Long story short: I’m hoping to get back into photography as a means of breaking out of isolation, interacting socially with a creative purpose, and supporting myself! This is a fundraiser post to help me replace broken equipment.
The last few years have been very difficult. As a result of my combination of chronic illness and mental health issues, I lost my job, was evicted, moved in with a family member, which didn’t work out and rendered me homeless, until I eventually moved away from the city I lived in to a smaller town, where I stayed with a friend until I found a new place. I have various debts both privately and with my insurance and other institutions and am working on getting financial support for disability, but bureaucratic wheels turn very slowly and I’m left with not even a way to pay my rent, not to mention getting out of debt or making a living. To add to this, my long-term relationship ended right at the start of this year, which means I also lost the last bit of emergency support. I’m saying all this not to evoke any pity - I would rather not go into any detail at all about my situation because I find it humiliating, but I think that if I’m asking for favors, then I owe it to explain why I am in this mess.
I very much want to make my way back into society, get a job, pay everyone back, and be social, but I’ve been struggling with extreme social anxiety for a long time and rarely leave my home at all. Photography used to be a hobby that was incredibly helpful in getting me out of my shell and taught me to socialize and gain confidence in that area, as well as giving me a creative outlet and a sense of purpose. I’m especially into artificial lighting using DIY resources and very basic equipment, meaning I build a lot of my own stuff and improvise with very cheap materials to build sets and achieve effects that have fooled a lot of people, including fellow photographers, into thinking I use high-end equipment. I’ve been wanting to take up photography again so I could start getting out of my hibernation as well as earn some money, but throughout the years, my lights have broken and I found myself without the basic necessities to continue working on my personal style.
But why don’t I just shoot with natural light?
The photography style that I’m known for absolutely depends on artificial light and my portfolio reflects that. I tried to do natural light shoots and direly disappointed the ones who reached out to me because this was the style they desired. Natural light is beautiful, but it’s not what people collaborate with me for.
Any help would be extremely appreciated and if you’re in Germany or able to travel, I’d be happy to do a photoshoot with you in return. Of course I would also promote any contributors on my pet blog on Tumblr with currently 32k+ followers. If there’s any other reward you’d like, just let me know.
I’m hoping to buy:
2 flashes (I still have 1 functional flash, 3 flashes are enough for a lot of different lighting setups)
1 large & 1 small softbox
3 light stands
a reflector set
This is a very basic set that would allow me work my way up towards earning money and completing my setup. A real, professional studio set would be well over 5 figures, so this is a modest goal adequate for my needs.