FotoFacts Podcast Podcast Artwork Image
FotoFacts Podcast
Eps 310 - PhotoExpo - Matthew Dyson
August 03, 2018 Jim Felder & Robert Trawick

Matthew Dyson talks about how he gained his passion for photography. It wasn’t how you think.

The Foto Twins love using Røde Microphones for smooth, quality audio on our podcast episodes.  Be sure to check out their entire line of audio capture devices. 

Matthew Dyson talks about how he gained his passion for photography. It wasn’t how you think.

The Foto Twins love using Røde Microphones for smooth, quality audio on our podcast episodes.  Be sure to check out their entire line of audio capture devices. 

Episode Transcript

Speaker 1:0:01Well, well, no intro music here because we're going to get started right now with Robert Traywick, me, myself and I and Matthew Dyson, the vacuum cleaner. Yeah. So Matt, Matt is the assistant manager in Little Rock, Little Rock, Little Rock, Arkansas for Bedford camera. So He's here for the, his, this is his first day here. He was not here yesterday, but that's all good. We are still love you. So you, you weren't here yesterday. Yeah. So, yeah, so we, uh, I wanted to get him on here because he, we were talking a little bit and I've, I've met him like two or three years ago, talk several times, but I've never heard that story. I've heard some of it, but not all of it thought it was really cool to, to here. I thought, well, we need to share that. So, yeah. So let's, let's go before that. Oh, I'm so sorry.

Speaker 1:0:56Let's talk about, you know, we've had some really great positive feedback from the speakers that have spoken already, spoke already. Sorry. Um, so yeah, it's been really positive. A lot of positive feedback from the, from attendees that I've, I've heard. Um, so I've, I've really enjoyed it personally. Just being able to go around and videotape video record, whatever you call it now record, what do you call it nowadays? Videotape video. Video. Videography. Yeah. Video video. I call it [inaudible]. Graphy capturing, capturing video four. Bedford's the one thing I haven't run across anybody cause I like to talk to the people when they come out of the different presentations. See are these the kind of speakers at Bedford? We would like have Bedford spring back. And like you said, there's been like a lot of positive comments on the presentations and the content, but I have yet to find someone that was awake for that sunrise federal walk with Alex Camp.

Speaker 1:1:54I think all those people went to bed right after that. They got up early, went to bed and then they're just going to miss him right there. Well there go there, go there. I am going to try and catch him if you keep talking to come on to the mat. All right. So Matt, uh, we were talking and I asked you, you know, kinda where, where does your passion start with, uh, with photography and, and you said there was nothing there, there was. So expand on that with no passion for photography at all. Actually. You hear that a lot. You hear people say, Oh, I've had a passion for photography forever. Right? And that's the cliche. Everybody's about me pages. I've loved photography since I was a child. That's horse crap. I did not. And it wasn't that I didn't like photography. I just, I didn't know photography.

Speaker 1:2:46And in my earlier working life, I just had a lot of retail experience. I didn't go into college right after high school. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. So I figured why go to college and spend the money in time to do something. I didn't know what I wanted to do. So I just went into the working force. I think a lot of people out of high school do that. Don't really know what they're going to do. A lot of them. But anyway, I didn't go to college either. Absolutely. So I, I didn't go to college out of high school. I joined the workforce, I was in retail all through my late teens and then eventually into my, you know, twenties I became, you know, managers of various retail establishment. So I had a lot of retail experience. And then through a odd little series of events, I ended up being a framer for houses.

Speaker 1:3:34I was, I was framing houses and in February it was rainy and sleepy and cold. And I was hungry because we weren't making any money because there was no work. Right. I know how that feels. And a, I couldn't afford to buy groceries. And so I was like, well, you know, I gotta, I gotta get a new job, I've got to get something more stable. And my wife said, well, you know, there's a place back in the day where people actually looked through the want ads in the papers, right? We're sitting at the table and she says, there's a place called Bedford camera and video opening a store fairly close to our house. And they're, you know, taking applications you should go. And I said, I, I can barely spell camera and let alone use. Why don't, I've never, I have no interest in this at all.

