I was a HORRIBLE PHOTOGRAPHER
I was a HORRIBLE PHOTOGRAPHER


So this video is meant to kind of inspire Everybody and kind of poke fun at me, but but everybody at the same time because we’ve all been there Everyone’s a rookie at some point so I thought I’d take this opportunity to critique my very first photographs We’re gonna dive back like 13 years plus and look at the very first photos that I took with my canon rebel in my little HPR 607 we’re gonna critique them, we’re gonna look at them we’re gonna laugh at them And I want to show some comparisons from then until now kind of proved a little bit of a point But inspire everybody to know that keep putting in the work because you will improve and you probably already have improved, okay So with that being said, let’s start looking at some terrible photographs and disclaimer This kills me a little bit inside to do because like some of these are bad some of them are really really bad I Think it’s also important to say some of my very first photos were taken on this my sister got this for me as a gift for being a Part of her wedding party and at the time. I was like oh cool a camera with you Thanks I was more concerned with like my kill death ratio playing Halo I was just gonna return it get the money and like maybe buy some expansion pack and some new maps came out But I decided to give it a shot dragged myself over to Best Buy grabbed a memory card bought an extra battery for it started Taking photos, and then suddenly started taking more photos and more photos and more photos, and I was like. Oh this is fun There’s more to life than Xbox Live Do not even know where to start, but let’s let’s just start somewhere like oh This is like a it’s like a self roast. I I don’t I don’t want to do this at all okay whoo Let’s dive back. Let’s check the date on this Let’s dive back to 2005 October 29th 2005 the day after my birthday 13 years ago ready I Mean photography aside you can see I had terrible taste in clothing I’d like to point out shirt number two that’s a Tim Hortons uniform That was one of my very first retail jobs selling donuts and coffee I quit that job when they asked me to clean the grout and I said what’s grout they’re like it’s the stuff between Tiles and it’s like I’m not doing that you’re like you have to that’s your job I remember saying cuz I’ve no my job is to sell time No, my job is to sell doughnuts not cleaning the grout and my punk ass put on my rollerblades. I skated home My first taste of anti-establishment nice framing. You know left-justified Great gamut of colors totally blown out background. I remember buying this paper roll It’s just thinking like oh. I am Michael a full-on pro now I also love my my watermark that font is like the second cousin of Comic Sans so that’s just a massive offense right there That’s it let’s take a look at some more Pile of leaves there’s a funny thing about this choose because very early on when I started photography I joined up to a stock photo website stock photos. Hadn’t really exploded yet, so the market wasn’t really saturated. I think I made like 20,000 dollars off of this photo and I was like a punk-ass kid over time mind you wasn’t like one day But that’s it took a photo of a pile of leaves put it on a stock called a website along with some other terrible photographs Started making money straight off so I was pumped on this photo, but I mean there’s nothing nothing special. It’s not bad It’s not good. It’s Yeah, also I love that the resolution of all these edits are what is it seven hundred by three hundred I was really thinking ahead with that perfect I would take full-size photos and compress them down to less than a thousand pixels because I was thinking ahead this photo I actually don’t mind like this shows some depth of field. I actually like the lines in this photo like the leading lines You’ve got the reflection against the back of the piano You’ve got the Black Keys the white keys in the wall and everything kind of points forward I’d love to see some kind of payoff at the very end of the photograph kind of like the shadow on the Black Keys Looks like my watermark font has changed yet again I also like this this weird drop shadow fake photo mat that I was putting all my photos on Super-modern okay, what is this labeled junk? It’s a photo of a dumpster I wouldn’t even begin to be able to tell you why I took a photo of a dumpster But I think what shocks me even more than this Awesome photo of a dumpster is the fact that I water marked a photo of a dumpster just in case someone stole it Wow Yeah, I mean I got nothing to critique on this. It’s just bad all right What’s the stage this doesn’t even have a name? I’m just open this one Well folks there it is there it is Peter McKinnon photographs a splat of paint on a brick wall at the worst angle there I Who takes a photo like this like that might be the worst one yet, just awful I? Wish I had some kind of clever excuse to tell you like no it was I was trying to get assets for this paintball Poster that I was working on for this client, but no it’s just it was just a young paps young PD Pabst Just just out there trying to be creative trying to find his way trying to make his mark awful with Front Street This isn’t bad either. I remember taking this photo I remember being pumped on this photo like I remember taking this and thinking oh That’s the cover of a magazine And I think what I liked about it is the same thing I liked about the piano keys is that it just? It’s like a long tunnel you got all those lights going straight down one thing I do remember when I was editing this like way back was the gap right here between the first two lights I really wish there was another light there, and I think I tried to Photoshop one in but I had zero skills with Photoshop So I didn’t even know how to do that so I settled with this I also don’t like the car at the very end of the payoff that needs to be like a Silhouette of a human or somebody standing there or anything better than the front half of a sedan that bugs me a bit But I’m happy with this photo. That’s decent. That’s not bad oh
