You have no idea what you’re capable of until you try. Nothing is impossible if you set your mind to it, and work hard towards that goal or idea. Challenges are not something to be afraid of or avoid. Challenges are “obstacles” that trigger our problem-solving mode and stir up our creativity, while passion and ambition keep us going through moments of uncertainty or weakness. We, at Flothemes, admire and try to learn from creatives who dare to push their own limits and follow their dreams. We are starting a series of interviews called ”Entrepreneurial Photographers” and will be sharing the stories of some of the most remarkable and captivating folks within the photography industry. Our first superhero is Andrew Funderburg, also known as Andrew “Fundy” – the founder of Fundy Software and creator of the Fundy Design Suite software platform.
For those of you who are not familiar with Fundy Software, it’s a template-free, full suite of design solutions for photographers. You will find everything from an Album Builder and Gallery Designer to Blog Collage, Image Brander and Album Proofer. Recently, they’ve also announced an amazing Free update to their popular album design and studio sales software, which includes tools to help boost in-person sales or conduct remote design consultations for worldwide clients. Definitely something to be excited about! See more details here.
Back to our hero, apart from the amazing work that he does through Fundy Software, Andrew Funderburg is also a talented photographer. His creative adventure began with his passion for people, and curiosity for capturing emotions and telling stories through print. And there is no better person to tell this story, then Andrew Fundy himself. So here it goes:
“One summer day, I was walking in downtown Portland, OR with my good friend and world-class photographer, Hiram Trillo, working on some street photography. A man walked by and said, “you should take my picture.” I pulled out my Leica M240 and my 50mm and took 2 frames. One of those frames was one of my favorite street photos of all time.
I started street photography while living in Japan, where my journey in professional photography began. I shot my first all digital wedding in 2003 in Japan and soon signed a contract at three Iron Chef restaurants in Japan. My first wedding album was displayed at AsukaBook headquarters in Tokyo.
And that was the beginning of the journey that brought about Fundy Software. As the founder of Fundy Software, my focus has always been the design workflow, modern design principals and helping photographers be as profitable as possible. Our suite empowers photographers to design albums in the fastest and most flexible way possible – freeing them of templates. The newest part of our suite allows photographers to design and sell wall art to their clients, finally making in person sales easy. Going forward we want to bring all of the photographer’s design and sales tools into one suite.
This desire to bring design and sales together stems from my belief in print. We all have those boxes of photos and old albums in our parents’ house. We have the old photos from our childhood and our parent’s childhood. These prints preserve family stories and if professional photographers can provide more printed product to our clients we are ensuring that family stories will be passed down to the next generation.
Last year my mother and her sister came across a print of my great, great uncle from World War I. The photo, we believe, was taken in 1917. You can see the address on the photograph. The studio, to my surprise, is still in existence and is 10 hours south of Paris, in the middle of nowhere, 2 hours from the nearest train station. I believe it is so important to communicate the power of print. This summer I made the journey to this studio and had my portrait taken in the same exact location, completing this family story. If we, as professionals, are not providing printed products to our clients, we are robbing someone in the future of their own family story.
And remember, that man, who stopped me on the street? His portrait is one of my all time favorite portraits. Before I snapped those two frames, he stuck out his hand and said, “Hi, I’m Lee Majors, International Hustler,” as if that was his job. He then rattled off all the countries he’s been too and it was much more than the 16 I’ve visited. I pulled out my Fuji Instax printer and created a polaroid for him right on the spot, as I always do. I left Lee with a photo that can become part of his story.
I invite all of you to find those photos from your family history and make them a part of your narrative to your clients. And make printed products a central part of your studio, so that some day, a great, great grandchild will find an album, a canvas, a print that holds meaning for him and his family.”
As Howard Thurman once said: “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” This was a beautiful insight on Andrew Funderburg’s story, now it’s your turn!