If you could give 1 piece of advice....

sarahp

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I've been a pro for just over a year, so obviously I don't know it all, but I'm noticing a lot of behaviors in other "pros" that I think are so completely unprofessional it's making me crazy. Things like "recycling" their old business cards by placing white stickers over the name of the studio they used to work for and the contact information, and writing in their own phone number on the bottom of the card. Another told a roomful of her friends (3 of whom also happened to be MY CLIENTS) how much she pays for prints from her Pro Lab - thus prompting one of my clients to ask me to switch labs and lower my prices (Wha-HUH!?!?!). So, I thought I'd ask you all - If you could give 1 piece of advice to a new professional in regards to the way they behave/perform within the industry - to help them be respected and taken seriously by other pros and by clients - what advice would you give?
 

adamwilliamking

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what advice would you give?


don't search for advice on TPF.

I always find advice in threads that blows me away and feel that its my duty as a photographer to make sure no one actually follows the advice or takes it to heart.

Also, if you sold banana's on the corner you wouldnt be telling people what you pay for the skid full. That lady was quite silly.

People pay the big bucks because there is a mystery as to what you do. If you started handing out Photoshop Tutorials and listing your profits, well than.. there goes the mystery.
 

JE Kay

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Set your standards to a level you're comfortable with and never deviate.

If clients threaten you with cheaper alternatives, wish them luck, be polite and move on.

Don't be concerned with what other 'pros' are doing. They don't have anything to do with what you're doing. Just do your job to your standards.

You can always tell the 'real pros' if you happen to be around them... They don't care what you're doing, you really don't interest them as they're usually working themselves. It's always the morons who walk over and start asking about your gear, or who you shoot for. Smile and tell them you're working.

Most of all enjoy your trade, if not get out of it because everyone can tell if you don't. :mrgreen:
 

Jim Gratiot

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If you want to make a living at this...

Don't be a photographer who does marketing.

Be a marketer who does photography.
 

Christie Photo

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Don't be concerned with what other 'pros' are doing. They don't have anything to do with what you're doing. Just do your job to your standards.


I'll offer the same advice. Worry about what you do. You know what kind of product you want to produce. And you pretty much know how you want to do it and what you want to get in return.

Remember... you're not selling 8x10s. Anyone can buy a whole box of 'em at any camera store.

-Pete
 

KmH

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Another told a roomful of her friends (3 of whom also happened to be MY CLIENTS) how much she pays for prints from her Pro Lab - thus prompting one of my clients to ask me to switch labs and lower my prices (Wha-HUH!?!?!)
I'm in the "Don't worry about what other photographers do. Tend to your business, not theirs."

As far as what any lab charges for prints? People don't separate the image from the print. They're not the same thing.

"My Pro lab is actually less expensive for some print sizes than Wal-Mart is because they do a higher volume of those sizes."

"My lab, and Wal-Mart, charges for a piece of photographic paper and some ink. They don't charge for the image that gets put on the paper with that ink. You're paying me for the image."

Hope that helps.
 
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what advice would you give?


don't search for advice on TPF.

I always find advice in threads that blows me away and feel that its my duty as a photographer to make sure no one actually follows the advice or takes it to heart.

Also, if you sold banana's on the corner you wouldnt be telling people what you pay for the skid full. That lady was quite silly.

People pay the big bucks because there is a mystery as to what you do. If you started handing out Photoshop Tutorials and listing your profits, well than.. there goes the mystery.

Advice is called advice for a reason: no one says that it has to be followed. I'll take every bit of advice I can get but it's ultimately up to me to decide what's best for me.
 

atbawrps

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If you want to make a living at this...

Don't be a photographer who does marketing.

Be a marketer who does photography.

Wrong. Be a photographer - meaning, be an artist first. Then be a business person.

All I see are crappy photographers trying to sell their crap to unsuspecting brides.

I will tell you this - as time goes on, especially in the information age, more and more people will be able to discern artistic and creative photography from ****ty work. Brides and everyone else will become more knowledgeable as to what great photography looks like.
 

Xristos48

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Perfection is best and take note of the famous quote 'failure to plan is planning to fail'
 

Henry Peach

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Another told a roomful of her friends (3 of whom also happened to be MY CLIENTS) how much she pays for prints from her Pro Lab - thus prompting one of my clients to ask me to switch labs and lower my prices (Wha-HUH!?!?!).

...what advice would you give?

Don't spend too much time and energy on clients who want to nickle and dime you. It's one thing if it's a non-profit/charity/donation situation where there are budgets that have to be met, but in general it's rarely worth wasting your time with people who don't think you are worth what you charge.

I don't have any problem telling folks what my equipment and materials costs are; they can just as easily look it all up on the internet. They aren't paying for the gear and paper. Anyone can show up with that stuff. They are paying for me.

I know how much a head of lettuce costs, and I know what a salad costs at McDonalds and at a local gourmet restaurant. Who would ever suggest to the gourmet chef that they buy cheaper lettuce?
 

Jim Gratiot

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If you want to make a living at this...

Don't be a photographer who does marketing.

Be a marketer who does photography.

Wrong. Be a photographer - meaning, be an artist first. Then be a business person.

All I see are crappy photographers trying to sell their crap to unsuspecting brides.

I will tell you this - as time goes on, especially in the information age, more and more people will be able to discern artistic and creative photography from ****ty work. Brides and everyone else will become more knowledgeable as to what great photography looks like.

It depends what your goal is. There are an awful lot of "starving artists" out there. When I say "Be a marketer who does photography," the implication is that you should still be as technically & artistically skilled as you can be... but without a business and marketing sense, you're destined to remain a "starving artist" no matter how good you are.

Bottom line:

A good photographer who knows how to market will do much better than a good photographer who doesn't know how to market.
 

adamwilliamking

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what advice would you give?


don't search for advice on TPF.

I always find advice in threads that blows me away and feel that its my duty as a photographer to make sure no one actually follows the advice or takes it to heart.

Also, if you sold banana's on the corner you wouldnt be telling people what you pay for the skid full. That lady was quite silly.

People pay the big bucks because there is a mystery as to what you do. If you started handing out Photoshop Tutorials and listing your profits, well than.. there goes the mystery.

Advice is called advice for a reason: no one says that it has to be followed. I'll take every bit of advice I can get but it's ultimately up to me to decide what's best for me.

Cool, good for you :thumbup:
 

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