Tam Nguyen Photography

New York Beauty and Fashion Photographer

Signs That You’re a Real Photographer

Posted on September 6, 2011 in Personal

Signs That You’re a Real Photographer

In a day and age when anyone with an iPhone or a Flickr account can call themselves a photographer, it can be a little difficult to figure out when you’ve separated yourself from the pack to become a real photographer. After all, beauty — in photographs as in all things — is in the eye of the beholder.

But here are 21 clues that you’ve crossed the threshold from pretender to contender:

  1. Your friends have begun to hand you their cameras at social gatherings when they want a good picture taken.
  2. You don’t run out of battery power because you are chimping less.
  3. Your kids have stopped fussing about being photographed because you work faster.
  4. The salesman at your favorite camera store lets you handle the merchandise usually kept locked in the shiny glass display cases.
  5. You understand the difference between bokeh and a flower arrangement.
  6. A gorgeous woman with a digital SLR brushes by you — and you only notice her camera and what kind of lens she has.
  7. You concentrate on the lighting instead of the undergarment when you photograph backlit subjects.
  8. You snicker at the folks in the back row at the concert shooting with an iPhone or a point-and-shoot.
  9. Photo lab workers ask you to complete paperwork to verify that you own the copyright to the pictures you bring in.
  10. Your in-law who’s a pro shares fewer and fewer tips with you.
  11. Other photographers follow you to see where you’re shooting from.
  12. Other photographers ask your opinion about gear when they see you at camera stores.
  13. You realize how inaccurately Hollywood portrays the photographer’s job in the movies.
  14. More and more engaged women want to be your friend.
  15. You stop asking what aperture and shutter speed was used to take a picture.
  16. Fewer people make fun of your torn, tattered but ubiquitous photo vest.
  17. The subjects in your group pictures no longer resemble the hapless victims of a firing squad (everyone against the wall).
  18. You are unashamed to carry a point-and-shoot — even at events crawling with other photographers.
  19. Before you allow yourself to be impressed by that long telephoto, you want to know its widest aperture and whether it has image stabilization.
  20. Your spouse stops asking what FedEx or UPS delivered.
  21. You realize overexposure has to do with how you meter instead of how many Twitter followers you have.

Here are 15 more clues that you have crossed the threshold from pretender to contender:

  1. You don’t say “Lensbaby” without a separating comma, as in “Show me you love my lens, baby.”
  2. You don’t mistakenly use a beauty dish for chips and salsa when your spouse has friends over.
  3. It’s no longer enough to make pilgrimages to all the natural wonders of the world; you now obsess over being there at sunrise, sunset, moon rise and eclipses.
  4. You’re indifferent when the airline tells you they’ve lost your baggage because all your photo gear is in your carry-on. You can always buy new clothes.
  5. You’ll rather use sandpaper in the bathroom than low-quality paper for your photos.
  6. You get irritated when your browsing history on Amazon gets contaminated by items other than photo gear after your spouse uses your computer.
  7. You produce HDR images without the use of software or tripod. Of course, your HDR (“Huge Dumbass Removal”) technique does require that you exit your vehicle on occasion to exclude bystanders who think they’re transparent.
  8. You’re not bothered by your competition’s high-end DSLR — especially when you see that their Speedlight/Speedlite is permanently bolted to their camera’s hotshoe.
  9. Your spouse insists that you either take her with you, or leave your credit card at home, when you go to the neighborhood camera store.
  10. More and more of your Facebook friends want to be tagged in your pictures, even the shy, private ones (and especially those too cheap to pay for profile pictures).
  11. You no longer obsess over websites hot-linking your images; you’re now more interested in the number of visitors being driven to your website — and the leads that result.
  12. Now that you also shoot video, you insist that every shot has to be done at your maximum aperture for that film-like look, even if it’s a group shot requiring more depth of field.
  13. You finally stop obsessing over file size when you realize you don’t even like your own work enough to make a 20″ x 30″ print.
  14. You grudgingly decide to show restraint in your post-production after you see the results your 5-year-old gets with your iPhone and the Hipstamatic app.
  15. Your Twitter followers are increasing because they are stalking you for your great location finds — even though most of your tweets are about where you had lunch.

by Black Star Rising.

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