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Tips and Advice on Photography and Videography by a Professional

Updated on April 1, 2017
Nathanville profile image

As an amateur photographer I take a lot of inspiration, and learn new skills, from my son who is a qualified professional photographer.

A Day in the Life of Multimedia Productions

Proper Job Productions Professional Photographer
Proper Job Productions Professional Photographer
BetterPhoto Basics: The Absolute Beginner's Guide to Taking Photos Like a Pro
BetterPhoto Basics: The Absolute Beginner's Guide to Taking Photos Like a Pro

A great book on the basics of photography for beginners; a very popular book because the author doesn’t bore the beginner with pages of techniques or explanations, instead he keeps his descriptions short and to the point so its packed with tips and inspiration that is relevant for the beginner wishing to learn the best ways to take great photos with modern digital cameras.

 

Fancy Becoming a Budding or Professional Photographer

And Getting Involved With Professional Film Production


That's exactly what my son did when he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree with Honours in 'Broadcast Media' from Bath Spa University, England.

His friend also graduated from university and together they formed their own small Bristol based film making company.

The work's interesting and worthy to share in the event that it inspires and encourages others in becoming budding photographers who may wish to give it a go either as a keen amateur or a semi-professional; and if you're really keen perhaps make a go at becoming professional.

The showcases in this article includes photographic projects such as 'Beamish' and 'Bristol', an educational selection of old and antique cameras (some dating back to the turn of the 20th century) and photos of events such as 'Pride Week'.

Professional Photography and Film Making Videos in this article are all the work of my son and his company.

Showreel 2011

Showreel of Proper Job Productions; mentor and colour grader for the SPA Life TV productions showcased on this lens.

Photography 101 for Beginners: Learn Digital Photography Basics on How to Use Your DSLR Camera – An Introduction to Photography
Photography 101 for Beginners: Learn Digital Photography Basics on How to Use Your DSLR Camera – An Introduction to Photography

A Kindle Edition for learning the Basics of Digital Photography and how to best use your DSLR camera to put you onto the road to becoming a great photographer.

 

Can You Make Money From Photography?

Yes But its Hard Graft and it Will Take Time to Establish Yourself

Making money from photography isn’t easy and will take time but can very rewarding. These days the business is very competitive and to establish yourself as a professional or semi-professional photographer first and for most you need the aptitude, commitment and sheer determination.

You also need to make a name for yourself, develop your own style, build up contacts, and have the occasional lucky break. It’s not a 9 to 5 job, you’ll need to work all hours, often unsocial hours; and these days spend just as much in post-production as in taking the photos in the first place.

No Job Should Be Too Small

In the beginning no job is too small, you’ll need to be prepared to take on any job, even if it’s not profitable, in order to build up your reputation and portfolio. And you never know where a job may take you, it might be that photo you take of your friends pet cat (done free as a favour) that gives you your lucky break e.g. their friend who runs a cattery business might see your photo and on the strength of it commissions you to take regular photos for their publicity magazine. As if life was that easy, but the point is you never know where or when these lucky breaks may come; the important thing is when an opportunity opens up, seize the moment and don’t miss your chance because that might be your golden rainbow to a bright and prosperous future; a once in a lifetime opportunity.

You Need More Than Just Luck

Besides talent, commitment, getting yourself known and a few lucky breaks here and there you’ll also need good equipment, and plenty of it; not just professional cameras and lenses and all the associated lighting equipment and filters but also these days a good multimedia PC with lots of storage space, proper editing software and a good Internet connection. Most professional photographers these days will tend to use an IMac Pro with Adobe Photoshop rather than struggling with second rate software on a medico PC. As I am writing this for my son I would like to add that the same standard of work can be done on a PC just as easily, but only if you invest in a proper multimedia PC which with proper investment is just as expensive as an iMac Pro. I mention this because some (like me) can’t adapt to an iMac so for people like us there are alternatives, but many people do use and love their iMacs and they in turn would be uncomfortable in using a PC; so the choice is yours.

Finding Your Niche

Unless you are an established photographer specialising in just one or two areas, such as wedding photographer or wildlife and nature photographer your work as a photographer can be wide ranging and varied, at least initially until you find your niche.

Below is a showcase of project my son worked on his first year as a professional, including voluntary work for Spa Life TV; which may help to give you a taste of the broad spectrum of projects a modern photographer can get involved with when starting out in the photographic world.

One of his recent projects gaining interest and showing promise is pet photography, although in working with animals you do need lots of patience and a good eye for opportunity shots, as animals are notorious in not co-operating.

Cat looking in grass
Cat looking in grass

Want To See More

View Proper Job Productions YouTube Channel or browse their website for more information.

Pet Photography

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Dippy Christmas TreeDippy and GreeboDippy and Greebo playingDippy and Greebo Christmas StepsDippy and Greebo Snow WalkDippy SleepsDippy Snow WalkGreebo
Dippy Christmas Tree
Dippy Christmas Tree
Dippy and Greebo
Dippy and Greebo
Dippy and Greebo playing
Dippy and Greebo playing
Dippy and Greebo Christmas Steps
Dippy and Greebo Christmas Steps
Dippy and Greebo Snow Walk
Dippy and Greebo Snow Walk
Dippy Sleeps
Dippy Sleeps
Dippy Snow Walk
Dippy Snow Walk
Greebo
Greebo
Pet Photography For Fun: Let's Have Fun Photographing Dogs, Cats, Horses, Alpacas, Llamas and Everything Else!
Pet Photography For Fun: Let's Have Fun Photographing Dogs, Cats, Horses, Alpacas, Llamas and Everything Else!

