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Thread: PROFESSIONAL status level

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    PROFESSIONAL status level

    I'm wondering if AP might think about having a ' professional' photography level , above advanced, for those who make a living from photography.

    And when comps are on , there is a professional level too. Also critiquing can come from another level too.

    Criteria would be for some one who is an actual pro though, not advanced togs who sell too.


    Thoughts?



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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    We have thought about this. But at present it would probably only have a couple of dozen members (max) and we do not think that would leave much in the way of competition, and those few members who are on the higher level would end up with a LOT of winners badges.

    If we moved say 24 people into this new level and only 5-6 entered a comp, it really is not much of a competition.

    Most camera clubs that have levels of membership, tend to have 3 levels.
    Last edited by ricktas; 01-02-2013 at 4:26pm.
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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Kerrie, not "above" necessarily, but "beside". Anyway, it doesn't matter in view of the above.
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    I'd also wonder about how you define a professional.
    If it's your sole income is that less of a professional than someone that makes most of their income from it?
    Is it someone with a qualification, because that definitely doesn't guarantee you're a great photographer. There are exceptional professionals out there who've never done any "qualifications", and there are "qualified" photographers out there that make a living out of it, but aren't much better than some intermediate tog's.

    Mind you, I do see where you are coming from. It would feel a little intimidating being an "advanced" member and going up against "professionals" in comps and the like, so I do see why it would be suggested. I just think that Rick is probably right about it being a very small group in the long run.
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    Account Closed Wayne's Avatar
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    I agree with Ezookiel, just because you derive all of your income from photography and hence professional, doesn't mean you are good at it. Being a professional photographer (one that can feed themselves and/or a family) I think is as much being a good business person as a creator of images. there are plenty of professional photographers who produce very mediocre images.

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    adjective
    1. following an occupation as a means of livelihood or for gain: a professional builder.
    2. of, pertaining to, or connected with a profession: professional studies.
    3. appropriate to a profession: professional objectivity.
    4. engaged in one of the learned professions: A lawyer is a professional person.
    5. following as a business an occupation ordinarily engaged in as a pastime: a professional golfer.
    6. making a business or constant practice of something not properly to be regarded as a business: “A salesman,” he said, “is a professional optimist.”
    7. undertaken or engaged in as a means of livelihood or for gain: professional baseball.
    8. of or for a professional person or his or her place of business or work: a professional apartment; professional equipment.
    9. done by a professional; expert: professional car repairs.

    Noun
    10. a person who belongs to one of the professions, especially one of the learned professions.
    11. a person who earns a living in a sport or other occupation frequently engaged in by amateurs: a golf professional.
    12. an expert player, as of golf or tennis, serving as a teacher, consultant, performer, or contestant; pro.
    13. a person who is expert at his or her work: You can tell by her comments that this editor is a real professional.

    So which definition/usage are we talking about?
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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Who decides who is a Pro? There are probably pro's on AP that have kept their work statuses away from their posts etc, and we would have no idea. So they would probably stay as advanced. I am not sure how we monitor this and decide who is a pro and who isn't.

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    How many "pros" bother about AP comps?
    Are "Pros" better photgs, or just better business people?
    I've seen entries in beginner comps that I think are better than the entries in the advance comps!
    How long can you be classed as a beginner Kerrie?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ricktas View Post
    Who decides who is a Pro? There are probably pro's on AP that have kept their work statuses away from their posts etc, and we would have no idea. So they would probably stay as advanced. I am not sure how we monitor this and decide who is a pro and who isn't.
    In my view, there isn't a need to define who is a professional photographer and who is not.

    I've seen great images captured by amateurs, and I've seen extremely ordinary or bad images captured by so-called professionals.

    The experience and quality of each person's visual and written contributions to this forum hold far more value than an arbitrary badge one chooses to place after his/her name.

    That's not to say that amateurs never know what they're talking about, or that professionals always know what they're talking about.

    I evaluate someone's photographic worth, in my eyes, by their words and their images, not their status.

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    Who let the rabble in? Lance B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xenedis View Post
    I evaluate someone's photographic worth, in my eyes, by their words and their images, not their status.
    Hear, hear.

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    Funny That..... I only PM'ed Rick about this last week. And I agree there should not be a level set for "Professional".
    But I do see a need to split the intermediate level for members.

    Looking at this weeks, and the two previous weeks competitions entries.
    Beginner Intermediate Advanced
    4, 7, 2.
    11, 27, 14.
    11, 23, 9.

