The following is an interview with Charlotte, North Carolina Photographer Jill W Lang. I met Jill through LinkedIn and she is another person who uses WordPress to run part of her site. You can find her blog here – it’s regularly updated with awesome photographs from all around North Carolina (like the one right above this post!) Even better, you can purchase those photos here.
Q. Jill, I’ve been browsing through your work and it really is amazing. How did you get started?
A. It seems like I’ve always loved photography but didn’t start getting serious with it until a few years ago. I “retired” from my previous job as marketing manager for a food broker and started my new adventures in photography. I love it!! It’s allowed me to tour the state and see the sights that I may never have seen before.
Q.How do you see photographs progressing in the digital age? I know some photographers who see this as a dilution of their work. I sort of see it as an increase in demand. Business / web demand, for sure, but an increase in demand nonetheless. But then again, I’ve never tried to sell photos online before.
A. As with most “older” photographers, I’ve had to convert all of my equipment from film to digital. Once I started working with digital, I’ve grown to love it more than film and have not looked back. Camera manufacturers are improving their cameras and accessories with each new release and it just keeps getting better and better. Personally, I have grown and improved in my skills because of it being digital. I can instantly see my exposure mistakes and correct it right then or instantly work on some creative shots to see how they turn out.
No doubt, the demand for photos is increasing with the ever growing presence of the web. Site owners, designers, bloggers, etc. need photos for their site or they’re just boring! There’s definitely an increase in demand for good quality digital photos but there’s also been an increase in photographers entering the market making things very competitive. That’s why you have to be better, more creative, etc. than the next guy.
Q.It drives me crazy when people “borrow” my work whether it was a clever piece of programming or a turn of phrase for an article or as in some cases, the whole thing! How do you protect yourself against getting copied or license violations?
A. It’s very frustrating to see your work getting “borrowed”. Yes, it is flattering but I think most people don’t even think about how that hurts people who are trying to make a living at it. (But in turn, I’ve also had a lot of people asking permission or wanting to know if they can buy the photo/rights.) There are some things you can do to prevent the borrowing. Watermarking on the image is the best way. Disabling the right click is another. You just do what you can to prevent it… that’s about the best you can do.
As to specifics to promote…. I’m concentrating a lot on Charlotte. I’ve discovered that there’s really not a lot of places out there that people can instantly download a Charlotte photo for their designs or purchase a print easily. I’m also concentrating a lot on the state of NC. We have so many great places from the mountains to the ocean… it’s a lot! The Raleigh area will be my next focus.
Thanks to Jill Lang for the great interview! This folds in nicely with all of the image, logo, and general graphics discussions going on in the wake of my header image and logo contest.
Do you have additional questions for Jill? Who would you like me to interview next? Let the world know in the comments below.