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10-13-2013, 09:41 AM - 1 Like   #46
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I'm a qualified tradesman, have made a living for decades with my work. I ran into a fellow once, who on hearing that I was a refrigeration mechanic asked me what I thought about such and such gizmo, which I had never heard of. He was quite disappointed.

The same attention to equipment occurs on the web sites that service my trade .

I'm training some guys and see the desire to fill their pouch with toys. First fill your brain with understanding.

Professional photographers have certain exigencies they must fulfill. Journalists have to get their work submitted quickly. Sports journalists need certain things. All of them need support, ie. They can't be without their gear and need arrangements with their equipment suppliers. Their employer may have certain standards or formats. Those considerations may drive purchasing decisions more than marginal improvements in iq. Some may travel; if they need a replacement lens in an emergency, who will have stock, distribution where and when needed.

The skilled amateur probably demands more at a lower price than a professional. Good equipment makes a difference, but the best investment I made as an amateur is an old long manual focus lens. I learned a skill by using it, learned how to get the best out of what I had. Those skills enable me to know what I really want, and to be able to take advantage of the advancements in technology when they show up in my hand.

10-13-2013, 09:46 AM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by derekkite Quote
The skilled amateur probably demands more at a lower price than a professional. Good equipment makes a difference, but the best investment I made as an amateur is an old long manual focus lens. I learned a skill by using it, learned how to get the best out of what I had. Those skills enable me to know what I really want, and to be able to take advantage of the advancements in technology when they show up in my hand.
Very beautiful. Very true. Won't soon forget.
10-13-2013, 09:54 AM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by derekkite Quote
The skilled amateur probably demands more at a lower price than a professional.
If the professional files a business tax return in the USA, (he) can deduct equipment depreciation over time, or lease and deduct the expense - and replace with each upgrade cycle or as needed. Depends how "Bushkin" structures his Business Return."

In such cases professionals might pay less after taxes than amateur retail buyers do.
10-13-2013, 10:17 AM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
If the professional files a business tax return in the USA, (he) can deduct equipment depreciation over time, or lease and deduct the expense - and replace with each upgrade cycle or as needed. Depends how "Bushkin" structures his Business Return."

In such cases professionals might pay less after taxes than amateur retail buyers do.
I do this. but consider it a governmental rip-off because depreciation is minimal. I feel I should be able to deduct full price. It's unfair!

Please note K-3 shutter is rated to 200,000 actuations. Isn't that BIG news? Know your investments. We all want are investments to be durable, right?

10-13-2013, 10:22 AM   #50
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
Knows the difference between a hobby and work.
There you have it in a nutshell.

If photography is your job, you chose your tools to fit the work you do. Over the years I have seen working pros using a number of tools:
  • Somewhat fragile 4x5 and 8x10 field cameras
  • Studio view cameras
  • Technical view cameras
  • 120 roll film twin lens reflex
  • 120 roll film rangefinder
  • 120 roll film SLR
  • 35mm rangefinder (no, not always Leica)
  • 35mm SLR
  • APS-C dSLR
  • FF dSLR
  • MF dSLR
For each category, multiple makes might be represented. The common denominator is that the tool does what the photog needs it to do and does so reliably. Flimsy generally does not cut it here. Neither does a huge set of useless features. Available glass and desired format often drive the choice of tools. Ditto for intended work environment or choice of subject*. Good maker support for working pros is helpful too.

Often enough the difference between pro and hobbyist gear is evident just by picking the thing up. There is nothing amateur about the Pentax 6x7, for example. The user experience is not a casual thing.


Steve

*Rumor has it that some combat photographers during the Vietnam War used Nikonos underwater cameras due to their resistance to weather.
10-13-2013, 10:27 AM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by derekkite Quote
I'm a qualified tradesman, have made a living for decades with my work. I ran into a fellow once, who on hearing that I was a refrigeration mechanic asked me what I thought about such and such gizmo, which I had never heard of. He was quite disappointed.

The same attention to equipment occurs on the web sites that service my trade .

I'm training some guys and see the desire to fill their pouch with toys. First fill your brain with understanding.

Professional photographers have certain exigencies they must fulfill. Journalists have to get their work submitted quickly. Sports journalists need certain things. All of them need support, ie. They can't be without their gear and need arrangements with their equipment suppliers. Their employer may have certain standards or formats. Those considerations may drive purchasing decisions more than marginal improvements in iq. Some may travel; if they need a replacement lens in an emergency, who will have stock, distribution where and when needed.

The skilled amateur probably demands more at a lower price than a professional. Good equipment makes a difference, but the best investment I made as an amateur is an old long manual focus lens. I learned a skill by using it, learned how to get the best out of what I had. Those skills enable me to know what I really want, and to be able to take advantage of the advancements in technology when they show up in my hand.
This comment should be made into a "sticky". Excellent!


Steve
10-14-2013, 05:46 AM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentikonian Quote
Pros need to use what gear is needed to meet their client expectations...
I think this is the answer to "What is a professional camera?" It's whatever is needed to get the job done.
10-14-2013, 08:03 AM   #53
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Cnet?

