Who's in the Crew? - Spotlight on Jacob Ginda
NAME: Jacob Ginda
WHERE ARE YOU FROM AND WHERE DO YOU LIVE NOW?
I am originally from Poland. I now live in Schaumburg, IL. Northwest suburbs of Chicago.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN SHOOTING HEADSHOTS?
I took my first headshot about ten years ago. I had no freaking clue what I was doing, but I actually got paid for it. I had to wait nearly seven years before I took another one. Now I do it from time to time ;)
WHAT IS YOUR LIGHTING SETUP FOR HEADSHOTS?
Westcott Flex Kit for the majority of my work. I may use the ekhm... Chinese shitty LEDs occasionally or a strobe if the situation demands it.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR STUDIO. DO YOU OWN IT? RENT IT? OR LIVE IN IT?
I have a studio in Schaumburg, IL, where I live, so the commute is really easy. I share it with my wifey, who is a wedding photographer, so that we may fight for the space on occasion :) I also have a pop-up shop in another suburban town, Naperville, IL.
WHAT ELSE DO YOU LIKE TO SHOOT?
Eeeeee, I don't really shoot for fun. I have other stuff that gets me going. I may shoot my kiddos on my phone if my wife starts yelling at me...
WHEN DID YOU FIRST DISCOVER PH AND THE HSC?
In 2017 we got a commercial space for my wife's wedding business. That's where I realized it can be used for more than a couple's consults and mail forwarding. I started digging into headshot photography, and BOOM!!! Peter shows up on top of the results, and the rest is history;)
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO JOIN THE CREW ONCE YOU FOUND IT?
I joined with a free profile in 2017 and then became an actual member on January 1st, 2018. I was ready to leave after a few months and a few critiques from The Man. I thought I didn't need that shit. But decided to keep at it, met Peter at Shutterfest, won some contests, then did Headshot Intensive, become the associate in October of that year. It jump-started my whole headshot business. Believe it or not, but I left the crew in May of 2020 feeling burned out. A few months later, Peter messaged me asking why the f*ck I am not with the crew anymore? And I rejoined. You kind of don't say "NO' to the man, ya know...?
WHAT IS ONE THING PEOPLE WOULD NEVER GUESS ABOUT YOU?
I wasn't born with a camera in my hands! Yes, I know, most people think that's how you become a photographer, but not me. Over time, I learned how to use one (a little) and kind of started using it for the things I do now.
WHAT IS ONE THING YOU WISH PEOPLE KNEW ABOUT YOU?
Do you mind if I rephrase the question? 'What is one thing you wish people knew about themselves? The whole reason why I am doing headshots is that I couldn't photograph weddings anymore or do other things I used to do... In 2014 I suffered from a spinal cord injury which left me paralyzed from the chest down. I am now a full-time wheelchair user. It took my and my wife a looooong time to get our life back on track. With everything that happened, we could keep our photography business going. We have our home, our business, two amazing kiddos and a french bulldog puppy. Could never ask for more.
In a wheelchair, I was able to win some contests here in the crew. I did a Headshot Intensive and became an associate, and I had so much fun at the Headshot Mania 2 in Vegas and so much more. I run my own business, pay for all my bills and enjoy life to the fullest. Why do I brag about this, you may ask?
'WHAT IS ONE THING YOU WISH PEOPLE KNEW ABOUT YOU?' You can do it!!! If I could do it, with everything life threw at me, you can do it. If you get criticized, discouraged, or whatever... It is in you, your strength, courage, and motivation to keep doing what you love. In the end, it is all worth it. Cheers!