How to be a professional photographer.
Real on-the-job training and experience.
An in-depth understanding of a multitude of techniques and of every item of your equipment. From your photography camera to your video camera ( two different worlds ), strobe, continuous lighting, radio slaves, reflectors, wireless tethering, computers and the list keeps going on and on...
Digital communication skills which include a website, blog and an on-going battle with search engine optimisation ( SEO ).
Human communication skills: the ability to help models relax, the ability to quietly guide your crew and above all the ability to understand a clients need for information about your assignment and of the need to answer every question fully and promptly.
You may be an outstanding photographer, but no client will knock on your door if he cant´t find you. And no client will give you a repeat assignment if they are not treated courteously and correctly
Check out my new promo video on Youtube. I decided it was time to make a film of myself and show the audience a bit of what it is like to be a professional photographer, where I live, how I work, the equipment I use, my fine art photography and my loyalty towards my clients.
Basically this video also explains the approach many professional photographers have towards their job, from working with a client in a photoshoot to post production in the studio.
I am based in a paradise location called Tarifa, in the south of Spain, where the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean merge together. Living in a place like this really inspires my photography !!!
Apart from being one of the world´s best venues for kitesurfing and windsurfing, it has incredible golden sand beaches and dunes that go on and on for kilometres. Some of the must see visits are the sand dunes of Punta Paloma that give you an incredible view of two continents, Europe and Africa, facing each other, or Baelo Claudia, an ancient roman town beside the beachside village of Bolonia, or the Isla de la Palomas, the island connected to Tarifa by a causeway, is the southernmost part in Europe, just 14 kilometres from Africa. It is also only 1 hour drive from Marbella and less than two hours to Malaga airport.
With all these locations and many more beautiful sights to visit, this makes Tarifa a perfect place for photography, photo shoots and advertising campaigns. After all these years living and working in this town located on La Costa de la Luz, that translates to Coast of the Light, my knowledge of the locations, people and business has grown to a great advantage for my photography business and my clients. This is very important as a photographer, let your community know that you are a photographer, word of mouth gets around and can bring new clients !!!
I must admit that I love photography and working with clients, but not all your time as a professional should be spent on comercial assignments. Creating a personal portfolio and developing techniques and skills will help you grow and solve issues that for sure will come up on each photo job.
The art of creating powerful images or even sometimes more simple but evocative forms and colours. The understanding of different lighting techniques, how a lens can change the perspective, the dynamic range of a camera and how it can affect the overall exposure of a image.... all this has helped me a lot on my assignments with clients and their specific needs.
As one can see from my portfolio, I love to imagine and produce fine art photography. What better way is there to express your fantasy or dreams than though a photograph !!! It is such a pleasure to see the end result of a fine art project on the screen. But this is not a easy path... More than once I have tried to produce a thought or idea but was just impossible to find the talent or the location or more importantly to be able to realise the concept.
There are many ingredients that must blend together to make an authentic fine art photograph. First of all is the idea or concept, without this you can forget about all the rest... Then finding the model or people that fit your story, then location, lighting, props, hair style, make up, and it goes on and on... But with practice and experience it can be done and the personal and technical reward is extremely satisfying !!!