Here’s a fun one look at this this was one of my first video cameras off Terra 20 look at that road mic on It’s not even a road mic look at that shotgun mic up top little fisheye lens on there So you get close to some skateboard action mini DV tapes those were the days. Yeah Wow come a long way, okay? Here are a few photos from the HP camera, BC plane Zero composition like the bluest sky, it doesn’t even look like a sky It looks like a model plane on a blue paper background. I still watermark everything. That’s just not good That’s just not good at all. Let’s get okay. Let’s go move on oh
Here’s a fun fact check these out So because I was in the stock photography because it was one of the only ways I knew how to make money with photos we Used to go into model homes on the weekends or after school and keep in mind. We were like young punk kids We’d walk into these model homes And I would just start taking photos as fast as possible because you get kicked out in like five minutes But look at these like I even watermark to them PM interiors Hilarious I used these in my portfolio so I would go into these model homes and just start shooting because everything was set up for you the kitchens always look great the living rooms look great every room looked great so go in and the open house was there and the agent would be in there and I just walk in and start shooting they like can I help you and I think no I’m good I’m good, and they figure out what I was doing and it kicked me out But I would at least get like three or four photos before having to leave that place you could see like the brochure is Hanging huh? Oh my god I guess I missed that then I would take these photos and upload them to a stock photography website as Interiors and try to make more money that way I’m impressed with that here’s another hilarious comparison check this out This is my friend, Bobby you guys know Bobby from the video. I made him spend $6,000. He’s getting into vlogging He’s a Mentalist and this was one of the very first photo shoots. I got paid for professionally This is right after we met we became friends, and I was like. I’m a photographer. I would carry business cards everywhere I went and I would like pitch to everybody if they needed photos did not matter this was no exception The difference is Bobby actually paid me for this one of the first people if not the first person to pay me personally for a photo shoot I think it was 500 bucks, and I was blown away that I could make five hundred dollars doing a photo shoot I’m still today I can’t even believe he paid me to do this But you know, maybe he was just trying to be a good friend right from the get-go maybe he needed the photos Maybe he thought they were good we both thought they were good long story longer. They’re not good So these were shot in 2008 so years ago a decade ago. We both look different now You can see the compositions at least better I’ve got him like not Center not too far to the right kind of just in that sweet spot I get what I was trying to go for with like that grungy graffiti background But the problem with this shot is I have him too close to that background I needed to have him come like ten feet ahead so that background was blurred out You could still see the grunge and still see the environment, but it wasn’t competing for him. He’s the focus of this photograph I need to be shooting him not the graffiti in the background, but when you look at this photo You’re thinking yourself what am I like this? There’s just too much going on so that would have solved that issue I think I was probably trying to photoshop his face and make it look like smooth, but like it. I just overdid it It’s over smooth. It looks way too smooth The skin just looks weird and glowy and I’m not a fan of that at all so not the best not the worst But yeah, not good. Here’s another not good photo It’s pretty bad. If you ask me I don’t know what’s going on with the railing like dominating the shot the creativity as far as composition goes is it’s okay And you guys will notice this too If you look back at your old photos like it’s not like I’m trying to justify this shot. This is a bad shot I appreciate what I was trying to go for place him down below on the stairs kind of shoot from the top But you know there’s psychological aspects with photography as well this makes him not look as established in the photo He’s looking up to the lens like if I wanted to make him look cool in like a badass and like you wanted to hire The sky like he was someone important. I wouldn’t be shooting down I’d be shooting up to make him look like the hero of the shot so right away the Psychology of this shot is totally off the black-and-white is flat. The light isn’t good the composition with the stairs I’m okay with that, but the rolls should have been reversed. He should been on the upper deck of the stairs I should have been below shooting up so now let’s take this photo