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Meet Burbank Photographer: George Grigorian

Today we’d like to introduce you to George Grigorian.

George, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I love my wife and I love soccer, I knew those two for certain back in early 2002 before my first son was born. When we were getting ready to welcome my first son, Adrian to this world we did the regular first-time parent things… getting a digital camera to take pictures and a camcorder to make ever-lasting videos. I started taking a lot of pictures of him from the day he was born in early Oct. When I was taking pictures of Adrian, I started noticing familiar feeling in my heart about taking pictures… it felt the same way I felt about playing soccer. I didn’t pay too much attention to it until my second son was born in Dec. of 2004. Starting in early 2005, I decided finally to invest some money and get some real gears, take some lighting classes at Art Center in Pasadena (best decision ever for my photography career!!!) and do a lot of self-study and self-corrections based on reviewing my work, online materials and feedback from other professional photographers.

I knew from beginning that I loved fashion photography. Something about makeup and the lighting used for fashion shoots has always mesmerized me. Of course, there are different lighting styles but when you look at my work you’ll see that I’m more focused on simple lighting and on the subject.

Being a freelance photographer, a father of three and madly in love with my wife and family before anything else in life, I haven’t gone as far as one would feel I should have with my photography by now. But, I’ve never stopped either. I do anything I get a request for an get paid for. I still do headshots for actors and business folks, editorial shots, shoot dancers in pole, lyra and aerial studios, shoot events, shoot sports related events from pole dancing competitions to professional soccer games for press, I also shoot products and anything that would make my heart happy. I do apply my lover for fashion photography to my shoots though. I always try to capture people at their strongest and most confident look.

I love what I do and people always sense that and it creates a very positive and energetic atmosphere.

Has it been a smooth road?
It’s never a smooth road, but that’s what makes it fun. Smooth anything is boring. Struggles are always keeping the life and work balance. Having to split your time between doing what you love and being with people you love is the difficult part. I always rather be with people I love vs. doing what I love. So that’s always been my struggle. But I will always choose to be with people I love over doing what I love , that will never change. People that understand and appreciate that about me always get the best results and the 3000% commitment from me.

So, what should we be on the lookout for, what’s next in store for you?
I am planning to focus more on shooting small sized weddings and parties. So I can continue to give myself away 100% to the event. I don’t want to share the process with another photographer since it is my name that goes on all the images. People that I work with truly enjoy my style and I don’t want that to be changed. I haven’t been paying too much attention in shooting those kinds of events but they do bring me happiness and pleasure as well. So I may start focusing more on those.

Let’s go backward a bit – can you tell us about the most trying time in your career?

I am currently going through some of the hardest time in my life. I haven’t worked in 6 months (I am a technical project manager at my day job) and it’s been very tough financially to keep our spirits high. I have 3 kids (boys, 13, 11 and 8) and my wife is a strong rock that’s been always very supportive of my artistic side and one of my biggest believers in my ability to always deliver. Despite having many interviews, I still haven’t landed an offer… I will need to focus more on the photography side to be able to make up for this 6 months of no income.

I’ve always been a fighter though. I left Iran when I was 19 and lived here in Southern California for the past 28 years. I’d much rather have a tough challenging life vs. a boring quiet one. It feeds my artistic side as well. BUT, if they asked if I’d rather be a full-time photographer and make the same money as I make being a Technical Project Manager, I would take being a full-time photographer in a heartbeat.

What about “Wow-moments” – any moments that stick out? Any moments when you felt like you had made it?
I knew what it feels like to love something, so when I realized I love photography, I was also able to recognize that I am advancing in photography at a much faster rate than I’ve ever done with any other skill. I never understood what people meant when they talked about being so excited about something they do. I think It must’ve been because I’ve never made it as a professional soccer player. But when I started excelling in photography to a point that I felt comfortable charging people for my work, I realized what it meant to feel excited about what I do. So that was sort of my wow moment.

Pricing:

  • Headshots start from $300 for one look makeup included.
  • Daily rate for events from wedding to any parties starts from $1200 (up to 10 hours – 0r half day for $600 up to 5 hours)
  • For product shoots, please contact me for pricing.

Contact Info:

 

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