5 Insightful Tips Only an “Old” Professional Photographer Would Know

You could search online for tips and advice on photography. But you'll probably see the same "helpful" hints from site to site. Here are a few of mine. Some I learned but only after YEARS in the business. So hopefully I'm saving you valuable time in trial and error. These are helpful photography tips I don't hear many others talk about, but maybe they should.

NEVER Buy New

5 Insightful Tips Only an “Old” Professional Photographer Would Know
Don't fall prey to the "I NEED the latest in technology" school of thought. Some of the greatest photos were taken with simple film cameras. Just earlier today, I bought an old version of Adobe Lightroom for post processing photos. It originally retailed for $300. I got mine for $18! Sure it's Version 1, but I usually don't need those advance tools featured in the later, pricier versions. Nothing wrong with manipulating photos but I mainly cover events. So I shoot "as is". I've learned to keep things simple. That's Tip 1½. This keeps costs down. All my gear is used. Since I shoot "as is" I don't need the latest in gadgetry. The iMac I'm composing this article on, $1200 new but I bought mine recently for $400 at a local Goodwill!

Make a Lists

How organized you are is in direct proportion to how successful you'll become. Make lists: from a daily "to do" list to a list of shots you plan to do on your shoot to a list of what you need to do to prepare for each shoot like cleaning your equipment, replacing batteries, formatting memory cards, etc. And perform those tasks the same way every time. That's Tip 2 ½. It's like an athlete training for the performance. It'll become routine and eventually you won't need to refer to a list. This is invaluable, especially on important, STRESSFUL shoots. It's one less thing to worry about.

Think Like an Art Director

Magazines don't show up somewhere with a crew and start shooting. They're carefully planned out. Put some thought into your photo making. At least have a list of shots you'd like to do. I always have some game plan, theme or concept. I'll research online for photos that inspire me. I then gather them onto a page or two and bring the print outs on shoots. They're nice to reference to, especially when working with newer models.

Carry a Camera Phone

At least, carry a note pad. You never know when that next great idea will come to you. I've taken pictures of mall mannequins, billboards and items on store shelves because they gave me an idea for a photo.

Be Stealthy

As an event photographer, I like to "blend in" with the crowd. I wear black but anything dark and solid will do...no patterns, stripes, etc. If it's not a wedding where I need 2 cameras, I prefer using a backpack. It's one less thing that calls attention to you. Because of my "stealthiness", I've shot in locations other have been booted from. I think it's because I try NOT to look like a professional photographer. But being nice and cordial to security helps too!
5 Insightful Tips Only an “Old” Professional Photographer Would Know | Victoria Knight | 5