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Thread: Volunteer photography?

  1. #21
    Deregistered allenleonhart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by ed9119 View Post
    I've heard of some new photo businesses who play on the 'Everybody Happy' angle and have a scheme offering ONE 'prize' for an outing shoot competition while collecting everyone's best images for the event organizer's benefit ..... and still getting paid by the organizer .... win-win situation for everyone it seems ...
    haha... i know this company i think. i don't like the way they operate.

  2. #22

    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by ed9119 View Post
    I've heard of some new photo businesses who play on the 'Everybody Happy' angle and have a scheme offering ONE 'prize' for an outing shoot competition while collecting everyone's best images for the event organizer's benefit ..... and still getting paid by the organizer .... win-win situation for everyone it seems ...
    Quote Originally Posted by allenleonhart View Post
    haha... i know this company i think. i don't like the way they operate.
    Ohhh, its the ONE, submit WANT get ONE. If you are not the ONE, are you the chingaylilerli ONE

  3. #23
    Senior Member G-man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by telefax

    Ohhh, its the ONE, submit WANT get ONE. If you are not the ONE, are you the chingaylilerli ONE
    And for those of us whose first language is English you are trying to say.....?

  4. #24

    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Hi, thanks all who took the time to share their views and opinion on the topic, and I really appreciate that.

    I wish to clarify some misunderstandings first about myself and why I wished to volunteer:

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    before you going around offering your services, for free or for a sum of money, are you competent enough on your photography skills? capable to provide decent results to whoever engaging you for your services?

    if you are not, please spend more time to go shoot sunrise sunrise, firework, zoo, botanic garden, Chinatown, little India, street parade, National Parade, family and friends gathering,

    don't be fool if your friends say you can go and make some money with your photography, they know noting better than you, and they don't have to be responsible if you ban on the wall if you are not ready.
    Some of my photos can be found here:

    Flickr: P.GS' Photostream

    I may not have the experience or equipment, nor are these photos of professional grade, but I believe these are of decent quality. And if I may say again, I'm not doing this for financial gains.


    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    if you want to volunteer your services for a good cause, you should approach the charity organizations which you like to help,
    not sit here and wait for people to come and look for you.

    it is the same when you are shoot for money, you don't sit here and wait for customers/clients to come and look for you, go out and find them,
    you will face rejection, you will encounter the assignment is too big for you to handle, you encounter people very unreasonable or very demanding, so why don't start now and face the reality?
    I'm not sitting around and doing nothing. By starting this thread, I wish to show respect and consideration to those who earn their ricebowl from photography, by first asking for opinions whether I would affect the market in any negative sense. I believe me as an individual will not make much of an impact on the market as a whole, plus my photography skills are not of most full time photographers. However, once such free services become available, will people will start to look for or even demand free or cheaper photography services, especially people who just want photos of slightly better quality than their P&S? Maybe not those big commercial companies, but blog shops/young couples marrying or event organizers striving to cut cost? Plus with many people now owning DSLRs, it is impossible to stop them from accepting lower paying or even free shoots just to earn that extra $ or "build portfoilo". I believe these people will adversely affect the market in the long run, and I hope to not spoil it further thus these questions before I embark on such ventures.

    On the other hand, as some had pointed out, people looking for pro quality photos are often willing and able to hire those established photographers. Hence, by doing free volunteer photography, this will not affect the market in a sense. If so, what happens to those clients who are looking for pro quality photos but are unwilling/unable to spend that much money? And how do we differentiate between unwilling and unable?

    I used to shoot for my JC back when I was a student, and I quite missed the exhilaration and feeling of shooting events/sport after so long of not shooting it while in the army. Also, I thought of applying for being a 2nd photographer for weddings or events, but due to my inability to commit for a long period of time (uni starts in Aug) plus of my relative inexperience and lack of portfoilo, I was not shortlisted. This is one of the reasons why I decided to volunteer, as I just want to find the joy in shooting again, and to contribute back to the society as well.

    I hope I did not come across as too defensive in my above statements. Also bro catchlights, I thank you for your time and insights.

  5. #25
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    I share my experience. My dad is active in some clan activities. There was one time I went to take my dad in a performance. Then my dad casually ask me to take photo for the group. I did not handle the stage lighting well and came in for some criticism. Next time, I understand from my dad the clan engage pro in their next event.

