The Photography Community
As a beginner, I came into the photography industry with little experience behind the camera. I’ve been in the creative field for almost 15+ years professionally but no photography experience that I could leverage from the start.
I relied on joining photography Facebook groups and asking questions to people on Instagram about what lens or camera they were using. I trolled the comments sections hoping the photographer had given some sort of details on his process. 2.5 years later, I am thankful for the community around me for their help.
I enjoy asking and answering questions on social media. It reminds me of how I started. I’ve also become a huge fan of different photographers simply because they would answer my questions along the way. How many of you have been guilty of sending a DM to a photographer over social media just to tell them how much they inspire you?
The community is so much bigger than social media, even though it makes up a huge presence. Youtube is also becoming a popular platform for photographers that choose to showcase their behind the scenes shots or editing techniques.
Not Everyone is a Photographer in this creative community
To me, the photography community is so much more than individual photographers. It is made up of content creators and people who have a passion for this industry. I have met models, make-up artists, stylists, bloggers, and so any more. I consider them all a part of the community because they actively take part in many of my collaborations. Even if I am the one who initiates the project, I love getting input from other people along the way.
Feedback and Encouragement
I knew I wanted feedback on my work, and Facebook was the perfect place to ask. I am apart of countless photography groups just itching with people who give you instant feedback on your work. Some were very negative but the majority was encouraging and very constructive. I have since started to give my own feedback to people looking to get better at their own work and techniques.
Dealing with criticism
Yes, I know I am a beginner, but that does not stop me from giving my opinion on work when asked. I know some photographers who are quick to tell someone that their work sucks and that they will never “get it”. This type of criticism exists in all areas of the creative community and photography is no different. Handling rejection of your photography is something you will need to become familar with because you can’t please everyone. Just remember the only opinion that should matter is your own. Nobody else should affect how you create the art that you love.
How to join the community
The best way to join the creative community is to become a part of the conversation. Again, social media allows for connecting with people and professionals all over the world. Start a profile and join a few local or national photography groups. Give your feedback to others when they are looking for new ideas or general comments on their work. Hopefully, they will return the favor and give you the same feedback when you’re ready to post your work.
Become a part of the conversation
Encourage the people who have come before you and lift up the people who will come after you. The better the engagement in the community, the more ideas that can be shared and the greater the outcome will be.