need advice building a portfolio

Discussion in 'The Aspiring Professionals Forum' started by Jcederroth94, Jun 15, 2017.

  1. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2006
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    Mid-Atlantic US
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    that makes a lot of sense but perhaps consider this.

    If your knowledge/experience/taste is at step 1 out of 10 and you get a job working with someone, you will waste a great deal of face-time with the pro learning the early steps whereas, if you work hard yourself to get to step 4 or 5 before you get a job, you will learn more, faster.

    Pros (good pros) are not concerned with mechanics of doing things, because all that stuff is embedded in their brains - and I can't imagine that they want to be teaching kindergarden when what they want is help.

    At step 1, you don't know who is good and who is not-so-good.
    Get some experience and taste first by shooting and posting and getting critique and looking at other critiques and learning to 'see' pictures.
    Develop an eye, develop a style, develop some taste, then you'll be valuable as an assistant and not just a guy who can fold light stands and hold reflectors.

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  2. Studio7Four

    Studio7Four No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Oct 5, 2010
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    Boston, MA
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    I'm a hobbyist, I like to shoot a little bit of everything - sounds kind of like the situation you're in now. My website is, frankly, a bit of a vanity website and reflects this. But I do have a couple very specific print portfolios that I take to meetings for certain shoots. I occasionally work with models, and the portfolio I bring to our pre-shoot meetings has nothing but images from my model shoots. Similarly when I'm setting up a maternity shoot. Those two books don't overlap, even though they're all "people pictures", and I certainly don't include any of my nature shots in those portfolios.

    I second the suggestion to shoot, shoot, shoot. Set aside your best images, even if that's only in folders on your computer (I have a "Portfolio" folder, with subfolders by genre). Compare your new work to what's in these folders - be critical, and be honest with yourself. Don't be afraid to remove a favorite photo from your portfolio, even if it's been with you since the beginning, if it's just not up to the caliber of your newer work.

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