Starting on March 2017, Jorge Parra Photography will offer a series of Advanced Photography Workshops for selected participants, in an intimate atmosphere, where only 10-12 photographers will attend each hands-on workshop. This will allow the one-on-one training that each participant deserves to REALLY improve their visual arts skills and the creative development of his/her portfolio.
Based on the experience gained from teaching for several years at the Miami Ad School, plus the previous private San Francisco and Miami Workshops, Jorge Parra Photography has selected the following content for the upcoming trainings:
– SMARTPHONE PHOTOGRAPHY: an interesting trend has now become a powerful form of expression, and the participants of this workshop will greatly improve their skills at shooting with their smartphones , first by learning the professional tricks on how to use the capabilities of your own smartphone, plus further improving their images without ever leaving their phone, using editing apps for even better results.
– PORTRAITS AND LIGHTING: this is a basic training, so participants can get comfortable with the use of artificial lighting in studio, plus manipulated natural light, to obtain fantastic results which will improve the quality of their portraits.
– FASHION AND BEAUTY PHOTOGRAPHY: although the name is obvious, this training is aimed at those who already have some good knowledge of lighting (both natural and artificial) and want to improve their own personal style by shooting models on location and/or studio, conceptualized as an editorial for a magazine. Wardrobe, from casual to swimwear to couture, plus Hair and Make Up Stylists will be provided.
-THE FINE ART BODYSCAPE: A powerful workshop dedicated to study the human figure and how to develop creative and artistic images, where concepts, composition and lighting will lead the way to obtain meaningful images. Models, Make Up, Styling and Props will be provided, so each participant can approach the body from his /her own vision.
NOTE: All workshops include either online or live review of the work done by participants, so, unlike other workshops, there is TRUE ADDED VALUE THROUGH REAL MENTORING, in order to assist participants in their creative portfolio development. Each Workshop has it’s own inherent characteristics, so the mentoring process will be disclosed along with detailed info when participants register.
Cash and Credit / Debit Cards will be accepted on the premises. However, We can not guarantee slots available for unregistered, Walk-Ins. On-Site Registration and Payment will proceed on a first-come-first-served basis.
In order to guarantee your participation in the workshop, you will find a simple way to safely register and pay, using PayPal in the secure link below, BEFORE the actually dates of the workshops.
I had previously posted a whole set of tips and suggestions on how to successfully use Linkedin as a professional networking channel, taking advantage of the fact, that, contrary to FaceBook and other channels, Linkedin gathers a huge percentage of professionals from all areas and fields of human performance. This characteristic makes Linkedin a potentially useful platform to build up new business relationships and strategic alliances, which can help on the profitability of your own business.
Thing is,Success is, from my point of view, more of a process than a goal. It can be easily proven that, once a goal is achieved, in any aspect of our lives, the mind already has yet another new goal to achieve, and on and on, indefinitely, so it makes sense to focus more on the process to achieve success than in the goals themselves. Improving the process will facilitate achieving new goals.
The well known formula: [Garbage In = Garbage Out] applies wonderfully to Linkedin and every other platform and channel you intend to use for marketing and promotional purposes.
Basically, if you do not commit to provide useful, appealing content, a well groomed profile and stay active on the process of updating all your info on Linkedin, and participate in Groups, you can not expect better results than the ones you have today. Too many Photographers believe that they just need to create a profile, as brief as possible, and sit and wait for a torrential rain of new clients and projects to pour on them. Then the complaints about Linkedin not being useful as an instant cash cow pop out in every forum.
I can not emphasize enough how critical it is to prepare a very effective Profile about yourself in Linkedin. Almost everything is relevant!! From your education to the causes and organizations you donate time and resources to, to the historical career path which has led you to who and how and where you are today, everything counts, if posted properly.
