Makeup artists are always giving me their stuff. My favorite thing is free stuff. I’ll take anything. —Cindy Margolis
Hey ya’ll! My name is Mortimier Chunkendunck but ya’ll can call me Mort. I’m a good friend, well, actually more of a distant acquaintance, of ol’ Chuck Letbetter and he’s done gone and given me permission to teach ya’ll a little bit about photography. I’ve known ol’ Chuck since he was still wet behind the ears. I’ll tell ya’, that boy couldn’t tell the difference between a lens cap and a shutter button when he first started. That’s a story for a different time with lots of alcohol, though. He’s only giving me one page to do all this learnin’ for ya’ll here.
You see, how this all got started was that an ad from something called Shutter magazine. Not Shutterbug, mind you, which is something totally different about a lot of the same stuff. This here Shutter magazine has been promoting these ads on your Facebook sayin’ they’ll give ya’ a free photography lesson, or somethin’ like that. There’s a pretty picture on the ad and I’m guessing that’s what gets most people’s attention. Click on that there ad, though, and you find out there ain’t nothing much free. You get this page here that says ya’ gotta subscribe to that there magazine to get anything. And ya’ gotta get what they be callin’ an “Elite+” membership to be gettin’ any lessons about anything. Now, I don’t know what neck of the woods you grew up in, but ’round here that’s not what we call free.
So, ol’ Chuck calls me up—well,actually, I been houndin’ him a fair deal on Facebook to let me write somethin’ for him—but anyway, he says to me, he says, “Why don’t you go write a one-page photography course since you already know everythin’ ’bout everythin’?” An’ I says back at him, “Why, I’d be right honored to do that fer ya’>” So strap in an try to pay attention ‘cuz this here is some high-level information I be givin’ ya’ll here.
You Need A Camera
I know, that pretty young woman in that picture is a bit distractin’ for some of ya’ll. Let me just tell ya’ right now ya’ll probably ain’t got the smarts to keep up with that young lady there. Ya’ might as well just keep your mind on the topic here, which is cameras, and that’s exactly what she’s holding in her hands: a camera. You’re gonna need one of those things if ya’ll plan on being a photographer. No, dangit, your phone does not count. Takin’ a phone to a photo shoot is like showin’ up at church without a Bible, ’bout all ya’ can do is watch.
Now, I know a lot of people make a big freakin’ deal ’bout the kind of camera they be usin’. Let me tell ya’ right here and now that it don’t make one damn bit of difference one way or the other when you’re just startin’ out. Yeah, I know those really pricey ones got all the gizmos and gadgets that are fun and look good in the store, but if’n ya’ll don’t have the first clue’ bout takin’ a picture all the gizmos and gadgets on the planet ain’t gonna help ya’ none. Get yourself somethin’ simple so you can find that there ISO setting without having to turn the dang camera upside down and sideways. Ya’ don’t need 250 on-board filters if’n ya’ keep choppin’ everybody’s head off in the pictures. Like my momma told my pappy, “Keep it simple, Stupid.” She told him that ’bout a lot of things. That’s why I have 11 brothers and sisters.
Jus’ git yo’self a decent little camera there. Get one that feels good in your hands. If’n ya’ have tiny little dainty hands, like that there Republican feller that Chuck doesn’t like, then you’ll be wantin’ one of those smaller little boxes ya’ll can pick up for cheap. If’n ya’ have big ol’ farmer’s hands, though, you’re gonna be wantin’ something heavy enough ya’ don’t break it jus’ tryin’ to put the lens on the front. Try ’em out like ya’ would a good pair of work gloves. Git a feel for ’em.
You Need A Subject
Now, if’n ya’ gonna be a photographer, ya’ gotta decide what kinda subject you’re gonna shoot. No, De-Wayne, put down that shotgun, that ain’t the kinda shootin’ we be talkin’ ’bout. Ya’ need to decide what kinda pictures you’re gonna take. If’n ya’ take pictures of pretty people, like the young lass in this picture, then us normal folk will like yo’ work. If’n ya’ take pictures of ugly people in black and white, then all them high falutin’ artsy dodgers gonna like yo’ work. HowEVER, though, there’s only one way yo’re gonna make your grandma happy and that’s if’n ya take pictures of old barns and that ol’ oak tree back there by the crik when it turns all them colors and the Grand Canyon and stuff. Ya’ probably don’t want to go makin’ Grandma mad now, I hear she’s been updatin’ her will just in case the good Lord takes her away. Jus’ between you and me, I wish he’d get on with it ‘cuz Grandma’s done past her expiration date an’ is startin’ to smell a bit, if’n ya’ know what I mean. But don’t be tellin’ her I said that.
ANYway, takin’ picture of blank walls isn’t gonna get ya’ very far. Ya’ gotta have a subject and ya’ kinda want to keep takin’ pictures of the same kinda subject so that folks’ll know what to be expectin’ from ya’. Ya’ don’t need no tree photographer takin’ pictures at Darla Mae’s weddin’ next month, for example. That boy she’s gittin’ hitched to is dumb as a bag of rocks an’ twice as ugly. She’s gonna need one very talented photographer to make those pictures come out decent ‘nuf to hang on a wall. Pick yo’self somethin’ an’ stick wit’ it.
Lighting Is The Most Important Aspect Of Photography
Eyes down here, folks. I don’t know why ya’ll keep gettin’ so distracted by the pictures. Ya’ll know dang good and well yo’momma would tan’ yo’ hide if’n she caught you takin’ pictures like that. Ol’ Chuck’s diff’rent. He’s too old for it to matter. The rest of ya’ll, tho’, be needin’ to keep yo’ eyes in yo’ head. Ya’ gotta learns to be proFESSional and not be distracted by boobs an’ such.
