What is the “Norm”?

Reading my blog can most certainly be compared to eating Mashed Potatoes, eggs, couscous, pizza and liver for breakfast. I am all over the place in the topics I write about! This is a direct reflection of my gypsy soul and the scattered thoughts and ideas that percolate in my brain on a daily basis. I envy blog authors that stick to one topic and are able to express an infinite number of perspectives revolving around one idea. I, on the other hand, would be bored silly with myself and my mind revolts at the near thought of it!


I have finally concluded that the idea of feeling like I have to write a blog around one general topic is just plain nonsense!  After all, It’s my blog and I guess that entitles me to decide the direction I want to go with it -“it’s all about me, It’s all about I” feel free to sing along! Frankly, I have never been one to “follow the crowd” in life so it makes sense not to do it with my blog as well!

Recently, I was faced with having to come to the same conclusion when it comes to my photography –  of not feeling like I have to follow the “norm” (norm as defined only by one’s own mind –  including my own).

Recently, I had a photographer suggest (more than once) I use artificial lighting while shooting my real estate interiors. Let me begin by saying I am an avid natural light photographer and have built my Photography business around this particular style of photography. My clients hire me for many reasons but one of them is because of my distinct style. You can see examples of my works at juliathomasphotography.com

There are many Real Estate photographers that shoot interiors with artificial lighting (IE: lamps, fan lights, can lights etc.) on in a home during their photo shoots. I can argue that when you look in most design magazines, on houzz.com and architectural digest, you RARELY see artificial lighting used and in general, ambient light creates a more natural, inviting and pleasing “feeling” to a photo. Personally, for me, when I view an image taken with interior lighting on in a room, my eye automatically goes to the brightest spot within an image meaning it goes right to the lamp or light on in the room.

Dining room nature's Way-1

It is a distraction for me and most often, white balance is mixed creating a very un-natural feel to the images (in my humble opinion).  I find when I am viewing an image shot with ambient lighting only, I am immediately drawn into the entire room and am able to explore and “experience” the room without distractions. I have researched many articles on this subject and of course, everyone has their own opinion, however, it appears that high-end architectural photographers, rarely use artificial lighting in the majority of their interior shoots. Yes, exceptions can be found, as it depends on the overall objective the photographer is trying to convey to their viewers, but 99% of Architectural Digest images are Ambient images. On the flip side of a thought, even though I consider the “Norm” for architectural/interior photography is using ambient light, it does not make it true.  It is simply the style I choose to emulate.

The Blue Chair-1

Photographers that work for themselves as I do, have the unique ability and luxury of having the artistic freedom to create images in the style of their own choosing. That’s the beauty of what we do, we are able to create the feelings we want to convey through our images.  That’s why photography is the passion of THIS gypsy’s soul!

So, as I continue “my” style of photography, just like my blog, I reject the notion that there is a “correct” or “normal” path I (or anyone else) has to follow.  Instead, I will continue to pursue my passion in following “the light” as it is created naturally within a space and writing about whatever crazy thoughts cross my mind on my blog.  🙂

French Country Bathroom-1

Take on the day, be who you are and remember, “Be yourself  – because everyone else is already taken!”


Julia                                                                                                          juliathomasphotography.com



  1. Hi Jeff! Thanks for hanging with me and reading my blog! As you know, with the predicted weather we are having in Michigan, I enjoyed having the time to sit down and write as we can’t go anywhere at the risk of getting stuck with having to find our way back on icy roads! Appreciate your compliments – stay safe on the roads if you are out and hope to see you again SOON!


  2. Julia
    I always enjoy your blogs and the thoughtful message they convey .
    Agree that ambient light is far more desirable. Your photography beautifully reflects many nice home interiors


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