Editor's note: Fook writes whatever he wants, when he wants. You can find all of his here: Fook's ohm image articles. Also note that ohm believes that lighting is first in importance, editing last.
And be sure to check out Fook's work on Instagram.
Like I said in instalment #1 of On Turning Pro:
So in the past year, people have been asking me: “Fook, you’ve been spending quite a bit of money into photography, are you going to turn pro?” Honestly, I have thought about it for a while now, and here are some of the reasons why I believe I am not ready to turn pro.
A professional photographer who only shoots in natural light is kind of like a professional chef who cooks exclusively with a microwave. There are two distinct things that photographers use to get out of the microwave trench: editing and lighting.
Editing is a good way to make your photos great. If a photographer is able to use proper editing, colours can be added, light can be emphasized in certain areas, irritating objects can be removed, etc. This will properly improve the results that photographers get. Sure, some fields of photography actually bar their photographers from editing their shots (news photojournalists in particular), but every so often, a photojournalist gets caught in the act. This photojournalist immediately turns into an art photographer, which in marketing terms is called pivoting (looking at you Steve McCurry).
The fact of the matter is, editing is extremely important in the photography world. While I feel like many modern photographers get by with a pre-programmed filter, proper knowledge of how to even out lighting and remove artefacts are very important.
Lighting is the other ridiculously important aspect of photography. Without flattering light, people tend to look just horrible. On-camera flash is quite possibly the worst way to take a photograph with light. While certain photographers have made this style iconic by calling it “edgy” (American apparel look, gross), it really just screams low-calibre. Lighting is versatile, allowing shoots to continue in inclement weather. Even when natural light falls evenly, subjects can look boring without a dose of additional light. Learning how to light and how light affects the photograph is truly important. I reviewed some images from a friend’s wedding. It was absolutely appalling that the photographer basically just applied a filter on all the shots. Artefacts stayed put, lighting was uneven, and misfocused shots were included in the album. But hey, you get what you pay for, right?
I don’t believe in being a bargain basement photographer, so I will never do this.