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DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> When did you become a photographer?
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09/16/2010 01:36:00 AM · #1
When did you become a photographer? I don't mean when did you start taking pictures. But was there a point you can look back to and say that since then you've been able to describe yourself as a photographer? (whether that's as an amateur, professional, or otherwise)

For myself, it was probably when I bought my first digital SLR and joined this site. I have of course improved since then but I would say that's where I moved from taking snap shots to making good images (or at least trying to).
09/16/2010 09:49:40 AM · #2
I can say it was in my teen years, and that was a long time ago. My father had a real interest in photography---he liked to collect cameras and equipment! I was very fortunate to have cameras, lenses, lights, tripods, flashes and what seemed like a never ending supply of film. We also had darkroom equipment, and I would turn my mother's bathroom into a make/shift darkroom. We developed our own film ( black & white) and I enlarged my own photos. I purchased my own camera equipment ( my dad paid half) when I was about 17 or so...I bought a used Konica with several lenses. I've had many cameras over the years...my interest in photography has gone through many highs and many lows. I attended the Art Institute of Ft. Lauderdale when I was still in high school ( special summer classes) and I thought I was going to be a professional photographer...never materialized. When digital cameras first came on the scene I was very happy. My son happened to be working for Best Buy and Panasonic gave the employees and their family the chance to buy some of their products at a very reduced price...I spotted that 3.0 megapixel camera ( at that time 3.0 megapixels was big news) and had to have it. The funny thing is I had an old IBM computer that did not have a usb port and I was never able to download the photos properly! A lot has changed since then....
09/16/2010 10:22:40 AM · #3
Other people started calling me a photographer before I did. I was a bartender at the time. "Hey, he's a pretty good photographer."

I didn't call myself one until I was doing it for money.
09/16/2010 10:24:41 AM · #4
Originally posted by Citadel:

When did you become a photographer? I don't mean when did you start taking pictures. But was there a point you can look back to and say that since then you've been able to describe yourself as a photographer? (whether that's as an amateur, professional, or otherwise)


I'll let you know when that happens... So far, I'm just a schmuck with a camera.
09/16/2010 10:32:07 AM · #5
Originally posted by ambaker:

I'll let you know when that happens... So far, I'm just a schmuck with a camera.

+1
09/16/2010 11:17:09 AM · #6
I became a photographer once I was confident enough in my abilities.
09/16/2010 12:11:07 PM · #7
after a decade of photographing views that pleased many mildly.
when I got restless admiring the fine work of those who had gone before me.
when I was sure that my vision was sufficiently specific to be seen for what it is
when I discovered my care for certain things and aspects of life exceeded everyone else's

09/16/2010 12:14:43 PM · #8
When I understood what would happen when I took the camera off the Auto setting.
09/16/2010 12:22:22 PM · #9
Originally posted by cmcphee:

When I understood what would happen when I took the camera off the Auto setting.


LOL! An exhilarating moment to be sure. That may have been the first time I considered being a "photographer", but quickly realized it was just the tip of the iceberg, so I too am still just a schmuckette with a camera :-)

I must admit that being a DPCer has had a decided impact on the process.
09/16/2010 12:30:12 PM · #10
Probably in 1977 when I took a photography class and put a darkroom in our bathroom. I was 16 at the time, and I was asked to photograph for the school paper. Then in 1979 I went to college and I wasn't a photographer anymore. Began taking a fair amount of, uh... snapshots after marriage and kids started arriving. I still take and enjoy snapshots. Probably became a photographer again when it became a more serious hobby about 2008. I play tennis, so I am a tennis player. I suck, but would still call myself a tennis player. My brother is a "photojournalist"... a professional Photographer (makes money at it). I guess I am a photographer with a small 'p'.... what else would you call someone who enjoys taking pictures whether they are good at it or not?
09/16/2010 12:55:39 PM · #11
Still waiting for that to happen. When I get a new camera bag:
' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/1000-1999/1211/120/Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_882236.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/1000-1999/1211/120/Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_882236.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

But seriously, it probably started over the past two years when people started to ask me to take pictures. Then I realized that I don't need to be "perfect", or win blue ribbons, or meet every "rule" in photography. Only, take photos that they like and are willing to show other people.