Just recently, the Linkedin Blog published the 10 words people OVERUSE the most in Linkedin in their Profiles, and therefore, have been rendered technically useless for self-promotion, specially if you want to differentiate yourself properly, so your Linkedin Profile should avoid the following:
Ten most overused Profile buzzwords:
• Extensive experience
• Track record
Sounds familiar?? How many of these are right now in your Profile?
To make this brief, consider this: if by any chance you actually are NOT motivated passionate, creative, responsible, etc,etc, then you are not a good profesional anyways, and again, if you are all of the above, a cool Pro, make no mistake: every other Pro who is your actual competition, claims to be exactly the same cool Pro!
So, use your motivation, passion, creativity and experience to build up a better profile, avoiding most of the words above!!!
The matter of connecting with potential clients stays the same: One of the most useful decisions is joining Linkedin Groups, BUT, do not join a dozen of photographer’s groups, since basically none of them will need your services!! Of course, it makes sense to be in touch with the photographer’s community, so being in a couple of those groups is healthy to stay in touch with changes in the industry, etc, so, do not discard all of those, but know in advance those do not offer lots of marketing opportunities. For the same reason, Retouchers, Educators, Assistants, Coaches and Consultants need to be in photographer’s groups, since they can become their clients.
Think exactly in the same way, to decide what groups you should consider joining. You have to be in places where your potential clients also roam. If you are interested in architectural clients, join architect’s groups, same for Corporate, same for Fashion, same for Advertising etc,etc.
Participation in those groups will streamline the process of connecting with people who might become your future clients or strategic allies. It is also important to note that potential clients, prospects, may not necessarily react instantly to your profile and activity.They may bookmark your profile and will check it out for changes/updates in time, and might consider you for a project later on, when their need for your type of work arises. Months may pass by before this happens. Be patient!!
This is solid proof that success in Linkedin is a process, as you can not measure your success by what you have already achieved, but for what is coming ahead.
I have previously started a discussion on the impact of digital technologies in the way we do business, and it’s implications in the Visual Arts (see for example http://linkd.in/12i2K0Z), but there is still more to talk: a critical conceptual and relevant element in the discussion was very clearly exposed by Mr Herring in his presentation: the fact that many artists and creators are still having issues embracing digital technologies as the way to create new work.
Of course, we are the generation dealing with the transition process, and that is already hard and harsh. Many of us learnt our craft the “analog way” and many are reluctant to just switch over to digital technologies.
It was impressive to hear Herring talk about the problems in the music world, all the more so in classical music ( Mr Herring is in charge of developing the right digital tools and strategies to teaching classical music to young musicians, whose interests are mostly elsewhere) and the experience has been quite challenging and yet, successful.
Many other artists, and specially photographers, have had troubles in embracing digital cameras, computers, software, plug-ins etc, etc, after having lived for decades under the analog technologies, shooting in film, chemical processing, chemical printing, manual retouching of both negatives and prints, tons of darkroom techniques to produce “alternative” results, and then, in the scope of less than 10 years, it all changed. Film manufacturing is going to minimum amounts, Kodachrome ceased to produce new film, ( actually, Kodak went out of business!), Polaroid closed doors, and , while still a few artists keep shooting in film ( just the same in the movie industry), most shooters from older generations have had to forcefully adapt, in an attempt to not go down the drain.
It is then when Herring’s presentation brought in a fantastic insight to the state of things, bringing back from the past no other than Marshall McLuhan, a well respected communications visionaire from the 60’s and 70’s. Herring recalls one of the most remembered phrases, “The Medium is the Message”, and even though McLuhan did not even foretold the advent of the internet and the digital revolution, the relevance of his words resonate today more than ever.
Basically, in current terms, we have to understand, absorb and digest the fact that EACH NEW MEDIA IS MEANT FOR AN INTRINSICALLY NEW MESSAGE.
And here’s a simple train of thoughts I offer to explain this:
Back when the telegram was invented and put to use, communications were brief and to the point ( probably, the first iteration of Twitter). Then comes the Radio, and now the message is not just written word in a few characters on paper, there is now audio, and conversation is “streamed” through the airwaves. Then comes Television, and now the message involves both audio and moving images, generating an altogether new message (or type of messages), that no telegram or radio program could provide. You can, of course interject photography and movies in between.
