Now there seems to be a fairly common misconception among the general public about what the title, “Photographer” means.
When one calls themselves a photographer, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they can (or want to) shoot everything under the sun. Don’t get me wrong. It can be fun to be open to shooting a variety of subject matter. But that’s not usually how it works.
Yes, it’s a great way to learn and meet people.
Usually though, most photographers have a specialty or “niche” market that they like to shoot. And us photographers for the most part, tend to stick to one area of specialty.
When us aspiring photographers were in school (if we were in school that is, if not then when we were learning on our own) we were told again and again that we needed to pick a specialty or niche area.
Why? Because you're guaranteed a high quality, well-crafted product.
Look at it this way, would you ever hire a doctor who specializes in foot surgery to do work on your hand? Or your brain? Would you want a music producer who’s experienced in rock music to produce your hip hop album? It only makes sense that this applies to all industries and areas of work and specialty.
What you may not know is that it may end up hurting you vs. saving time or costs. You see, us photographers spend a lot of time and energy and research and study and SO MANY GODDAMN RESHOOTS in school (or at home) perfecting our craft.
Each specialty has it's own knowledge and expertise that can take years to master. So when you ask for example, me, to photograph your children or your portraits, I will do the best that I can to give you great photo's. But they won't be as up to par as someone who shoots primarily shoots people.
This shouldn’t in anyway make you feel limited or question your abilities as a photographer or artist or creative. Instead, let it motivate you to want to become the absolute best of what it is you want to do. Don’t worry too much if you’re not sure yet. The best part of working in a creative field is that you get to continue to learn, explore, and grow. If you’re interested in learning how to shoot everything under the sun, then do it! Just be aware that people like to hire specialists.
So all in all, yes, stop asking a food photographer to take your portraits. You’ll thank me later.