A professional photographer is a skilled photographer that has dedicated their professional working life to partnering with you to create beautiful images of you, your children, your family.

Professional photographers not only know their equipment and know it well, they are also legitimate business owners who:

  • pay taxes
  • pay for their equipment and software with money they earn by providing this service
  • support their families with money they earn providing professional photography services

Professional photographers do not need to “portfolio build”, they already have a portfolio.  Professional photographers do not work for free: they understand that they provide a valuable service.  Professional photographers are much like professionals of other occupations, they have overhead and create photography not out of just love but out of a dedication to providing families with lifelong memories.

Some photographers participate in industry wide certification programs (i.e. Certified Professional Photographer), competition (competing nationally and internationally against other photographers), teaching/mentoring other photographers, writing about photography and reviewing equipment for trade publications, will mentor local photographers to achieve high quality photography as the norm within their area, work within the trade organizations to help maintain and/or create a sustainable profession where all learn and grow, etc.  A true professional photographer will have a large display of work available to look through on their website, will have a client list and should be willing to provide references, should be able to provide you with consistent and beautiful images and will partner with you to create images that you will be happy with for years to come.  A true professional photographer is not only a skilled artisan but also a business person like any other professional you may know.

This article was written by Marianne Drenthe and can be found at the Professional Child Photography site at http://www.professionalchildphotographer.com

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  1. yes, I agree Kegan. Everyone needs to start somewhere. However, clients may not realize the difference between a proffessional and an ameaturer. This is where comparing and negotiating of prices gets to be a sticky situation.

  2. I agree that a professional is different from an amateur, however, I’d like to point out that professionals are not born with this amazing ability. They started somewhere too. So yes, pick your photographer wisely for the occasion you want captured, but don’t forget about those who are building their knowledge on their equip, portfolio, client base, etc. Sometimes taking the chance on someone new helps to further the industry & broadens the amount of professionals with a wide range of areas of expertise available.


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