This is a 35mm shot of me in 2002 by Gaby whilst sitting on the most Northern tip of Rugen Germany. Lots of wind out there blowing my long gone locks.
Some questions you may have:
Who are you?
My name is John Holden and I’m a Dad, a husband and a photographer. I am also the CEO and coffee boy for Elusive Elements Photography.
What do you do for a living?
I work for a large company doing other stuff than photography, but I’m a photographer, working for a large company, doing other stuff. My field is IT networking and has been since 1999. I have been employed steadily for a couple of major companies contracting to several other big players in the industry. From 1985 to 1999 I was in the Golf course and Ski Hill industry. That was a lifetime ago. From 1983 to 1985 I rented out sailboats, sailed, tanned and took pictures of stuff. That was Pre-anything and post-high school. I was a photographer back then as well.
Why do you do photography?
I suppose, it’s kind of like golf. It’s a never ending learning curve, and once in a while, a hole in one. More and more you find yourself landing on the green for a one putt. The more you play, the better you get. The better you get, the more you want to play. The social aspect is huge and no matter who you talk to, you are all feeling pretty blessed to be able to be playing that day. The game is 95% mental and can be extremely frustrating as you keep raising the bar. You keep trying new courses and new clubs, but always, always, enjoying your time doing it and are constantly awestruck in the views you find yourself in. Unlike golf however, a game does not do a service for others, which is another one of the “best” parts of being a photographer.
I don’t golf. I do photography, but if I was a golfer, ……..
How long have you been doing photography?
Dad handed me a camera in 1974 and it was really “cool” to be able to freeze a moment in time. Man that little camera felt good in my hands and I was always on the scout for a better shot. Third shot I ever took ended up on our wall and that was no easy feat. I was a kid shooting on B&W film, which I helped develop in Dad’s basement darkroom. Working in the darkroom taught me a lot about; don’t open the door to the darkroom!!! Swishing the paper around in the developer watching the image appear and really the entire process from developing negatives to developing prints was amazing. In 1983 my photography evolved into documenting my life and having photographic proof of adventures and again a way to reflect and enjoy the moments. This was using 35 mm Kodak color film which was developed at labs. The week turnaround time was excruciating. I remember sometimes not even making it out of the store before tearing open the envelope to see the gems of beauty. Followed by depression from looking at the pictures knowing I could do better. The odd time getting an exposure I thought was awesome. Later to shoot one better and look back at my last “awesome” shot and think it was just OK now. I couldn’t wait to shoot off the next roll though.
Looking back now, they were all gems.
In 2000, I started taking photography seriously. Moved over to digital cameras and have never looked back in my progression.
On my left I know people who have picked up a camera for the first time and barely a year later, while still shooting in auto and specializing in “Natural Light” (i.e.: haven’t learned flash photography yet) are calling themselves professionals and charging for their work. On my right I have friends who have been trained and have been making a living from photography since the 80’s. I feel for the consumer who is trying to find a legitimate photographer to hand their hard earned money to. I guess just make sure you research their body of work and the more discerning client will be able to weed out the chaff from the wheat. Honesty and Integrity are becoming more and more just an option rather than a way of life. If you find a friend with both, hang onto them.
What are your plans for your photography business?
My plans are to continue to move away from vernacular photography (look it up, didn’t know that’s what I was shooting) and develop and grow in the Life Style, Portraiture, Architectural and Stock photography areas. Each genre has its own style and techniques. Landscape and Nature are really enjoyable, but I live in the city and don’t get out as much as I’d like to. I know its business savvy to specialize in one field of photography, but I enjoy the act of photography more than any one genre.
I’ll continue the course like I always have with integrity, honesty, a child’s enthusiasm and sense of good will of helping others with something I really enjoy doing. I hope you enjoy this site and feel free to loiter. Try not to eat all the chips and remember to turn the lights off when you leave.
You’ll also find me at Facebook and Flickr.