Photography has been evolving at blinding speed since digital started winning the ‘digital vs film’ battle. DSLRs are in everyone’s hands these days and the inexpensive chips replacing film lets amateurs (and pros) fire hundreds of shots without giving it a second thought. In those hundreds, or even thousands of shots, the photographer might find a few gems and realize it’s time to take this craft from the hobby/amateur stage to the weekend warrior/semi-pro level.
These terms hobbyist/amateur/weekend warrior/semi-pro… are not degrading. Heck, the word “amateur” in French means “lover of” so in that sense I am a huge amateur of photography. Being a ‘professional’ can be anything from someone paying a dollar for a portrait, to knowing how to appropriately react when a lens falls and shatters during an expensive wedding shoot.
What all photographers need to realize is that you will never, ever, ever, ever know everything there is to know about photography. On the same note, it is my hope that everyone who takes photography seriously, WANTS to know everything there is to know about photography.
What is the key to becoming a great photographer? It is the love and desire to develop your skills at every stage of your photography life. At that moment, when you take off the lens cap for the very first time, I promise the desire will certainly be there… but keep that passion to learn intact and you will be doing photography for a long time.