How to be a Facebook Photographer

If I ever have a son, before kicking him out of the house at 15, I’ll force him to take up photography. Even if he doesn’t like it, because I know that it’s for his own good.

For, if nothing changes about the world in a few decades, photographers will continue to be the luckiest bunch of people. I mean, look at our times.

Even if you are a crazy, psycho, peadophile with an oily smile, if you have a camera, you get to hang out with all the girls. Because you take pictures. And upload them on Facebook. You are important. People need you.

Photographers are an interesting bunch. Thanks to liberalization and uncles abroad, every Tom, Dick and Harry now has a camera. And every Tom, Dick, and Harry is a photographer. And every Tom, Dick, and Harry is important.

Now, I don’t have a problem with photographers as such. They are friendly people. But once they get hold of an SLR camera, there is a transformation. There are strange effects that the black object has on people’s lives and they can’t shake off those effects even if they want to.

Product of their times, I tell you. I believe every generation has a set of chutiyas.

In the 90s, there were the Roller Skate chutiyas. These kids would roam around wearing roller skates, living testimonies of the fact that the wheel might not have been the greatest invention on earth.

Zipping and zapping from here to there, roller skaters of the 90s were like Rahul Roy, very cool – but extremely transient. Of course, then liberalisation struck us, and bicycles and bikes were available. Which meant roller skating became as cool as picking your nose in a marriage video.

In the 2000s, came the Guitar Chutiyas. Wannabe rockstars who held a guitar and sang songs of love, pain, and peace. The Guitar chutiyas carried their guitars everywhere and threw up strange words like ‘chords’, and ‘progressions’. Victims of a clear case of ‘EveryoneGivesAFuckitis’, Guitar chutiyas strummed away to glory like everyone cared, and some of the 3-chord wonders are still available on youtube.

And then, in the 2010s, we have the Facebook photographers.

If you’re still interested, here are the rules you need to follow to become a Facebook Photographer.

The Display Profile: If you have a camera (which automatically means you are a photographer), you HAVE to put it up on your Display Picture. Otherwise, how else will the world know that you are a photographer? What if they think you’re a carpenter or something??

The Display Picture will have the person, and the camera next to/in front of the person. Remember, the man is as important as the camera and hence the term ‘camera-man’. A display picture with the person holding the camera and taking a picture of yourself in the mirror leaves no doubt in the mind that you are a cameraman/woman. You know, just in case people mistake you for a shoplifter or bootlegger. All I am saying is you need to make your identity clear.

The Dvaita Philosophy: Facebook Photographers follow the duality in presence. They are different from their photographs. In fact, their photography is a separate, breathing entity altogether. So much so that there will be two profiles for the Facebook Photographer. One is ‘Facebook Photographer’ (the person’s profile), and the other is a separate page called  ‘Facebook Photographer’s Photography’. If you are a Yo! photographer, you may call it ‘Facebook Shutterbugs’, or if you are confident of yourself, you may even open a page called ‘Facebook Photographers’ Fan Page’. Yes, I know!

The Original Photographers: Every photographer will use his/her originality and creativity and take some extremely creative pictures that no one earlier has either attempted or shot. Some of these extremely original photographs are: 1. The poor kid: The poor kid is guaranteed to win you ‘awww’s and ‘ooooh’s from your fans on Facebook. Screw things like Right to Privacy, I mean, they are poor right, what do they care? Then there are the photographs of babas in fairs, the close ups of flowers, or the close up of the chameleon on the rock. Your work is to come up with such beauties and open the eyes of the rest of the world.

Editing: Once you’re done with taking the photograph, you have to remember to edit the fuck out of it. Deepen the colours, improve the brightness, alter the focus, and throw in some shadows for effect. But photography is about the photograph and not the effects, you say? What rubbish! Would Sachin be the same without his MRF? Or Karan without his Kavach and Kundal? Or Rakhi Sawant without her …. you get the idea! Similarly, when you have those effects on photoshop, why not use it? I mean, computers are emitting out gases and ruining the world. It’s only fair that while we are at it, we use whatever resources we have with us.

Copyrighting: After you’re done tweaking the photograph, remember to stamp your identity over it. This is done by putting your watermark over the picture. Here, it is important to remember that others may take away your picture from your profile. Hence, it is important to put the watermark clearly on the photograph. I would suggest putting a huge watermark right across the middle of the image. The watermark becomes more prominent than the actual picture? What nonsense! Haven’t you seen the most famous painting of the world?

The Global Tagger: But your work is not done after taking that terribly original photograph. You have to tag people to your photograph. This is where you have to be magnanimously generous. The more number of people you tag, the higher your ratings go. Your friend, his friend, his aunt, her neighbours, their dog, it’s vet, his child, and their teachers. No one that you know should be spared from the joy of watching you capture that poor little child on the road or that bumble bee that waltzed into your room. I mean, after all, your uncle in the US spent so much money on getting you the camera. What is the point in quietly pursuing the profession?

