by J. Rae Chipera

Most photographers have heard at least one of these questions before. Regardless of how harmless they seem, they really hurt a photographer's soul. We all have our way of reacting to these questions. Here are a few funny (and a few serious) suggestions for those photographers who haven't heard them before. I hope you don't get caught off guard.

<<Disclaimer. This is intended to be funny.>>

QUESTION: Are you really a professional, though? You don’t have a degree.
ANSWER: No... me so stupidz me thinky four plus four is seven.
ANSWER: Actually, I just like taking pictures of naked people. Art school rejected me for that.
ANSWER: I fit into a unique group of professionals without a degree. Other members are Katy Perry, Halle Berry, Michael Dell, Michael Jackson, Rachel Ray, Steven Spielberg, and Henry Ford.

QUESTION: Your camera takes really nice pictures! Will you give me some advice on my photos? 
ANSWER: That pen in your pocket must write some great novels. Will you give me some advice on writing best-sellers?
ANSWER: Yea all you have to do is point and shoot.
ANSWER: Sure. The best advice I can give is that the lens goes forward.

QUESTION: I want to learn how to use Photoshop. Will you give me your RAW files?
ANSWER: Sure. I can give you the RAW files I took of my dog pooping.
ANSWER: What's a RAW file? Is that like a negative?
ANSWER: I sell my RAW files for $1000 each. It is probably cheaper for you to just pay for one of my workshops.

QUESTION: Can’t you just photoshop that? 
ANSWER: What's Photoshop? Is that like Picasa?
ANSWER: Yea, as long as you're willing to pay for the added time that will take. It might take up to 13 extra hours.
ANSWER: Unfortunately no. Photoshop can only fix dust spots and pimples.

QUESTION: Can I have all the reject photos too please?
ANSWER: I don't take reject photos.
ANSWER: That's what my parents said about reject kids, but they lied. They never wanted me.
ANSWER: Actually, they're all reject photos.

QUESTION: I wanted to invite you to my event. Can you bring your camera?
ANSWER: Sure, I'd love to. Tomorrow, I can give you an invoice so you know how much I charge for event photography.
ANSWER: What camera? I don't have a camera.
ANSWER: Why? Are there going to be any people there to take pictures of?

QUESTION: Isn't it just the camera? I mean if I had a camera like that, I could take the same photos you do.  
ANSWER: By all means, use my camera. Let's show the world what you get.
ANSWER: Oh no. You've discovered my secret. Please don't tell anyone about this ripoff of a business.
ANSWER: Which way do the Canon balls go into this thing?

QUESTION: Is it easy to run a photography business? 
ANSWER: As easy as it is to run any other type of business. 
ANSWER: Wait... this is supposed to be a business?
ANSWER: No. It's really hard. The voices in my head keep telling me to click the shutter at different times. It's a constant war over art.

QUESTION: Isn't your job easy? I mean, all you do is click a button all day, right?
ANSWER: Yes it's really easy. In fact, I'm looking for an assistant next week when I go to ___________ (name of remote place requiring lots of physical strength to get to). Do you want to go with me and help carry my gear so I can click the button better?
ANSWER: That's not cool. I have a disability that makes it really hard to move my fingers. Except my middle one.
ANSWER: I guess the same could be said for those people who set off the dynamite with the push switch. I think I'll go do that for a while.

QUESTION: Which is better? A Canon or a Nikon?
ANSWER: Actually, the best camera on the market right now is an iPhone 6.
ANSWER: Well not this piece of crap camera. You need the most expensive one on the market if you want good pictures.
ANSWER: I prefer ________. They're the only camera you can completely submerge in water.

QUESTION: Can you post your photos onto Facebook without the watermark? My mom wants to print them out.
ANSWER: No, but I can print them without a watermark for your mom for the price of $______ , my going rate.
ANSWER: Sure. Should I put up the naked ones too? I'll make sure to send them directly to her wall.
ANSWER: Wait, which ones were the ones of you? Were they the ones in the strip club, or the ones at the nude beach?

