Top 5 Reasons to Use a Professional Photographer

By Eric Doggett, www.doggettstudios.com

With the wealth of photography knowledge waiting for you to soak up online, your first thought might be to avoid using a professional for your family images. After all, photography tips are everywhere, cameras are cheap and you can keep checking your display until you get it looking good, right? Here are 5 reasons that may be a bad idea.

The Gear!

Let’s start with the gear! Photographers invest thousands of dollars in their equipment. This is not to say that you can’t get great results with a point and shoot, but they simply won’t compare with the quality that a pro offers. Besides camera features like sensor size and low-light sensitivity, the actual physics of light and lenses allow depth of field and wide angle framing of images that you simply can’t get on today’s pocket cameras. Many photographers with studios invest in additional gear, including multiple strobe lighting, wireless systems to trigger them, backgrounds and more. A true professional invests in their business, and their images will reflect the quality of that investment.

Training

Professional photographers continually invest in training. This might come in the form of professional affiliations (like PPA, TCPPA or WPPI), nationwide seminars, conferences, or full-blown college degree programs. This training not only covers the fundamentals of photography, but encompasses a wide range of subjects including business, marketing, and technology. These educational resources keep professionals current with what today’s clients need, and the latest technologies that help them meet those needs. Many of these programs are only available to professionals.

Unique Products

Taking the picture is usually only the beginning; you need a way to display it. The ‘print only’ days are long gone. Today, professional photographers have access to the most unique and personalized products available. Albums, framing, canvas printing, cards, high-end paper products, jewelry and more are available to the professional. Pros handle all aspects of the product ordering process for you. Images are retouched and cropped to fit the products as necessary. If a pro has a relationship with a vendor, they would know for example that a certain product prints a little dark or light. This experience on their part saves you time in money in the end.

Quality Control

If a professional photographer shoots your session and orders prints or albums for you, you can bet that the quality will be high. This is because the final product is an expression of their business. Professionals don’t skimp on labs and vendors - they go with the best they can find because their work becomes something that you will treasure forever. They will present the work to you in a way that reflects their pride in the work. This is a completely different mentality from your local drugstore which happens to have a photo lab. Over there, it’s about mass-sales and ‘consistently average’ quality.

Experience

This is the biggest reason to go with a professional. Whether you are looking for a wedding photographer, family/child photographer, or an event photographer, there simply is no match for the experience of a professional. They will be able to see what you envision for the shoot, or suggest ideas in case you don’t know where to start. The good professionals have seen everything in their particular field, so they will be well-accustomed to your situation (whether it’s a stressed out bride or crying child). When you work with a pro, the shoot can be incredibly fun, creative, and productive. You feed off of each other, and this further enhances the trust you have in their ability to get the shot.

I hope this post has been helpful. You could really dig down into each of these areas and find even more reasons to go with a pro. If you’ve had a cool experience with a professional photographer, send us a note and tell us about it! Or, if you are new to all of this and are looking for a professional photographer, use the search feature here on our website.

March 21, 2008

­