End of 2013 - What's Next?

The 2013 Con season is all wrapped up for me. I want to take a minute and thank all those who I've shot with this year, hoping you had an enjoyable time and that you are please with the end results.

I do have my simple schedule up for next year, here, but here they are in a row. Katsucon, Con-G, Costume-Con, Anime North, Colossalcon, Otakon, Otakuthon, Fan Expo, NYCC, Youmacon. Some may be added or taken away depending on things and stuff. I wanted to attend DragonCon this year but its just such a difficult con to figure out. Flight plans, photoshoot plans, and especially hotel plans as the hotels sell out faster than you can say " ". Exactly.

If there is anyone out there has an open room and wouldn't mind storing a photographer in there for the weekend please let me know! I will reward you handsomly! ; D

Let's talk promotions. A lot of people go *GASP!!!!!* When I tell them I dont' have a facebook account, "YOU DON'T HAVE A FACEBOOK ACCOUNT?!" No, I don't. "Why not?!" Uh, many reasons. While I'm certain FB has its benefits and appeals to many people, its just not suited for me. I wouldn't take the time to write to make any coherent timeline of what I do and it would be a garbeled mess. I don't want to talk forever about this, but a few additional key points. I don't care (nor have the time) to track and keep up to date with 100+ people/aquaintances every day/week. As it goes, we have hit a wall in how much media we can consume every day, and the unfortunate reality is it is being created faster than we can take it in.

I have a few subscriptions on youtube, and only watch some videos which I may find entertaining. I don't have time to watch 12+ 1h "let's play" or "chat about this" every week, even the short 5m videos start adding up once you start going through them all. I have a personal preference of spreading my work and play around, and don't have the mindset to just sit and watch YT video for 2 hours.

And you may be wondering "Well Michael, why are you telling us this? We're smart people unlike you." Well yeah, it all goes back to me being unable to "fully integrate into the online world" like so many of you do. I haven't even talked about twitter and tumblr, and instagram and whatever else is popular nowadays. How do you manage to keep track of all that stuff? Like, it seems like a lot of online gardening you need to do every day.

This is more or less my thought process of social media and its younger brothers (tumblr, snapchat, etc...). If I don't have the time to really devote myself to a system, I'm probably not going to try at all. In my opinion it becomes just as bad if you were to, you'd always catch the tail-end of a conversation and not understand it. You would start a debate and be gone for days before doing another reply. Meanwhile in the back of your mind you're going "Jeez I need to check on that post from yesterday, and I still have to reply back to the reply on my reply." Chances are those thoughts could make you lose focus, so I'd rather just not have to deal with it. 

I'm actually quite delighted when I receive emails from people : ) Personal thought-out messages are great to read and reply back to. If you have any thoughts on the whole social media thing feel free to drop a comment below. And if you're worried on how I feel about about not having those "likes", I can tell you I'm doing just fine without them and that they have no impact on my quality of work. If the photo is good and people like it, it will get around on its own anyways without me having to pamper it.

In 2014 I will am planning introducing a per-con contest, with the first convention being Katsucon. How it'll work, is before I put up my shoot schedule, I will do a post a week or two before and within it you'll enter by doing a specific action, ie "comment on this article" or "graffiti 'eleventhphotograph' on a wall", just kidding (seriously, don't). It'll most likely be handled by rafflecopter. The winner will be randomly decided from those who entered and will receive a free shoot for that con! With other prizes perhaps in tow. So yes, I am still promoting myself : P Again if you have any thoughts or ideas leave a comment below.

I'll also be revising the photoshoot policies list again before Katsucon, nothing big, but I just want to fine-tune some more details. Prices will be staying the same as I think they are fair for what I'm offering. Again, if you have any thoughts please feel free to add them in or send me an email.  

I'm really hoping to amp my game up even more for 2014 as I want to create even higher-quality photos for both me and my clients. Color gels is something I started recently and its something I want to take further, creating I even have plans to do some prints of specific photos to hang up on my wall in my room, as big as 24x36! If anyone is looking to do prints of my photos to sell at cons, I'm pretty flexible so just give me a shout and we'll figure something out! Those details will also be included in my updated policy list.

I'm also open to doing shoots outside of conventions. Haven't done too many recently but it certianly has its benefits. If you have an idea and want to pitch to me, I'll take a look and see if its something we can work on together.

I think I've covered just about everything I wanted to cover, if not, too bad. Thanks for the long read and hope to get some feedback from you guys about anything above.