QUESTION: Can I pay you in three installments over a year? My wedding took a lot of money out of my pockets.
ANSWER: Sure, I can let you pay in installments, but like any other business, I have to charge you interest. Most people end up paying at least 10% interest, depending on their credit score.
ANSWER: This is not a furniture store or a car dealership.
ANSWER: Only if I can take your images in three installments over a year.

QUESTION: I only need a few photos taken. Is that cheaper?
ANSWER: If you go to a restaurant and order your cheeseburger without pickles and onions, is that cheaper?
ANSWER: Your mom is cheaper.
ANSWER: If you can convince my cable network to only charge me for the seven channels I watch and not all of them, then yes.

QUESTION: Why is the background blurry like that?
ANSWER: I think you might need glasses. You seem to be nearsighted.
ANSWER: I didn't notice that before. There must be a ghost haunting you in the image.
ANSWER: That's a rip in the fabric of space. We were lucky to get out of there before we fell into hell.

QUESTION: Will you edit the selfie I took for my Facebook page?
ANSWER: Well that depends... do you still have the negative?
ANSWER: Sure, as long as you don't mind my making you look like a zombie.
ANSWER: Sure, as long as you want to look like an alien. I've been meaning to get more familiar with the blur tool.

QUESTION: Is there a discount if I edit the pictures myself? I have Picasa.
ANSWER: No, in fact I charge more for that because of added legal fees.
ANSWER: You use Picasa too? Best editing software ever!
ANSWER: Sure. Does Picasa read a RAW file?

QUESTION: I don't have to give you credit when I post your photo on my Facebook page, do I? 
ANSWER: No, it's not necessary, as long as you don't mind me putting a giant watermark in the corner. 
ANSWER: No you don't. I'll just make sure to take terrible pictures of you so that I don't mind not getting credit.
ANSWER: No, as long as you are willing to pose next to my cat.

QUESTION: Is it okay if I crop your watermark off the photo?
ANSWER: Sure, as long you're willing to pay an invoice for a photo without a watermark when I send it.
ANSWER: If you bribe me with enough alcohol, then still no.
ANSWER: Oh you can't crop off my watermark. It's made of real water, and it stains the picture like blood on white carpet. Oh... speaking of blood on white carpet, I need to go to the store.
by J. Rae Chipera
(not a Twitter stockholder)

Alas, my un-named source who works for Google has informed me about the truth behind the rumors that Google+ will abandon ship.

The truth is that they are dismantling Google+ and all existing employees are going to work on the secret Dinosaur Cloning Development department. Jurassic Park will benefit our economy by eating Facebook. After all, Google's only concern as a corporation is NOT increasing the wealth of its shareholders and ensuring the longevity of its long-term assets - it's all about taking down that face place. 

The reorganization originally happened because of a broken light bulb. Nobody could figure out how many Google employees to get to fix it. Thus the light bulb went unchanged, and our beloved Mr. Vic Gundotra had to resign because he couldn't see the power button to turn his computer on at work.

With his departure, the entire platform will go to the Dinosaur Development project because no project on earth has ever survived after its leader leaves - ever. In the history of all time. Though people have been working hard on Google+, it's just not allowed to function anymore now that Gundotra is leaving.

<<Disclaimer: This truth has been completely made up. Thanks for clicking.>>>
by J. Rae Chip

To all the friendly people reading this and all the indifferent ones who happened upon it by mistake: I hope you get some negative feedback on your site. You deserve it. And yes, that is a complement. Want to know why? Keep reading!

I owe a big fat thank you to my internet trolls. Most businesses only get positive feedback, and consumers don't really have a lot of trust in businesses with only good feedback. It seems fabricated and fake. So I really appreciate you bringing humanity and reality to my web presence. If you are a business owner, and you have negative feedback, weigh that carefully because it's not necessarily bad. Just because John Doe on Yelp didn't like that you shoot too many flowers and sunsets and wants to spread that all over the internet doesn't mean that people who like flowers and sunsets will dislike you.

