Professional Photography and Free Photo Shoots

A question I am often asked is, “how long have you been a photographer for”? An answer often given is, “around fifty years”. But, that is not really accurate. I was given my first camera by my parents before a trip to India and Pakistan back in the mid 1950’s. I still remember its brand name, it was a “Bunny”. It took rolls of 120 film, and after taking twelve shots, the film had to be rewound onto its original spool to be processed. Many different cameras I have owned and used since then. And as well as the quality of the equipment having improved markedly, I like to think that my photographic skills have also.

Photography has never been my job, but it has been a passion of mine for a very long time. As a teenager and young adult I still recall spending many evenings in my makeshift darkroom with an enlarger and trays of chemicals.

Back in those days, many people did not have cameras. Times have changed, now nearly everyone has at least one camera, and for snapshots, your smart phone is great. But, professional photographers don’t spend thousands of dollars on cameras, lenses and associated gear if smart phones can do the same job. They can not!

What is a professional? To me a professional photographer is one who has quality equipment and the expertise to use it well, and produce quality results. Others may tell you that a professional is someone who charges. But, there are photographers out there who call themselves “professional” who have very little experience and some with only entry level equipment. Some even have the audacity to try charging like wounded buffaloes for their inferior product.

Well, according to my definition, I am a professional. But, with only a few exceptions that you could count on the finger of one hand, I have not and will not charge for any of my photography sessions. I made that conscious decision years ago. Never have I wanted photography to be my job. I enjoy photography, and as I have already said, it is a passion of mine. In the past, I have sold some framed prints that were hanging on the walls of a café where I used to display some of my work. Currently, I submit some of my photography in response to briefs that have been given to an agency called Image Brief that I am associated with.

These activities have given me some return, but that is a small fraction of what I have spent, and continue to spend on equipment. I do like to have quality.

My favourite genre is portraiture. But this goes beyond photographing people posing. My preference is for photographing people involved in activities. I do ask all models I work with to complete and sign Model Release forms. These are required by Image Brief clients. If for example they want a photograph of a young child holding a puppy for a book cover for a book publisher, they need to be assured that consent had been given for the photograph. This was a brief I recently submitted to, unfortunately although I obtained some great photographs, the submission was not successful.

If you live in south-east Queensland and you would like to be involved in my photography sessions, you would be made very welcome. The only cost to you will be your time and the cost of getting to the venue involved. Information on my shoots is available on my Passionate About Photography Facebook page and my Passionate About Photography web site.

In the past I have done some pet photography, but I would like to do much more now that I have additional time available. If you have a special pet and you would like some photographs of it, or better still you with it, let me know. I include horses and other farm animals in the category of pets also. Recently I set up a web site specifically for Pet photography and also a Facebook page for pet photography. You are welcome to take a look.

The agency I submit briefs to I have already mentioned. It is Image Brief. Click on the link if you would like to see my portfolio there.