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My flat got burgled.
Seong Joon Cho, Photographer
Seoul | South Korea | Asia | Posted: 7:58 AM on 08.14.07
->> I am a freelance photographer based in Seoul, South Korea. At the same time, I am a senior student majoring in photojournalism in Korea. Yesterday my flat got burgled. Thieves broke the lock in my flat and stole all my equipment (Canon 1D Mark2n, 16-35, 24-70,70-200, Extender 1.4, 580EX and other stuff.) Of course, I reported to the police. Unfortunately, there is no camera equipment insurance here in Korea. I am going to graduate next February (Korean educational system is different from America) and planning to work as a freelance photographer. But, right now, I don't know what I have to do. I am really desperate and I even don't want to take pictures any more. How do I overcome this situation? My life as a photographer is over, isn't it?
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David G. McIntyre, Photographer
Beijing | . | CHINA | Posted: 9:05 AM on 08.14.07
->> Hopefully you have the serial numbers and there is a way for the police to trace it if someone tries to sell it. Also look in the newspaper or someplace that might list used equipment for sale and maybe you can find it.
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Michael Brown, Photographer
Roxburgh Park | Victoria | Australia | Posted: 10:00 AM on 08.14.07
->> Seong,

I went through the same thing several years ago, I was on the verge of going full time pro (doing weddings eeew), had work lined up for 12 months ahead, and had my gear stolen out of my car. My insurance didn't cover it. I felt exactly the same as you, had lost all interest in photography, and canceled all of the weddings that I had booked (stupid I know, I could have hired the gear, but thats how bad I felt)

I had 3 years off shooting, and spent all of that time scanning old images, and learning P/S back to front. When I had saved the cash to buy a little bit of gear, I started small with the body, and spent up on the lenses, it cost me $10k and that was with a D70 :-o.

Now I am back with new gear, big glass, and shooting away happily every week. (and even thinking of changing to Canon LOL)

Don't give up, if Photography is your passion, it is in your blood. You will find a way back.

Mike Brown
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Rob Bye, Photographer
Winnipeg | MB | Canada | Posted: 10:10 AM on 08.14.07
->> Years ago, the very same thing happened to me. There's no more sinking a feeling than coming home and finding your place ransacked. It took me a few years to get back on track, but I did get back on track, and so will you.
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Peter Grigsby, Student/Intern
Arcata | CA | USA | Posted: 10:37 AM on 08.14.07
->> Seong,

I am so sorry to hear about your loss.....It must feel as if your world has come crashing down at your feet.

It's not much....but I have an old Nikon D100 with a 50mm 1.8 lens that I am willing to give you. It is nothing in comparison to the gear you are used to using, but it will at least keep you shooting.

The D100 has some problems, but it works (most of the time).....It has two or three batteries and a charger. Let me know if this would help at all. Contact me through my member page and I will ship it to you.

Who knows....maybe the SS community could come together and help you get back on your feet photographically.
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John J. Kim, Photographer
chicago | il | usa | Posted: 11:29 AM on 08.14.07
->> ahn young, seong,

your life as a photographer is definitely not over. be sure to take some deep, deep breaths to clear your head every time you feel nervous and anxious because of what happened.

i'm not sure how much freelancers are making in korea, but if you have some money saved up, use it to invest in new gear. all together, the items you listed combined add up to less than $10,000 (u.s. dollars). yeah, that's still a lot of money, but think about it: you probably want to make your living shooting pictures, and your long-term happiness and shooting skills are worth way more than $10,000, right?

just don't beat yourself up because some ass clown stole your camera gear. take a couple of days to calm your nerves, and then start planning - do your finances, consider taking out a loan, invest in theft-proof storage for your apartment, et cetera. also, be sure to keep your eyes open in newspapers or internet classified postings that might be selling the same equipment that was stolen from you.


p.s. buy new canon gear and definitely not nikon.
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Yamil Sued, Photographer, Photo Editor
Peoria | AZ | USA | Posted: 11:46 AM on 08.14.07
->> Seong,

I know how you feel, When i went to school in Santa Barbara over 22 years ago, we were broken into, TWICE!!!

I have a Nikon 50 f/1.4 I can send you too.

Don't have much more stuff spare, but I bet we can hook you up here in SS.

Remember guys, Good Karma pays off in the end.

