Who does not like taking photos? Whether it’s a portrait or a detailed scenery of a landscape, we love to take snaps of whatever catches our eyes.
However, becoming a professional photographer requires a lot more than enthusiasm and love for photography. If you want an escape from your 9-5 job to become a photographer, well, photographers work almost 24/7. Did you know that?
A typical day does not exist. You might have to go scuba diving to take the best shots of a reef or fly above clouds to capture an incredible shot of the vast landscape below. Despite the hectic schedule, continue reading if you still want to know how to become a professional photographer.
Why Do You Want to Be a Professional Photography?
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Becoming a professional photographer might seem fun and thrilling to you now, but are you ready for it? Have you thought about why you want to be a photographer?
Photographers need intense training and have to work for long hectic hours. To pursue a career, you need to have a solid reason. Do you like photography because you have an amazing talent or are you choosing it because you need money? If it is the latter, we would suggest you pick photography as a part-time profession. If it is your dream, then chase it with all you got.
For those who have not figured out why you want to become a professional photographer, let’s help you out.
Many of us have a talent for seeing the world from a different angle through camera lenses. For them, photos are the perfect medium to do so. If you want to capture the beauty in little things and casual surroundings, then photography is your game. We all have different reasons to love something. You need to identify why you love photography and become a photographer only after finding the answer.
The Right Photography Equipment You Need for Professional Photography
Your camera should be of high resolution and lightweight. It should not be too heavy or difficult to manage. If you are a beginner, you should get a mirrorless camera or any beginner-level DSLR camera. DSLRs have an internal mirror that helps to reflect directly from the lenses to the viewfinder for the photographer to see.
There are three main types of lenses for all entry-level photographers.
- Kit lenses: These lenses have several zooming capacities like 14-42mm, 16-50mm, 18-50mm, or 18-55mm. They are versatile and are of decent quality.
- Prime lenses: These lenses do not allow you to zoom. They have a fixed focal length of usually 35, 50, or 85mm. But they can be built with any focal length and usually have a large aperture for bokeh. These lenses are perfect for taking portraits.
- Telephoto lenses: They are great for outdoor photography. If you want to be a wildlife or a sports photographer, these lenses will be perfect for you. They can come as a prime or zoom lens.
Memory cards are the next most important thing you need. You need a memory card of at least 16GB for storing photos. A professional photographer has a standard of 64GB of memory with them all the time. If you are doing wildlife photography, we suggest keeping an extra 64GB memory card with you as a backup. The best SD cards for photography have fast write speeds for burst shots.
Tripods are a valuable object for all photographers. They help reduce camera shake, especially during low-light shooting. You will find many types of tripods such as all-in-one, travel tripods, studio tripods, etc. The type of tripod will depend on what kind of photography you will be doing.
Filters go directly on your lenses and help to alter the light entering your camera. There are three types of filters: lear, polarizing, and neutral density. Lear filters are transparent reduces blue color casts on your photos from UV rays. They also protect the front lens glass. Polarizing filters darken the sky and reduce reflections and glare.
They are highly recommended with outdoor photography. You should go for neutral density filters if you want to blur your photos, such as smoothing out moving objects. They reduce the light enter the image sensor and require a slow shutter speed. They’re great for waterfalls.
A built-in camera flash is only suitable for casual photography. If you want to be a portrait or professional photograph, you’ll need an external flash or studio light.
Many types of batteries are available for external flashes; however, we suggest you opt for Eneloop rechargeable batteries. Eneloop batteries will help ensure the power flow is steady. You can also recharge them more than 2100 times. Moreover, they fit with all kinds of professional cameras and are easily accessible.
Take In-Person and Online Photography Courses
If you prefer hands-on learning, several camera stores and freelance photographers offer in-person photography lessons. They have courses both for beginners and professionals. You can also check out The New York Film Academy, California Institute of Arts, Parsons School of Design.
If you’re looking for something more convenient and low-cost, then see the best online photography courses. Many online photography classes with lifetime access and are also viewable on your smartphone. This allows you to watch and practice the lessons out in the field.
Practice and Improve Your Technique
Practicing makes everything perfect. Take as many pictures as you can and learn from your mistakes. Apart from that, there are few things you need to consider, such as your camera. Adjust its settings properly. Here are some tips on how to improve your technique:
- Read your camera’s user manual thoroughly. Check out all the options and adjust your camera accordingly.
- Use the edges of every element in your frame as a guide
- Understand how shutter speed, aperture, and ISO affect exposure
- Take photography lessons from professionals
Build Your Brand and Market Your Business
Building a brand means that you are setting up an identity for your company. If you want to establish a photography brand, you need to choose a name and a logo first.
Authenticity and attraction start with a website. Buy a domain and create your website. Setup your brand story and state what your brand stands for. Market your business by letting people know the story behind your photography and why they should trust you to capture precious moments of their lives.
Now that you have read this article, you should know how to become a professional photographer. Instead of focusing on creating a brand, first, focus on your techniques and skills. If your photography is excellent, your opportunities will follow you.