I had my first conversation with a professional photographer today...

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by Senor Hound, May 29, 2008.

  1. Senor Hound

    Senor Hound TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    1,425
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    La la land...
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Well, it was acually yesterday, I guess. Anyway, he was super cool. I had heard some things on here about certain photographers being really annoyed by us amateurs, but this guy was super nice, and talked to me for like an HOUR! He was showing off his new toy, a EOS 1d mark III (shoots at 10fps...wow), and his 14mm L lens (that isn't a fish eye). Anyway, I asked him how he got to doing what he does, and he says it was the only thing he was ever good at, even from the age of 12 or so.

    But when I asked him what the best way to become a photographer myself was, he told me to be persistent, and also told me, "good luck." He said he used to do portraiture for catalogs (Bass Pro Shops) but the industry is so saturated now, he makes a ton more money freelancing for nature magazines (has done a cover or two for Field and Stream) than he did in studio.

    Anyway, this is a somewhat pointless post, but if any other noobs like me were getting a little downtrodden about the prospects of being a pro, there's always some hope. Its not impossible, its just difficult, and anyone who has enough love for the shot should follow their heart!
     
  2. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    May 10, 2007
    Messages:
    7,997
    Likes Received:
    26
    Location:
    Slapamonkey, New York
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Did you show him any of your works?


    I think that would have helped your mind set some.

    If so, What did he say?
     
  3. Senor Hound

    Senor Hound TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    1,425
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    La la land...
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    No. I was at work, and I didn't know he was going to be there. I don't take my camera to work, cause I'm afraid I'll get in trouble (I don't trust myself not to use it). I work at a fishing resort, and he booked one of our guides to catch a fish, so he could get a good photo and sell it to a magazine. After he was done fishing, he came in with all of his equipment, and we just started talking...

    My work really wasn't the point, though the feedback would have been nice. I know I need to get better, but just the idea that becoming a professional is indeed possible gave me some hope. Sometimes Iget the idea that if something is really difficult to do its impossible, and there's a HUGE difference between hard and impossible.
     
  4. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    May 10, 2007
    Messages:
    7,997
    Likes Received:
    26
    Location:
    Slapamonkey, New York
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit

    Ah....My encounter was considerably different :lmao: He was working where I was shooting and we got blathering on. He was the photographer doing the bulk of the photos for the musium I was out to shoot. First thing he wanted to see was my negs. He tought me quite a bit about modern lab processes and why to expect what I get.
     
  5. Ask the guy if you could trail him for a shoot, in order to learn from him. Most people are honored and eager to share their knowledge.
     
  6. Senor Hound

    Senor Hound TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    1,425
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    La la land...
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I didn't want to inconvenience the guy, besides, I was at work and he lives about 100 miles away from me.

    I'll take what I can get, which was a good conversation.
     
  7. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Messages:
    6,111
    Likes Received:
    15
    Location:
    Montreal, QC, Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Then you may have missed the perfect opportunity for an incredible learning experience. What if he had been doing a shoot in your town next week and would have been pleased to let you second shoot just for fun?

    There is a difference between taking what you can get, and missing a nice chance to learn a lot in a short time.

    Just something to consider the next time you get lucky. ;)
     
  8. Senor Hound

    Senor Hound TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    1,425
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    La la land...
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    So what you're saying is Carpe Momento (seize the moment)? I am a bit too passive to be asking people like that to take me under their wing for a few hours. I know I am missing out on stuff, but this is his livelihood, and as a freelancer, he has nothing to fall back on but his own work (no salary, no unemployment, nothing). I'd hate to slow him down.
     
  9. waileong

    waileong TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    The work is hard, it doesn't pay well unless you make it to the big time, and you may not enjoy photography once it becomes a work and not a hobby.

    So think long and hard! It's not about persistence. It's about whether you want to live a certain kind of lifestyle.
     
  10. A bit of unsolicited life advice:

    I've learned never to assume what others might be feeling or thinking. I end up getting wrong often enough to have stopped doing it. This has proven smart in business, as well as personal relationships. Just ask.

    I've learned that people LOVE to teach. There's always an occasional curmudgeon who wants to be left alone, but there is no greater compliment than a person taking an interest in another person's work. Most want to share what they know, or at least show it off a little.

    ... and by taking such a chance, you might end up with a new friend. Relationships don't just happen, you have to pursue them, and then maintain them.
     
  11. Cinka

    Cinka TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    235
    Likes Received:
    10
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Out of personal experience, if you're really interested in becoming a "professional" photographer, it's all about gaining experience and learning everything you can. I've been a photographer since I was 11, but finally in my late 20's decided to give the pro world a real shot. It's hard, it takes persistence, patience, and not giving up when the going gets tough. I don't think I could survive on my own making the money I do, but luckily I live with my boyfriend and he covers most of the expenses. For now :)

    And yes, the market is oversaturated.
     
  12. Hawaii Five-O

    Hawaii Five-O My alter-egos have been banned. :( Now I must be

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,099
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    you can start off as an entry level freelancer even now. I know a girl who recently started doing freelance work for her local newspaper. College apprenticeships would be good too. My photography professor was also a professional freelancer. And some of the other students would help him with his projects from time to time.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

short conversation with photographer