professional photographers can be working for some corporations or running their own business. I believe we are in discussion about be a professional photographers with own practice.
many people wanted to be a professional photographer, at a point of time when they begin they journey on photography as hobby, just like every little girls wanted to be a princess.....
most people tried and failed, largely because they think can shoot better than others and that is all it takes. but they didn't realize that they need to learn to run a business properly in order to sustain their dreams as professional photographer.
there are many things ones need to know and learn about to be professional photographer, and the process is endless.
If anyone keen to know more and the truth about professional photography, there are few books in National Library in this topic, read at least one book before you want to embark into professional photography.
hope this help.
I don't think that the low-end photographers are that much of a threat but it would be good for a rough guideline on pricing to be talked about, so that when clients approach us they don't try to play the fear factor on us.
As my friend told me, Asians tend to find it difficult to pay service fees so we have to be able to back up why our fees are such and such.
US market and SG market no parallels at all, seriously. At least the amateur photographers there don't claim to be a professional and flood the market (even the low end one).
Regarding XMM, if you talking about the workshops that I so often see, I don't consider it going professional? It is a different business, you aren't shooting for money. You're basically an event organiser in the photography field.
And to OT, I have never understood why is it called a workshop. Do you really learn anything? Do they teach you anything? To me it is more of "pay money to see skimpily clad girls". Go beach with camera lah!
There is only 1 organiser I know that actually does seem to bring in quality models. The rest are like
5 years ago, i entered this field as an assistant, i had big dreams,
now it seems really difficult, i feel like giving up sometimes.
Cynic mode engaged..
Checks out the Singapore edition of GWC monthly and looks up "Workshop".. hmm it says and I misquote...
A place where the GWC "works" on his lameas$ pickup lines to the XMM in the vain hope that he might get lucky, while the XMM dreams of "shopping" with the loot she's not been paid to prance around in scanty clothes...
Editors note: GWC's never get lucky with models, that's a perk of the full time professional photographer only
Cynic mode disengaged..
The Ang Moh from Hell
Professional Photography - many are called, few are chosen!
i've only ever gotten lucky once...once only :/
I know the journey in photography is never easy...
quickly glance through your web and you have excellent work.
Perhaps it will be great to hear from you what makes you feel like giving up sometimes? what are the factor that dampen the initial "fire"?
I am sure this will benefit many as this will give another perspective from someone that is there and done that and still in the market but feel like giving up....
I will start with mine...
Initially, photography is always a dream and coming from well paid engineering job and it was difficult to let go... however, little that I know working in photography line isn't always smooth.
First thing that strike me is the comment from people you trust as they would give you a very true opinion on what they think abt you and your work. It is very personal and deep down, it was a little difficult to swallow but you know with those comment, that you will grow from it.
Second thing is looking at your peer who is busy with job after job after job, it was kinda demoralising when ourselves don't have much to work on.
Third, is the administrative chore that prevent you to do what you prefer... but you know you have to do it.
To sum up, i think it is more or less about our perception on how glamorous to work as photographer but rarely happen that way.
The hard work that needs to be put in seems to be a burden sometime but you know there isn't much you can do without it.
That pretty much sum up my first 6 years in photography and I am just starting to enjoy the little fruit of hard work that I put in last 6 years. However, the hard work don't stop if I want to go forward so I think it will be continuous process.
My advise is to have a practical expectation when you start and continuously evaluate the situation with your expectation to ensure a better understanding on your business.
It is very important not to compare your achievement with other's because everyone is different. More importantly running your own race and achieving your own goal is more meaningful.
In other markets many people go thru training, education, ojt. I noticed that there is no real photography school in singapore that actually impart the skill and arrange for OJT till the student becomes pro. Maybe there are such schools countries with larger market.
True there are monkeys that charge cheaply and There are also pros that charge high and deliver fantastic results or the other way around as well. In such a situation the newbie that wants to go pro will just have to keep doing trial and error to become the pro they are today and deliver value for money pics. This natural cycle wont change for years .
TO AgeTan(Hart) :
why do i sometimes feel like quitting.
To be truthful to you, the first and foremost reason for me to PONDER about changing profession, is the highly unstable income.
I presume that i am in the intermediate stage of my career and IMHO it sucks badddd.
if i shoot i get paid( in 30-60 days mind you ) if i dont shoot i dont get paid.
its not like last time when i was an assistant, i get paid doing assisting stuff.
the second thing that affect me the most last time was my constant Comparing with my peers, i get affected when i see much younger photographer churning out amazing work, gracing covers of much coveted fashion magazines.
but after a while, i realized such comparing isnt healthy at all,
Sure it has propelled me to create a portfolio, but too much comparing will lead to feeling jaded about your art.
so i totally agree with you, that we should concentrate on OUR OWN PATH.
bettering your craft, bettering your mind, and bettering your self.
anyways, its just a passing mood, i will feel better (especially after people start paying up)
PS: any aspiring photographers, new assistants or those thinking of learning the craft thru assisting, if you got questions, doubts or worries, feel free to ask me , and i will try my best to tell u what i know and been thru
Its never easy... when we are in the action, we feel alive but most days spent doing "seed planting" and that could be quite tiring and to some degree difficult to "measure" and we just don't know when this "seed" that we plant will grow...
However, at the same time, we don't plant the "seed", we won't see anything for sure...
I used to spend time looking at peer, now, I don't do that at all as it doesn't help anything at all...
Anyway... maybe should have a "coffee morning" and have a chat... for anyone who cares to come and talk about life as pro photographer.
success don't come easy but certain lots of hoops to jump and lots of sweat and perhaps some tears... However, one thing for sure is, if you enjoy the process, it is quite fun...
yes most do enjoy the process and it definitly fun, especially when the photos turn out great! but i doubt u can survive base on that...
I have heard enough, "your competitor is giving me a better pricing", but the fact that if they call you back to tell you that, they want your service. Of course, winning the job is one thing, meeting expectation is easy but exceeding expectation is not. So the aim is to exceed the expectation every single time.
It is about having the right product for the right people at the right price.
There are photographers who command 5-6 figures for family photography... and I do believe if those photographers exist, there is no short of client who wants quality work.