    2 lessons learnt.

    Don't offer to help even out of convenience. If you get paid and fare badly, you deserved to be criticized. But some people just like to make nasty remarks.

    Every organisation should have operating budget for their events. It is just whether they choose to allocate budget for a photographer.

    While it is your personal choice to want to offer your service for free. There are perhaps other way to achieve the same objectives, such as charging and then donating the amount earned back in your name. At least there are acknowledgement rather than offering a service that will be taken for granted.

    My 2 cents.
    Last edited by ManWearPants; 18th March 2013 at 11:05 PM.

  6. #26
    Senior Member G-man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ManWearPants
    I share my experience. My dad is active in some clan activities. There was one time I went to take my dad in a performance. Then my dad casually ask me to take photo for the group. I did not handle the stage lighting well and came in for some criticism. Next time, I understand from my dad the clan engage pro in their next event.

    2 lessons learnt.

    Don't offer to help even out of convenience. If you get paid and fare badly, you deserved to be criticized. But some people just like to make nasty remarks.

    Every organisation should have operating budget for their events. It is just whether they choose to allocate budget for a photographer.

    While it is your personal choice to want to offer your service for free. There are perhaps other way to achieve the same objectives, such as charging and then donating the amount earned back in your name.

    My 2 cents.
    Wah quite nasty of them ah?

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by G-man View Post

    Wah quite nasty of them ah?
    It is understandable.People have expectations.

  8. #28

    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by ManWearPants View Post
    I share my experience. My dad is active in some clan activities. There was one time I went to take my dad in a performance. Then my dad casually ask me to take photo for the group. I did not handle the stage lighting well and came in for some criticism. Next time, I understand from my dad the clan engage pro in their next event.

    2 lessons learnt.

    Don't offer to help even out of convenience. If you get paid and fare badly, you deserved to be criticized. But some people just like to make nasty remarks.

    Every organisation should have operating budget for their events. It is just whether they choose to allocate budget for a photographer.

    While it is your personal choice to want to offer your service for free. There are perhaps other way to achieve the same objectives, such as charging and then donating the amount earned back in your name. At least there are acknowledgement rather than offering a service that will be taken for granted.

    My 2 cents.
    wow thanks for sharing your experience. What you said about the donation thing is a good idea.

  9. #29

    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by Acolyte View Post
    Also, I thought of applying for being a 2nd photographer for weddings or events, but due to my inability to commit for a long period of time (uni starts in Aug) plus of my relative inexperience and lack of portfoilo, I was not shortlisted. This is one of the reasons why I decided to volunteer, as I just want to find the joy in shooting again, and to contribute back to the society as well.
    Interesting fact for anyone interested: Pro studios and established photography houses selects new photographers based on what kind of value you can bring them. Lack of experience and portfolio is a minor thing if they can see potential. But one thing for sure is they will not select anyone who will behave to the detrimental of their business. Giving away free work, happens to be one of the top of the list.

    Quote Originally Posted by Acolyte View Post
    I believe me as an individual will not make much of an impact on the market as a whole, plus my photography skills are not of most full time photographers.
    I believe me as an individual littering on the floor will not make much of an impact on the environment as a whole, plus my rubbish is only a small piece and cannot be compared those of a rubbish truck. Of course everyone else won't have the same mindset. So its perfectly ok.

    Quote Originally Posted by Acolyte View Post
    Maybe not those big commercial companies, but blog shops/young couples marrying or event organizers striving to cut cost?
    In local context, there are already well established market segments to cater to all levels of budget, from $15 to $15000 a shoot or more. By doing free, it means those trying hard to earn a little bit of money, may also lost those chances. Those budget photographers already very siong already, please don't make their lives harder.

    So its up to you. Obviously you already made up your mind before you started this thread. Are you looking for validations on your decision or are you genuinely listening to opinions?

    Volunteering is a well abused activity.

  10. #30

    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by ManWearPants View Post
    It is understandable.People have expectations.
    Big camera + Big flash = Big expectation

    If I need to shoot for free, I will show up with the smallest compact camera
    I eats, shoots & leaves

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yutaka Go

    Big camera + Big flash = Big expectation

    If I need to shoot for free, I will show up with the smallest compact camera
    Even though for free jobs, no one will pick you, nowadays have to list equipment used..lol

  12. #32
    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    I just have one thing to advise ...... STAY ENCOURAGED !!!

