Top 6 Things a Photographer Hates to Hear

I am not a photographer. But I have been working for 6 years as “marketing intelligence chick” for a known photography brand and have dealt a lot of time with photographers. What I learned from them? What NOT to say to a photographer. Here’s a top 6 things a photographer hates hearing. For some photographers, there may be more, but here are the ones that really feel like a slap in each of their faces and you might not even realize it. So, if you want to be careful not to offend your photographer friends, you better keep this list in mind.

Top 1 – Great shot! Your gear must be expensive

One of the most painful face-slaps, do you know how this comment sounds like to the photographer? “Without your great gear, because you have no talent and experience, your shot will turn out to be boring and ordinary. So it must be just the gear.” Ouch. Enough said.

Top 2 – Anyone can do photography, how hard can it be?

At the end of the day, having a camera doesn’t make you a photographer, just like driving a car doesn’t automatically make you a racecar driver.

Top 3 – My friend has a DSLR, I’ll get him/her for my wedding

And all the wedding photographers can say, “Sure, go ahead and see how your pictures will turn out!” Wedding photographers have the knowledge and expertise that your friend may not have because of the lack of experience to shooting wedding events. You won’t get to re-live this event, so hire a professional.

Top 4 – My phone camera has more mega pixels than your camera

Okay, so some camera phones have amazing features of having X-number of mega pixels. At the end of the day, the reason why photographers still buy DSLRs – and not phone cameras – is that a phone camera cannot perform the features as a DSLR can, in the same way that a DSLR cannot do things which a smartphone can.

Top 5 – Why don’t you just Photoshop it?

How do the photographers hear this? “You don’t need to use your expertise,” “Forget your style” or for some, “Never mind work ethics.” Post-processing is the photographer’s prerogative.

Top 6 – Can you give me a free photo shoot? It’ll help your portfolio.

Okay, so this may not sound so bad to you. But what do the photographers hear? “I don’t think your services are worth that much, or anything at all.” Will you go to a five-star hotel saying, “Can I just pay you €10 for a room, or better yet, can I stay here for free?”


Arianna Ardia-Wenink
Arianna studied Literature and Arts at the University of Amsterdam, where she specialised a.o. in "museology" and "organisation & marketing of blockbuster exhibitions". After working for 6 years as market researcher & marketing analyst at, now she focuses her photography love and enthusiasm on the Haarlem Photo Club.

Leave your comment