Closet Photographer, Speaking Up

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For all those photographers, and non-photographers, this is for you.  It seems I’m in the position to say things that some of you can’t, so I hope this helps. Here’s a light rant.

Who am I

Here’s some history.  It might be safe to say I’m a closet photographer… many photos, little credit, a well-kept secret.  No claim to fame, but I’ve been around the block.  In fact, the K3 (camera) itself has an impressive passport stamp collection.  After swearing photography was stupid, I started with film in high school & college, jumped to Sony, and now rocking Pentax & Primes with no regrets.  I have experience in sports, travel, art and product photography.

The photography “blur”

There’s a blur between new cameras and new phones (with cameras).  There’s also a blur between professional and amateur photographer.  I take phone pictures all the time, but… if you don’t know the difference, then that’s your red flag.  In short: quality requires consistency, which requires style, which requires control.  Yes, phones can capture good looking photos, but they can’t always capture what you need.  Taking pretty photos versus taking the right photos, which sometimes needs the right equipment.

“Quality” photos

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder?  To one person, yes.  To all of them (the world), no, it’s not.  In business, quality matters, style matters, consistency matters.  Let’s say an inexperienced person does their own photography.  This person hasn’t developed the eye to style and consistency, they don’t realize the photos are terrible, or think they are ‘good enough’.  The rest of the world might not notice either, but they will ignore the photo instead of taking interest, and that’s all that matters.

The unfortunate photographer

To the point of this story.  The experienced photographer sees bad photos and knows: “this person needs my photography services”.  But they can’t walk in and say “Your photos are not good.  Let me help you”.  This business thinks they have great photos, but they don’t, or they think professional photography won’t help business.  It’s hurting their business and there’s nothing the photographer can do about it.

Another situation: “Why should photography cost so much?  It’s just a photo.”  This photo is like your face (but of the business).  Bad photography is like skipping showers, makeup, haircuts, jewelry and clean clothes.  Try running a business with the ‘homeless’ look and see how it goes.  Or, maybe you already are and don’t realize it, because you have terrible photos.  Yes, photos matter, and photographers need to pay the rent too, but they aren’t going to say this to your face.  How do you tell people they are ugly?

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