My trolls like to spread that I'm a possible psychopath with a fetish for the apocalypse. Someone once accused me of breaking and entering into an abandoned building (for the record, I don't break and enter, and I'm not a psychopath. I will plead guilty to being obsessed with the apocalypse, though.) So I don't get a surplus of people calling me to ask about shooting their newborn photography. Since newborn photography isn't my niche or a particular interest, that's not really bad for me. 
Rumors about my alleged nefariousness and creepiness have raised interest for my business in the fields I do enjoy. I get crazy calls. If the police ever tap my phone they'll wonder about the people calling me. Someday, someone is going to call me wanting me to shoot them naked in a coffin with blood all over and a sign saying "killed by the chocolate sauce killer" with chocolate sauce smeared all over the wall in the shape of a skull and cross-bones and cherries as eyes. Seriously, that could happen. And I would find that fun to shoot. (Again, I'm not a psychopath. I just like fake blood, chocolate, cherries, and naked people.)

My h8rs don't like that use a pseudo name. They'll have to get over it. It is extremely common for artists, writers, famous people, etc. to use pseudo names. It's not illegal, and I can use whatever name I want. People use pseudo names to protect their identity, which is what I am doing by using one.

Someone I admire once said that "Anyone can create something mediocre, call it art, and post it on the internet. And people will like it. But you know you're a real artist when you have a group of haters who are just as adamant as your fans." The thing is... my art can piss people off. And I'm okay with that because when they get mad, I know they took the time to look at it. It makes me happy when people look at what I create.

Between six months and a year ago, someone who was very popular online had a lot of untrue things to say about me, and it really bothered me. A bunch of other people jumped on that bandwagon. I was so upset by it that I deleted that social network page. And when the people who joined the mob against me found out the truth behind the situation, some of them felt like a$$*%@s, and they were. But when the apologized, I forgave them. One positive externality I didn't foresee was the immense jump in web traffic I got from people wanting to know who the f%&$ I thought I was. This popular person is the founder of the "Foes with an Unhealthy Compulsion for J. Rae" Club (FUC for short).

J. Rae Chip Productions' website jumped from the second page of search results for one of our target keywords to the very top slot on the first page, overnight. So thank you for the negative publicity, FUC J. Rae Club.

And now I find myself facing a new evolved form of troll: the anonymous troll with some smart friends. (I suppose it's a possibility that the troll is diabolical too, but I envision trolls more as short people with pointy noses and poofy hair who cause trouble under bridges and don't know what the frack a computer is.)

So since this new attack is all about posting alleged personal / private information of "mine" all over the public internet, I'm sure they will not mind if I name them. So... to Marty Phillips, Mondo Diaz, Amanda Kroenig, HAHAHA, Samantha Samson, and Drew Q, I would like to again say thank you. These people are the new officers of the adamant FUC J. Rae Club.

I find it ironic that these people are so angry that I use a pseudo name. HAHAHA can't possibly be the person's real name. And if it is, I totally understand why they're so angry. It's more likely that I'm being attacked by a bunch of pseudo names who are mad at me for having a pseudo name. The difference between me and them is that on my social media accounts, my profile is filled out. Theirs is not.

So this FUC J. Rae Club has several avenues. First they went with the ingenious tactic of nicely asking me about myself and my history. Blue headed Mondo Diaz asked me on Google Plus. I didn't think anything of it because I don't discriminate by skin tone. However, my professional life is not usually something I discuss on social media, as I find that saying "HELLO MY NAME IS BEST ARTIST IN THE WHOLE WORLD" all the time is a huge turn-off. I really don't like it when people do that to me, so I try not to do it to my friends. So when "Diaz" asked, I gave short answers and a re-direct to a different site where my work is more directed to the business world.