Becoming a better photographer is an on-going process that incorporates experience, discussions, and participation in the photographic community (e.g. DPC).
09/16/2010 12:59:31 PM · #12
I simply had to emulate my hero.
09/16/2010 01:06:39 PM · #13
Originally posted by Strikeslip:

I simply had to emulate my hero.


hahahahahaha!!! Oh thanks for that. Made my day. (really)

09/16/2010 01:39:13 PM · #14
Actually, it began when I found DPC. I was involved in photography because my brother was a well known photographer, and I hung around his darkroom in the early 60's. I got my first SLR, a Canon Tx in about 1975. I shot a lot of slides and B&W for the band that I was in to use for promo. It was not unusual to see a hundred 8X10 B&W's drying in my living room on a portable clothes line. I was just composing on intuition and shooting things that I found interesting.
When I joined DPC, it changed my program quite a bit to be able to learn from the photos, and the people who share the knowledge here.
Now everyone likes my photos, but I still can't get a good score in challenges here, which may indicate that what I am doing is working LOL.
I don't consider myself a photographer, just a hick with camera.
Slippy, you're not getting me with that one again : )
09/16/2010 01:42:54 PM · #15
Originally posted by MelonMusketeer:

....Slippy, you're not getting me with that one again : )

Haha, no, it's not a trick-link or Rick Roll or anything, it's Mike Myers playing Austin Powers as a photographer, baby, yeaaaah! :-D

Message edited by author 2010-09-16 13:43:39.
09/16/2010 02:35:29 PM · #16
Me too, when I discovered DPC. That was way back then in 2004. A member since then and learned everything I know either directly or indirectly from this great big family.

Still not sure if I am a man with a camera or a photographer. Depends on one's definition maybe. Sort of like every man with a piano calling himself a pianist. Or your better halve calling herself a chef because you have a nice stove in the kitchen.

But yea, 2004, Canon S1IS, then the Rebel, the awesome 20D bla bla bla.... Better equipment, I am the first to admit, also did not make me a photographer, just another man with a more expensive camera enjoying his relatively limited creative side.
09/16/2010 03:22:53 PM · #17
I would say I take much better pictures since I joined DPC, and stopped shooting Auto, so roughly 4 years now. And having a *real* photographer for a bf hasn't hurt much, either! He knows how and when to push me and makes me learn my camera (once he stops snickering at the size of the manual ;-). So now I know what mirror lockup is and how to use it, zoomblur, painting with LEDs, how to shoot studio stuff (though that is still my weakest area).

But I won't call myself a real photographer til I've made some sales on Alamy. Getting there, as I got accepted in the first place. And I got my first zoom recently!
09/16/2010 03:27:47 PM · #18
The first time you pick up a camera and take a photo you are a photographer, same as when you first ride a bike you are a cyclist. However, whether you are a good photographer or not is a different question.

I have been using cameras for the past 40+ years and still don't rate myself as a photographer of any note. I have thousands of photos, some good, some bad, but they are all taken by me, with a camera, so I consider myself a photographer.
09/16/2010 03:56:16 PM · #19
when i stopped beating my wife.
01/20/2011 12:31:18 PM · #20
My girlfriend back in the day pushed me saying I needed to pick a career, so i was saying I was going with photography. Then I deployed and she broke up with me, so I decided I would buckle down and learn photography even more just so I can have something to do. Thats when I joined dpc. I put all my time into learning the craft.
01/20/2011 12:34:57 PM · #21
Still working on it....probably always will
01/20/2011 12:51:50 PM · #22
Probably around 3 years ago. But I wouldn't admit to it till just recently ;-)
If I'm good photographer or not is in the eye of the beholder.
01/20/2011 01:02:24 PM · #23
September of 1971, while a sophomore at Iowa State University, I purchased a Canon Canonet QL19.
01/20/2011 01:02:58 PM · #24
When I started taking photographs for their aesthetic, rather than just to record an event...I'd say I started that when I was 12 or 13.
01/21/2011 01:57:48 AM · #25
I have digital camera. some times I use that camera and capture the picture.
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Camron Sareja
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