Recently I read something that really put a smile on my face and showed me that there is still hope in humanity. Before I share the story though I want to share a small success story of mine as well.
I studied graphic design and for most part after graduation I have worked as a graphic designer. Working in the advertising world is something I enjoyed very much and often times I wished to get a position maybe in a big publication house like Condé Nast. I still enjoy graphic design and always will but since 2009 I started to focus more on photography. It’s something that I always enjoyed as a part-time hobby but slowly I was leaning toward making it full-time. Well lo and behold I got my first DSLR! Soon enough I was ready to take it out and shoot with my new baby. What I was already enjoying with my point-and-shoot, it got even better with the DSLR. Let’s just say my photos got a bit of “oomph” to it now. My first real test was shooting a friend’s wedding not as a hired photographer but just for fun. Nothing special, no external flash or fancy lens, just my camera and one lens. I enjoyed the whole wedding scene. It’s something you cannot repeat so there is a real challenge in making “the shot” or you have just lost your opportunity. Shooting wedding keeps you on the edge and there is a sense of adrenaline rush with all the chaos at a wedding. Anyway some days later after my friend’s wedding I uploaded the photos on Facebook, had plenty positive feedback. From that I started getting offers to shoot more wedding gigs and that’s how my photography journey started.
Now let’s forward to 2012, this is where my small success story comes in. Like every artists want their work to be noticed, I also want my work and name out there. I don’t need ten million fans but only ten true fans is sufficient to satisfy me. So back in earlier March this year I came across a contest by Airtel for the Independence Day of Bangladesh. Airtel is a mobile phone company like AT&T, T-Mobile and such. The theme was green-red, representing the colors of Bangladesh. For the first time I decided to submit one of my photos in any contest ever and I did. After submitting the photo though I realized it was a rather difficult task to be a winner due to their rules. The rule was very simple, promote your photo and based on how many Facebook “Like” it receives they will pick the winner. For every “Like” you get 10 points, the rule wasn’t that simple after all. Now you may say I am ungrateful but that was a pretty lame rule because that’s not the way to judge a photograph. I shared the photo on my Facebook timeline and received 35 “Likes” which is 350 points and noticed the leading photo had 21,830 points even though that photo had nothing to do with the theme or did it say anything about Bangladesh. After seeing the number I wasn’t feeling very optimistic any longer, so I kind of gave up on the idea. Life has a way of working with you… I received a call on March 22nd, it was from Airtel telling me that they picked 71 photos out of 5,000+ photos and my photo was one of them. Oh boy was I excited! I already felt like a winner right there and then. I received a second call, I was told to submit the actual size of the photo so they can print it for gallery and award ceremony where the photographers will be given a certificate and Airtel goodies. The second call was a bit misleading, the guy on the phone told me my photo placed first…
At the award ceremony I realized my initial feeling about their rule had become grandiose, it was lame! I wasn’t the winner, I was among the 71 people, number 12 and the real winner was the guy with the ability to promote his photo very well, the guy with thousands of friends on Facebook. As disappointing as this was, I was trilled to be among the 71 people out of the 5,000+ because I wouldn’t be receiving that certificate that day if I hadn’t submitted my photo. How I came across this contest in the first place? It was a nice gesture from a friend who is also a photographer, told me “you never know, give it a try”. Now is this a success story? To me, it is very much so. :)
Photos from Ceremony
The whole idea behind this post is this: You will come across artist that are very generous and some filled with so much ego that they are blind beyond their own self. I know it’s a long post but the next part is where it gets better and I promise you, it will be worth your time reading it. It’s a true story about a photographer and his generosity and that’s all I am going to say without making this any longer. Click on the link to Scott Kelby’s blog to read the post: This Story About Photography is About Much More Than Photography.