Trust me I’m a professional…Or am I?


by Bellamy /

2 min read

Trust me I’m a professional…Or am I?
In another guest post from Jonathan Wicaksana, he shares Some thoughts on why you should be happy with your status as an amateur photographer. Read on.

A lot of you esteemed readers must have taken a picture or get your picture taken somewhere along the line. Did you enjoy taking a picture? Digging through your old disk drive (or your hidden stash of Kodachrome slides, depending on how old you are), you may find pictures from the last big family dinner, pictures from your holiday to Vietnam, or maybe of your high schools mates; chances are, you will find things you love captured in a media called photographs.

So you shoot film? Why would anyone waste money on film and film processing these days? Do they even still sell film rolls? The skeptical might ask a question or two. Sure, all they talk about is the latest and greatest innovation from Canikon with their high ISO and megapixels race. Some even go as far as saying that with film every exposure costs money, whereas with digital you can always delete it if you don’t like it. Duh. Why shoot something just to delete it? The exact reasons we shoot film and why we take pictures are because we LOVE film and we LOVE the things we shoot, don’t we?

Ah, forgive me, gents, I tend to digress whenever I talk about these things. So back to why we should be happy as amateur photographers. I don’t want to start a war on what defines a professional photographer. But I do know, that the English word ‘amateur’ is derived from the Latin word ‘amator’, meaning ‘lover’. I’m sure you knew that ‘amor’ means love, right? So as simple as that, ‘amator’ means lover! Amateurs do their stuff with love, and in our case, we love the medium- the magical emulsion we call film, and we love the things we shoot, I mean it makes a perfect sense, right?

So, bottom line, folks: be proud of your status as an amateur, love your cameras, love the things you shoot, and don’t forget to spread the love to others, too!

Interesting thoughts from Jonathan. What is your take on this? Comment and tell us how you feel about your status. How do you define yourself?

13 comments on “Trust me I’m a professional…Or am I?”

    MrJava September 27, 2012 at 10:38 am / Reply

    Awww you’re such a romantic Bellamy :)

    Colin Corneau September 27, 2012 at 10:46 am / Reply

    Most professionals are too busy working to drone on like this. Sorry, I just don’t see the point.

    Steven September 27, 2012 at 11:01 am / Reply

    Colin- maybe you should re read the post. The message is quite clear.

    ZDP-189 September 27, 2012 at 11:05 am / Reply

    Yes, turning pro in any hobby turns a passion into drudgery. Ask any hooker.

    As for the lovely lady using a camera upside down, I bet I could do a reasonable job with the camera like that. Mind you, posing with a camera inverted is the equivalent of duck-face, and as that potentially denigrates water fowl (many of my best friends are drakes) I’d better not.

    Feeling silly this morning. Normal service will resume shortly. We apologise for any offense caused thereby. Especially if you are a duck, model, or lady of negotiable affection.

    cidereye September 27, 2012 at 3:18 pm / Reply

    I use my Ricoh GRD III upside quite often, no seriously!

    Nobody thinks for one minute they’ve just been photographed by an upside down camera so if you are looking for stealth in tricky situations give it a try.

    Neal September 27, 2012 at 5:42 pm / Reply

    I use my rolleiflex upside down sometimes, but then it was a design feature to be able to do that.

    Lovely post, i enjoy my status as amateur, often just calling myself a traditional photographer.

    Jan Cipta September 27, 2012 at 9:00 pm / Reply

    :) agree 100%

    Carsten September 27, 2012 at 9:27 pm / Reply

    A pro earns money with his equipment, an amateur spends money for it. ;)

    bh September 28, 2012 at 7:36 am / Reply

    If you have to take pictures for money you’re a commercial photographer – if you don’t, you’re an amateur, and spared all the drudgery. Was it Tony Vaccaro who checked all his contacts upside down to see which ones worked?

    ZDP-189 September 28, 2012 at 6:13 pm / Reply

    Having worked with many professionals, I have come to learn that there are pros that have neither the talent, nor the technical skills one would expect as a paying customer and there are many amateurs producing excellent work.

    It’s not hard to recognise skill and flair in a person’t work method and product. Commercial buyers of images know one from the other, but I fear for the bride-to-be or portrait customer that finds the wrong photographer.

    Thomas September 28, 2012 at 6:54 pm / Reply


    maybe it should be pronounced

    “Trust me, my work is professional …”

    Forget the label, let the result talk for itself.


    Chris Hwang October 2, 2012 at 9:47 pm / Reply

    its like you read my mind about the love of film.

    Ali February 3, 2013 at 4:38 pm / Reply

    I think we use film, because it is not just the result, but about the act, the act of photographing. therein lies an esthetical experience which can be enjoyed. Also, the results are enhanced by film photography, as a separate creating, achievement, beyond todays automatisms. Your more pround on the homemade cake or the self-hunted chicken, than something you can get in the supermarket.

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