So here we are, with each new media, a new message was intrinsically created and developed.Then we jump back to current times, with the Internet and all the digital technologies popping out.
We then have to question ourselves: for these new media, which are the new messages?
For the initial years, the term Disruption has been used over and over. Digital is destroying our way of life, or at least the one we have lived through several years/decades. The Digital Crossover is right there, in front of us.
But disruption is the initial stage and things just change and move on. Most everyone was convinced at the onset of the 20th century that Painting was going to die, due to the disruption created by Photography, but then again, Painting just took another, less pictorial, representational road, and thanks to that we have contemporary Painting, well away from Photography.
We then have to deal the realities of living the “disruption era” of digital technologies, the Digital Crossover. As a sad reality, among the visual artists, I see so many photographers still entangled in this recurrent and pointless drama. The fact that so many shooters are just trying to emulate analog photography, while using their digital cameras, is merely a disappointing way to deny the new message that is implicit in digital photography!
The fact that cameras look almost exactly the same may be part of the issue, but when I see so many of my colleagues, for example, longing for grain (and actually, adding noise to digital captures, in order to make them look like grainy film) and so many other complaints about how film photography was soo much better, I only have one solution to their longing: get back to film photography. Use the old media in the context it was developed. Artists and creators can still go a long way creating interesting images in film ( some movie directors, like Tarantino have sworn they will stop shooting movies when they run out of film), but in the meantime, if you are going to embrace digital technologies in your visual art, then get ready and curious to explore a new media, create and produce your own, new/revamped message.
Recently I tried to sit with my teenage daughter, to explain to her the basics of Photoshop, and she flatly refused to go there. She quickly showed me all the editing she does directly on her smart phone, and even challenged me to do it as fast as she does. For her, Photoshop is already old school!
So, for this coming generations, who were born in this digital/technological environment, for them the new media and it’s new message are matter-of-fact. Looks like once again, and more than ever, we have to keep learning from our kids, and stay in touch with the ever-changing technological landscape, as we learn to embrace the new world we are crossing over.
The same applies to so many other careers and professions, from lawyers to architects, to engineers, etc., meaning, we all have to stay in learning and experimenting mode, in order to stay relevant, as the business models also keep changing, sometimes in unexpected and aggressive ways.
My question/challenge to the Visual Artists is: are you willing to explore and craft your new (or revamped) message, as a way to stay relevant in this digital world we are crossing over, full speed ahead?
About the Author: Jorge Parra is a Photographer who shoots mainly Fashion, Beauty and Portrait for Advertising, and based in Miami, FL. He is also an Advanced Photography Instructor at the Miami Ad School.
Jorge’s photographic work can be seen in his spanking new website,
I was glad and curious to attend the The Green Shows at the New York Fashion Week this week, presenting a group of fashion designers who are working on sustainability by way of reusing and recycling materials , fabrics and objects that many would consider trash or rejects, and transform them into fashion garments.
The interesting thing, as I saw it, is that there is still a good way to go before most of those products can be truly marketable into mainstream or even boutique stores.
The simple reason for this is that the designers are still too involved in their Eco-friendly/Green Activism, most designers have a defined background and participation in environmental/Green causes and therefore, many designs and pieces only convey a statement, sometimes a protest, sometimes an irony, and activism has to be “toned down” into a more refined and subtle form, so the message is still there, but the glamour, usability and good-looking factors prevail. We are talking fashion here!
It was notable to see lots of designers like LAVUK, Auralis, and Samantha Pleet working with recycled fabrics, and going more towards casual and party wear. Other great collections like the “Black Label” by british designer Ashton Michael introduced greatly designed pieces from recycled fabrics and natural products, for a very targeted population of young, androgynous consumers, lovers of the post apocalyptic look.
