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Thread: Photography as a profession

  1. #101
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by GeckoZ
    yes i do know the basics. what i'm asking instead was, how do you gauge the aperture and shutter speed acurately so that a picture would turn out perfectly as to what you intended. missing a stop would cause great difference, isn't it?
    experience is the best teacher.
    alot of trial and error is involved.. that's why there's exposure bracketing.. for tricky lighting situations.

    actually if you know the basics as you claim, you really shouldn't be asking this question.

    it really depends. a stop can make a difference depending on the type of medium you are shooting with.. so again , please do your research and read up on exposure latitude.

    no such thing as getting it right the first time in photography.. and do consider about getting a manual film camera like mattlock suggested.
    Last edited by jherek; 23rd July 2006 at 01:23 AM.

  2. #102
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by GeckoZ
    yes i do know the basics. what i'm asking instead was, how do you gauge the aperture and shutter speed acurately so that a picture would turn out perfectly as to what you intended. missing a stop would cause great difference, isn't it?
    By reading a lots books,
    By doing a lots research,
    By doing a lots of shoots,
    By doing lots of test,
    By going through a lots trial-and-error,
    By many years of experience,


    Sometime you see a photographer just like anyhow aim and shoot, can produce a great photos, what you don't know that he may spend 10 years just to refine he skills. Even he let you use the same camera with the same setting and standing at the same spot, you still will not produce the same result.
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  3. #103

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights
    Sometime you see a photographer just like anyhow aim and shoot, can produce a great photos, what you don't know that he may spend 10 years just to refine he skills. Even he let you use the same camera with the same setting and standing at the same spot, you still will not produce the same result.
    like the Chinese saying: 1 minute of performance on stage, 10 years of practise off stage (did I get the numbers in the saying right )

  4. #104

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Ok... here is my view...

    Photography as profession is not as good as it sound.
    Why?
    because, you need to always churn out high quality of work everytime you shoot... because you get paid and people expect only the best. Its not a choice between getting a good shot...it is a requirement. if you miss an important shot, yes I mean 1 important shot, you are pretty much out of the game.

    Wierd working hours and most of the time a very long day...

    Quite some sizeable investment before you see your investment paid off...

    Also, it is not about the equipment alone, but the attitude and principle of a photographer. One should never interested to lower their pricing in order to get a "normal" job. Of course, if you are tendering for a prestige job, that is different case. Pricing reflect your self worth.

    If you can't deal with people... then don't worry about doing photography as a business... it is afterall a very personal area... your belief vs someone else belief.. and we can never questions people belief.

    Now, that is the negative side.. the positive side...

    You can mix passion and profession... great!!! I don't feel I go out and work... I am not working, but I enjoy every part of the photography business that I am running at the moment as photography is my passion.

    Yes, it is long hours, dealing with client but you get to shoot what you feel... So it is important to accept job that you wanted to shoot... and enjoy the shoot.

    If you want to be a photographer, you need to be comfortable with the quality that you can produce as the comment from client sometime can be quite difficult to accept.

    Because I shoot what I choose to shoot (difficult in the beginning, but you have to hang on) and only accept the shoot that you want to shoot, that in the long run will help you to become who you want to be.

    Last but not least... YOUR SELF-WORTH..... ask yourself honestly how much you worth... before doing your pricing... and please do not run the business on the pricing basis.... should always learn improve the level... after all we all still learning at every click of the shutter.

    ART has no quantitative price, but its the artist who put the cap on their pricing... Remember people will pay what you think you are worth. Not the other way round and should never been the other way round.

    regards,

    Hart

  5. #105
    Senior Member Sion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by theRBK
    like the Chinese saying: 1 minute of performance on stage, 10 years of practise off stage (did I get the numbers in the saying right )
    Most people want to be on stage performing without the 10 years practising off stage.

    Advances in digital technology has raised the hopes of many people.

  6. #106
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by Sion
    Most people want to be on stage performing without the 10 years practising off stage.

    Advances in digital technology has raised the hopes of many people.
    so be it. when they found that there are no steps down the stage when they want to exit, let them fall over

  7. #107

    Default Re: Photography as a profession


  8. #108
    Member Static's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Hey Sam, read through this whole thread u started. Interesting comments, some sacrastic, some hypocritical and some truly sincere comments.

    IMHO big expensive cameras doesn't mean pro. It only means you can achieve good pictures from it. If you hold big expensive cameras and still take lousy pics ... might as well buy a PnS auto mode all the way

    Anyway, something to share. I was in a bridal shop over the weekend, deliberating the details for my wedding photoshoots and etc. During the discussion, we touch on the subject on which photographer to engage. They gave me the option to choose among 3 photographers. 2 DSLR expert and a SLR expert who uses traditional film camera. The bridal shop strongly recommend the SLR expert to us. We quickly dismissed the SLR expert as it is impt for us to immediately view the pics taken during the outdoor photoshoot. If they are no good, can at least retake again. SLR can't give us that convienance to instant preview and we dun want to take the risk to pay for another outdoor shoot if the film turns out to be bad.

