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Whether you're a photo enthusiast or a working professional, it's important to have a "compass point." So says David Hobby, publisher of the popular Strobist.com blog and a former staff photographer for the Baltimore Sun.
A compass point is a set of guidelines aimed at helping you arrive at the intersection of your personal interests and your business goals. In this course, David talks about his experiences running a photography business that's rooted in photojournalism and the community where he lives. The course combines honest advice and practical techniques from a photographer with firsthand experience setting up a successful business.
As an extra bonus, each movie in the course is lit in a different way, and David shares his lighting techniques for each one.
All right, let's go back to our analogy of traveling. We've got a destination, the compass point. Now we need a vehicle to get there. For twenty years, I had probably the best vehicle that you could have in this area, which was the position as a staff photographer for either the Howard County Times or The Baltimore Sun. I could walk into any business, any interesting place, the county fair, anywhere and say, my name is David Hobi. I'm a photographer for with The Baltimore Sun. And I, had been thinking of doing a story on this place, and the doors just opened. Most of the time, actually, the vast majority of the time.
Now, I didn't have that anymore, so I needed to make that. I needed to make a license to be curious, which is just the coolest thing to have in the world, as a photographer. So I created a website called Howard County 360, or HoCo360 for short. It's a blog. It's a photo-centric blog that is essentially one or more large pictures and an extended caption. And a HoCo360 port is actually kind of interesting because I spend a lot of time coming up with a name just as I did for Strovist. It's 17 characters long. It's combination of a word mash-up and a number, which meant it was easy to get the dot com.
It was easy to get the the Flickr name. It was easy to get the Twitter name. It's nice and short for Twitter, so, you can be re-tweeted. It only costs 14 characters to be re-tweeted, so if my posts are 126 characters long or less, people can, can just add RT A Hoco360.com, and re-tweet what I just said, which is a big barrier if, If your name is very long frankly. When I was coming up with the name Strovist, I carried around a sheet of paper in my pocket for, I know a month, with maybe 30 different names.
What I liked, what I didn't like, and I slowly narrowed it down to three or four, and from there I chose Strovist. And that was a very fortunate decision because as a new word. That search has now pointed back to me. literally million sites on the site, on the web register when you typed in Strovist. And, that's something I actually have trademark. so that word is very powerful, so I knew I wanted to create a new word as a name for my site. And I wanted it to point back to me. very very big deal. By having hoco360.com redirect to blogger, my hosting, which is owned by Google, I had the best of both worlds.
I had the dot.com, seven letters. And I had Google as a, as sort of a technological partner. They're not going away. They have a gazillion dollars in cash. And the smartest people in the world working in Mountain View, California. So I feel very comfortable being again in the blogger neighborhood. And I'll continue to be there. And any new site I would start out would be there. But for you things may be different obviously you may want to choose a stand alone site, you may want to choose more of a magazine kind of of a, a look, but the important thing is to consider your compass point. Again, that's going to dictate what you're going to do, it's going to dictate why you want to shoot those pictures, what you want the pictures to accomplish, and that will point you towards the right, the right solutions.
And for me, that solution was to create the licence to be curious. I wanted that licence within my coverage area and now I have it.
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