I want to turn Pro, please look

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by garyslaw123, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. garyslaw123 macrumors newbie

    Dec 18, 2009
    Hey there, i wanna turn pro some time in the near future. I have been taking pics and editing for some time. i normally make for friends and family but have recently been living in thailand and using my computer and camera to try and make ends meet. i have managed to secure some paid work with boxing fights but want to explore other fields.
    in past i have done

    2 weddings, Album Covers, Club flyers, Portraits, Travel Photography.

    I am always looking for new ideas, shots and good advice

    I use canon 400 D and Photoshop CS3

    please take a look at my pics in the Fav Pics folder here and let me know what you think

  2. Phrasikleia macrumors 601


    Feb 24, 2008
    Over there------->
    Well, I looked through your "fav pics" album and found enough to show me that you have a good sense of timing and framing. But what do you mean by "pro"? Overall, I don't see a niche or specialty developing in your work. Do you want to be a pro wedding photographer? A pro stock photographer? A pro fine art photographer? What exactly do you have in mind? And what is all of that grungy graphic design doing in there?

    If there's one area you might work on aesthetically, I suppose it would be lighting and tonality. Some of your shots have that "crushed" look about them, as if they've been over-processed. But mostly I think you need to work on a specific direction and vision that you can market in some way.
  3. mtbdudex macrumors 68000


    Aug 28, 2007
    SE Michigan
    When I was younger, 25 years ago, a wise person told me this:

    If you are getting paid, you are a pro.
    If not, you are amateur.

    You had some paid gigs (boxing), so you are "a pro", sounds like you want to expand.
    I'm sensing you lack confidence in yourself, therefore I suggest working for another "pro" to learn the ropes before you branch out on your own. Walk before you run.

    Good luck, seriously.
  4. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    Looking over all of your images, frankly the people ones are the worst lit and posed. Most of them need at least some fill flash, almost all of them are center frame and a few have the people looking off to the short side of the frame instead of into it. With the few that do use flash, it seems to be centered over the camera without any power adjustment at all, setting up hot spots. Your landscape shots are much better, but there's really not much money in landscapes or stock these days.

    A few examples of images that need improvement:


    The lighting is all on the bouquet, but it's harsh enough to wash out the flowers due to overexposure, but there's absolutely no lighting on the face of the couple- a wedding is about the couple, not the flowers, so they either should have been turned to face the light, or better-yet they should have been turned so the sun was a back/rim light and the shutter should have been dragged with an off-axis flash as fill to light up their faces.


    The exposure on the background is perfect, the exposure on the couple is under-exposed, and once again their faces should have been lit from flash.


    She should be to the right of the frame "looking into it," not in the center. The flash would look better if you were dragging the shutter, and we wouldn't have those distracting background reflections.


    Needs less flash power and subject more to the left of center.

    The train in Japan and bridge picture would both make great stock images, as would the China and Ayuttaty images, but unless you can get good corporate clients (and with the advent of microstock that's a dying theme) I can't see how you'd make a living that way.

    Overall though, the ability to shoot professionally relies significantly more on marketing than technical or artistic skills.

    To upgrade the Muy Thai shots, you're either going to have to strobe the venue or get a camera that has better high-ISO qualities, which is a major investment either way, so you have to figure out if it's worth it in terms of opportunities, or if you can get income with other stuff first.

  5. anubis macrumors 6502a

    Feb 7, 2003

    It's difficult to be a general "professional photographer". It's best to have a specialty - one particular facet of photography that you do better than other people. If you want to be a professional boxing photographer, then work your ass off to learn everything there is to know about boxing photography, tailor your equipment purchases to suit that need, and spend all of your available time interfacing with all of the boxing promoters, venue managers, and boxers you can find. On the other hand, just putting yourself out there as a "professional photographer" is difficult...
  6. stagi macrumors 65816


    Feb 18, 2006
    Great advice. Focus on one type of photography and become a master at it, keep working hard to create the best images you can (and at the same time learn the marketing and business end)
  7. garyslaw123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 18, 2009
    wow, thanks peops for all the constructive advice

    I really appreciate you guys giving me some info. going to try and cover everthing said in small points.

    yeah by pro i mean that i wanna make some cash and maybe a bit more than i do now. good to do something you enjoy right. just enough to keep me traveling. And of course to improve my styles, i now guess multiple styles

    you are right, it would make sense to stick to one style and perfect it, i wish i could do that but my personality will not allow that yet. there is hope for me later i am sure but for now i am still experementing.

    you are right i do lack some confidence. i notice it when i miss a shot, need to get right in there and direct more. normally i just snap a picture i think will look good and spend time in photoshop. but i am reading a lot and watching others to try and get the perfect shot without photoshop, well heavy editing.

    Lighting is my main issue, i am investing in some soon.

    great idea about working with somebody who is doing it already, i am keeping my eyes open

    grungy art work was paid work so afraid that stays.

    yeah there is more equipment i need, but that will have to come in time.

    i have another wedding to do in july so i need to get my direction and lighting up to scratch.

    What does dragging the shutter mean???

    thanks for dicecting those pics, that is what i was looking for.

    ok that is for now, thanks again and take care peops
  8. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    I think some of the shots need flatter lighting. But the real hard part of being a pro is the business side. Most fail because they don't understand marketing, accounting and how to write a bussines plan.

    It is one thing to sell a few images and quite another to consistently sell enough images to support a middle class lifestyle.
    You need to write up a plan that says how many images you will sell, who the buyers are and how to will find enough buyers. Then stand back and see how many un-reasonable assumptions you have made and remove them. Can you write the plan so that you turn a profit on three years what to do until then?

    Read at least as many business books as photography books

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