    Furthermore, we also have this impression tat the SLR pics suffer from quality reduction as the traditional flims have to go through the process of digtial conversion b4 you can edit them, compared to those taken by DSLR which are already in editable digital format.

    So we quickly dismissed the SLR expert. We oso suspect they strongly recommend him becuz most ppl prefer DSLR and as a result he is the more "ENG" photographer available most of the time.

    Anyway, the sales lady did brought out some interesting points which I readily found it to be very true. She said technology is so advanced now that ppl now have a very short learning curve handling digital DSLR. Its a matter of playing wif different settings, preview and delete the blur ones, anyone can be a good photographer now. Those using SLR had went through a much harder way of learning. In the past, there was no instant preview, no settings information on pics. Everything was learnt through years of experience and trial and error. Thus their knowledge of lighting conditions, skills of playing with lights, shadows and environment are thus much better.

    She differentiates between a good photographer and pro photographer by feel of the pictures. After comparing the different photographer's work, I have to admit that the SLR expert pics are much better in terms of artistic feel, more natural and more capable in bringing out candid moments that illustrates the the couple love journey.

    I m not saying the DSLR pros are very lousy, its the ability to bring meaning to a picture that matters. The pics one DSLR pro took were decent and clear, but it seemed that they were nothing more than PnS style. It seemed it was a matter of choosing popular background location, capturing couple smiling constantly to each other and post processing the blur areas.

    Like what the sales lady had mentioned, more ppl are becoming "pro" through investing in expensive gear. A good acid test to photographers would be the ability to handle both DSLR and SLR competently.

    Lastly to summarize what i m trying to emphasize. Having expensive gears doesn't make one a pro, it just gives u the ability to produce clearer pics than ordinary cameras. Its the ability to control and handle your camera to produce the pics u envisage that makes u a pro.

    Last edited by Static; 24th July 2006 at 02:11 AM.
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  9. #109

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    geckoz, just to share... i actually wanted to study photography after my secondary studies. but my dad discourage me, then i ended up having a diploma in bio engineering. and now worse, i'm heading for university. only recently, i need a part time job so my friend introduce me to become a photo assistant. i have no knowledge at all beforehand, so i'm kinda blur at work. but still, the photographers are really kind, sometimes they explain alittle but they dont teach much. so every shoot, i will observe hard and try to learn fast. now, i've gotten myself a cheapo slr. i seldom use my lousy digital pns anymore. i carry my old rangefinder everywhere i go. although i have some cash now, but it's actually meant for getting a laptop when i start uni. i am so tempted to get a dslr, but i know my dad will be angry. i sometimes wonder if my dad have ruin my future and i really regretted studying bio engineering. but i just take a step at a time, maybe.....

  10. #110

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by GeckoZ
    mattlock, i saw your photo gallery from your website. they are very nice and artistic! what camera do you use?? Is there any chance that you could share some tips with me too?

    I'm curios of how newbie photographers can predict the aperture and shutter speed to use if they are shooting with film camera since they can't see the results before they wash the films. please advice.

    Oh, and I would be glad if I have the chance to tag along any pf your photoshoot.
    you need to just go out there and start shooting instead of worrying about such things
    pick up a book on photography to learn the basics, it's not difficult.

    trial and error is the best way to learn

    if you concentrate on technique from the start then your creativity will be stifled from the start

  11. #111

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Just go & get tt piece of paper 1st, everything else can come after tt.


    .

  12. #112

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by sylvia
    geckoz, just to share... i actually wanted to study photography after my secondary studies. but my dad discourage me, then i ended up having a diploma in bio engineering. and now worse, i'm heading for university. only recently, i need a part time job so my friend introduce me to become a photo assistant. i have no knowledge at all beforehand, so i'm kinda blur at work. but still, the photographers are really kind, sometimes they explain alittle but they dont teach much. so every shoot, i will observe hard and try to learn fast. now, i've gotten myself a cheapo slr. i seldom use my lousy digital pns anymore. i carry my old rangefinder everywhere i go. although i have some cash now, but it's actually meant for getting a laptop when i start uni. i am so tempted to get a dslr, but i know my dad will be angry. i sometimes wonder if my dad have ruin my future and i really regretted studying bio engineering. but i just take a step at a time, maybe.....
    i think having a bio engineering education just opens up more opportunities (not to mention being insurance). i studied for so many many years and my job now is completely not related.