Follow these simple steps, and you’re all set. Remember to take your camera everywhere – who knows, you might discover a peacock shaped turd in the potty? The sky is the limit.

*****

59 thoughts on “How to be a Facebook Photographer

  1. Aditi Saha

    Great article, your cynicism is spot on. But the thing is please don’t generalize or categorize every other DSLR user in this country. Because there are very few honest DSLR users, who click pictures for their own satisfaction, not just for someone’s attention. Although I agree, most guys are DSLR chutiyas, yet not all.

    Yours,
    Tom, Dick & Sally

    Reply
  2. Devarsi Ghosh

    Reblogged this on Chasing Rabbits and commented:
    My favorite Indian blogger besides Raja Sen, Brangan and Arnab Ray (great bong) is Heartranjan. Never really reblogged on WordPress so I don’t know how that looks like. Hence reblogging. Ok? Ok.
    Also, he’s fantastic anyway.

    Reply
  3. Shweta

    like you have heard the argument I made many times, I have heard yours the same number of times and I dont want to debate on this. you ll stick your point and i ll stick to mine.
    Cheers!

    Reply
  4. Shweta

    good piece. but i am surprised. you were talking about respecting women in one piece and ‘chu..’ a hundred times in this one?
    abusing one the name of the same woman whom u say should be respected?

    Reply
    1. heartranjan Post author

      Ah! Not the same argument all over again.

      See, humour is always associated with using a certain amount of profanities. And after a point, they are not taken literally. Like, when I say to a friend – “Fuck You”, I’m not really wanting to fuck him. Its just an accepted way of saying it. Also, when I call someone a chutiya, I am using it as a colloquial substitute for an idiot.

      I don’t think calling someone that makes a person’s opinions, or feelings about women and feminism any weaker. Things aren’t taken so colloquially at some places. For eg. Anywhere in India, if you call someone ‘saala’, they won’t really mind. But I have had problems with auto guys in Old Hyderabad because of the word. So may be the word offended you, but to most people, it’s treated as a colloquial substitute. That’s the thing about words – they evolve, their meanings change. Fifty years ago, saying the word ‘cocksucker’ got Lenny Bruce in jail. In jail, imagine. But its common these days, isn’t it?

      Reply
  5. Sameer

    Haha very well described! Do you take requests? it would be interesting to read an article on the cool dudes of our generation who “tink dat its cool n awsm 2 write lyk dis” 😉

    Reply
  6. gbz

    I’ve been photographing around for quite alot of time. Now that i felt like taking a step further and mustering up my finances and courage to give it a “shot” and buy an SLR ….. i read this post.
    And all my enthusiasm drew back into a shell lolzz….

    Reply
  7. Sunil Ch

    And, another thing! – one privilege I have over many of your readers is that I know what fun it is to hear you talk about these things! Great going, man!

    Reply
  8. Sunil Ch

    hahaha! thanks for this one, SHR! I just luuv your comparisons (similes)! Ones like – “..as cool as picking your nose in a marriage video” – are hilarious! They come when least expected and you never fail to impress with these. Kudos!

    Reply
  9. Rohan

    Seriously awesome! Had me laughing throughout the post!! And there is this bunch of people who are on the other side of the lens. . The ones who start posing the moment the see a camera. . The ones who thrust their camera to a random guy to click. .

    Reply
  10. ACN

    Can agree to pretty much except the watermarking part…. Say that after you see your photo being sold by someone to some xyz website/corporation for abc $$$s…. No good photographer would want to put a bold watermark on the photo barring its beauty… but the instances when you see your photo being “sold” as someone else’s or being entered into contests by someone else or even bragged about by someone else as if its his own, is not a very good feeling.

    with the technologies available today cloning out a small/insignificant watermark is no big deal and hence urging ppl who want to protect their photos to put on LOUD and BOLD watermarks.

    and about Picasso/Michelangelo not using watermarks, they didnt have these problems at that time… 😛

    nevertheless good article and nice read.

    Reply
  11. Manju

    Did you know, there is an easy option in Facebook to disable people from tagging you in photos.
    Rather than spending so long a time cribbing, you could go an activate it
    😉

    Reply
  12. Avadhesh Malik (@Cpt__Bane)

    hahaha …….. awesome dude!! ……. it was hilarious …….. and yes…… I am a photographer… and I’m guilty of some of these charges ……… but let me tell you ……… there are photographers …….and there are wannabes with SLRs …….. there’s a fine line in between… …….. (and I’m going to change my twitter profile pic ASAP 😉 ) ………

    Reply
  13. najeem (@najeem)

    i am a ‘facebook photographer’! i can agree to many of your points here and this was an interesting and hilarious read!! But well, as i’ve understood, you were more pissed about the bunch of photographers who tags every one of their friends in their mediocre photos (which they think are superb). You should have been more specific about this lot! All the other tom dick and harry who pursue their passion in a quite way doesnt deserved to be mocked at like this! Everybody in this world wants to be important, and they seek attention. That i believe is the whole idea of facebook. If you (the blogger) is not an attention seeker, why would you even write this blog?