Speaker 1:4:14Why would they hire me? She said, well, if they say no, you're in the same boat you're in now and you haven't lost anything. So I fill out that application and I get called in for an interview. And uh, it's funny because the, the, the application has three pages. First page is personal information, second page, his work history. Third page is photographic experience and the equipment that you own. So I'm in the interview and he goes through the first page, goes to the second page, flips to the third page, and he's going to crickets there. There's nothing there. It's silent, you know, he, he looks at me and I just nod my head like, yeah, I know I've got no experience. Here's a little delayed reaction. That's basically what we are. So we go on through the interview and again, a few minutes goes by and he grabs that last page and he looks at it again, thinking magically something that'll have appeared on the paper.

Speaker 1:5:10I said, man, that nothing's going to be there. But um, I'm a quick learner. I'm a dedicated worker. I'll be here if you hire me, give me the chance. He said, well, I'll give you, but we'll give you a call. Two or three days goes by. I call him, Hey, well we're still, we're still interviewing people. Two or three days went by, I called him and I did that for about a week and a half, almost two weeks. And he finally just got tired of me calling him. So instead of telling me to go away, luckily he said, you're persistent. Come in, we'll put you to work somewhere. So I became, you know, a front counter person and helped people and then got to take the cameras home. And that's when it sparked with me because I picked up these pieces of, of, of camera gear and it was like, what is this?

Speaker 1:5:53Like, what, what is this really about? And I watched how excited people were getting coming in. And so it was other people's passion for photography and the fact that I was able to learn this stuff. I Dunno, just, just, I was able to, to be with it and around it every day and I realized what the stuff was capable of and that's what sparked my interest. It wasn't that, um, I joined, you know, Bedford Cameron video because I was a diehard photographer and wanted to work in a store that supported my hobby. I, I found that passion as I started working there over a period of a few years and, you know, two or three years in, I fell in love with it so much and I learned so much so fast. Then in about two years' time I was instructing, teaching the classes there and then they just kind of moved forward from there.

Speaker 1:6:43So do you think that, um, the, well, obviously this was the case, you know, seeing the, the, the passion and the excitement of other people, uh, was a big part of that. I do because like I said, I, this was back in the days when film was still selling way more than digital, you know, the digital cameras had two megapixels and whatever. So I was taking home film SLRs and learning about how to process the negatives and do these neat things where it was really hands on and then you would see the guys come in and just get so excited about, you know, dropping off the rolls of film and the anticipation, you know, the anticipation of two weeks or two or three days going by and, you know, people getting their, their film back from, from the lab and open it up and seeing if they, the images came out the way though.

Speaker 1:7:30And that whole thing of watching people have this anticipation about, did I do what I was supposed to? Is this a good memory or is this just a piece of trash paper? You know, that sparked a big interest in me and it made me want to learn how to do these things. It's kind of like when you, when you're growing up and, or whatever in, in, in life, uh, you see something that's kind of interesting, but you really don't know anything about it. Like kinda like smoking pot, you know? I wouldn't know. I didn't know. Well, maybe I didn't know. I was thinking about that when you were talking. I'm like, I got to come up with something, some analogy and I couldn't think of anything else smoking, you know? But anyway, yeah, I just thought that was a real interesting. Uh, I'd never, I had not ever heard that before.

Speaker 1:8:20Not that I'm like this big, you know, here are all the top to all these people, but I had never heard that experience before. And since then, you know, since then, I've been with Bedford Cameron video for 15 years now, a little over 15 years. And so watching the new people come in and fill out applications and every one of them is, oh, I have a really big passion for photography. I took photography in college, or I was on my yearbook staff in high school. You know, I want, it's, I want to learn more. And more and more I came in because sir, I'm hungry and I could really use a job. I don't know anything about this industry but I'm willing to learn. And it became so important to me that I stayed with that photography company for 15 years. You know, I didn't go, okay, this is a good job.

