what could be the best thing you hear about your work?

hey there! well, can you believe that i started writing another wednesday find feature, everything was almost ready, but you know the feeling of “this is not it… it’s about this i want to write today!” and then i just shifted the topic and ended up with this long question! so i want you to think your work and ask that same question:

what could be the best thing you hear about your work?

i’ll tell you my answer, well i have two answers actually (am i allowed to do that? as i started the topic, let’s admit that i am!)! one is listening to my clients say that they had a great time with me, they loved the photo session (this could apply right before the photo session and/or right after they see the results). that happened yesterday with the group of finish girls. they were three, two sisters and one cousin. they grew up together, they have traveled a lot, they are best friends with each other and they came to lisbon for a week and decided to book a photo session with me to celebrate. but the thing was one of them was not that comfortable with the whole photo thing. she usually didn’t like pictures being taken of her, so she was a bit nervous in the beginning. but then as we were taking a few pictures, laughing, talking about traveling and life in general, drinking some wine… she would say “i’m just so glad we did this! i’m loving this afternoon, i’m loving lisbon, i don’t want to go away and i would like to thank you for such a wonderful time!! i’m really loving this!” and that my friends is the reason why i do what i do…

and the other answer is when someone looks at my work and says that he/she could tell right away that that was my work. style, my friends! this is a huge conquest for all photographers, to find our own style. to find a style and to be recognized by it is a major thing. and even when we admire other people’s work, we may think “oh that is one beautiful image!” and yet, most of the times i know that if i had taken the very same picture, i would edit it differently. and i may be in love with that certain processing by that someone. but i found out this week that though i may find out how to process the images in a different way, even the way i have been admiring for so long, it’s just not me. i may like it, but i’m not sure i’d be comfortable with sharing that kind of new work.

i’ve been admiring some photographers i found recently on flickr! and flickr has been so amazing for my work… i started on flickr! i met wonderful and talented people, i developed skills by learning things on flickr and i just love the feeling of spending some time there. people usually complain that flickr is not keeping up with its rivals, that people are no longer spending that much time on the website, i don’t have the time to be on flickr like i used to, but even so, i make the effort of spending like half an hour per day or a lot more on the weekend, and the feeling is amazing. it’s like a window to the world, just photography for the pleasure of it, and the curiousity about other’s lives.

i’ve been admiring sarah abraham‘s work with film, i absolutely love this by lisa epp, this by kirstin mckee or the delicious food photography by sam. i have also shared my love for catherine giroux‘s gorgeous work on the blog… and if i look at all these, there is a common thread – light. it’s the use of such a low light that impresses me, keeping this comforting mood and beautiful colours. and yet, my work is known for the extreme use of light… almost a little overexposed. maybe it’s that difference that drives me towards these ladies work. so as i was saying this week i found this shop on etsy that sold some presets that matched this kind of processing and finally i would be able to understand it. i’m terrible at these things, as i always try my very best to find how to do something on my own (well, that’s how i came to a point where i get paid for taking pictures, designing websites and logos!) and i couldn’t figure out how to achieve that look. so i bought the presets, i understood how i could get there, i edited some images and then i felt like “ok, i’m done… it’s really nice, but this ain’t me!” and i want people to look at my work and keep saying “this is so you! i knew this was yours!” 

these images were edited with bailey film of sunday morning presets for lightroom by cara farnell with some minor adjustments and though i really like the feeling and the mood, i don’t feel it as this is the kind of work i would do. not that i won’t be using this any more, but i know that i probably won’t, unless i’m really looking for a shift at a certain day and for flickr purposes. it’s like editing and i like what i see, but then i try one of my very own presets and i feel like “ahh this is so much me!” but of course this doesn’t mean that my style will remain the same for years and years. we evolve as a person and as a professional, therefore change is expected and very welcome! in the end this is all about finding our own creative voice among all the others we admire and feel inspired by!

so my friends, tell me, what is your answer?


  1. I stopped going on flickr for ages, plus I got fed up with all the people with tumblrs who do not actually have anything to share making me a contact and re-posting my pictures. But now I’ve gone back, and I like it again!
    As for finding your style, I’m so happy you now recognise what it is you want from your images. It is a little different for me; as I shoot film and do no post-editing, I achieve the look I want by getting the light just right and paying careful attention to composition.
    I’m sure you will play around with your presets and get them how you like them eventually, we all change our minds from time to time!

    • hello suzie!! i think that flickr is that love that you have, that you may even step away for a while, but then you go back and you instantly remember why you liked so much! as for my style and yours, i know what you say about film. i also shoot film and i don’t edit my work. it is what it is! but even so it’s the way you mentioned, it’s the light, the composition, the small details that make that picture ours. and i’ll tell you that i recognize your kind of work! as for my presets, i love the ones i have built so far through this last year. tweaks here and there and i know the mood i want, the feel i look for a certain picture, but as you say and i know it, this may slightly change over the years, as we change as well!

  2. I still love flickr and still spend ours checking new photos (ohh I really love photography). as for the work, nothing is better than wake up knowing you are doing something you really enjoy, and even better, that you are recognize for that! One of my bosses told me yesterday that he thinks I really enjoy working, well I do, the day when I think I don’t like I will move to something else.
    But I wish that someday I can be like you, be recognized by my own style, and believe me you have your own brand now, many many times I think this looks so much like Twiggs style. It’s a great achievement indeed :)

    • oh my dear friend, knowing exactly the environment in which you work, i’d say that’s a pretty accomplishment indeed! your boss likes you for sure, and is concerned, or else he wouldn’t have said anything! as for the style you are always so generous!!! thank you from the bottom of my heart for such kind words!!

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