    Reply
  14. muhaha

    The more mediocre the photograph, the more prominent the watermark. I think they misunderstand what ‘signature’ style means.

    Reply
  15. Divija

    crap.. just C.R.A.P.
    do you realize that there are better things to do in this world than to mock at someone’s hobby/passion and the way they pursue it? Get well Soon!

    Reply
  16. kim

    Yeah.. when did blog chutiyas pick up? I guess sometimes between guitar chutiyas and photographer chutiyas…
    me write blog…
    me funny…
    me write novel
    me win nobel prize
    🙂

    Reply
  17. bharatwrites

    If I see another DSLR wannabe on my facebook news feed with a photo of a dew drop on a flower petal, I will unfriend him or her. What is up with these nuts? To me, all such photos merge into this blur that signals douchebaggery.

    Reply
  18. SuperKC

    I wanna kill 3-4 aholes who caused ass in my pain and i deactivated my fb profile. Every asshole having a camera around his neck thinks he is a photographer. Worst thing is they will tag u and sometimes personally message u to like and comment their pic.

    Reply
    1. neversawu

      “personally message u to like and comment their pic.”…yeah…that is the most painful part…I myself have been taking pictures for about 3 years now…but I don’t remember ever having forced anyone to look at my pictures…

      Reply
  19. shruti

    I totally get ur point… Since people dont tag gals in weird pics… I am saved…. But my husband gets tagged on a bikini model pic !

    Reply
  20. SS

    Very well written. Even I got some chutiya friends in my list, so I’d been thinking of writing something similar; you made my job easy – now I’ll just share it on my profile and tag them. One more point to add here – to become a Facebook Photographer you not only need to take and tag, but also make chutiyapa comments to the photos you’ve been tagged, like – ‘I think brightness could have been increased’, or ‘why don’t you crop the baba’s head and zoom on his skinny hands to make it more vivid’!
    A thumb rule is that a Facebook photographer can never be satiated … if not revealed to them, they can find a fault even in world’s best photography.

    Reply
  21. aandthirtyeights

    Brilliant! Hahahaha! Facebook photographers also think that a blurry photo is the best photo. So, only the eye of the said chameleon or the tip of its tail is in focus. If there are four flowers, only one petal is in focus. If there is a person, only her nose is in focus. What’s the point of a owning a DSLR if you take clear, crisp photos?

    Reply
  22. sg

    I was excited to read the article but then your use of “coz” instead of “because” put me off. Shorthands like those bother me more than pretentious facebook photographers.

    Reply
  23. Akshay

    I enjoyed reading this post. Man this is tooo good 🙂 i got few chutiyas with me as well 🙂 can relate everythng you said:) lol good one bro.. keep writing & keep rocking.. cheers 🙂

    Reply
  24. Dinesh Bhat

    every word you said here is true enough.!! 🙂 i always wanted to write this kind of shit and let all those ‘Wannabe’ photographers on Facebook 😛 they’re so damn annoying.. they’re just ruining the real image of true photographers..!! i got so bugged of those wannabes that i opened my own fan page to prove them they do nothing but editing.!! have a look https://www.facebook.com/pages/Who-says-photography-is-all-about-SLRs/213427008736181

    no no.. im not advertising my page 😛 i just want you to have a look at this and feel that its true.. you dnt even have to like my page or wat ever..!! and oh.. read the ‘about’ info of that page.. i’ve written somewhat similar to what you’ve written here 🙂

    cheers.!!

    Reply
    1. Mahinoor

      Ur page is really shitty…. i cant see any photography skills there. You are just another Wanabe Photographer. Thank you

      Reply
  25. Rahul

    i really enjoyed reading this piece, every bit of description. Myself being a so called facebook photographer i totally accept to what ever u say. its brilliantly put in through ur writing.. i always thought of writing something like this..cheers..

    Reply
  26. nabeela

    things like this make u laugh when u want to cry…thanks :)…its hilarious and some points are very well said…btw kya dushmani hai aapki photographers se?? (kidding) 😀

    Reply
    1. heartranjan Post author

      Thanks! 😀

      Koi dushmani nahi hai. Actually, the photographers I personally know are really good. But I was getting tagged in some random photographers’ pictures and it was quite annoying, which led me to write this!

      Reply
      1. thedewarist

        I am just glad you said it out LOUD, cause i was getting so annoyed telling people don’t FUCKING TAG ME… now i can post this in their message box, and not get disturbed. Ever.

        Job well done.

        Reply
      2. sree

        If getting tagged is your problem then i think there is a option which lets you to approve someone to tag you or not. You are doing the same what photographers does to get fame; imagination. They use use their camera , you use your key board.

        Reply

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