shoot That was 10 years ago, and as an example. I did some photos for Bobby last year and now look at the difference So first thing you’re gonna notice is the quality because obviously 10 years of technology cameras are way better They’re way sharper their way clearer image sensors are so much better Thank you, but the composition the lighting the thought that’s going into each frame is a lot more now It’s ten years of experience to get photos like these and these are the shots you’re seeing on Instagram from everybody These are the shots you’re seeing people post you’re not seeing them post the first ones. Here’s another one right It’s all about that lighting and like that took me 10 years to figure out is that lighting is the biggest part of? Photography, you don’t have good creative light isn’t matter what the subject is. It’s just not gonna look good So being able to fuse and mold this light and get it to light the right side of his face And part of the left side of his face and give Bobby Dimension in this shot are the things that I’ve practiced and learned over these past You know decade-plus of taking photographs And here’s another one same thing like using flash putting in smoke that kind of thing catching that light in the Background so that it just kind of coasts over his shoulder and gives me some nice lens flares the same thing with this Here’s a good example of putting Bobby in an interesting background But not too close to the background like we did with that graffiti So you can still see the room and what’s going on? But he’s far enough away from everything in that room that it’s not distracting like he’s still popping. He’s still the focus Ya only took me 13 years to figure that out, so All of this to say if you see a photographer online if you see a cinematographer Online and they put out an incredible edit and it discourages you because you think to yourself comparing that to my work I’m nowhere near that and that’s so good I don’t know how to get there like what’s the point of even continuing when there’s people like this just shredding That’s the same thing of photos. I’m never gonna get to that location. I don’t know how to use lights like that I don’t have that equipment like I just can’t compete with that and these photos are so good And then I go back and look at mine and think to myself. What is the point of any of this? Everybody feels that way and everybody posted the photos from when they first Started two years after three years after even five years after whatever It just wouldn’t be as good as the ones they’re posting now, so you’ve got to put in the time anyone is gonna Tell you that you have to put in the time You can’t just pick up a deck of cards and start blowing mines and being proficient and technical and nimble Knowing how to feel a card knowing how many cards are in a deck if you pick up a deck and there’s three cards miss And you know instantly that stuff doesn’t come day one that stuff takes years and years of practice To the point where you can make it look completely effortless without having to even look, but doesn’t come overnight and that’s the purpose the premise the Objective of this entire video is to inspire you to say that even your hero is the people you look up to the people you? Learn from the people you follow online your friends your peers your competitors doesn’t matter Everybody started somewhere and everybody had to put in the work to get to where they are now I mean Let’s end with one more like look at this There’s like a full-on Gaussian blur over this entire photo like no depth It’s just it’s just awful but I haven’t seen body and Ages like I used to go he does a show every Friday and Saturday night down in the city I used to go hang out with him all the time and like Hang out in the little back room where people would do his soundboard I used to do tricks for people and like I just you know what we should do that We should go surprise him right now and show him these photos Yeah, hundred percent Avenue Oh, it’s so cold. It’s so cold so cold. It’s so cold all Right, this is my secret entrance. I never actually go in the front of this building where he performs a secret knock knock Still works Dude it is so dark in here dark is mysterious. You’re about to go on now right yeah, I’m sorry I’m laying back here waiting with a cold one for the guy and Knock-knock-knocking the whole theater is full of people you show them the old photos. Just did just today. No you didn’t yeah I Showed them the p-side warmer you’re flipping the peace sign in front of that graffiti. We’ll see these photos I’m sorry well. Let’s just say Pizza improved over the years He’s a big improvement over what it used to be I thought you might use that peace sign photo for this I just telling them I used to suck and you were the first person To pay me money for photography first gig who the first gig I remember I was like 500 bucks But like done, then those photos were amazing yeah, that’s what I was saying. I got thought they were good bachelor photos. No You paid me 500 bucks. You’re like you’re like how much is it gonna be and I was like um $500 and you were just like yeah, I’m perfect and Pete was like he was like he Said to me he’s like I am so happy right now. Thank you so much. I’m like dude. They’re great photos Don’t get on the photos. Never go I’m gonna follow now. This is gonna be fun. Even I got my backpack on I’m auntie why mama vlogger I gotta go. I’ve been Peter MacKay shameless plug in this blog like and subscribe

