Sunday, May 6, 2012

Oh, what fun photographers have...

photographer photo

People think that being a photographer is fun. Today, there's a photographer on every corner snapping away with their iphones and their point and shoots. They have smiles on their faces; they are having fun. But being a professional photographer in no fun, as evidenced by this photo I took while on assignment recently of another photographer working her bu...I mean 'lens' off in the hot sun.

You see, photographers have to work when it's hot, cold, rainy, foggy; in sleet and in snow, and in hurricanes and tornadoes. And my favorite, the worst lighting conditions that Mother Nature and PR people can dream up, not counting professional political PR people; they are about the only ones who think about the lighting photographers have to work with - they want their candidates to be shown in the best possible light, so the podiums are always well lit if indoors (and with no additions around the podium to distract), and if outdoors, arranged so that photographers do not have to shoot into the sun.

I love professional  political PR people! There has to be a second job somewhere in teaching people how to prepare for photographers. I could write a book!

Photographers also have to make editors happy and their editors happy, and of course, there are deadlines. Always deadlines. 

I am happy to say that in my retirement I no longer have to carry towels and umbrellas or hard hats and reflective vest or ladders and work-boots, or even my entire arsenal when I shoot. In fact, if it's raining I can stay home and file photos while other photographers are out working. Of course, I still like to photograph in snow and hurricanes and floods, but only if I feel like it. 

So, though everyone wants to be a photographer, take my word for it, there is no glamor in it. The pay is low, the gratitude is zero, and you always look and feel like a pack-mule. But it's who we are. We were born that way. Personally, I would rather have been born the princess of some obscure mountain-dotted European country. Maybe then I could have afforded a couple of $22,000 (each) Leicas (no, that doesn't include the lens).

1 comment:

Jackie said...

I had never thought of all the things that photographers have to go through and endure. What an enlightening post, Patty!
And concerning your wish list (Leicas)...I am going to have to Google that. Sounds like the best of the BEST! I hope that your camera dreams all come true. You are a great photographer!