    There is always a larger group of intermediate. So it needs to be levelled out a bit.

    EDIT.....

    Kerrie... Join Date: Dec 2011...... Posts: 861.... Level: Beginner?
    Last edited by geoffsta; 02-02-2013 at 9:52pm.
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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    Reckon I know stuff all about PP (a beginner), but know about the technicalities of capturing a lot of images (advanced). Can I do it well? Intermediate.
    Quote Originally Posted by geoffsta View Post
    .....
    Looking at this weeks, and the two previous weeks competitions entries.
    Beginner Intermediate Advanced
    4, 7, 2.
    11, 27, 14.
    11, 23, 9.

    There is always a larger group of intermediate. So it needs to be levelled out a bit.
    These were all themed comps.. The general comps don't seem to have such a large difference in numbers entered, though there is still a difference.
    Also this may reflect the real world.

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    The statistical distribution of Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced follows the normal curve, i.e most in the middle

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    Can't use the Normal distribution as a measure because the data is integer values, the Normal or Gaussian distribution is analogue, ie., for real numbers.

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    Based on all the above.

    1. Adding a new level above advanced is not required.
    2. We upgrade members when they win comps, and/or show significant improvement in their photography, not just based on date joined or post count.

    When upgrading someone we review their photos (both competition and otherwise) and their comments on AP. If someone joins as a beginner and posts they have been taking photos for 3 years, and have won a few local competitions (or similar statements), we upgrade them straight away. Members can upgrade themselves,.

    Members are quite welcome to send a Personal Message to myself or a mod if they notice someone they feel should be upgraded, giving the reasons why and preferably links to any comment/photo that made them think the member needed upgrading. The mods and I upgrade members continuously. Generally we upgrade at least 15 members a month.

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    I guess it comes down to considering do " pros" having better access to better photo opportunities sometimes?

    example : they may have a studio, props, models, locations galore, time, and top quality pp stuff, best cameras, or even photos just becasue its what they do. Why? It's the tools of their trade. = pro.

    I agree some pros take worse photos than others, despite having all of the above, but those without said advantages are they on the back foot even if they take the best shots, as its not all about technique is it. So many elements make for a good photo and the wow factor can be artificially created for those with the means, or wow opportunities galore due to simply location?

    I agree " next to advanced" would have phrased better, as some advanced here could be mistaken for pros, due to quality. I wasn't posting to take away from them at all...but u know that

    Maybe considering excluding pros may be a different approach? Oh dear...no, bad idea I'm sure.

    My beginner status is fine as is btw.

    Thanks for all the replies. Good to get the feedback.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ricktas View Post
    2. We upgrade members when they win comps, and/or show significant improvement in their photography, not just based on date joined or post count.
    We have also been known to upgrade members when they indicate some success with their photography outside of AP i.e. they sell their work, exhibit their work, are paid for their work, etc. We treat that as "they win comps" but the comps are the ones that really count ... in the real world of business or art ... and are voted on by the wider community.

    The other reason for the levels is to ensure that new members with little experience are encouraged (Beginner), average members are given a fair chance to excel (Intermediate) and above average members are challenged by strong competition (Advanced).

    On the subject of normal distributions and populations, the population of AP members is normally distributed just like any other so using the bell curve to approximate the distribution is statistically legitimate IMHO.
    Last edited by WhoDo; 03-02-2013 at 11:20am.
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    When I read this post I initially thought "Hey! That's a good idea!" and then when I read the replies, I thought "Hey, that makes sense" (as for the reasons why this isn't a good idea). I agree that Intermediate is a very broad group too. Me, personally, I am listed as intermediate. I have never won a competition and I have only made the top 4/5 about 3 times. I was upgraded as the mods saw an improvement in my work, which was a pleasant surprise. I'm not sure I am ever going to win a competition, but I'll keep plugging away - One day I might be lucky. My only real input is one thing they do in music eisteddfods - They often have a separate category for people who have never won first place in a standard section. Now, while this is all well and good in classical music and is sort of a nice idea for photography, I'm not sure it would work here. I guess it would be a little ridiculous to run 6 concurrent weekly sections as well as a monthly section, however, if you want to do this, I won't complain
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lance B View Post
    Hear, hear.
    ++ 1

    Nicely put Xenedis.
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    Something to keep in mind is that the levels here are for AP competitions, they don't necessarily relate to a members true photographic skill level (and I don't even know how you would measure that). In my opinion the best "leveller" for comps here is the frequent application of themed / genre-specific conditions.


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