So, get this – some weeks ago I flew to New Orleans to meet up with an online friend of mine. Honestly, it’s not as bad as it sounds. No axe murders or mysterious disappearances involved. Here is the story.
I’ve known Weng for 4 years, we “met” on the 365project.org when we both started documenting our lives diligently with a photo each day back in 2010. Weng was posting pictures of delicious coffee drinks, amazing dinner dishes and their beautiful cats, and I really enjoyed following him. We had both picked up photography as a hobby, and we were learning and growing at the same rate. After commenting on each other’s photos for 365 days in a row, you get a pretty good idea of a person and the life they lead.
However, it wasn’t until we both stopped participating actively in the 365 project and became Facebook friends, that our collaboration grew. Weng and I started exchanging photos from our photo shoots, asking each other for constructive criticism and tips on how to improve our work. He and his wife Betty lived in London, I was in the United States, yet we connected online and we were learning from each other. Weng began taking pictures of models, and around the same time I was doing more and more photo shoots of people, so his tips and advice on posing came really handy. I’ve always thought of him as my mentor and friend, because he knows a lot more about the technical side of photography than I do.
So, when Weng messaged me one day to tall me he was coming to a photography workshop in the United States and asked me if I’d like to meet, I knew the answer was “yes.” I did not make it to the workshop, but I met up with them in New Orleans and we spend 4 days together exploring the city, drinking coffee and eating mouth-watering food, having great conversation, and taking pictures.
Weng was traveling with his wife Betty and their adorable baby Mason, and as soon as we met at the hotel lobby, we immediately liked each other in real life. The idea was for us not only to meet in person, but to shoot together. Weng was to take boudoir photos of me, so I could experience what my clients feel, and I in turn was to take their family photos because he wasn’t one to be in front of the camera often. It was out of our comfort zones for both of us, which made it interesting, but we had already established trust and we had quite a few inside jokes that broke the ice if it were ever there.
I love taking family photos on location, learn more here. 🙂