Today we’d like to introduce you to Brandon Gray.
Hi Brandon, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
So I am actually from Norfolk, Va., home to the largest military base in the world. However, a couple of my closest friends relocated to Denver a few years ago and it has since become a second home to me. I visited the area for Thanksgiving 2017 and fell in love with the place.
As for photography, I guess you could say I fell into the profession by accident. I had always loved photography, as well as skylines and architecture. I printed out a few photos of local (Virginia) landmarks that I took with a point-and-shoot camera but wanted something more “magazine” quality. So on Black Friday 2012, I purchased a Canon Rebel T3i as a 30th birthday gift to myself. I had no idea what I was doing and let the Facebook likes convince me that I was a pro (ha!).
This convinced me to try and sell my prints, which proved to be an uphill battle. At the time, I worked as a content writer for a marketing agency and one of our clients was a homebuilder. Looking over his website, I noticed the photos and a watermark. While I looked over the photographer’s portfolio, a light bulb immediately lit up: I wanted to be a real estate photographer. Nine years later, that remains my bread and butter. I also shoot businesses, special events, and of course landscapes including those in the beautiful state of Colorado.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
It was a very rough road. I often tell aspiring entrepreneurs about a Steve Harvey video called “Jumping off the Cliff”, where he talks to the “Family Feud” audience about taking chances and jumping. It is never a smooth landing, and you usually end up with a few cuts and bruises. I say all that to say I was PUSHED off the cliff, and yes it hurt like hell.
When I still worked at the marketing agency, my initial goal was to save up about $10,000 over the course of two years. They fired me a few months later. From that point, I hit the pavement and picked up any photography job I could find, usually on Craigslist or from a friend (of a friend), and also sold my prints at a pop-up shop. I learned a lot while on various gigs, filling in the gaps by watching Youtube videos and reading message boards.
It took me about two years to find my footing, and there were many long, sleepless nights. And to be perfectly honest, it was worth every minute. Had I not jum….been pushed off the cliff, I might still be at that cubicle telling myself “just two more years”, but nearly a decade later.
Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I am a photographer that specializes in real estate. However, I also shoot commercial and event photography, as well as landscapes.
Cliche as it sounds, I am simply proud of my growth. Every so often, I stumble across a photo I shot when I first got started around 2013-14. And while I would not call the pictures cringeworthy, I realize I am able to point out what I could have done differently. For that reason, I promised myself never to bash a photographer’s work, no matter what. We all had to start somewhere.
Alright so before we go can you talk to us a bit about how people can work with you, collaborate with you or support you?
I try to be an open book and can be found on IG: @fostergrayphoto. If you are ever in the Norfolk/Virginia Beach area, I am always open to talk shop!
- Website: http://fostergrayphotography.com
- Instagram: instagram.com/fostergrayphoto
- Facebook: facebook.com/fostergrayphoto
- Twitter: twitter.com/fostergrayphoto
All images courtesy Foster-Gray Photography and were taken by me.