LMK what you need, maybe I can hook you up with a Camera bag too!!.

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Al Santos, Photographer
Silver Spring | MD | USA | Posted: 11:56 AM on 08.14.07
->> The great sports shooter community coming together to help a fellow shooter in need. That's awesome!

I don't have any spare Nikon gear to offer but if you send me your email address I can paypal some $ to start a camera gear fund.
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Mitchell Clinton, Photographer
Carlsbad | CA | USA | Posted: 12:32 PM on 08.14.07
->> All you lost was "stuff". What makes you a photographer is your talent (and after looking at your member page it is obvious you have it!).

All that "stuff" would be broken, worn out or outdated in a few years anyway.

Money can be a problem and replacing equipment may be a slow process, but it will come.

Many of us have suffered the same fate, for me it was a hotel room in France 1 month into a 3 month job, got most of my equipment and almost all of my money. At first I wanted to just say the hell with it and give up. I ended up buying the highest quality camera and lens I could afford with the money I had left (not quite "Prosumer") and with that and the one lens that the thieves left behind I managed to finish the job.

Hang in there, it is not as bad as you think!
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Mitchell Clinton, Photographer
Carlsbad | CA | USA | Posted: 12:54 PM on 08.14.07
->> Take a look at this little bit of history from the sports shooter archives:

...then the follow up:
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Ramsay de Give, Student/Intern, Photographer
Santa Fe | NM | USA | Posted: 12:59 PM on 08.14.07
->> I think I can help you with some Canon gear.... I'll be in touch very very soon

Just roll with the punches, you'll be on your feet in no time. Do not give up
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Alex Menendez, Photographer
Orlando | FL | USA | Posted: 2:25 PM on 08.14.07
->> I have a 28-200 lens (3.5-5.6) for a Canon that I can spare as well if you need. Just collecting dust.

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JohnPaul Greco, Photographer, Assistant
Milwaukee | WI | USA | Posted: 5:44 PM on 08.14.07
->> Gosh,...just when I thought I had it bad..! :-(

I'm so sorry to hear that!!

I've had similar things happen on a smaller scale,...and all I have to say is: Do not give up because some low-life punk thought it was a good idea to rip off your camera equipment!

Buy a good used body like a 1D....(heck, for years, magazines published images taken with a 1D bodies.

Buy used glass in "bargain" condition.. I personally know a local photographer who uses other photographer's old used "junk", and gets great shots as good as the new gear..and he paid much much less than anyone else because of the working condition the glass was in.. (so what if there is a little "paint" missing from a lens barrel, or a camera body! Cameras don't have to be sparkly clean to take shots with..

Or, when in a pinch, buy some inexpensive prims.. My 85 f1.8,..I use that for indoor field sports, & events, often shooting it at f2.0, and I get great results from it..

My first Canon lens system was a (used) 20mm f2.8 usm,..which was an "o.k." lens..nothing special.. and a 50mm f1.8 II lens..that I paid 75 $ for.. which I ended up keeping for the next 9 years.. and a (used) 80-200mm f2.8 L lens...for a total of $675.00 (back in 1996). If you are in a pinch for equipment, could also look into getting some off brand glass to get you bye..

Don't let that punk rip off your career as well!

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Mark Smith, Photographer
Elk City | OK | USA | Posted: 8:40 PM on 08.14.07
->> I'm game for throwing a few bucks in a hat. If 1/4 of us here tossed in 20 bucks, Seong is back in business pretty quickly.
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Seong Joon Cho, Photographer
Seoul | South Korea | Asia | Posted: 8:46 PM on 08.14.07
->> Thank you for everyone gave me warmhearted comments. You guys kindhearted advices really helped me. I hope I will be able to overcome the hardship. I know photography is my passion, it is in my blood. I will never give up. I don't know how to express my appreciation to you guys. Again, thank you so much.
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Dan Megna, Photographer
San Diego | CA | USA | Posted: 11:51 PM on 08.14.07
->> Seong - This is just an unfortunate setback. Not unlike those you're gonna encounter throughout your career, (what ever path you choose to follow) as well those you'll experience throughout your lifetime. While it doesn't seem so now, these disappointments will actually help mold and develope your character and prepare you for the really bad stuff that'll happen late on. Don't let this distract from what you really wanna do with your life. When I was frustrated with similar BS my wife used to tell me, "shooters shoot, now get out there." Another associate used to tell me to "lean into the wind" meaning overcome the obstacle that's in in my way. They were right. And it'll work for you, too. Just look at the support from the group of folks on this forum. You'll be past this before ya know it; Stronger, wiser and more creative on the other side...
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Mark Buffalo, Photographer
Lonoke | AR | USA | Posted: 12:33 AM on 08.15.07
->> Seong,
I just wanted to wish you luck with everything. Don't give up on your passion at all. And at this point, film might be a good avenue as well.

