Top 10 Qualities of an Experienced Photographer You Should Look for

Photography is without a doubt a very powerful form of artistic expression. Although Instagram can make us all feel like pros, pictures of food and posted selfies do not even come close to professional photographers’ portfolio.

Photo by Jesus Ochando
Photo by Jesus Ochando

So today, let’s talk specifics and study top qualities which differentiate experienced photographers from the amateur crowd.

The importance of professional presentation

In such a creative profession, excellent presentation can make the difference between getting the commission or not. Experienced photographers understand how important it is to showcase high-end products and versatile services with style. They know that engaging website, neat blog, and professionally crafted portfolio are good for the business, because potential clients have a chance to get to know the artist before they make the first contact.

Seizing the opportunity

Experienced professionals are doing what it takes to deliver quality product to the client, even at the cost of getting out of their comfort zone. The label of professional entails maximum confidence. No matter what, a self-conscious pro will keep his eyes on the prize and execute high-class photography.

Travelling Spree

Have you ever wondered why professional photography blogs, Facebook profiles and websites are filled with some of the most picturesque views from all over the world? Well, the answer is pretty simple. Inner curiosity to explore new things means that photographers are always ready to go on the adventure of a lifetime. Experienced pros catch every opportunity to travel as often as they possibly can.

Photo by David Murray
Photo by David Murray

Travelling to different – sometimes exotic, other times dangerous – places, like deep forests of the Amazon jungle, or freezing-cold mountainous Tibet, strengthens one’s character. It is the unstoppable wanderlust that pushes many photographers to go beyond their cognitive limits. People who are involved in digital photography business are aware that in order to work out excellent photography skills, one needs to have loads of physical and mental strength.


You can recognize great professionals by the fact that they always know someone, who knows someone, who knows someone else. Having a well-established network of professional connections is something you should expect from experienced pros. They understand that positive word of mouth is the most powerful and at the same time the most efficient form of advertising, therefore they do their best to join reputable organizations and associations.

Photo by Andrey Nastasenko
Photo by Andrey Nastasenko

It takes time to build a sustainable community of trusted printers, florists, make-up artists, wedding planners, and even wedding venues’ managers ready to work together. Being a part of an inspiring community is a beneficial experience for everyone involved. Together, photographers and artists review their work and give themselves constructive criticism. A great photographer understands the need for strong professional bonds and cares for cultivating friendly relations.

Focus on hyper-attention

The best shots are not the ones that show extraordinary subjects. To the contrary – the photographs that make the most powerful impressions often show ordinary things. An experienced photographer knows how to notice and bring out the beauty in everyday objects. He realizes that proper lightning, right angle, good background, and distinctive face expressions are essential components of a memorable shot. Attention to detail is therefore one of top traits you should look for.

Distinctive signs of creative vision

Apart from having a good eye for detail, perfect timing and quick reflex prove essential as well. Everyone who has lost an ideal setup or arrangement knows what we are talking about.

Photo by Pierre Bomfim
Photo by Pierre Bomfim

An experienced photographer should at the same time be an amazing storyteller, who knows how to build the entire tale around the photos taken in the right place at the right time.

The issue of top-notch equipment

School and licence do not make professional photographers. They just give and guarantee technical background, necessary to become one. It is what happens after school that really matters. Experienced photographers take the knowledge and put it to good use in order to take creative control over their equipment. And, most importantly, they acknowledge the fact that professional cameras have more settings than just the Auto Mode.

One-man show

Photographers are masters of their own time, therefore they need to possess essential time-management skills.

Photo by Anbu Jawahar
Photo by Anbu Jawahar

After all, they are responsible for marketing, invoicing, bookkeeping, and many others aspects of running a successful business and maintaining consistent customer service.

Real people

Shooting in extreme circumstances can be pretty stressful, therefore a great photographer needs to know how to take the pressure off conflicted models or demanding newlyweds. Sometimes it takes hours to get all the elements of a photo together, so patience is another necessary trait.

Photo by Jesus Ochando
Photo by Jesus Ochando

Additionally, make sure that the photographer is sensitive and respectful, not only to the clients, but also to the subjects he photographs. He should be communicative, easy-going, open-minded and, most of all, dependable to produce maximum results.

The science of ambition

Nothing can be accomplished without a healthy dose of ambition. It fuels perseverance and desire to become an expert in the field, and pushes to act as an inspiration to other people. Highly competitive world of professional digital photography revolves around strength and determination.

Photo by Ariel Novak
Photo by Ariel Novak

A talented individual needs to make huge effort to stay on top of the competition. It’s not easy and requires the ability to rise from defeat with head held high. However ambitious the photographer is, he also needs to be humble and know how to tame his artistic pride to adjust to client’s needs.

It is fairly easy to call yourself a photographer, but being recognized as a professional requires much more work. We have just given you top traits to look for in an experienced photographer and we hope our list will help you find the person you are looking for.

By Blogger

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  1. While I agree with many of your points, I strongly disagree with your traveling spree guideline. Have you considered that some artistic photographers may not be able to afford to travel to exotic locales, or perhaps they are handicapped in some way which precludes them from such travels? A person who can take the ordinary (a street in their own city) and make it extra-ordinary in a photo provides a much better indication of artistic capabilities in a professional photographer than someone who travels. Not that traveling is bad, it is merely not a prerequisite for finding a great professional photographer.

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