What is a 'Pro' Photographer, really?

Started Feb 20, 2014 | Discussions thread
Morris Sullivan Veteran Member • Posts: 9,643
Get certified (if available), otherwise earn money consistently.

Mark_A wrote:

Laurentiu Todie wrote:

Paid or not, a pro delivers consistently good results.
It helps if the pro also has a distinguishable style, particularly good knowledge of the technology and history of the trade, but that isn't mandatory.

Hi Laurentiu,

For me, a pro is someone who derives a significant proportion of their income from photography.


I would say consistent, not "significant proportion". That would lead to a situation where a Dr. who makes 50k on the side shooting weddings was not a pro, and yet a fast food worker who makes 20k doing the same would be. Both would be as far as I'm concerned.

In my opinion professional photographers consistently make money from their work. But I have no extra level of respect for a professional photographers. It's just a job. It doesn't signify a level of quality. Some of them aren't very good.

If fields where there is actually a governing board (including photography in some areas) the title of professional, once earned, can imply a level of knowledge and ability. But absent that governing board, the term simply means "does whatever for money". Again I don't mean "did whatever for money once" I mean "does whatever for money".

btw, if someone wants to call themselves a professional photographer even if their not, I couldn't care less. It means nothing to me. Call yourself whatever you want. Your work speaks much louder than your title.

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