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Author Topic: What's your definition of "Pro"?  (Read 9437 times)

RLPhoto

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2013, 09:38:51 AM »
Anyone who gets paid for their photography services. I've seen horrible pros and excellent non-pros, so take the title with a handful of salt.
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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2013, 09:38:51 AM »

Zv

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2013, 09:45:35 AM »
It's a difficult one to define since there are such varying standards. I consider people who not only earn 100% of their income through photography but also those who are contributing to the photographic community with innovative and imaginative new ways to express their art. Taking a bunch of pictures at a wedding does not make a pro photographer in my eyes. Offering a unique experience and capturing a wedding in a way that not only satisfies the expectations of the client but exceeds them and adds their own signature and style would be a better description. Other descritions would include sports photographers and fashion photographers.
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unfocused

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2013, 10:09:59 AM »
I'm more interested in the term and theory of "craftsman" – which requires about 10,000 hours to achieve. That equates to three hours of practice a day for 10 years.

I like it because it has nothing to do with money, but everything to do with building and mastering skills.
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awinphoto

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2013, 10:20:46 AM »
hmmmm your opening a new can of worms, aren't ya... The hardlined definition of Pro, especially in the photography sector, tends to be a person who works full time and makes their living from the use or sell of photography.  That's how canon defines a pro when considering candidates for their CPS (Canon Professional Services), although it's debatable how strict their process is, but anywho... Then again, there are a lot of professionals that burn out within the first year or two, a lot of pro's that overprice and go bankrupt, and a lot of pro's that aren't the best photographers, but are awesome sales people which keeps money flowing.  The line between Pro and amateur is so fuzzy, especially since anyone can buy a 5d or 7d or even a 1dx and call themselves a pro with no credentials or training.  And then in the pro sector, you have the long time existing pros (dinosaurs who are retiring soon and not up with technology or still shooting film), the actually good and successful pro's, the up and comers, and then those shoot and burners who likely will be out of a job in a matter of time...  So in that jumbled mess of an answer, i'd say your an advanced amateur... and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.  If you want to be a pro, take the leap of faith and try it full time and sink or swim 
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TWI by Dustin Abbott

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2013, 10:53:51 AM »
Pro - You make a living at what you do.  Everyone is a pro at something.
Semi-pro - You make some money at it.  Could be Weddings/Events or image sales online or at art/craft shows.
Amateur - you do it for fun and/or show.

I don't think these terms have anything to do with skill other than you need to have more skill to make more money at something.  An amateur can certainly have the same skills as a pro they just make a living at something else.

I think I agree with this definition.  I consider myself a semi-pro because I do photography professionally (I get paid to do a variety of photography related things, from portraits to weddings to business events), but it isn't my main pursuit or vocation.  I have been published in multiple magazines and newspapers.  Getty licenses some of my work.  My day job is as a pastor, and it will always be my primary focus.

I love the place I get to do photography from.  I can be both the passionate amateur, get paid when I want to take jobs, and but don't have to take them because I don't make a living from photography.  I essentially try to fund all of my equipment through photography, and if I make a little extra, it is gravy.  I'm far from rich, but I'm far from greedy, too.
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Rat

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #20 on: February 07, 2013, 10:59:37 AM »
You're a hobbyist if you do something you like. You're a pro if you do what someone else likes.
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V8Beast

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #21 on: February 07, 2013, 11:18:33 AM »
Someone who has no money ;D

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #21 on: February 07, 2013, 11:18:33 AM »

unfocused

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #22 on: February 07, 2013, 11:32:41 AM »
Someone who has no money ;D

Best answer yet.
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paul13walnut5

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #23 on: February 07, 2013, 11:33:55 AM »
If photography is your living and you have things like liability and indemnity insurance and you pay tax then you are probably pro, regardless of ability or kit used.

I'm an amateur photographer but make my living doing video (partly) on DSLRs.

I see no shame in the badge amateur.  It means you do it for the love of it.  I see no harm in the label 'hobbyist' either.

By sheer fluke I've sold a couple of images directly and through the getty/flickr scam, but thats because I was asked to, I've NEVER taken a photo commission, and never intend to.  It's mine, all mine, and I love it.

By dint of my day job I have an idea how to work a camera, and how to control light, and on a good day downhill with the wind behind me, can even compose a shot.  But I would never call myself a pro photographer.

And neither should some of the folk who do.

My final word... careful what you wish for.  I was at the video game for a while before I went back to school, and have been in paid work ever since, but I don't enjoy video anywhere near as much as when I wasn't piping  to somebody elses tune.

Lurker

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #24 on: February 07, 2013, 11:52:51 AM »
Quote
also those who are contributing to the photographic community with innovative and imaginative new ways to express their art. . . . Offering a unique experience

I understand what you're saying but I have a concern.

If a person does something innovative or imaginative people will study it and duplicate it.  If they contribute to the photographic community its even easier to duplicate their work.  Once others are doing what they do are they no longer a pro?  If a person wants to continue to be a pro do they have to regularly change their style or technique to keep it fresh? 

I don't think its fair or appropriate to define one person based on what someone else is or what someone else is doing.

charlesa

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #25 on: February 07, 2013, 11:54:53 AM »
Someone who has no money ;D

Seconded haha!

agierke

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #26 on: February 07, 2013, 12:11:51 PM »
its as if we need Jeff Foxworthy to do a "You Might Be A Professional Photographer If...." bit.

you are a professional photographer if your main source of income is from photography. plain and simple.

now whether or not you ARE "professional" is a whole nother story....
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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #27 on: February 07, 2013, 12:21:41 PM »
So what exactly does it mean to be professional in your opinion? We know it's not the gear alone. Is it the making money off of your skill? Paid jobs? Making a living? Is it simply having skill and experience? What do you all think?

In addition to the things about income written above, imho it's a mostly a different perspective - either you do it for fun and invest accordingly ("that gear will be fun/interesting to use and I look forward to the results") or you think of it like a business ("what gear is required to do the job and will I get a return of invest").

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #27 on: February 07, 2013, 12:21:41 PM »

Chris Geiger

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #28 on: February 07, 2013, 12:22:13 PM »
"You Might Be A Professional Photographer If your main source of light comes from somewhere other than the camera flash"

I consider myself a pro. Photography is my only source of income. I have insurance, pay taxes and recently achieved my Certified Professional Photographer certificate. I average 30+ weddings a year along with other shoots.

Don Haines

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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #29 on: February 07, 2013, 12:46:40 PM »
I don't think there is a hard definition...... just a sliding scale...
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Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« Reply #29 on: February 07, 2013, 12:46:40 PM »