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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 11 Jul 2013 (Thursday) 08:01
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Pro Photography.

 
airfrogusmc
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Jul 11, 2013 14:36 |  #16

breal101 wrote in post #16110902 (external link)
The early RB WA lens was a POS, shot wide open the middle of the frame was sharp but the edges were so soft that even mothers of people at the edge of the frame wouldn't recognize them. :lol:

To Mamiya's credit they made them much better later on.

The square format was great if you printed them yourself but printing for other people could be a pain unless they gave specific instructions.

When others would print my stuff I would just say print full frame. And when I was shooting weddings I would only offer square proofs and square flush mount books (Leathercraftsman) and square prints.

The only stuff I really shot with the RB and RZ were studio portraits. Great cameras but I always preferred 500 C/Ms.




  
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ssim
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Jul 11, 2013 16:10 as a reply to  @ airfrogusmc's post |  #17

Back when I started in the professional arena on a part time basis those that called themselves professionals rarely shot with 35mm. It was almost entirely medium format and that is what I started with as well. To get to the point of buying medium format cameras people had spent a few years getting to know the ins and the outs of photography and the industry. I spent a few years working part time for a local photographer that had several locations throughout the region. All the time he knew fully well that at some point I would be his competition but he taught me the value of pricing your product right. There was no sense in shooting a wedding for the value of the film and processing. In the time that I worked for this person he helped me get the right gear so that when I started on my own I had a Mamiya RB Pro-S, a Pentax 6x7 and I acquired a Pentax 645 a little bit later. I also had gotten myself set up with 6 studio strobes and all the umbrellas and soft boxes that I needed. I am forever grateful to this studio owner to the time he took with me (and others). He truly cared about the craft and the customers whether it was him or someone else shooting it.

The number of people doing photography on a part time basis were substantially less than it is today. In retrospect the taking of an image hasn't changed but the technology certainly has. You never heard of a photographer in the film era that billed himself as a wedding photographer that shot only available light. Today you that quite often and I don't think that it is because it is trendy but more likely they are afraid of learning the art of artificial lighting.

The thread that the OP alludes to in the Post Processing forum seems to be nothing more than a person that is out there billing themselves as a pro when they aren't ready yet. The problem he/she is having is so basic the question is almost comical in some respects.

watt100 wrote in post #16110710 (external link)
I find it kinda funny. especially the knuckleheads with their instagram iphone pics,--- they are the ones ruining photogaphy !

I don't see the smart phones destructing professional photography from my point of view. They may be lowering the bar as far as acceptable quality that one would post online or print for themselves. In certain circumstances these devices can take good pictures but rarely would I ever call any of them great. The people that I see hurting the overall industry of professional photography are the people that enter it before they are ready. Those that don't know how to light a scene with artificial lighting, those that think that pushing the shutter button is enough are two examples of that, imo. How many times have I heard, "Oh that should be OK, I'll clean it up in post processing".

Technology has certainly changed the overall environment. When I used to shoot a full day wedding in medium format I would shoot around 450 shots and supply a printed album of somewhere in the 175-200 4x5's. Now you have guys and gals bragging about going to a wedding and shooting close to 2000 images. I don't know how you sort out these to give the customers a good reflection of what their special day was. I never used to give the pictures of Uncle Harry dancing on the tables at the reception but that is now the norm.

Anyone can call themselves a pro these days and quite frankly I don't care who does. I can only control what I can. I take the time to see what others are charging and doing so that I know I can compete but I refuse to compete with the people charging less than what I think is fair for a wedding. When I went full time a few years ago I chased this market but came to the conclusion that I wasn't going to waste alot of marketing time and money on the lower end of this market. There are still plenty of people that will pay top dollar for this service and I will shoot them if they pay my price. My primary focus changed from wedding and portraits to commercial work which is much more rewarding financially because the weekend warriors have a harder time competing in this market. You have to be able to move and change with the marketplace. Imo, a true professional photographer will be able to shoot pretty much anything that comes their way. They may like to specialize in one area or another but being able to shoot a diverse subject matter will make you more successful in the end.


