Pro or non-pro?

June 6th, 2015, 10am

Those distinctions never really made sense to me. I’m self taught. My stuff is being distributed by an agency. I have made money from photography. How much? Not even a sizable portion of my overall income. I feel all this has nothing to do with being or not being a photographer. What defines me as a photographer is something entirely different. I can’t get my head around the concept that in order to call yourself a photographer you have to a) schlepp tons of insanely expensive or at least impressively large gear around and b) make shitloads of money shooting for Vogue. What I do know - and I initially got this advice from a very seasoned pro - is that it takes quite some time to learn what an image is. Years, even decades. Pictures are tricky. Photography is shock full of surprises - nice and nasty ones. In this respect, I’m pretty much a beginner, although I’ve been active since 2003. Having made a little progress over those twelve years and practicing every day is what really makes me a photographer. Not my camera and not the amount of money I earn. It’s passion, dedication and developing an eye for that strangely oscillating, meandering boundary between pictures and non-pictures. And of course a million of details which come with the process.

The spying glass | Aerosol is here to stay| The fact of having a body

The picture up there was taken at the Romano-Germanic Museum, which can be recommended.

David Wade, Philippe, Peter, Christine and 7 others said thanks.

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Marcus Hammerschmitt

Writer, journalist and photographer. Eighteen books so far, on paper and on screen. My biography is boring, my life is not.

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