half of my students raise their hands.
Hey streettogs, my good friend Todd Hatakeyama just put together this cool behind-the-scenes video of the past “Conquer Your Fear of Shooting Street Photography Workshop” in Downtown LA. Check me and the students having fun on the streets, and how I direct some of my subjects when shooting “street portraits.” If you want to take… Read more about Conquer Your Fears and Meet New Peers
It is hard to know what makes a “good” photograph, but it is easy to know what makes an intimate photograph.
Dear friend, I wanted to write you this letter about the importance of staying fresh creatively by taking a break from your photography, not forcing you to take photos everyday against your own will.