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When you read articles on photography sites like this one, by and large, those articles tell you what you should be doing.
But there's value in understanding what not to do as well...
Darren Miles offers up some insights into that very topic in his video above.
As an experienced pro in wedding photography, portraiture, family photography, and real estate photography, he knows what he's talking about.
For his list of five things successful photographers don't do, check out the video or read below for a blow-by-blow of each point Darren makes.
Don't Put Just Any Image on Your Website
These days, many of your clients - perhaps most of them - will get the first view of your photography when they visit your website.
That being the case, the photos you put on your website need to be spectacular.
And that's not just the first photo or the first handful of photos, either.
Every single image you have on your website needs to be technically sound, show your personal aesthetic, be composed perfectly...you get the point.
You only get one chance at a good first impression, so curate your website images and be sure you're only putting forward your very best work.
Editor's Tip: The first step in having a great photography website is in the domain name you choose. With a .pics or .photo domain from Uniregistry, you can set yourself up for success with a photography-specific domain that shows just how professional you are. Check out .pics and .photo domain names for your website today.
Don't Make Your Clients Wait Forever for Their Images
Since photography is a service industry, you need to not only be a great photographer, but a great businessperson as well.
And part of that is getting images and photography products to your clients in a timely fashion.
Obviously the timeline for each job might vary - you can process and print images from an hour-long family portrait session much quicker than you can from a wedding.
But either way, you need to establish a timeline with your client regarding when they can expect their images, and stick to that timeline so they get what they pay for sooner rather than later.
Don't Ask "What Were Your Settings?"
In photography, the camera settings you use are dependent upon the situation.
That is, there isn't one magic combination of settings that will get you a well-exposed image every single time.
Yet, new photographers often ask more experienced photographers, "What were your settings for that photo?"
Though there's something to be said for trying to learn from more experienced photographers, this question won't get you anywhere.
The best approach is to practice - a lot - and dial in settings that are appropriate to each different situation you encounter.
Don't Spend a Lot of Time Trying to Impress Other Photographers
Other photographers don't pay your bills, your clients do.
So, if you're going to spend time and energy trying to impress anyone, make it your clients!
It's nice to have some street cred with other photographers, and it's a good ego boost to have others in your profession look to you as a dynamite photographer.
But in the end, as long as your clients are happy with the images you take, that's what truly matters.
Don't Obsess Over Gear
Gear Acquisition Syndrome - GAS - is a very real thing for many photographers.
They mistakenly believe that if they get an expensive camera with a bunch of expensive lenses that they'll suddenly be a better photographer.
And though I fully admit that a Nikon D850 is a better photography tool than a smartphone, in the end, they're both just tools photographers use to get a job done.
In reality, the best gear you have is you! Your creative eye, your understanding of composition and lighting, and your understanding of how to use the gear you have is what's really important.
As Darren notes in the video, a good exercise is to go to a photography website like Flickr and find groups centered around a specific camera or lens that you own.
Then have a look at the images in those groups to see what's possible and get inspired to use the gear you already have.
It's a great way to stop lusting after new gear and focus instead on maximizing your ability to use the photography tools you already have to create awesome photos.