Tilt and Shift Photography Podcast

Photography from a HEART of SERVICE: Conversation with Daniel Kim

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Have you ever wondered how a photographer’s journey can transform their art and business? In this episode, I get to talk with Daniel Kim, a photographer who’s not just capturing moments, but creating art with a deep sense of service.

The Artistic Transformation

Daniel Kim’s journey isn’t just about photography; it’s about life changes that reshaped his vision. A couple of years ago, his work took a significant turn, becoming more beautiful, intentional, and meaningful. He shares his experiences with family and clients, offering insights into his creative process and the shifts in his life.

Approaching Photography with Reactivity

Daniel discusses the reactive nature of photography, especially in genres like wedding photography. It’s about responding to the moment, understanding the scene, and bringing your unique perspective. This approach differentiates photographers who meticulously set up their shots from those who capture the spontaneity of life.

“Like with wedding photography, it’s reactive, right? Because we’re at an event, we don’t know what’s happening. We’re reacting to it. But I think there’s also that element of we do get to make it up in a sense. Because, for example, if you’re framing the scene a certain way, and it requires you to step out of the room, and then like go on the other side of this wall. Well, you’re manipulating the scene by where you choose to stand. And so, you’re bringing in all these other elements to make this you’re creating up. You’re just instead of making something like out of thin air and like getting a set and like getting props and things like that you’re doing it on the fly. That’s why I was trying to tell somebody: Wedding photography does require for me to have skill sets, skill set, skill set, skill set, skill set. So, I have to be like a Swiss army knife.”

Balancing Artistry with Business
An essential element of Daniel’s philosophy is the balance between artistry and business in photography. He speaks about the struggle many photographers face in seeing themselves as artists due to the utilitarian nature of the medium. His experiences in art school and his foray into wedding photography are testaments to this struggle and his journey towards finding his identity as an artist in a business context.

The Athlete’s Mindset in Photography
Daniel uses a unique analogy to describe his work approach: being an athlete. This mindset involves discipline, skill, and the readiness to adapt to any situation. Like athletes, photographers need a diverse skill set to respond to various scenarios, especially in event photography.

Embracing the Human Aspect
According to Daniel, a significant part of photography is dealing with people and emotions. He stresses the importance of collaboration, not just with clients but with everyone at an event. This people-centric approach adds depth and authenticity to his work.

“Because we’re event photographers and portrait photographers and photojournalists and all of these. And we also have to respond to all of all of the emotions that and I’ll call the people management, right? Even if you’re not necessarily managing people. You’re dealing with a wide variety of people. It’s not just the one person that you’re collaborating with. I feel like I’m collaborating with everybody who’s there, not just my client.”

Artistry vs. Documentation

Daniel explores the fine line between taking photographs as a form of documentation and creating art. He believes that the photographer’s intention and perspective are what elevate a photograph from mere documentation to art.

A Journey of Self-Discovery Influencing Art

Daniel shares his personal journey towards self-discovery, including attending the Hoffman process, which helped him align his internal struggles with his professional life. This transformation led to a deeper understanding of his work as an artist and the impact of self-worth and self-belief on artistic expression.

Pushing Boundaries in Art

Daniel doesn’t shy away from discussing the need to push boundaries in his work. He candidly shares instances where he chose to take creative risks, stepping outside conventional norms to capture moments in unique and innovative ways. This willingness to experiment and embrace uncertainty has been a driving force in his artistic evolution.

Heart of Service in Photography

Daniel talks about approaching photography with a heart of service, emphasizing the importance of being responsive and accommodating to clients’ and guests’ requests during events. This approach, he believes, adds significant value to the photographs, capturing not just images but memories filled with emotion and meaning.

Final Thoughts

This conversation with Daniel Kim was both enlightening and thought-provoking. He emphasizes adaptability, emotional intelligence, and creativity, akin to an athlete’s discipline. His approach highlights the importance of genuine connections and pushing creative boundaries. His journey inspires photographers to blend personal growth with professional skills, reminding us that photography is more than just capturing images – it’s about capturing the essence of experiences and stories.






Learn more about coaching and mentoring at bobbibeducation.com.

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