Speaker 1:9:12Let me find something better and more suited to me. Because when I first got hired, I was training in the store that was an hour away from my house. It was an hour's drive, you know, to work and then an hour's drive home. And so you were training in the store different than what you work? Correct. Look as though the store, the store that they were putting in a little closer to my house hadn't been built yet. It hadn't been built. And so, okay. So I had the luxury actually. I thought it was a pretty cool experience too. After I trained for a while, I got to go to the new location and help assemble the, like put up the displays and fill the shelves. And, and, and, and really put some, some blood, sweat and tears into building, which also led to my, I felt like it was my store because of how I got to be a part of that whole, that whole build process.

Speaker 1:10:03And that paired with the, the absolute fascination that I did accrue for taking photographs and creating that medium was something that made me decide to stay here instead of just going into the next retail job or going off and doing whatever. So, sorry, I'm yawning man. That's cool. That's the story. Must not be that. I'm just tired of that. No, that's a, that's a cool story. So have you, so not just employees. Have you ever experienced anybody else that, that, that didn't have a passion, uh, pre, uh, you know, previous experience with a camera or whatever that, that, that gained the, the, uh, passion? Um, I personally haven't, no, no. I say not really. Not, not of people that have worked for our company or have come in to our company. Um, p people that I know because they watch what I do, like family members, you know.

Speaker 1:11:01Um, I have a niece who's convinced that she wants to be a photographer just like our uncle Matt. Of course, you know, she's nine. She doesn't really realize that I'm poor all the time. Um, but uh, no. Yeah, the things like that where people watch how excited I get because I do not at now at this point, I genuinely, this I'll sit up in bed at night and my wife's asleep and I'm, I'm searching my iPad for photography articles on wonder what this new companies coming out with and, and she, she kind of pokes fun at me and in good humor. Yeah. Was, she knows that it really is something that a, it pays our bills, be it, it is something that I'm able to create for B for people. And she knows that I really do have a passion for it now, but, so my family and friends seeing how excited I get, they start to get more excited about it, which is good.

Speaker 1:11:53Okay. So I'm going to go on another angle. So a lot of photographers, well most photographers are creative. You have to be, I mean, you have to be a creative person. So, and I know a lot of enough said this many times on the podcast. I know several photographers that also have other creative things that they can do, be it music, singing, painting, drawing. Is that any of your background? Absolutely. I was, um, I was in high school and junior high. I was in the band and, and, and I sang. Um, but out of high school I was the drummer in a rock band for about six years and we did pretty well. You know, we, we, we never really know top of the charts or anything, but we, we traveled around and had a good following and was fun. Um, I've always drawn, I can draw, you know, see not great.

Speaker 1:12:43I'm a good cartoonist is what I should say. Cool. I'm a hell of a cartoon as well. So my, my kids are always asking me, draw me this drama. Yeah. So, yeah, I'm definitely a creative tight. That's good. It's just funny that the medium of photography was not even in my, not even in my field of vision at all. Why? It was somewhere that I had never even thought to look. You know? And I, I knew a guy used to work with, uh, he was an it geek. He was all computer, but he loved photography, which was, uh, was not really odd. It's just different, you know, it wasn't really wow. Really, you know, but I can't remember exactly how good he was, but I know of another guide now, James Pratt, he was, he's an it guy, a great photographer from Oklahoma City. So, uh, anyway, that's a, that's a good story and cool. That's good. Uh, that's good. Good content. Right? Well I'm glad I could be of assistance. Yeah. So anyway. Ooh, dark some music and we've closed this thing out. Alright, thanks a lot. Matthew. Anything in place, we can go see your images. Um, right now. Yeah, you can go to Dyson creative my right now and over the past few years I specialize in senior portraits and that's sort of where my passion lies. Cool. All right. Go check him out. We'll talk to you later.

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