Saturday, April 26, 2014

Discussion: The Art of Blog Photography

Today I have two very special guests on the blog. Not only are they certified bookworms and awesome-sauce bloggers but they are also super-talented photographers. :)

They are here to to share their expertise on the art of blog photography. Say hello to:

Hazel of Stay Bookish

Q1: What does photography mean to you?

Hazel: Photography is something I love, not just to do but also to look at and appreciate. Ever since my sophomore year of high school, I've been associated to my camera because I always bring one around. Photography is simply my outlet for creativity and it's something I hope to continuously improve at.

Hawwa: For me, it's a way of capturing memories. I love to journal and scrap-book so I use the photos I take in them sometimes. When I really started getting into photography about a year ago every place I went was a whole new excitement. Instead of just wandering through streets and climbing up hills on holiday, gazing at the view for a few minutes, I could capture that moment and that beauty and keep it with me - photographs aren't replicas but they can conjure up so much nostalgia I love it. My camera is like another set of eyes that notices the small things, the mundane objects and angles that would have passed me by if I hadn't had my camera. 

Q2: What first drew you to photography? And what keeps you inspired?
HazelCapturing memories. I always used to think that photography was about taking pictures with friends, family and snapping photos of special life moments. Until of course I realized that I could capture anything and everything. I'm inspired to pursue my photography because of the loveliness I see around me, and also because of the people, places and things I care about- like books for example.

Hawwa: I'm not sure to be honest. a lot of things. My grandad did photography so I must have inherited the love of it but it only started showing about a year ago as I said. When I made a photography tumblr and I saw all the beautiful photos I thought, I want to try that. So I bought a camera and went from there! Inspiration is everywhere. Other photographers, pinterest, tumblr, special moments and beautiful sunsets.

Q3: Who are your favorite photographers and how did they influence you?
HazelThere are so many but one of my favorites would be Kimi Juan, a local photographer from Manila who takes gorgeous life, nature and travel pictures. I also happen to adore fashion photography and I look up to Julia Trotti when it comes to that area. Mostly, they influence the way I hope to achieve my photos- filmy, colorful, and narrowly-focused.

Hawwa: I have many favourite photographers, one photo can capture my attention and make me want to stalk that photographers photos forever! Some of my favorites are hannah nicole, tim coulson, ash and james photography and carrie from wishwishwishwish

Q4: What kind of gear do you use and what kind of tools do you use for processing the images you take?

HazelI mainly use a Canon 600D with different lenses but mostly with my 50mm f1.4. I also sometimes use my phone or my film cameras. For post-processing, I use Photoshop a lot. I use premade actions and curves at times but if not, I just play around with the image adjustments. I use VSCO and Afterlight when I post-process photos on mobile devices.

Hawwa: I have no gear and no tools. sad face. I'm pretty broke so the camera I have is my dad's old work camera that's about ten years old. It takes pretty decent pictures though compared to the point and shoot I initially bought [which decided after a couple of months not to switch on...]. I don't have a tripod or any lenses. I'm one sad photographer ;) I don't have photoshop or anything. I just..edit with pixlr mainly...

Q5: Among your works, which one is your favorite? Why?

HazelIt's so hard to pick a favourite since I'm always finding faults in my work haha! At the same time, despite those faults, there are also several that I still feel proud of, especially when others like them so much. I wish I could share some of my fave portraiture work but I'd rather share one of my fave bookish photos instead. (attached fave photo) This got a huge number of notes on Tumblr and I can see why- it's sharp, colourful, and has natural lighting.
Hawwa: I actually have quite a few surprisingly enough, mainly from holidays etc. I tend to like the photos that either mean the most to me or look [to me] like something I would see on one of my favourite photographers websites. :D

Q4: What is the one thing you wish you knew when you started taking photos?

HazelI wish someone told me to keep photos natural-looking. Now, I have the tendency to over-edit them and that is a really bad habit. I think one of the most important tips I could share with everyone is to DECLUTTER. Remove unnecessary things/blemishes from the frame before you take the shot (not after, when you post process). Focus in and make sure there aren't other distracting things in the shot so you could emphasize on your subject.

Hawwa: I wrote a post [top five tips for book photography] although looking at it now: I really hate the photos I used for that post! I think one thing I wish i had know when I first started is to not be discouraged and to work with what you have. You're not suddenly going to be able to buy a professional camera and lenses and tripods, that takes time. [if you can then feel free to chuck some my way..;)] so work up to what you want. I like some of the photos I have taken with the camera i have, even though it is really old and compared to the cameras I see nowadays: 'rubbish'.

Rapid Fire Round

Black n White or Color?

Hazel: Color
Hawwadepends! i love black and white photography..

Doctor Who or Teen Wolf?

HazelTeen Wolf because hot wolf boys. (Sorry, Whovians hahaha!)
Hawwa*whispers* i don't watch either..

Contemporary or Sci-Fi?

Hawwa: BOTH [i'm so good at this..:P]

Chocolate Chip Cookies or Blueberry Cheesecake?

Hazel Blueberry Cheesecake
Hawwai don't eat either..o.O PRINGLES?!

Pinterest or Instagram?

Hazel: Instagram
HawwaPinterest because i have an account. I don't have a phone but I LOVE Instagram so when i manage to make an account i'll probably like them equally.
Meet Hawwa at It Was Lovely Reading You:

Hawwa is a teenage blogger from the UK. 

Check out her lovely blog for bookish shenanigans!

BLOG: It Was Lovely Reading You
Chat her up on TWITTER: @secretlyzuzana
Meet Hazel at Stay Bookish:

Hazel is an 18 year old blogger from Phillipines. 
Check out her blog for bookish awesome-ness!

BLOG: Stay Bookish
Chat her up on TWITTER: @staybookish

So over to you guys
How important do you think photography is in a blog? Is photography one of your passions? If so, what inspires you?

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  1. YAYAYAYAY i love this post and *sigh* I love Hazel's photography and i'm so jealous of her camera and lenses!! Thank you for having me, :)

  2. This was such an interesting interview to read! I've always admired both Hawwa and Hazel for their awesome, kick-ass photography skills so it was cool to read a little about what they do! I'm not very into photography, like actually taking pictures myself but I love looking at others' photography. And yes, Teen Wolf always because of DYLAN O'BRIEN <33 (But I'm also biased because I don't watch Doctor Who at all...)

  3. I love photography! I love this post soo much! Great interview :3 Your photography skills are amazingxxx

  4. Photography isn't my passion, but I am definitely envious of people who can pull it off! I do like taking pretty pictures, but I only use my dinky little point-and-shoot, and it's nowhere as good as the photos these ladies shared. :D

    Awesome interview, Nara!

  5. Beautiful photos are a joy to look at and you know it makes me envious of people that have that natural knack for taking them. Especially when you combine that with photoshop zowwie. Definitely an art form.


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