Back to the subject at hand, light is the most important part of photography. Ya’ can’t take pictures of nothin’ in the dark. That’d just be silly now, wouldn’t it. Besides, I done know half ya’ll city slickers be ‘fraid of the dark in the first place. Ya’ll wouldn’t know what to do if ya’ got a picture of the boogey man now, would ya’? So, ya’ gotta have some light turned on some place or else the picture just ain’t gonna turn out the way ya’ want. Git that through that li’l pea brain of yo’rs. Ya’ gotta turn a light on somewhere.
Now, ol’ Chuck likes whatcha call that there “natural light.” That is, he shoots where the sun be shinin’. He don’t even use no flash or nuthin’ most the time. Me, I prefer crankin’ up the generator and usin’ some big ol’ strobe lights so that everything is all lit up nice an’ pretty like Chris’mas. Either way’ll work if’n ya’ be careful. Just don’t go draggin’ no ‘lectrical cord through a mud puddle, though. That’ll give ya’ quite a shock there an’ ain’t none of yo’r kin gonna want to be yo’r assistant no mo’.
Posing Is The Most Important Part Of Photography
If’n yo’ takin’ pictures of peoples, then gittin’ ’em to stand the right way is the other most important part of photography. This is called posin’. No, DeWayne, it ain’t got nuthin’ to do with those folks walkin’ ’round with their britches saggin’ below their drawers. We be callin’ those folks “urBane” now, or somethin’ like that. Posin’ has to do with how yo’ subject be standin’ or sittin’ or whatever. Ya’ gotta be payin’ attention to this stuff or else the pictures be turnin’ out lookin’ like the stuff ya’ be shovlin’ out of Merle’s dairy barn.
Now, posin’ standin’ ain’t exactly like how ya’ll might be normal standin’. Ya’ gotta make it interestin’. Like, standin’ with one leg lookin’ like it done got stepped on by Pete’s bull. No, DeWayne, that does NOT mean ya’ll can go around stompin’ on people’s feet. Didn’t yo’ momma teach ya’ll no better’n that? Whatcha gotta do is go lookin’ at them there fashiony magazines an’ seein’ how them pretty ladies in them magazines be posin’. Pauline’s gotta stack of ’em down there in her hair Say-lon. She don’t mind ya’ lookin’ at ’em as long as ya’ keep the stack neat’n tidy.
Ol’ Chuck says ya’ can hire some help who done knows how to pose folk. They be called “art di-rectors” or somethin’ like that. I suppose they be walkin’ ’round with paint brushes in their pocket or somethin’. I ain’t never met one so I can’t rightly say.
Editing Is The Most Important Part Of Photography
Now, once ya’ done takin’ the pictures, ya’ gotta do this thing called editing before ya’ can show them to anyone. Take this here picture of ol’ Chuck, for instance. We both know dang good and well that there’s no way anyone’s gonna git Chuck up on no space ship. He done gone an’ used PHOTOshop to make it look like he was out in Jedi-land, where ever that is. Ya’ see, that PHOTOshop thing is mighty powerful stuff an’ ifn’ ya’ gots them computer smarts ya’ can do just ’bout anything with a picture that ya’ want.
Once upon a time, back when Chuck ‘n me were jus’ pups, folks used to have to do this editin’ stuff the hard way in what was called a dark room. It weren’t actually really dark in there, of course, we wouldn’t be able to see what we was doin’. There was a red light bulb in there and ya’ had to dip the picture in all these strange chem’cals an’ hang it up to dry like June’s laundry out there on the line. Took forever, it did.
Ya’ll be lucky now, tho, all ya’ll gots them computers an’ yo’ wifi an’ I’m tellin’ ya, there’s magic in them there boxes. Ya’ll can edit jus’ bout anything into anywhere if’n ya’ know what yo’ doin’. DeWayne, ya’ might as well go ahead and find yo’self a tudor or somethin’ to help ya’ figger it all out. Not all ya’ll the brightest bunch of bulbs in the box.
Post Everything To Facebook
Once ya’ll got all them there pictures edited, then ya’ gotta post ’em all to Facebook. This is a re-QUIRE-ment ‘cuz there ain’t no way folks are ever gonna see none of those pictures if’n ya’ jus’ leave ’em sittin’ on yo’r computer there. Now, ol’ Chuck is sittin’ over here shakin’ his head for some reason. I’m not sure he’s feelin’ all that well. But trust me on this, no one is gonna know that yo’r bein’ a photographer now if’n ya’ don’t be postin’ yo’r pictures on the Facebook.
Now, I know some folks be postin’ all their stuff to this other thing called the Instagram. I sup’ose that might be okay if’n ya’ want to be lookin’ like one of them there spoiled li’l brats out in HolLYwood. I myself ain’t found much use for the thing. It keeps tryin’ to make all my pictures square and look funny. B’sides that, most people who be usin’ the Instagram be takin’ pictures of themselves, ya’ know, what they be callin’ selfies. Vanity is what it is, ya’ know, takin’ all them pictures of yo’r own face. Ain’t nobody need to see that many pictures of yo’r own face. Vanity is what it is. Heard the preacher say so jus’ the other Sunday.
This here concludes my photography lesson. I was gonna give ya’ll a test but Chuck is sayin’ we ain’t got time for that. So, I’m jus’ gonna go ‘head and DEclare ya’ll gradjuates of the Mortimier Chunkendunck Skool of Photography. Ya’ll is now o-fish-ally photographers. Good luck to ya’. Jus’ don’t be tryin’ to steal an of my customers.