Got an eye for spotting breathtaking landscapes? Know how to feel the shutter and capture raw emotion in people’s eyes? Or are you great at encapsulating the bustling atmosphere of a party?
Then maybe photography is the perfect career for you.
While it might seem like the market’s overpopulated with photographers, both professional and amateur ones, the reality is that opportunities for success await at every corner – even for a complete novice.
Photography is one of those areas of expertise where talent and persistence play a much bigger role than formal education, and passion itself is enough to fuel this part time hobby and transform it into a lucrative career.
However, it doesn’t mean it’s an easy job, nor that there isn’t some basic theoretical knowledge to be covered. We know how hard it can be to for people to break through in this industry, so we’ve decided to create a beginner’s guide that will help jumpstart your career.
After combing through the web back and forth, and gather some inside info from the creme de la creme of photographers, here are the 10 things professional photographers would never (ever) do:
- 1 1.Not have a place to showcase their work
- 2 2.Forget to backup their work
- 3 3.Sort through the photos on their camera
- 4 4.Use the built-in flash
- 5 5.Only take photos standing still
- 6 6.Only use the default camera mode
- 7 7.Only use the default SD card that came with the camera
- 8 8.Only shoot in the JPEG mode
- 9 9.Not editing their photos
- 10 Wrap
1.Not have a place to showcase their work
What’s the point of having incredible photographs when you’ve got nowhere to show them? Sure, you can post your photos on popular social media channels such as Facebook and Instagram, but their limited format significantly lowers the quality of your images. Not only that, but it also makes you seem like an amateur who’s snapping pics as a side gig.
In order to convey a dedicated, professional image and attract a much more serious clientele, you need to create a website for you business.
If you’re thinking – who’s got time for a website right now? – then you seriously need to catch up with the times. Using a safe and reliable website builder such as SITE123 makes creating and publishing an amazing website a breeze. The setup process takes less than a minute, and the dozens of pre made layouts, some of which are specifically designed with photographers in mind, leave no room for confusion. No coding or design skills necessary – just upload your high quality images and you’re good to go!
2.Forget to backup their work
Photography is all fun and games until you accidentally format your SD card or delete an entire folder on your computer before it finished uploading.
Don’t risk having your hard work perish due to a second of neglect and always make sure your photos are backed up. Most newer point and shoot cameras have wifi built in, which automatically backs up all of the photos and videos you take to a cloud drive.
If you’re working with an older or a DSLR camera, the good old mechanical backing via cable is the way to go.
3.Sort through the photos on their camera
No matter how new and expensive your new DSLR camera is, there’s no way its tiny little screen could do your photos justice.
In a bout of creative madness, you might even be tempted to delete some of your snaps because they seems so plain and boring on your camera screen.
Never, ever do this! Resort to scrolling through your photos only to make sure you’ve captured all of the angles you wanted, but never use it as a way to decide on the actual quality of the images. Leave the sorting process to a computer with a bright, large screen where you’ll be able to grasp the entirety of your image.
4.Use the built-in flash
Be honest – have you ever seen an image taken with a flash that looked anything even close to decent?
Built-in flashes are a photographer’s worst enemy, and it should be yours, too. Flashes and camera additions can get pretty expensive though, so we suggest looking into second hand gear that won’t break the bank.
Bonus fact – photographer’s that sell their equipment online usually do so because they’ve outgrown it, not because it’s no longer usable. By buying from fellow photographers, you’ll be getting equipment of the utmost quality, and maybe a few useful pieces of advice along the way.
5.Only take photos standing still
The world is a fast changing, vibrant, moving place – and you should be, too. By failing to move around when taking your photos, you’ll be missing out on unusual perspectives and new, innovative angles.
Try crouching, sitting, or even laying down – the change of perspective will make even the most mundane object or scene look pretty out of the ordinary.
If you’re feeling extra adventurous, try climbing a tree, snapping photos from a rooftop or a balcony, or using mirrors to distort your perspective a bit.
6.Only use the default camera mode
In order to make it easier for people to get into their interface, most cameras come set up to an automatic, or a default mode. Designed to make your life easier, it does most of the work for you – detect the amount of light, adjust the brightness, the white balance, the ISO settings, flash, etc.
While the default mode will make the amateur holiday pics your mom took last summer look pretty decent, they won’t be able to fulfill your needs as a professional photographer.
Give your camera’s user manual a thorough read, do a bit of research online and play with your settings a bit so you get the hang of it.
Auto mode will never be able to capture great photos in anything other than perfect circumstances. Anything shot in low light, with moving subjects, lots of flashing lights or in closeup will needs its own separate and specific setting.
7.Only use the default SD card that came with the camera
Whether you’ve bought a brand new, state of the art camera or got a well used one from Craigslist, chances are that the SD card you’ve got with it will be – rubbish.
To cut costs, most manufacturers use SD cards will less memory, and of less quality. While it might not seem that important at the beginning, a lack of space or a slow SD card can make your life as a photographer hell.
Always make sure you get the best, largest card you can afford, as it will save you money in the long run.
8.Only shoot in the JPEG mode
JPEG is one of the most widespread and most commonly used image formats out there. And while it allows fast and easy sharing, this format actually compresses your images.
That’s great for having fun, personal snaps you can easily access and share fast. For monetizing your photographs, though, not so much.
Always make sure you’re shooting in RAW mode. This format, as its name clearly states, provides you with the purest, rawest image form – the way your lenses and your processor captured it. You’ll be able to fit less images on an SD card, but the sheer quality and size of the image will make any subsequent editing much easier.
9.Not editing their photos
Most amateur photographers seem to be afraid of editing, thinking the technical skills would need years to master. If they’ve got the will for it, then it’s the hefty price tag of professional photoshopping software that makes them drop editing completely.
However, what most people don’t realize is that the basic editing every image needs to be polished to perfection can be done in open source, free online editors. A quick Google search should provide you with dozens of free photo editing programs, all of which should be good enough for the basic brightness, contrast, and color coordinating editing.
Capturing great photos doesn’t seem so hard now, does it? Following these 9 simple tips from professionals will help you enhance your skills and elevate your career, gaining a following and having business opportunities arising from every corner.
Remember – passion is the only thing that matters here. Everything else just provides a little structure to it and helps you reach your goals faster.
Ready to start your photographing career? Start by creating an amazing free website and uploading your captivating snaps there.