Friday, January 30, 2009

Finish the Sentence...with Mike Fulton

[cue the rockin' game show music]
"It's time once again to ask a well-known photographer, instructor or otherwise interesting person the same 10 questions and ask them to Finish the Sentence! This week the sentences are finished by.... Mike Fulton.

Mike, please Finish the Sentence..."

My favorite photography accessory (lights, modifier, bag, tripod) is
Without a doubt our Canon wireless flash and a Radio Popper attached to it. Since the Canon 550ex flash was developed I have been learning, playing and experimenting with wireless flash. Having a passion for an art form with NO LIMITS or BOUNDARIES why would you want a tool which limits your creativity by setting a maximum shutter speed setting of 1/250 of a second (or whatever your flash sync speed is) Truly with a simple light stick, canon flash unit and a radio popper set I can create light and an image anywhere in any lighting situation in any time of the day. Complete freedom and I simply love that!

I’ve learned the most from..
Working 12 years as a Crime Scene Investigator. Photography is so much more about taking the image, its dealing with people, understanding their problems - their concerns, relating to them. As a CSI I not only learned about how to deal with people by studying them and their habits I also learned off camera lighting, low light photography and many other tips and tricks I use today in the wedding and portrait world. As the old saying goes, I used to be a Crime Scene Investigator today I still photography dead people, they are just getting married and die over a longer period of time :)

If I could go anywhere in the world it would be_____ because….
If I could go anywhere in the world it would be Korea because my better half, Suzy was born there and I would like to take her back to let her enjoy the country she knows very little about. However a close second would be back to Uganda, truly an amazing country with beautiful people. I truly enjoyed the country while there covering a wedding last year, beautiful jungles, amazing wildlife, and well all around a perfect experience.

My most-used Photoshop add-on, plugin, action set (etc) is
TriCoast's Finding Color Action Set. Not because I am getting interviewed to pimp it out but the action set was developed WAY before TriCoast became "popular" we developed our action set to assist us in processing images, our style, our look. As with anything we do here at TriCoast we want to be Faster - More Effective - and More Efficient in our work. For me in our processing our Action set does that. Over 125 actions all designed for our style and our color and well just TriCoast.

I love the fact that Photoshop
Simplfies my workflow. To be honest I enjoy Photoshop and Bridge over Lightroom. While Lightroom has its advantages for me the way I process I can work faster and more effectively in Bridge and Photoshop. You give me Photoshop I can process anything and everything with again a Fast - Effective - and Efficient manner.

I hate the fact that Photoshop
Costs so much. While I know we make money as professionals having to purchase software which costs so much to place on so many computers in my office can really take a chunk out of the pocketbook. Of course you can get cheaper versions or other brands which process RAW images but the fact remains Photoshop is truly the industry standard for a reason, they are the best, so it costs money to use it. Of course with Photoshop comes a new computer, with more memory and everything else that comes with it.

If I could turn back the clock 10 years
I would have left Crime Scene Investigation and become a full time professional photographer. While I love CSI work and I miss the puzzle pieces I helped solve over those years, the job truly took its weight out on me in the form of emotions and personal loss. Being a Crime Scene Investigator one sees the worst that mankind can do to each other. Over the years you become numb to many normal emotions which one needs to experience for a healthy life. Of course I never realized this until I left the CSI world, and now with CSI in my past I feel I am a much better father to my daughter, a father figure to my niece and a companion to the love of my life, Suzy Roberts, all which make me a much happier person. Not to meantion I am getting to do my dream job, which not many people can say they get to do that.

In 10 years
I hope to still be educating, teaching, sharing and enjoying photography with other photographers. Truly sharing my knowledge with others is the key to TriCoast, it is what we live for and what makes us tick. In 10 years or 20 years or however amount of years, I hope the chance for me to share knowledge and learn in the process never goes away. Without sharing TriCoast would not be where they are today, I truly feel NO SECRETS is the key to our success in the past, today and in the future. It is why we teach our hands on workshops today and with any luck we will 10 years down the road from today.

If I could give one piece of advice it would be
Be ethical, share with others in the business and learn from everyone you can, NO SECRETS. Being a photographer is easy, being a professional photographer takes work. So many young photographers in todays business look at older photographers as someone who they can not learn from due to the styles are different or "not in style" today. The reality is the photograph is one of the least important aspects of our business, being ethical, learning, and sharing are much more important. The big difference between being a a "Photograph Shooter" and a "Professional Photographer" is not based on the talent you have behind the camera but more the talent you have away from the camera. Being a Professional Photographer involves a level of commitment that I do not believe many photographers give serious thought to. Remember to be a Professional Photographer one must understand what you are commiting yourself too, a dedication to IMPROVING and ADAPTING your skills not just for you but for the PROFESSIONAL INDUSTRY as a whole. The concept of OUR should come before the concept of I. The dedication of improving your skills to the market and more important to your persional vision is always important but you must ALWAYS play well with others in the business and treat everyone with respect. Remember to place ethics above everything else and learn from those who came before you, without them you would not be where you are today.

Your readers can find out more about me
through our 2 and 3 day VERY hands on workshops in wireless flash Ettl / Ittl thoughout the country. . Or through our art websites of (Wedding) (Seniors)

Ladies, Gentlemen, let's hear it for Mike Fulton!
[much applause and whistling as the music fades out]
Mike Fulton was born and raised in Southern Brazoria County, located just south of Houston, TX on the gulf coast. Learning his love for photography by finding his father's camera as a young teenager he self taught himself and enjoyed photography as a hobby through his high school years. While studying Criminal Justice and other science fields in college, his passion for the art of photography grew and he made the switch to professional level shortly there after. Starting in the high fashion and glamour field, Mike found his work being published in many publications ranging from art magazines to calendars. After a short term in the motion picture industry having his work displayed as props in several short films and motion pictures he found his true passion in the art of wedding photography. Bringing his love for fashion and glamour styles with him, Mike uses his knowledge and artistic eye to blend these Editorial Fashion styles with the beauty of the wedding day.


Anonymous said...

Great answers Mike and I really appreciate that you actually took the time to answer them sincerely and informative. I wish that some of the people who answer Daves' questions would actually have taken it more seriously and do like you did. Those are the type of answers that I really like to take the time to read and you are showing respect in regards to Dave blog readers not like some others did.

Dave, those are the guys who should answer your questions. He's really respecting you and us not like some others and I won't name who(s).

Jason said...

Great job Mike!!! See you in Vegas!

TriCoast Photography LLC said...

Thank you again David for the chance and honor for being a part of your great blog with us TriCoast kids have read for quite some time now. Your a class act sharing and giving back every chance you can and is truly something we look up too. I hope our answers help someone understand us (and Mike) and through sharing and believing in the NO SECRETS attitude we got to where we are today.

Thanks again and don't forget to give Jordan a hard time when you see him next, challenge him to a Photoshop or Lightroom duo I think you scare him with your knowledge :)