100 thoughts on “I was a HORRIBLE PHOTOGRAPHER”

  1. Peter McKinnon says:

    Thumbs up for not cleaning the grout 🙂

  2. RootsReclaimed says:

    Your personality so attractive.

  3. Chapter Games says:

    Me: sees tittle, thinks well obviously, mom walks in ,Peter McKinnon there’s more to life than Xbox, mom yeah he’s right, me dies inside

  4. plagosus says:

    I tough this video was cool from the very beginning and then he did this with cards, without even looking… Instantly forgot all the advises… Googling 'card tricks' 🙂

  5. Nikayla Bautista says:

    You made $20K on that leaves photo!!! Holy whatever

  6. DocSnipe says:

    Thats what I love about my Instagram. You can see how many mistakes I made and the farther up you go the better the photos get

  7. Niggut says:

    9:11 i stg thats a meme

  8. jujubeannie says:

    So if you thought those were bad, what would that make mine…

  9. Royal Aloha says:

    Something am not getting here? 🤔 These photos are flames 🔥

  10. Alice Rigoux says:

    I needed to hear that, thank you so much

  11. Dejon Legaux says:

    He looks like a serial killer in that photo

  12. Soup says:

    Bobby got scary

  13. Danny says:

    Do you have a video talking more about stock photography and how that works???

  14. Madleen Alnajjar says:

    I am new follower but I have to say I am so lucky to be here you are amazing .

  15. Vanessa Realrose says:

    Im at that stage of taking pictures of everything and later when looking at delete 95% but the other 5% is what I can work with and learn what not to do in photography.

  16. NOALS says:

    Amazing video like always men!! getting more and more confident with my pictures and also my video productions,,, much respect for your advises…

  17. Colton Hartzell says:

    <3 This!

  18. Raimy Roams says:

    That ending was cute!

  19. Direlang Rammutla says:

    This was just absolutely awesome.

  20. Mridul Dhar says:

    I miss this background.

  21. Toch Nouch says:

    Hi bro

  22. John spike Explores says:

    I feel like that everytime I upload a video

  23. Staby's Favorites says:

    I love the way you 'choreograph' your videos. :)) Big thumbs up.

  24. Project Queen says:

    Thank you so much for your authenticity.

  25. Gus Abiz says:

    This is such a great video! The ending made it that much better👊

  26. CreatiVia says:

    I was putting off this video because I always thought it would discourage me before I would even properly start photography and videography. I was so misjudging this update, thank you for making this 😀

  27. THOR Welding Innovations says:

    Been there, done that, got the T-shirt….and lost my mojo along the way many moons ago. But hey, your energy is rubbing off and I love your enthusiasm, it's helping me see my own journey a little different and starting to make me think a little more creative for a a change. Cheers from Altus Pienaar, Middelburg South Africa.

  28. Hobbies Geeks says:

    since last year i want to star in photography world but I couldn't for some very bad situation in my life, but now to overcome that difficults time I want to star, recently I discovered your channel and Im very obsessed with your content Pete, thank you for isnpire me, by the way my girlfriend sadi you are very handsome jeje

  29. Kev Gump says:

    Good ass video kneegrow ! I mean, I watched it thrice. Good clip bro. Needed some pro encouragement ! Thnx for your time.

  30. Ulises Escorza says:

    9:02, looks like the model has tiny legs 😂😂😂😂

  31. Natalie Kennedy Studios says:

    Oh my goodness i loved this, i love how you brought it full circle at the end. 😀

  32. BambooShoots says:

    your photo download links?