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Tami Chappell, Photographer
Metro Atlanta | Ga | USA | Posted: 1:02 AM on 08.15.07
->> Seong-I understand how you feel. Less than two weeks after I graduated from college, our house burned down with all my gear and my portfolio. I had to start all over again and so can you. I know its tough but once you get rolling you'll remember why its your passion. I wish you well and will certainly be glad to throw some money in the pot to help you out since I don't have extra gear.
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Ron Hawkes, Photographer
Rockport | ME | USA | Posted: 8:05 AM on 08.15.07
->> Seong, sorry to hear of your misfortune. Like everyone else here, I wish things like this never happened.

I too would be happy to help you get your feet back on the ground and running. I have a Nikon D-70 I could send you if you are interested.

Someone else mentioned sending some cash to help you buy the gear you need and I would certainly be willing to help that way as well.

With all the offers you are receiving, you just need to decide what would be best for you and let us know. We are willing to help.

Bottom line, you have to keep shooting, you are too good to stop over this setback as that is all it is, a setback.

Good luck and let us know what we can do to help you.

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Debra L Rothenberg, Photographer
New York | NY | USA | Posted: 8:15 AM on 08.15.07
->> Seong,
don't let this end it for you. You have too much passion and your work is too good.
It's a set back just for now.
I agree with Mark and Ron-can you set up a paypal account?
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Seong Joon Cho, Photographer
Seoul | South Korea | Asia | Posted: 10:21 AM on 08.18.07
->> What a great sports shooter community is. I am very impressed by you guys. Again, thank you so much! Actually, I was really desperate when I came across this situation but I am getting better. As dan said, these disappointments will actually help mold and develope my character and prepare me for the really bad stuff that'll happen late on. I think I am much stronger than what happened. It's time to go to shoot. Many of my friends are willing to borrow their gears for my assignments. I do my utmost every moment in order to get back on track soon. Photography is my life!
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Brian Shirk, Photographer
McCall | ID | US | Posted: 12:23 PM on 08.18.07
->> Seong-
See if you can get a safe to lock up your gear in. And move to a different flat, too, if possible.

The main thing about getting robbed is that once they (the thieves) know where to find expensive camera gear or something of that sort, they'll stop by the neighborhood to see if you've showed up with more (so that they can come back and do this to you all over again). The article Hanashiro wrote recently here on SS describes this a bit.

As far as safes go, the main thing is to either get something that you can bolt down from the inside of it or is extremely heavy (4+ people to carry), or awkward (you just can't get it through a door to take it to a chop shop). Don't worry so much about the fire-hour ratings or mechanisms - spend your money on getting more volume inside it (if you can't fit everything inside, there's really not much point to having it!)... The main thing is to slow them down or make them think, "I could go next door and have less chance of getting caught."

And just hope your luck doesn't end up like mine! (After having a massive mountain bike wreck earlier this summer, I was hit by cars a couple of times, right when everything was almost healed...)
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Corey Perrine, Photographer
Hudson | NH | USA | Posted: 7:02 PM on 08.19.07
->> Seong,
How's your gear coming? I've got an extra camera bag here I was going to sell but let me know where I can ship it to you.
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Philipp von Ditfurth, Student/Intern, Photographer
Staufen | B-W | Germany | Posted: 7:39 PM on 08.19.07
->> Seong,
please keep shooting. You will graduate in February with an excellent result, I´m pretty sure on that one.
And maybe, if you watch ebay, you might recognize your gear through any kind of marks, scratches or something like that. I really wish you the best of luck to get your gear back.

And, most important: What makes you a photographer, is not depending on your gear - it´s in your Head. Nobody can steal your talent, that´s for sure.
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Thread Title: My flat got burgled.
Thread Started By: Seong Joon Cho
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