    Always good to have a marketable skill - which is what you have. u can always use that to fund ur passion. hey dun worry, you are still young!

    Good to see you are still pursuing your dreams, just remember u dun have to give up one or the other, you can have both

  13. #113
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    GeckoZ,
    More than enough has been said already.

    Having digital may shorten the learning curve, but it is a curve nonetheless. Go climb it.

    The camera does not dictate the user, unlike some of the subforums here may want you to think.

    Read. Look around. Learn, discern. Use, practice... a lot more. Go shoot.

    Go get your basic diploma/degree first. At least you have other options.

    Being a photographer who earns 90% (or more) of his rice bowl from photography is tough, not as simplistic as you may think, or most people would like to imagine.


    *my last post in this thread*

  14. #114
    Senior Member glennyong's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    like i said in the beginning....

    not easy to start out also...esp when you are studying in a non-related field where i dun think u have a chance to use a camera in ur studies...

    i think u better have a stable job, have $. slowly climb the curve..

    like all parents like to say. Get a good cert, have a job, good pay... etc etc..

    if no $ buy wad camera...... u wanna get the virus also no use...

    got $ den talk...

    so...go back study. and shoot with ur PnS more.... and start saving up...

  15. #115
    Senior Member Sion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Money issue aside, I think there are other reasons why someone wants to take up photography as a living.

    Okay we know it's tough, it's competitive and money comes slowly for the new entrants.

    But it does give you freedom to pursue your own destiny. Some people enjoy the challenges of being their own bosses.

    I was working for someone else for donkey years. I was given a certain job, told what to do, how to do and how fast I had to finish it. I didn't see pay rise except pay cut.

    So 4 months ago when my income from photography finally matched my day job I told the manager I was not going to come to work anymore.

    Many nights when I am in my home studio shooting away, I have felt a certain happiness that sitting in front of a computer in the office doesn't give me. Money can't buy that. Maybe my home studio has good karma.

    Of course I have to thank the few cheques that arrive every month without fail.
    Last edited by Sion; 24th July 2006 at 06:59 AM.

  16. #116

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by Sion
    Money issue aside, I think there are other reasons why someone wants to take up photography as a living.

    Okay we know it's tough, it's competitive and money comes slowly for the new entrants.

    But it does give you freedom to pursue your own destiny. Some people enjoy the challenges of being their own bosses.

    I was working for someone else for donkey years. I was given a certain job, told what to do, how to do and how fast I had to finish it. I didn't see pay rise except pay cut.

    So 4 months ago when my income from photography finally matched my day job I told the manager I was not going to come to work anymore.

    Many nights when I am in my home studio shooting away, I have felt a certain happiness that sitting in front of a computer in the office doesn't give me. Money can't buy that. Maybe my home studio has good karma.

    Of course I have to thank the few cheques that arrive every month without fail.
    congrads man! glad you made it

  17. #117

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    i think when u shoot more, you will gain more experience and possibly have a few opportunities to shoot for a paying customer. From there u will start building experience n portfolio. Then you can decide then what you want.

    In my opinion, regardless of tools (photographic equipment), ultimately its the picture u want to make, the vision you want to convey. If a blur picture speaks your mind, then i think you are successful.

    2 cents from a newbie.
    Last edited by zhangyb; 25th July 2006 at 12:38 AM.

  18. #118

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights
    By reading a lots books,
    By doing a lots research,
    By doing a lots of shoots,
    By doing lots of test,
    By going through a lots trial-and-error,
    By many years of experience,


    Sometime you see a photographer just like anyhow aim and shoot, can produce a great photos, what you don't know that he may spend 10 years just to refine he skills. Even he let you use the same camera with the same setting and standing at the same spot, you still will not produce the same result.
    well said

  19. #119

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    Quote Originally Posted by GeckoZ
    yes i do know the basics. what i'm asking instead was, how do you gauge the aperture and shutter speed acurately so that a picture would turn out perfectly as to what you intended. missing a stop would cause great difference, isn't it?
    GeckoZ - I seriously advise that you have not understood the basics if you cannot understand how to expose properly. That is the one of the 4 most basic skills you need to have before you can really start to take better photos. Please go and work on it.

  20. #120

    Default Re: Photography as a profession

    I don't suggest anyone to just jump into it... it's not that easy..
    I had to slog for about 2 years with very little income. (Even the magazines publishing my work didn't help much).. it's hard work marketing, branding, building a good portfolio, constantly updating your portfolio (which reminds me.. mine hasn't been updated for almost 9 months)..

    Frankly.. I consider myself comfortable now only because I have a value proposition...
    Without that.. I'll still be slogging..

    Many professional photographers quit after a year as they can't sit through the trough.. it takes time to build your reputation and clientele...

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