  33. Renay Human says:

    Loved this vid- thanks ! Can’t wait to start ..

  34. caliv0608 says:

    Pretty sure that leaves photo was my desktop background at some point.

  35. RSIL-LAIKA in VOYCED says:

    i will life my passion on my way you are unique guru 🙊🙈🙉

  36. Butterandtoast says:

    I want to be a shitty good photographer like my work is meant to look bad

  37. Gonamo Rima says:

    Is that only me notice the man in the picture got his legs on the wall at 8:43 ?

  38. Mary D says:

    This video rocks! You made me smile, laugh, pay attention and feel much better about my own creative process. Your "beginner" photos are still damn good, but your current work is fabulous! Nice card maneuvering, by the way. I'm not subscribing to your channel and can't wait to see more of your stuff.

  39. Grandma Kermit says:

    I'm 14 right now and I love photography and really want to get into it as soon as possible but that probably won't be for about two years because I have basically no money

  40. Hans Nötig says:

    The cringe is still there

  41. Lazy Sunday says:

    if I'm honest I'm not very fan of your recent portrait shoot. Too clarity and sharpness, for me a bit artifiicial

  42. Amretha Ajith says:

    Fu**ing LOVE YOU BRO!

  43. Rock star says:

    Wtf…r u kidding me.. your worst photos are fckng awesome 😮

  44. TRNQUL says:

    God damn, Bobby really buffed up in the 13 years xD

  45. Keith Smith says:

    You will need to revisit this ten years from now…..the trouble might have been the one dementional ego you were attempting to capture…..subject matter counts….the rest the camera does !!…… You know like the dumpster !

  46. Chelsea Carroll says:

    This gave me soooo much inspiration! Respect Pete! Respect!

  47. Where’s Wayne says:

    How do you get such great sound, I have found a spot for semi decent voice overs but nowhere that’s suitable to sit and talk to a camera, simply because the sound would be like hearing my voice through a cup and string phone. Yet your room there doesn’t appear to have much sound deadening going on etc…

  48. Andrew says:

    can you make a part two?

  49. Sherlock GALAXIE says:

    U totally lost me once you start showing me the pictures from your 2005 camera. 🤔 am a head out. P.s you should have use your 2005 camera for your 2008 photo shoot.

  50. BaluMalli says:

    so cool man

  51. Mas Mejja says:

    That's some great bromance you got with Bobby, man! Say hi to him for me, will ya.

  52. Miguel Jimenez says:

    Just strating a street photography channel….has taken me couple of years to start it. Ready to throw all the beginner stuff….Your video just popped at the right moment. Nice insight in this video, thanks for the motivation.

  53. Ombretta Ameking says:

    I needed this so bad.

  54. rbn says:

    This is amazing!

  55. NomadicFanatic says:

    Lowkey just a video to show off them card skills..

  56. Adil Iqbal says:

    now that's what i call a friend

  57. Sam Link says:

    Nice angels and airwaves record in the background!

  58. commandante hodgson says:

    Was ?

  59. BKA Boss Krishna Agarwal says:

    My birthday is October 23rd and that's coming and after that 25th is yours.❤️

  60. Michael Botello says:

    Your first "professional photo shoot" was meant to be. It bettered the both of you.

  61. Breanda Crump says:

    Whoa! Those photos of Bobby after 10 yrs made him look like A BOOOSSSSSSS!! OMG what a difference in your skill!

  62. Javier Angeles says:

    Am I the only who goes back to watch this video to get encouraged, like, 10 times a month?

  63. Starzo says:

    No lie I enjoy this felt motivated lol… I'm beginning photography have a Sony dsc-w310 atm but I want to move on to the a6000

  64. JohnPaul Sein says:

    your updated pics of bobby definitely made him look like a total bad ass!!

  65. AP Outdoors says:

    His “worst” photos are like my best 😅😂 I must literally suck

  66. D3nniz says:

    I really liked this video and I found it funny when you said "Lighting is the biggest part of photography" since in finnish (I'm from Finland btw) a word photo literally translates lightpicture (valokuva) 😄

  67. Brett H says:

    thank you for this… gratitude. and maybe a beer.

