When is a Photographer a Professional?

It seems like photographers are ten-a-penny nowadays and everywhere you turn there is a photography service of one sort or another being advertised. But what is startling is the contrast in the price of their services. Often there is a reason behind the stark contrast in cost of photographic services and these reasons can range from the type or purpose for the photos required to the experience of the photographer themselves.

Here, we are going to discuss how being a professional photographer might have an impact on the cost of the services and why paying out that little bit extra might make all the difference in certain circumstances.

Let us start then with what actually makes a photographer a professional. Of course, in the loosest sense of the word a professional photographer is someone who makes money from their work. However, lots of people make a little bit of money from doing something they aren’t particularly good at it or don’t offer the best service to their clients. The key when selecting a photographer then is not if they make money from it but are they actually a professional?

Ask these questions:

  • Do they act professionally?
  • Does their portfolio look professional?
  • Can they provide an example of a well-presented result?
  • Do they have any certified qualifications and most importantly an extensive photography portfolio?

Once you have addressed these questions you are on your way to deciding if the photographer is a professional or not. Of course, if you are getting a few photos for a quick project (a few Christmas cards perhaps) then it might not take quite so much research to find the right photographer. However, if you are looking for a photographer for career or business purposes then selecting a professional could be crucial to ensuring you portray yourself and your brand in the best way possible.

A perfect example of this is when you are considering glamour or fashion shoots, a poor glamour photographer can easily stray of course leaving you with dated and frankly ‘tacky’ images that don’t send the right message. But, if you take a look at the work of a professional glamour photographer such as White Chocolate, London, you will see some great examples of how a professional can present you perfectly to the right audience.

A second area in which it is crucial to select a professional photographer, budget permitting, is for weddings. Of all the things at your wedding (other than the marriage itself of course) that lasts the decades are the wedding photographs so it’s really worth investing in a professional who has evidence of great results. Take a look at You and Your Wedding for excellent tips in this department.

The key aspect in all of this is trust and if you have followed the questions above, done a little bit of research and decided that the photographer you want to work with is a true professional then the deciding factor is if you get a sense that you trust them and they will provide fantastic client satisfaction.