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pawelgawel
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Jul 11, 2013 17:13 |  #18

Many great points thus far.

IMO, today's photography is combined with not only fast tech, but also creativity and business understanding.
Without the ability to creat something new, you're bound to struggle. With this amature competition on every corner, photography boundaries are being pushed more then ever before, and if someone doesn't understand the concept of 'real photography' and basic business theory, you're only wasting your own time and money.

I'm an amature myself. I trully enjoy every moment I spend with my camera and I've decided this to be my ultimate goal, to one day make a living out of it. But im set not to take any shortcuts as I see what happens to those who do.
Those who rush, crash hard.


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x0ny
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Jul 11, 2013 17:32 |  #19

For all the pros thats been in the business for a long time. Do you feel it is beneficial to attend workshops and seminars still?


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pawelgawel
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Jul 11, 2013 19:51 |  #20

Lol ^ you're asking if its worth going to class ;)
I don't believe $$ can buy you tallent. I use free seminars that are posted on YouTube and other websites and books. Hands on Practice is the key to learning.

Having said that, im not a pro :)


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flowrider
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Jul 11, 2013 21:55 |  #21

If you get one new thing from workshop it's worth it. Workshops, seminars, and associations are very good for networking as well. It's a good way to get into the industry as an assistant or 2nd shooter.


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karobinson
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Jul 11, 2013 22:24 |  #22

Well as far as photography goes what I know I learned in high school and we will not discuss how many years ago that was but I will confess my first kiss was in the dark room. So now we know it was in the film days. As far as photography goes nothing has changed. The medium has changed and that has been very confusing for many many people. The cost of the medium (digital) has only gotten cheaper and cheaper, therefore we will continue to see more people attempting to go into business thinking this is going to make them rich and/or the next big star, usually it will make them neither. I have paid for several classes non of which have taught me anything about photography I did not learn from the film days. Now the new digital stuff was worth while to learn but easy enough to learn by searching on google. I agree with Flowrider on networking and assistants, etc... that is always a plus.


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imjason
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Jul 11, 2013 22:37 |  #23

BigAl007 wrote in post #16110468 (external link)
Once upon a time on one would consider buying an SLR camera and setting themselves up as a professional photographer.

i never associated with SLRs with pros. I always associated SLRs with people who were somewhat interested in photography.

in terms of cheap and talentless photogs? there were plenty of them in the past. its just easier now due to automation and the access to information (internet, social media, etc).


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yogestee
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Jul 13, 2013 22:12 |  #24

BigAl007 wrote in post #16110468 (external link)
Once upon a time on one would consider buying an SLR camera and setting themselves up as a professional photographer. Not that there weren't bad photographers in business but it seemed you needed at least a minimal photographic understanding before you could set up even as a part timers.

Alan,, been there, done that (pre-digital era). One needs more than photographic skills to set up a photographic business. And it's not about equipment.

Back when I started in the professional arena on a part time basis those that called themselves professionals rarely shot with 35mm. It was almost entirely medium format and that is what I started with as well.

Medium format was the work horse, 4x5 (or bigger) was the big money earner.


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Jul 13, 2013 22:27 |  #25

Guess competition does hurt.




  
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BigAl007
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Jul 14, 2013 08:18 |  #26

Well I'm glad I'm not the only one feeling that way then. I agree that actually MF was pretty much where it was at as far as pro photography went, except maybe for reportage type stuff. If MF digital was still the norm for portrait and wedding work we would not be seeing this current urge for folks to think that they can start a business with neither technical photographic skills or it seems much business sense. I guess if you have nothing invested in the "business" it matters little if you actually make any money. I did nearly take on an existing photographic studio/retailer business, when the owner retired back in the 80's, but he wanted much more than the business was really worth. So I kept photography as a hobby. I'm glad that I did, as I later got involved in doing something professionally that had been a passion, and it dose have a very negative effect on it in the end, once you HAVE to go out and do it no matter what.

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