  68. Adam Klopotek says:

    you still are

  69. steven ladden says:

    this was awesome

  70. Dazzer1234567 says:

    Nice humble-brag! 😉

  71. carpo719 says:

    Remember all is perspective… 🙂 To others, those pics look great. It really depends on the person, and we are our own worst critics. Dumpsters are people too!!

  72. Urbex Bass says:

    I just realized how much ive improved on instagram after being only in one year into photography…
    @urbex_badger

  73. n0cturnal says:

    i actually really like the dumper image

  74. Bennett Gaming says:

    HAHAHA!! Quit your Tim Horton job on rollerblades. Laughing sooo hard! [Peter skating off] "I Quit!! Hey Tim, by the way, KEEP YOUR STICK ON THE ICE!!!!"

  75. Dave T says:

    Awesome video! You rock Pete!

  76. Evolve Together says:

    What's the story behind the hat? I like it

  77. Sandra Lind says:

    I love you. Thanks for the encouragement.

  78. Bonolo Solomon says:

    I've seen worse photos from photographers who make more money than I do😢🤣… These are quality by comparison👌

  79. Bonolo Solomon says:

    Thank You for inspiring us Peter, These photos boosted our confidence 😌💯

  80. Ken Raihan Gardia says:

    Bobby literally went from Level 1 Crook to Level 100 Mafia

  81. Bojana J says:

    Happy Bday! 😉

  82. Myishen Haines says:

    I haven't really practiced. I do street photography with an emphasis on non people subjects. But I don't go out with a goal in mind. From a basic outing less than a mile to my local coffee shop, I can easily take about 10 photos and 8 will make the final cut, because I always see something that catches my eye. It literally is effortless to me because I just shoot the world the way I see it. I'm non-neurotypical, and as part of that, I see things very vividly, and I see small details that the average person won't notice. I also write spoken word poetry. That I as well do not practice. When I am writing, it just comes out of me. A 3 minute poem takes about 3 minutes to write. After I am done, I have to read it because I don't even fully remember what I wrote. All of this is to say that I dont know if it's because I am mentally ill, or what, but when it comes to art, I don't really have to practice to have it be well received.

  83. Vignesh Amin says:

    This video made me depressed 😐

  84. Justin Jose says:

    ay Bobby is a real one!

  85. AlexBest says:

    OMG, last photo is almost a badass 🤘

  86. Dazzling Deb says:

    Your old photos remind me of my photos now. LOL! I can't wait to learn about lighting.

  87. harry baird says:

    A great video, with an excellent message for novices of any profession.

  88. Aashritha Kari says:

    could you do a more detailed video explaining light and how to use to get good photographs

  89. Wewen No Magic says:

    One word , INSPIRED!!!

  90. Ana Butler says:

    👏👏👏👏👏👏👏

  91. Sven Ziller says:

    This hectic background loop music drives me nuts :))) Other than that: quite interesting. Thx for sharing!

  92. Elizabeth Portant says:

    just found your channel, this is literally the 2nd vid I watch on your channel and your friendship is so heartwarming and genuine. you both seem like down to earth, nice guys. very cool

  93. Nate McDaniel says:

    I needed this – I was ready to put the camera down. Thank you!

  94. Christy Murry says:

    Thanks for this. Feeling pretty crappy lately about my skills, but now I'm gonna keep working.

  95. Matt Tennant says:

    Watching this a year later, but wish I could have seen it sooner. It’s super inspiring! Thank you!

  96. Alina Rivera says:

    Thank you for making us see that practice is the only way to progress… I started a youtube channel not long ago and the most dificult part is to upload videos knowing that they can't be as good as you want them to be just because you need to gain the experience. 😪 Little by little!… Thank you and love your channel!

  97. Krishna Jigsaw says:

    0:20 That moment when you realize your camera name was there 😳

  98. ridz man says:

    Amazing inspiring !!!

  99. Jaye Tee Owe says:

    I have the same shot of the photo you call Front Street. I think I took it in front of Novotel in Toronto.

  100. Bring me the Antfunny says:

    Didn’t have to flex that hard with the cards

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