Today, the Phoblographer celebrates four years of service to the photo world. The idea behind the Phoblographer began when I was fresh out of college and when I was extremely down on my luck during the height of the second recent economic recession. Lots of publications had to cut freelancers, the wedding industry began to change along with Google SEO algorithms to get to the top of the, “New York Wedding Photographer” search page, and I stepped out of the dark world of being a paparazzi. So while in my pajama’s and in my mom’s house, I told myself that I’d build something that would take care of me and others. It would become something larger in the photo world and would gain prominence. And four years later, we’re larger than I ever dreamed we would be. It’s a humbling feeling to have folks come up to you and say, “Your site has helped me so much” or “You guys have really taken off as of late.” And every time I hear it, I can’t get used to it.
A little over a year ago, I quit my day job to get back into full time freelancing and running the Phoblographer full time. But it was only after March that I decided to make it even larger and push more aggressively. We’ve been through a lot of changes and we’ve met some incredibly people along the way, and we haven’t hated a second of it.
But this site wouldn’t be what it is without a ton of people. For starters, there are the other editors: Gevon Knox, Julius Motal, and Felix Esser. Then there are others that have written for us before like Peter Walkowiak, Sander Martijn, Mike Pouliot, Andy Hendriksen, Jamiya Wilson and Abram Goglanian.
Then there are the folks who have influenced us and believed in us along the way: Dan Havlik at PDN, Stan Horaczek over at Pop Photo, Dave Etchells over at Imaging Resource, Laura Hicks over at Digital Camera Review, Adam and Alex over at Resource Magazine, Eric Reagan over at Photography Bay, David Elrich and Les Shu over at Digital Trends, TJ Donegan over at Reviewed, Jim Fisher at PCMag, Joe Gunawan over at SLR Lounge, John Shafer over at Photography Review, Gordon Laing over at Camera Labs, Mike Hession over at Gizmodo and lots more in the journalism world. Plus all of the PR reps, social media reps, and founders of other companies that have been such a wonderful experience to work with. A special thank you goes out to all the folks over at B&H Photo that helped me in small ways that you’d probably never even begin to realize: David Brommer, Steve Schwartz, Gabriel Biderman, Joseph Carey (now at Nikon), Kate Kliner, Afsar Arda, Yechiel Orgel, Jason Naperstek, Brian Formhals, Michael Hollender, Matthew D’Alessio, Kelly Mena, Henry Posner and the entire Marketing and Web team. But an even more special thank you goes to Hershel Waldner–who pulled me into the whole experience to begin with and who is one of the most positively emotionally radiant men one could ever be blessed to meet.
But above all else, I want to thank you. If you’re reading this right now, you’ve probably been following us for a little while. And I want you all to know that this website wouldn’t be possible without any of you or the outpouring of love that you’ve shown us for the past four years.
Every now and then, I sit here and I wonder what my life would have been like without the Phoblographer. Chances are that I might have gotten deeper into the professional video gaming world and probably would be competing in Call of Duty, DOTA 2, or other games. But if I didn’t create the site and learn all the things that I did along the way when it comes to running a business, I wouldn’t have had the journey of self-discovery that I experienced.
At nearly 27 years old though, I’m not looking to slow down. I’ve got big plans for the site. One of the big things that you need to remember as an entrepreneur is that every day that you wake up, you literally fight for your survival. Your employees might not be, but you are. And in one year, I plan to have the site’s traffic tripled from its current state. Additionally, we’re in the works of releasing two e-books next year targeted at folks all over the photo world. The site is also working with manufacturers on more lens guides, lighting tutorials, and more..
And at four years old, we want to tell you to expect bigger and better things from us overall.
Thank you again for reading this, and we hope you all enjoy coming to us as much as we enjoy producing content for you.
Editor in Chief