Then, when they couldn't verify every single little thread of information they found about me, they started e-mailing my friends, telling them that I was a liar. They commented on my Google Plus profile, and then courageously deleted their comments after I notified Google bigwigs of the event. Luckily I have screen shots because my fans are geniuses.

Like magic, all of a sudden I started seeing my web hits climbing again. Maybe this time I can get onto the first page of search results for an entirely different keyword. Once again, I have discovered that for some reason, someone somewhere finds me interesting enough to join the FUC J. Rae Club and start FUCing. Maybe the president of the Club, the founder, is recruiting. Maybe not. Hell if I know. Or care.

I do, however, really appreciate the ungodly amount of time these trolls must be spending marketing my business for me. It seriously is saving me a lot of money. 

That said, I did finally have to notify the police about this cyber-stalking campaign from the FUC J. Rae Club. It's not cool to post someone's personal information all over the internet. Whether or not my name really is what they say it is (redacted to protect the real identity of a person who they say I am), or if it is Jennifer Smith or Gretchen Green or Booger Flicker or whatever, it is not cool to put someone's home address on the internet. That is when it bridges the canyon from "trolling" to "stalking." I also reported it to Google.

The thing is... whether or not my real last name is actually Chipera (which I will neither confirm nor deny), I know people with that last name. I like that name, and so I use it. On Google+ I shortened it to Chip for the sake of an easier link between this website and that profile. Is Chipera a pseudo name? Who the hell cares, and why does it matter?

Trolls... please grow some humanity and stop posting someone's address on my Flickr, Google+, and 500PX profiles. How would you feel if someone did that to you? Please stop saying I'm a liar simply because you can't verify every piece of information about me with the Internet. I sure hope everyone doesn't post every aspect of their lives on the Internet. That is extremely unsafe!

So... Dear FUC J. Rae Club... thank you for being one of my most efficient marketing groups. I didn't solicit your services, but seriously this is the best free service I've ever had!
One of the things the FUC J. Rae Club says about me is that I was never in Egypt. 

Well here's a photo that I obviously didn't take on a trip that I probably didn't go on. I also have some non-existent friends who were nice enough to host me in their house while I was not there. They didn't even feed me! Since they are paranoid about internet stalkers (though I can't understand why, because obviously there is no such thing as internet stalkers), it is hard to verify their nonexistence by simply the internet alone. And I respect their privacy, so I don't see a reason to ever reveal their identities for any stupid reason. I will not divulge that even if you pretend to be the FBI.

This piece, which I drew freehand with a box of crayons while sitting at a desk in the United States, having never seen the pyramids or the sphinx, is my single most-popular piece. It has sold hundreds of copies. It has been in three galleries in three different countries so far (none of which post photos of the art on the internet out of respect to the artists), which is part of the reason why I chose them. I like having more control over my work as it appears on the internet. If you want to see my expert crayon skills, this piece is currently being exhibited in New Mexico. Stop by and go take a look at it if you want.

And no... this blog post is NOT sarcastic. At all.

by J. Rae Chip

We all know that one guy.... that one a$$hole, who always seems to make money off photography while everyone else struggles to find business. Well wonder no longer, I've discovered his secret! In fact, there are several different types of successful people.

1) The arrogant bastard.
There's that one guy who makes more sales than you because he takes advantage of you! There's always that one guy who posts a link to his blog post on your social media post, taking the audience away from your website and re-directing them to his. He always knows what's best for everyone, and if people disagree with him, well nobody ever has, so we don't know what would happen.

2) The mediocre photographer.
Ever see someone's work and say, "Dammit... why are people praising him so much. My work is so much better!" Well he's a marketing genius. He's constantly running ads, making friends, and well maybe he's already famous for something else in his community. The fact of the matter is that you CAN do better work than him, but for some reason you don't like to brag about it as much to other people.

