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"Professional" Photographers

This is a discussion on "Professional" Photographers within the General photography forums, part of the Photography & Fine art photography category; I have noticed since the upgrade of digital cameras and photoshop software, "professional" photographers have come out of the woodwork. ...

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    Default "Professional" Photographers

    I have noticed since the upgrade of digital cameras and photoshop software, "professional" photographers have come out of the woodwork. I was just looking at a few sites of photographers here in Baton Rouge, and see major, basic flaws in their shots, or just plain poor post processing.

    I am not talking about photographers that have real shops, and been around for 40 years, I am talking about people (mostly women) who advertise on Facebook, build a basic website, and buy a high dollar camera and photoshop and think they are professional photographers.

    How many times can they take a color photo, desaturate it all but one color point?

    I see basic flaws like the image out of level, composition, and other basic rules.

    I am not judging their "artistic license". They seem to have not a single artistic bone in their body.

    I may not be a good photographer, but I know what I want to do, just don't know how to get there. At my skill level right now and a little better equipment, I could easily do better shots then most of these "professional" photographers, and I would never consider charging some one to do it.

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    Maybe you have not heard the news, but it's all in the advertising! Like you, I have seen images from "amateurs" that outperform many of the "professionals". So take heart, build a website, charge outrageous prices and tell everyone you are the cream of the crop. Someone will believe you. Oh, and yes, I almost forgot: get same phoney testimonials from someone.
    ~~ Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder ~~

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    I do know what you mean. I have known some people who have done that as well. I just saw some photos from my niece's wedding- it was a destination wedding in Jamaica- I really didn't care for most of the shots.
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    kat
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    I personally think to each their own.

    It's up to the consumer to take responsibility to do their homework and figure out what they want in their photos and the price to go with it.

    I personally would not even consider doing a wedding or the like and for the rest, "you are taking a chance on me" warning and price tag. I wish more "photographers" would think of this before they take special moments in time that can not be given back.

    LOL..here's a video just for this..

    [Video] Judge Brown Tears Cheap Wedding Photog a New One | Fstoppers
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    Great video Kat!!! That's exactly what I'm talking about. This "photographer" showed up with a basic camera and two basic lenses and did her printing at Wal-Mart!!! The shots they showed look horrible, no composition, what so ever!!!

    In the last five years, I've hired two photographers for family portraits. The first one was $500 just for the sitting fee and the package was $4500, including a 36x48 on canvas. He did a lot of pp work, including moving my wife's face from one shot to another (due to the baby in one shot). I had no problems spending this $4500, I have some lifetime treasures.

    The other photographer, we got from one of these "daily deals" things on line. It was a $500 package for $100. Well, we got what we paid for. He didn't show with basic equipment, but he had no feel for composition and I was basically directing the shots. We ended up with the negatives instead of the prints because I feel I can do some more work on them. I will do it when I get better at PP

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    I think the problem is price. I as an amateur don't have to consider my time. I go on a walk take 100 images and spend 5 days processing them. Not a problem. So I looked at my sons wedding. And yes I could using HDR software or layers and masks have produced a far better image of church interior. But how long would it take?

    So if we consider the landscape guy he needs something really special. It make take 5 days. He works out best time of day and best time of year. He puts neutral density filters on his lens and takes 20 minutes to set up his large format plate camera with slide film. But when he takes that stunning shot he can sell 50 prints from it. Not just one or two.

    But the guy taking the wedding or family special event has a very limited sale for his product. So he has to learn how to do things fast.

    Even as an amateur I will for some events look more at speed. I hate Jpeg out of camera but will still batch process my RAW files. A series in the country will often need nearly the same process on each image. So one opens them all in RAW 5.7 select all and clicks on auto. Not best but it is quick. You quickly look down the images and just select the ones auto did not work with.

    Saturday I went to local country park and took shots of the snow. The panorama using four images took about 2 hours to combine on my return. At just £20 per hour if I wanted to make money from that shot I would need to charge at least £100. That will just not happen. OK the professional may have a 14mm lens rather than my 28mm lens so does not need to stitch them together. Cropping is so much quicker.