Wonder why the Canon 7D makes the list, and other, high end APS-C cameras do not?

10-14-2013, 08:16 AM   #54
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For me, if you have to ask what equipment was used to make an image y are not a pro. A pro, would know what you used without asking. If you need to know what sensor (that's really what you learn by asking what camera) to appreciate a photo, again you are not a pro.

The whole point is knowing what to do with the tools you have not simply saying I need X to be a professional.
10-14-2013, 08:25 AM   #55
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There's a pretty famous pro that goes around the world using an S95. He often does work with Vice. Some is pornography, but he's doing it. There's a fairly profilic photographer that used an LX5 for years in NYC.

Last edited by snake; 10-14-2013 at 08:42 AM.
10-14-2013, 09:49 AM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeff knight Quote

We're getting into arguments now with the full frame crowd that are comparable to this: Your 9mm pistol isn't enough, you need a 30-06 rifle with a scope to be a proper assassin. This is so stupid. The message is: you gotta have this or that high caliber gun to play with the big boys..... It's not only silly but just not true. What about us pistoleros who like a smaller high quality weapon?
not to nitpick but the gun analogy doesn't quite fit since all weapons are not alike. You wouldn't go into bear country with at .22 rimfire unless you wanted to be dinner! But the thread is spot on!! The camera does have to fit the job, but one type isn't in itself "Professional" and the others not. A magazine cover photo was probably on medium format, but a combat photographer would look for small and tough!!
Now for me, life is too short to worry whether or not my camera is "good enough"!! And if they think less of me for it, oh well. Now you may be thinking "he has a 6meg antique and no pro would be caught dead with that". Well I'm no pro, but I do know a dude that shoots wedding with a pair of D-40s and does amazing work. The short of this is a Pro is anyone with anything that can produce what they need for their employment(long as it's legal)
Joel
10-14-2013, 09:53 AM   #57
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It think the 'Professional' moniker attached to photography hardware is often geared towards well monied amateurs. I read on this site and dpr about folks who swap their systems to keep up with the latest and greatest. Whoever they are buying from just loves them and a will call what they sell whatever the buyer wants to get the $20k or so every few years that they are spending. Much of the fuss over full frame is about getting folks that would hesitate at real professional, ie. $6k+ bodies to think that the pinnacle of everything is a $3k full frame body.

I'm not suggesting that hardware doesn't matter. It does. It allows a skilled photographer to get the shots that they want.

My wife's niece was married a couple years ago, and we saw the photos from the event. I would have been interested to see how they were taken because there was something exceptional about how the photographer, a woman, managed to make the young bride look beautiful. Looking at her portfolio, that is what she did. She got their eyes laughing, they looked the best that they could look. The grooms all looked something like mud posts, but the women were exceptional. I'm certain she had specific hardware setups that worked for her, lighting setups, post processing, and the camera and lens itself. There are great portrait lenses with specific qualities, and they don't come cheap. But her skill, her value added over someone with equivalent gear was to get the women looking their best. Who knows, as I said, it would be interesting to watch her at work. Maybe she has a makeup box and touches things up so that the shots turn out well. The eyes were amazing. Maybe she had a knack of being a best friend to these women, made them relax. Ultimately the hardware was important but not primary. I'm certain that as a photographer she would jump at some advancement that cut some steps or allowed equivalent quality in less than optimum lighting. Her time is valuable. But the skill is what makes her a professional, someone people are willing to pay well.

As for the shot of the NFL photographer, I wonder what Nikon would pay to have their gear hanging from straps like that in front of thousands of folks. The ones with the good seats that could see what he is shooting would be great customers with lots of money.
10-14-2013, 10:04 AM   #58
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I like to say - "I'm only a professional when I get paid".

However, how I *carry* myself when out shooting is also part of being a "Professional".
I suppose for the most part, the two are linked in that you can't be an amateur and expect to get paid.

There have been plenty of times where I have showed up at an event, that might be fun to shoot, and I am allowed entry based on how I carry myself and who I talk to.

As a result, I'm not a "full-time" professional, and I only do jobs or take commissions when I want to.

I dread the concept of being a "full-time" professional or thinking I have to call myself that.
I'm a photographer that sometimes gets paid or does work for hire.

I leave the labeling to others.
10-14-2013, 11:11 AM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by skyoftexas Quote
Wonder why the Canon 7D makes the list, and other, high end APS-C cameras do not?
How can the D300s still be on that list?

That has nothing to do anymore with image quality or performance, but simply Nikon putting money on the shelf!
10-14-2013, 12:45 PM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by derekkite Quote
The grooms all looked something like mud posts, but the women were exceptional.
At least where I live the parents of the women pay the photographer and buy the prints - even the individual prints. Guys don't seem to buy prints.

Fathers of the Groom help out with stuff like the reception (usually the bar charges) adn limosines if they are used.

Photos are the domain of the bride, so who cares what the Groomsmen look like?
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