It is for this very reason, that the most remarkable looks, putting together a great deal of elegance, form and function while still conveying the green message, are the High Fashion designs for the “Upcycled Couture” Collection by Miami designer Luis Valenzuela, bringing class, style and forward thinking to the Green evolution, in atmosphere of luxury and glamour. His shoes made a remarkable presence, and he was one of the few designers to present shoes of his own creation.
I don’t see any reason why green and recycled has to convey a message of wear, deterioration, only post nuke attitudes and solutions. Homeless people, specially in New York, are masters at recycling garbage , and trust me, they don’k look great!
Backstage at the Green Shows, I spotted shirts and dresses left behind from some of the presentations. Does this mean that the designers just wanted to showcase the look – or rather the message- in the runway and just immediately after the event those pieces became garbage for real? Integration of green fashion design into a marketable product needs more than than just an eco-friendly message.
The Green Design for fashion is still in it’s early stages, no doubt much advanced than the Green Shows of last year, where most dresses were unwearable, they were just a protest, an activist’s message, but not a truly fashionable thing. The 2011 S/S collections bring an air of freshness, and true approach to real fashion design, and, if the movement does not slow down, and goes beyond being a trendy thing of the moment, we should see great solutions and great looks moving together for a future in which trash will have to be renamed , given the high value it may have in the proper hands of these true fashion designers.
I am so glad of having met with my old friend Carlos Cabeza here in Miami.
Carlos is great artist who has been living and working in Paris for more than 20 years, doing amazing work for companies like Capellini, plus many international exhibits.
His name in the Art world dates back to the time when he was assistant to Jesus Soto, the creator and major developer of Kinetic Art. Carlos is now bringing some of his energy to Miami, and we will see a great show in October, when the new Oscar Ascanio Gallery will finally open doors in Winwood. Oscar also deserves a warm welcome, because he is one of the most respected Gallery owners in Latin America, having published, edited and curated more than 30 books on Latin American Art, and from now on, we will have him permanently in Miami.
I had the chance to shoot an interesting portrait of Carlos immersed in one of his art installations, and also giving final touches to a very long ( 6 mt long) piece which will be on display at the opening. Carlos is also inviting local artist from Miami to a gallery in Paris he is curating for, as to create an Art Bridge between the 2 cities.
You are all invited to read my recent interview for Select Magazine, Issue 64, in the Miami Photographers section, where I speak of my process to relocate from Venezuela to the USA, and my life in a country that has welcomed me dearly.
You are welcome to the opening of this special solo show from photographer Jorge Parra, showcasing for the very first time ever, his Chemo-Digital Prints, developed for a long term, and still ongoing project, “Body Alchemy”, exploring the human form.
The ArtDecoMiami Gallery, located in the heart of South Beach, is the perfect setting for this exhibition, a blend of Fashion and Fine Art photography, that is clearly seen in most of Jorge’s personal and commercial work.
In this case, the human figure is the canvas for a transmutation process into a new visual expression, because it goes far beyond the original beauty and sensuality of the human body which originated the visuals in the first place, by using combined analog (darkroom) and digital (lightroom) techniques.
Opening: Thursday, June 3rd at 7:30 pm
Address is: ArtDecoMiami Gallery. 1528 Alton Road, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Exhibition runs from June 23rd through June 30, 2010 from 10 am – 6 pm
While on assignment last week, I had the chance to take a look at the surreal world of Mexico DF, or downtown Mexico, briefly. The blend of religion icons, specially “La Santa Muerte” (The Saint Death), patron of killers ,robbers and thieves, hand-operated print ” companies” that offer you any kind of fake document, including mexican passports, certificates of death, University Diplomas,etc , the ultra famous “free fighters”, and other things that popped in front of me, only helped me get more confused about what Mexico is today.
Meantime, taking a look at the Mayan ruins and all historical material gathered at the Antropological Museum, made me realize I was standing in front of the most amazing culture humanity has created, and will make me pursue a large road travel into those regions.