    As to artistic methods that's all a matter of personal preference. At my sons wedding the photographer tried to get the shadows cast by the leaves on the couples faces. I would have gone out of my way to remove the using fill in flash. I have worked hard with layers and masks to get the whole dynamic range. Only to see some one who took the whole scene as a silhouette win the competition.

    I go to a camera club and attend lectures given by the professionals. And I have to take my hat of to them. With me although I have some skill luck plays a big part. But not with them. They don't get those letters behind their names without a lot of work and skill. One does not become an associate of the royal photographic society unless one is good. Have a look here and then tell me you can do better! And do remember the prints look far better than they will on your PC. When to his lecture last Monday and I can only dream of taking photos like that.

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    Eric,

    I think you misunderstood what I was trying to say in this thread. I am saying with a little better equipment and software, I could do better pictures than some of these people who claim to be "professional photographers". I am a horrible photographer, I know it, everyone on this site knows it. I just hate seeing these people claiming to be "professional photographers", charging people money for basic shots that have alot of basic, beginner flaws.

    If I could achieve one thing off of this beginner hobby of mine, it is to take great shots of my kids and take shots of friends kids, that will be lifetime keepsakes for the family.

    This shot by Vyeko is one of my favorite shots I've seen on this site
    Little boy

    If I could just get close to a shot like this, I would be a happy camper!!!

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    I don't think it matters what trade you always get the cow boys. I am an electrician and over the years I have seen many bad jobs done by so called electricians. I am sure every trade is the same. For those trades where danger results from bad workmanship governments make laws but for those without danger it is a let the buyer beware situation.
    In the main most trades have organisations which try to promote those who really have the skill. Photography has these and one would expect a true professional to be a member of one of these exclusive clubs.

    Not sure about other countries be here in the UK I can set myself up as a photographer with nothing more than a portfolio to show clients. If people pay me to take photos then I am a professional photographer. However it could be to show evidence of faulty equipment, or other technical items and be nothing what so ever to do with art. I remember a professional photographer explaining to me the problems in taking a photo of a warped sheet of glass to show it was warped before it was returned in case it was broken in transit. A very different task to taking a picture to hang on a wall.

    The little boy is a very fine photo. I would agree I would be very happy with it. Last week I went out to take photos I am going to show two. The first was to me the type where it is the artistic skill which is required and I am not very good at that. The second I would never consider hanging on a wall but the technical skill to capture the image was far more involved than the first.

    Moel Famau from Loggerheads near Mold North Wales.
    Fungus on a fallen tree in the Loggerheads County Park.

    I take pictures like the second one for a guy who owns a local wood see Natural Forest Practice - HOME and he is interested in the photos to illustrate his points rather than what looks good on a wall. I love my close up and macro photography but I would not call it artistic.

    Look at the adverts on TV and look how many images have huge blown out sections. Enter these in a photo competition and it would have a very poor mark. Yet it does what the client wanted and the guys taking the photos will have been paid so are professional photographers. It is the likes of you and me who make them professional photographers by paying them for their work. They did not make themselves professional photographer it was the people buying their work who made them professional photographers.

    The same applies to paintings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ericmark View Post
    I don't think it matters what trade you always get the cow boys. I am an electrician and over the years I have seen many bad jobs done by so called electricians. I am sure every trade is the same. For those trades where danger results from bad workmanship governments make laws but for those without danger it is a let the buyer beware situation. ...snip...
    I'll chime in and say that computer "engineers" or programmers fall into this category. I've met so many that don't understand the basics of data structures or algorithms yet they sell their services as programmers or even worse "engineers" which seems like a crazy term to me but that's another rant for a different day. Suffice it to say, they suck but they still hang out their shingle like a professional.
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    Digital has certainly made photography more accessible to more people, which on the whole is a good thing.

    I would say the difference between an amateur and a professional is that a professional will deliver at an agreed quality and price 100% of time without fail or excuse.

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