    You just do what you think is best . I mean, these are life lessons that talk cannot teach. You'll end up with better understanding and ideas and why some people have said 'GO for it !" and others have warned "Be VERY CAREFUL !" each view is in your best interest

    Nobody is regulating this so its the law of the jungle and evolution that will determine how all this will pan out for newbies, hobbyists and professionals.

    good wishes

    Quote Originally Posted by Acolyte View Post
    Hi, thanks all who took the time to share their views and opinion on the topic, and I really appreciate that.

    I wish to clarify some misunderstandings first about myself and why I wished to volunteer:



    Some of my photos can be found here:

    Flickr: P.GS' Photostream

    I may not have the experience or equipment, nor are these photos of professional grade, but I believe these are of decent quality. And if I may say again, I'm not doing this for financial gains.




    I'm not sitting around and doing nothing. By starting this thread, I wish to show respect and consideration to those who earn their ricebowl from photography, by first asking for opinions whether I would affect the market in any negative sense. I believe me as an individual will not make much of an impact on the market as a whole, plus my photography skills are not of most full time photographers. However, once such free services become available, will people will start to look for or even demand free or cheaper photography services, especially people who just want photos of slightly better quality than their P&S? Maybe not those big commercial companies, but blog shops/young couples marrying or event organizers striving to cut cost? Plus with many people now owning DSLRs, it is impossible to stop them from accepting lower paying or even free shoots just to earn that extra $ or "build portfoilo". I believe these people will adversely affect the market in the long run, and I hope to not spoil it further thus these questions before I embark on such ventures.

    On the other hand, as some had pointed out, people looking for pro quality photos are often willing and able to hire those established photographers. Hence, by doing free volunteer photography, this will not affect the market in a sense. If so, what happens to those clients who are looking for pro quality photos but are unwilling/unable to spend that much money? And how do we differentiate between unwilling and unable?

    I used to shoot for my JC back when I was a student, and I quite missed the exhilaration and feeling of shooting events/sport after so long of not shooting it while in the army. Also, I thought of applying for being a 2nd photographer for weddings or events, but due to my inability to commit for a long period of time (uni starts in Aug) plus of my relative inexperience and lack of portfoilo, I was not shortlisted. This is one of the reasons why I decided to volunteer, as I just want to find the joy in shooting again, and to contribute back to the society as well.

    I hope I did not come across as too defensive in my above statements. Also bro catchlights, I thank you for your time and insights.
    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

  13. #33
    Senior Member Anson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by saberlancer View Post
    Even though for free jobs, no one will pick you, nowadays have to list equipment used..lol
    I remember a couple of years back I did an event for an organisation, on the same event I met my ex-client (who is the venue owner) his photographer didn't turn up at the last min. So he ask if I could borrow my backup camera so that he could take photos of the event himself, out of good will I loan him backup and my with a 580EX2 and a couple of my backup lenses. He was like WOW, a "single digit" DSLR, it must take GREAT photos.

    After the whole event, after he review the photos he taken he called me... "Anson can you share some of the photos you taken at the event with me, please.. ".


    Nowadays I freq see people too concern about what the equipment is the pg using... granted having better equipment does make your work easier. However to me "The equipment is only as good as it's wielder"
    Last edited by Anson; 19th March 2013 at 11:06 AM.

  14. #34

    Default Re: Volunteer photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by saberlancer View Post
    Even though for free jobs, no one will pick you, nowadays have to list equipment used..lol

    If they think my good photos are due to my gears and not my skills.

    Then they should go to buy the "good" camera and shoot themselves.

    That will stop the "shoot for free" photographer harassment
    I eats, shoots & leaves

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yutaka Go

    If they think my good photos are due to my gears and not my skills.

    Then they should go to buy the "good" camera and shoot themselves.

    That will stop the "shoot for free" photographer harassment
    Well theres no need for them to buy, already many willing pg with big cams.

    Even if u shoot better than them with a compact is a different matter, cant have a PHOTOGRAPHER at their event running ard with a compact.. not glam lol

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