NEX professionalism drawback?

Started May 9, 2012 | Discussions thread
RussellInCincinnati Veteran Member • Posts: 3,201
a story we'll never figure out

Jay A: Wow, I never thought of "naive" as name to be able to pick and choose which customer we can do business with...

Well would be fairer to say was making the case for occasionally picking and choosing which customer we do business with. This was a fairly special case.

Jay A: The woman questioned him on his choice of equipment, She didn't call him a charlatan did she? Isn't that something that was mentioned here?

"Hey doctor, you're not going to operate on me with that dinky knife"? Yes would say in effect that she was insulting the original poster, in essence accusing him of trying to get away with something, with giving her less than "she was paying for".

Jay A: At any rate, if someone were to call me a charlatan after our first meeting...what ...caused her to say that and reevaluate how I present myself. Is this bad?

We're in complete agreement. The original poster should definitely look at all aspects of how they presented themselves to the client. But am still not buying that the size of the camera body was the main problem in this gig.

Jay A: There is a difference between giving away free samples and ads and doing a shoot for free.

We're not far apart now. Would hardly equate making and emailing an informal exposure of someone, during meeting #1 for setting up a portrait deal, as "doing a shoot for free". My own characterization of it would be more like showing a non-technical new client exactly what technical quality image they're going to be paying for.

Jay A: While I can see charging a small fee for say a party prior to the wedding so the client can get to see what kind of work I am capable of, I would not prostitute myself by working for free.

Highly prejudicial terms for a first informal consultation.

Would you consider asking your doctor to perform a procedure for free to see how good a doctor he is?

A technical, irreversible procedure that might not even involve the client possibly even being awake? A tilted example.

Would you consider hiring someone to paint your portrait, who wouldn't even entertain an initial discussion with you without payment? Would you consider that painter "a prostitute" if they spent a couple of minutes making a clever sketch of you during the first meeting?

Jay A: Again, meeting with a client face to face before an assignment is not the same as doing a shoot for free.

Nor is snapping and emailing a sample photo the same as "doing a shoot” for free.

Jay A: I would be happy to show samples of my work, maybe even give them some samples, but to actually do my job for free to prove myself? Nuh uh!

There's so much more to “a job” than taking an exposure and sending an email. Sounds like you're playing both sides of the issue. You sympathize with the client wanting to understand what they're getting, and the importance of the photographer making some efforts to educate. But should that marketing expense include an informal demo exposure, it's "prostitution".

Jay A: Not sure why you feel the need to use the phrase "are your assignments so low end"

Coming from someone who uses words like "prostitute", "naive", and bringing up images of "drinking into a stupor", had no idea you'd even notice such niceties.

Jay A: Again, I would certainly meet face to face, and show and/or provide samples.

Sounds like we're all in the same boat.

Jay A: ...Again..would you ask the lawyer, doctor, phsycologist, carrer counselor, or engineering consultant to do a job for you for free?

Well if finding out how comfortable an unknown lawyer is with your kind of issue, or taking a sample exposure of someone you just met--a minute or two's work (depending on how long it takes you to set up a tripod I guess)--is the same as people "doing a job for free", then you're right.

Jay A: Again please understand the difference between a consultation and actually doing a job.

Was hoping we both would understand this.

Jay A: ...vast majority of people who don't really know much about photography think that if you have a professional camera, you can take professional pictures with it....electrical engineer [asked] me "hmmm, what do you teach in photo classes? How to build cameras?" (He was serious).

Hmm. Since the camera is by far the most visible and memorable aspect of a photographer, it would be easy to assume that it's by far most of what there is to being a photographer.

Jay A: It's just a most uneducated (in photography) people, pro camera = pro photographer.

Which is why all our arguing is of course about communicating well to a non-graphics-arts-professional client.

Jay A: If you present yourself as a pro, you need to look the part.

No argument there. Not sure if we're really in too much disagreement. My suspicion is that there was something else about the original poster that in some sense "didn't look the part".

Jay A: I am not saying it is right, I am not saying it is is just fact.


Jay A: If people who want to hire you expect to see pro looking equipment and you show them otherwise, be prepared for what the OP experienced...that's all I am saying. It's not's professionalism.

Can see certain kinds of photo professionals expecting some exact kind of equipment, it's harder for me to see total novices having such detailed taste in gear. Still suspecting something incomplete about the particular story here.

Jay A: again, ask a doctor to perform a procedure for free because you want to see how well he does and see how far that gets you.

Let's not equate having an initial meeting with a marriage counselor or lawyer (or even portraitist) you're about to hire, to get a taste of what they can do, with "asking them to do an entire, finished expensive procedure for free".

Other than that, have enjoyed and learned from the points you have carefully made in some detail. Though still scratching my head a bit about the original post.

A used lens.

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