3) The yay-sayer.
This ass-kisser is always talking about how awesome every piece of gear is, how awesome social media sites are, and how lovely his own excrement smells (and by the way yours smells nice too.) Every camera lens is perfect, and he knows this before he has even used one. Sometimes he knows this before the lens even comes out for purchase. Because he's so good at talking about how awesome everything is, companies promote him so that their customers can see his promotion of their products (and then be disappointed later when it turns out to be a load of bull.)

4) The whiney b%$ch
This guy complains about complaining. He's always whining, and his complaining has become a successful alter-ego. Drama sells, and he is FULL of drama. Everyone either thinks he's a jerk, or maybe a woman pretending to be a man. Everyone hates him, but for some reason, people listen to what he has to say. Blogs and journalists seek his negativity, and he is more than willing to feed it to them.

5) That one lucky guy.
There's always one. One in five successful people have worked hard and are nice enough people to truly deserve to be successful in the way they are. (Note: That statistic is completely made up.) But we all know that one, sweet person who drives a Lamborghini, lives in a mansion, and has worked hard for every penny. We hate that guy! But he's so nice, and that just makes us hate him more, because we want to say he doesn't deserve that kind of fame, but he does! He even offered to take you for a ride in his car, and that just makes you hate him more.

So there you go. The ultimate recipe for success at photography:
One part arrogance
One part mediocre work
One part ass-kissing
One part complaining
And a little bit of luck

Now, go be successful!
It's been a while since my blog has had a dose of humor, so I decided to incorporate some. Those who know me know that I'm definitely joking around far more often than I'm being serious. Life is supposed to be fun!

Here's something for my photographer friends. Have you ever been asked? Have you ever wanted a great reply?

To a photographer: That is a great photograph. You must have a nice camera!
To a chef: That was a fine meal. You must have some great pots!
To a chef: That was a nice dinner. You must have a good cookbook!

To a parent: This is a nice house. You must have a great maid!
To a mother: Those are some great children. You must be a good breast feeder.
To a parent: You have some great children. You must have a great parenting book. 

To a model: You have a nice body. You must have a great plastic surgeon.
To a make up artist: Wow your eyeshadow is nice. You must have a great q-tip.
To a hairdresser: Wow your hair looks great. You must have a fantastic brush.
To a writer: Wow this is a great story. You must have a nice keyboard.
To a designer: Wow this is a cool dress. You must have a nice sewing machine.
To a musician: This song really speaks to me. You must have a great guitar. 
To a decorator: Wow you made this room look nice. You must have a great paintbrush.
To a painter: Wow this painting is awesome! You must have a great brush.
To an architect: Wow that design is so cool! You must have a great pencil. 

To a minister: Wow that was a great sermon. You must have a very good bible.
To a doctor: Wow I feel so much better. You must have a great stethoscope.
To a fireman: You put out that fire? You must have a great firetruck.
To a gardener: Your yard looks awesome! You must have a great lawnmower.
To an athlete: You run so fast! You must have some great cops back home.
I've been using this new software called Tyfromagnicon, and it works for pretty much any photo I shoot. I used it on a portrait, landscape, cityscape, waterscape, on a cat and even on a macro shot of a flower.

I think its HDR capabilities are the best available, as it has the capability to make a scene look like it was taken anywhere, including places that exist only in one's imagination. And you don't have to spend any time in photoshop. Composites are way easier, and take only a few seconds.

The flower picture I used it with was out of focus, but Tyfromagnicon was able to make it in focus. If you take the shot and later decide that you should have taken a few steps to the right or left, Tyfromagnicon also has a slider for that. It also has a very useful feature of being able to make anyone look like Megan Fox. It is for this reason that I find it to be of the utmost use for my work. I don't need to use lights to make anyone look attractive anymore, and I don't need to know anything about the settings on my camera. I can just snap away against any backdrop and Tyfromagnicon can change it! Everyone must buy it, or else you can't be a serious professional photographer.

Because I wrote this snazzy review, and because you're nice and decided to read it, the TyfroStore is offering a 50% discount on new purchases with this code: ekaf43 si6 siht