A great guide to get started with taking great pet photography for photographers of any skill level; the 19 chapters in this book covers pet photography from beginner to advanced allowing you to skip to the appropriate section according to your own personal skill level in photography. The approach taken in the book is to have fun with photography although I am sure it can be adapted to more serious poses if desired. The chapters include topics on equipment, resolution, focus, composition, backgrounds, exposure, editing, cropping, and depth of field, shutter speed, flash and planning your shoot.

 

Professional Film Making Presented By Proper Job Productions

The Fun of Film Making on a Shoestring

During its start-up phase, Proper Job Productions started with professionally producing music videos of local gigs and bands predominantly for the YouTube market, and making other small film productions on a ‘shoestring’ budget; raising money for equipment hire and actors pay as necessary from donations and contributions. And during that time, supplemented their income by providing a professional photography service for local events and working as a professional pet photographer.

Two film scripts they worked on:-

  • 'Wingmen', a local non-profit film project filmed in Bristol about the trials and tribulations of teenage life and the realities of going out on the pull; told from the perspectives of four characters.
  • The second film project was about the friendship struck up between a German and British soldier across enemy lines during Christmas of 1914.

Below is the promo raising money video clip for the production of a local non-profit film project; Wingmen.

Photo Gallery of Local Bristol Bands and Gigs Filmed By PJP

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Atlantic View vocalistEsteban vocalistEyes of Mars Moles vocalistHello Cadenza vocalistIllustrated Men melodica PlayerMean Poppa LeanRed8The Vinyl Project Saxophonist and TrumpeterThe Vinyl Project Trumpeter
Atlantic View vocalist
Atlantic View vocalist
Esteban vocalist
Esteban vocalist
Eyes of Mars Moles vocalist
Eyes of Mars Moles vocalist
Hello Cadenza vocalist
Hello Cadenza vocalist
Illustrated Men melodica Player
Illustrated Men melodica Player
Mean Poppa Lean
Mean Poppa Lean
Red8
Red8
The Vinyl Project Saxophonist and Trumpeter
The Vinyl Project Saxophonist and Trumpeter
The Vinyl Project Trumpeter
The Vinyl Project Trumpeter

Get Cape Wear Cape Fly

Local Bristol Band

Filmed in Bath by Proper Job Productions.

Photo Gallery of c1913 Transport

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Beamish Train StationBeamish Accessible BusDouble Decker TramGrey TramLNER 985 train at stationNewcastle Breweries VanNewcastle TramNorthern BusTram DriverVintage Car
Beamish Train Station
Beamish Train Station
Beamish Accessible Bus
Beamish Accessible Bus
Double Decker Tram
Double Decker Tram
Grey Tram
Grey Tram
LNER 985 train at station
LNER 985 train at station
Newcastle Breweries Van
Newcastle Breweries Van
Newcastle Tram
Newcastle Tram
Northern Bus
Northern Bus
Tram Driver
Tram Driver
Vintage Car
Vintage Car

Photo Gallery of Durham Light Infantry

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What Did You Do With Your Old Camera (Analogue to Digital)

Praktica
Praktica

When analogue cameras were replaced by digital camera did you throw away your old camera or did you keep it?

See results

Photo Gallery of Old and Vintage Cameras

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Box Carbine cameraCoronet Every DistanceEastman KodakEastman Kodak Autographic BrownieEastman Kodak BrownieEastman Kodak Vest PocketKodak Six-20 Brownie CNagel Vollenda 80Pocket KodakVest Pocket Kodak
Box Carbine camera
Box Carbine camera
Coronet Every Distance
Coronet Every Distance
Eastman Kodak
Eastman Kodak
Eastman Kodak Autographic Brownie
Eastman Kodak Autographic Brownie
Eastman Kodak Brownie
Eastman Kodak Brownie
Eastman Kodak Vest Pocket
Eastman Kodak Vest Pocket
Kodak Six-20 Brownie C
Kodak Six-20 Brownie C
Nagel Vollenda 80
Nagel Vollenda 80
Pocket Kodak
Pocket Kodak
Vest Pocket Kodak
Vest Pocket Kodak

Spa Life TV

Bath Spa SU Video Showcase

While Richard was still at university finishing his degree both he and Nathan provided their voluntary services to help Spa Life TV. Spa Life TV (by Bath Spa SU) is a media arm of Spa Life run by the students for the students at Bath Spa University. All productions are made to a professional standard and broadcast in HD across the Internet via their YouTube Channel. Spa Life also runs their own Radio Station and Magazine.

Freshers Finished - SPA LIFE TV

This video was filmed during fresher's week and features many of the societies organised by the students in Bath Spa University; Extras shown following the credits.

Digital SLR Photography All-in-One For Dummies
Digital SLR Photography All-in-One For Dummies

A popular book series covering the subject of Digital SLR photography; these books are ideal for any beginner or novice wishing to learn more of the basics and expand their knowledge skills to take great photos.

 

Your Views - Multimedia

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    • profile image

      ruaridhmcdonald 4 years ago

      Having only just bought a dSLR that also has video capability I am keen to explore this new field.

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      Robert Dsouza 7 weeks ago from India

      This is really a nice article but i want to suggest that if you want to learn photography get some skill by reading any book on photography . Follow this link - http://www.booksmela.com/art-craft-photography-boo...

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