Interesting topic today…
What makes a professional?
Is it the equipment, experience or knowledge… many seem to put too much focus on the equipment, if I buy an expensive ‘tool’ I can do anything.
When in fact it is a combination of all 3. From my own experience – outside of photography, before I could join our family business I was required to have education, over the years I have gained on my experience and knowledge. Quite similar… as a trades person you must have knowledge and experience to receive your license.
My husband and I just purchased a new professional grade gas stove for our new home… does this make me a baker or cook… because I now have a top of the line piece of equipment?
I know I am not a baker, I enjoy cooking but by no means am I a “cook”, no matter how great my oven may be. We bought it because it was a great deal and we enjoy cooking at home. However we do still indulge in some fantastic meals out – and most times kidless!
I had a very recent photography experience which made me really think on this and think about my new oven. How easy and affordable it now is for anyone to purchase a DSLR and regardless of their knowledge or experience, they have the equipment and think that they’re set to be a “pro” and begin charging. This recent experience (which will remain nameless), the client received their photos back from the “professional” they hired to find the photos were not what they expected at all – quality wise.
After hearing a description of the photos I knew what had happened, the photographer under exposed the images and they were extremely “noisy” and beyond “repair”. I offered to have a look at one photo to look at the EXIF data to see what was wrong. My initial thoughts of what went wrong, was exactly that. The photo was poorly exposed which resulted in an extremely noisy image, it was also out of focus and the white balance was off as well.
Certainly not to ‘toot my own horn’, as this is a very common and unfortunatley typical situation for those who tend to believe it is “easy” to be a photographer. It takes a lot of time, patience, practice, understanding and then comes equipment. If you cannot nail exposure and focus on a lower end camera, you are not going to be able to do it on a mid-range pro-sumer camera (consumer/professional).
When looking for a photographer ASK lots of questions: Ask what equipment they use and WHY? Do they have insurance? Do they shoot jpg or RAW and WHY? Do they have a portfolio and can you see a variety of their work? Do they have an external speedlite flash? If they do not, why, if they do why and what do they use it for? Do they have backup equipment?
Think of your Photography as an investment not only in Art for your Home but also in yourselves and your Family. Simply by putting a small amount as less as $50 a month aside you can have a Custom Photography Session + Wall Art each year!
I cannot post without some photos… our gorgeous cousin is expecting their first baby! It was a pleasure photographing her!
Cannot wait to meet the wee babe 🙂