If You Don’t Like it, Don’t Do It


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Guys, I want to push back on a very, VERY common misconception. This might not be received well but I feel so strongly about it that I am going to say it anyway…

You don’t have to shoot everything to be considered a professional photographer.

Now let me say it again for the people in the back…

You do not have to shoot every genre to be considered a professional photographer.

I see this day in and day out with the new photographers that I mentor. They feel like in order to be taken seriously they have to offer all the thing. This is SO WRONG.

First of all, just because you CAN shoot it doesn’t mean that you should. Sure, you have the equipment and the skill to capture weddings but that doesn’t mean that you have to endure them if they make you miserable every second of a 10 hour wedding day.

Second, this way of thinking is seriously outdated. 30, 40, 50 years ago, this was a truth. If you were a professional photographer, you were expected to and you did shoot anything and everything that came your way.

Times have changed and this simply isn’t the case anymore.

So what happened? Why did this used to be fact and it isn’t anymore?

I am not a historian and I don’t know the “official” answer but I will give you my opinion: Cameras became accessible to everyone. 

Consumer grade cameras started becoming mass produced and all of a sudden, everyone was taking pictures. Over time that has meant that there are a MASSIVE amount of professional photographers in every city. Because there isn’t just one “professional” in the area, the expectations have changed. And for the better!

Now that there are a zillion photographers in my area, I don’t have to offer weddings or sports or high school seniors if I don’t want to. Why? Because there is someone else in my area that DOES love it and offers that service. 

The increase in photographers means you can gladly hand off all the inquiries that you get and are not interested in and just take on the ones that make your heart flutter. If you cringe at the thought of shooting one more maternity session then OH MY GOSH, DON’T! Find someone in your area to refer those inquiries to and stop saying yes. 

Now, how do you start getting inquiries for only the things that you DO want to shoot? 

I won’t go into this too deep because it is a pretty hefty topic but, at the root, the key is very simple…

Stop showing all that other stuff online.

Take down everything from your website and social media that you never want to photograph again and only show what makes you happy.

If you show it, they will come. So don’t show it. Or do. Either way, just be INTENTIONAL.

You are not one-size-fits-all. So stop trying to be and go after only the stuff that makes you giddy with excitement.

If you want to dig into this a little deeper, I would love to work with you. I offer both online and in-person mentoring and promise that the experience will be one of the best investments you ever make for your business. You can learn about those options here in the education shop.

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  1. This advice has been so freeing to me. Thanks, Sabrina!

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