Photographing for personal projects is a useless hobby

Started Feb 22, 2012 | Discussions thread
Dan Wagner
Contributing MemberPosts: 731Gear list
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Re: Photographing for personal projects is a useless hobby
In reply to aperture 56, Mar 5, 2012

Most honest post I've ever read on dpreview. You're not alone on this issue. The realities of a career as a photographer are daunting. One can have a few good, great years even, and there's no guarantee it will continue. Photography doesn't have a very good business model. Fortunately, one can always shoot for themselves and hopefully produce some relevant/important/artful work.

aperture 56 wrote:

I grew up in a family where my father was a keen photographer... so from the early age I was introduced to a b&w darkroom and SLR cameras. Always liked taking pictures, at one stage studied at the academy of fine arts for one year... and about 7 years ago I decided to change my life and to start taking pictures for a living... freelanced for some newspapers, then turned to wedding photography, then realized that photo-stories personal projects was exactly what I really enjoyed about photography... I was moving around my home country and various countries around the world looking for a story... on my own budget... my ability to see as a photographer was improving rapidly i gained lots of experience... created three major photo projects - none is really finished... Once in a while I was placing some photographs online just to get some feedback, and the responses I received from well established photogs were very positive. Then send some series to the photography competitions, and some competitions for grands.. won a couple of local insignificant photo competitions, got noticed and highlighted in one respectable photo competition, but didn't win anything not to talk the place with a financial reword... well, if you think, there are 10000 photographers who apply with their portfolios for the same grand at the same time... I spent all of my passion, time, energy, and finances on the photography... just to find out reality that no one really cares nor need my pictures... few other guys I talked to who tried photojournalism shared the same impressions, and even established photojournalists admit this reality... I could go to a conflict zone on my own and take pictures there but it seems i would just risk my life while agencies already have enough visual material... So, I sold all of my photography equipment, and just MacBook Pro is left because it has other uses:).. and I am free to walk now, I am not sure where though... I have to admit, I still like taking pictures, but now I know that in my personal life as a single man it's just a useless hobby... I have started to lift weights and eat better quality food instead:)... but i feel very sad inside because I cannot do what I like doing and make living from that... and I am still in a big conflict with my photography... I wonder if there are people that have been in a similar situation, and I would appreciate your thoughts on this...

P.S. I am not sure this an appropriate section to post my thoughts so I may post it in another section as well.

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