Peter Phun wrote the original 21 signs that you’ve crossed the threshold from pretender to contender in 2009. I read it yesterday and found it quite outdated. So i decided to re-write it and update it to what i feel the current condition is.
In a day and age when anyone with any sort of camera and a social network account can call themselves a photographer, it can be a little difficult to figure out when you’ve separated yourself from the pack to become a real photographer.
Therefore, here are the New 21 clues that you’ve crossed the threshold from pretender to contender:
1. Your friends have begun to ask you which camera to buy so that they can take better pictures at social gatherings.
2. You don’t run out of battery power because you have a solar charger.
3. You upgrade your camera to shoot better pictures of your kids.
4. The salesman at your favorite camera store asks you whats new in the market.
5. You correct people when they cannot get the word ‘bokeh’ to describe what they are talking about.
6. A gorgeous woman with a digital SLR brushes by you — and you take only a fraction of a second to notice her camera and what kind of lens she has. After that your eyes focus on her bum.
7. You concentrate on the lighting instead of the subjects.
8. You abuse folks in the back row at the concert shooting with an iPhone or a point-and-shoot when they ask you to get out of their lens’s field of view..
9. You don’t go to a photo lab anymore.
10. Your in-law who’s a pro asks you for new tips each time you meet.
11. Other photographers follow you to see where you’re shooting from. Shoot from the same spot, review the picture on the LCD, shake their heads in disapproval, but do not delete the picture.
12. Other photographers treat you as though you are a snob when they see you at camera stores.
13. Your photography workflow is not complete unless the picture ends up on some social networking site.
14. More and more women want to be your friend either because you have a big camera or they want to buy a big camera.
15. You stop asking what aperture and shutter speed was used to take a picture. Instead, you look for lens distortions in a picture.
16. You critically analyse other peoples photo vest – making a mental note of what equipment you can put in which pocket.
17. You have stopped taking group portraits and now focus only on individual side-lit portraits.
18. You are ashamed to carry/use a point-and-shoot even on family outings.
19. You can distinguish a 500mm f/4 from a 400mm f/2.8 and a 600mm f/4 from a mile away.
20. Your spouse stops asking you to teach her/him photography.
21. Right now you are thinking which camera or lens to buy next.
Are there any other clues that you might want to add? The list can always be extended to include your inputs. Tell me, use the comments system below.