The Fedora'd Photographer

           I  have been looking at a lot of profile pictures on social networks lately. Don't ask, it's one of those things that I get obsessed about on occasion. One thing that stood out in my mind was how poorly shot a lot of them were. I know most people use the whatever picture they have on hand taken by friends or by themselves where possible. Is that the best way to put yourself out there?

As I was pondering this question I ran across a post on Google + about a person that had just changed their profile picture. In the post the person mentioned that his profile picture was his brand. It was how he was presenting himself to the world and how he wanted people to perceive him. He was changing his picture because his circumstances and position had changed.

Think about the reason behind his profile photo. It was his brand. Most professionals or people involved in business understand this, to a point. How about the rest of us? How do you put your best face forward? I know it's hard to get a good profile picture of yourself, trust me I know from personal experience. Many of us have tried the at arm length shot, the cellphone mirror self portrait, bad flash, and so on. I am guilty of these myself.

So how do we overcome these limitations? The first part is the hardest part. You must become comfortable with having your picture being taken. How often have you pointed your camera at anyone and immediately the hand goes up in front of the face with the statement, "I don't take good pictures." Meaning the person you are photographing thinks they aren't photogenic. I have heard this more often then not, especially before I picked up photography seriously. In some cases they are partially right. Blame the camera, or blame the amateur photographer. You have to also put to rest the "I take bad pictures" argument as well. Once people start relaxing around a camera they take great pictures. A tense body and tense face show poorly in profile pictures. On the other side, a too relaxed person isn't the best subject for a profile picture either. Learn to be comfortable with having a picture being taken.

One thing to do to prepare yourself for the proper profile shot is to look at others. Try to look for the professional looking ones. It's not just about the pose and look it's also about backgrounds. Most will have either a professional background relating to their brand or a neutral background. The good ones will have a less busy or distracting background and it will be separate from the person. Remember the focus has to be on you the person.

Their are many other tips and pointers I could get into. The main thing though is that your profile picture is your brand. How do you want to be seen and remembered by people researching your profile?
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Here I have in my grubby mitts a package for some good friends of mine. Last September I set up a family portrait session for them. This was to be my Christmas gift for them. I took several pictures in different light, from natural to flash, from sun lite to shady. I took the best ones and processed them then sent them off to the printer.

Christmas comes and goes and no pictures. I apologized to my friends about the delay and they said, "No worries". In the meantime I gave them the digital copies to share with friends an family on the internet.

So, a couple weeks ago I was picking up some other prints for my show, and low and behold the printer starts pulling out all these other prints that I have been waiting for. Including a gallery canvas wrap. Apparently there was a break down in communications and I didn't get the notification they were in.

So the only words I can describe the looks are AWESOME. I can't wait till I deliver the pictures to them and see their reaction. A printed picture is so much more then a digital image.

Here's the images I had selected for printing:






And one final word. If at all possible, always include the family pet. They are part of the whole dynamic of the families life as well.


Can't wait to see their reactions when they get the printed pictures. It will have been worth the wait.
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Things have been busy over all. I recently participated in a show back in mid November as a part of the Toronto Photo Walks group. This week I will be participating in my second show curated by Mari Projects entitled "Balloons". Opening night is this Friday, March 1 and will run until March 31 at Playful Grounds at 605 College st Toronto.

Start time is 8pm and will cost $10 at the door. A balloon is asked for but not necessary. There will be music, jazz, and performances. Come out and see what is happening. If you can't make it out for opening night drop by and check out the works.

I have three pieces in the show this time. It's a start of things to come.

You can get some details at the Mari Project site, and full details on Flickr.

Hope to see you out there.
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Welcome to Phase 2 of Walking with a Camera, The Fedora’d Photographer.

Walking with a Camera has been such a great blogging journey for me , however it is now time to compliment the Oxfords with a Fedora.

I am launching my new web site, The Fedora’d Photographer , in con-junction with my current blog Walking with a Camera.

This web site is so that my photographic footprint can be viewed by people who wish to have their personal and life changing events in life documented.

The Fedora’d Photographer is not a site of interactive communication like my blog. It is a site of completed projects , a Port Folio of events that I have been hired to shoot for.

Thank you for visiting my new web site and I hope you enjoy the photos as much I have enjoyed shooting.

Phil Edmondson, The Fedora’d Photographer
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