What is an amateur?

Discussion in 'Australia Photography' started by ^Tems^, Dec 22, 2009.

  1. ^Tems^

    ^Tems^ Guest

    On the weekend I saw a guy win an amateur photo comp. He is employed
    full time by a photographer as a second shooter.

    Got me wondering what exactly is an amateur photographer? I would have
    thought it was someone that made no or little money from their hobby.
     
    ^Tems^, Dec 22, 2009
    #1
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  2. ^Tems^

    Robert Coe Guest

    : On the weekend I saw a guy win an amateur photo comp. He is employed
    : full time by a photographer as a second shooter.
    :
    : Got me wondering what exactly is an amateur photographer? I would have
    : thought it was someone that made no or little money from their hobby.

    If someone is employed full time as a photographer (even if he's just a
    lackey), I say he's a professional.

    But didn't we just have a lengthy debate on this topic in this or one of its
    sibling newsgroups? (OTOH, things are pretty slow in the NGs just now, so I
    suppose we might as well have at it again.) In that exchange, or one of its
    predecessors, someone opined that anyone whose day job ever has him taking
    pictures is a professional. But that would make me a professional, which is
    silly. So I guess the boundary between amateur and professional lies somewhere
    between those two extremes.

    Bob
     
    Robert Coe, Dec 22, 2009
    #2
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  3. ^Tems^

    Robert Coe Guest

    : : > On the weekend I saw a guy win an amateur photo comp. He is employed full
    : > time by a photographer as a second shooter.
    : >
    : > Got me wondering what exactly is an amateur photographer? I would have
    : > thought it was someone that made no or little money from their hobby.
    :
    : So Douggie could enter it then ;-)

    Where is Doug these days? One hopes (at least I think one does) that he isn't
    back in the hospital on account of his bad back.

    Bob
     
    Robert Coe, Dec 22, 2009
    #3
  4. ^Tems^

    tony cooper Guest

    I would say that an amateur is one who does not sell his work. If
    this guy is paid a salary by the photographer, then he's technically
    an amateur. Ethically, though, I think he's wrong to enter contests
    as an amateur.
     
    tony cooper, Dec 22, 2009
    #4
  5. ^Tems^

    JimKramer Guest

    In the US (and in most of the photo competitions I've ever bothered to read
    the rules) the IRS considers you a professional photographer if more than
    half of your yearly income is related to photography. I was, technically, a
    professional photographer one year; it was not a good year. :-(

    So I would assume that an amateur is someone whose photographic income is
    less than half of his or her total income.

    I would think that the winner didn't win by the rules, but I haven't read
    the rules. :)

    -Jim
     
    JimKramer, Dec 22, 2009
    #5
  6. ^Tems^

    Mr.T Guest

    In this case it simply depends on how the competition defined it.
    He would not be classified as an amateur by most people though.

    MrT.
     
    Mr.T, Dec 22, 2009
    #6
  7. ^Tems^

    Mr.T Guest

    Can't see it, you are still considered a professional if you are normally
    paid by someone who sells your work. Many, if not most professionals fall
    into that category. (I'm not talking just about photography here)

    However the competition rules define what THEY mean by amateur, or indeed if
    the word amateur was even used?

    MrT.
     
    Mr.T, Dec 22, 2009
    #7
  8. ^Tems^

    ^Tems^ Guest

    This is the comp
    http://www.internationalapertureawards.com/CategoryPlacings09.php

    A friend was another finalist and said the winner Naomi Frost is a well
    know photographer and a little search shows she has Naomi Frost Photography
    http://au.linkedin.com/in/naomifrost

    The comp doesn't explain what a pro is in the terms but I know Canon
    puts in it's terms a pro is one that earns $XXX from their photos.

    Seems she has been working as a tog for a while so I really can't see
    her as amateur.

    Second shooter - Naomi Frost

    A second shooter has the opportunity to capture moments
    behind-the-scenes, fleeting glances, alternate angles - all of the
    events that take place away from the main attraction. Naomi has been
    shooting weddings with Renee since 2008 and her images will complement
    those of Renee's.

    * Ask about Renee's optional Second shooter Naomi Frost - $550 includes
    up to 200 images.

    I can see why the other finalists are pissed off may as well let a first
    grade footy player go and play under 16's
     
    ^Tems^, Dec 23, 2009
    #8
  9. ^Tems^

    Paul Furman Guest

    Almost all the finalists are listed with a professional photography
    studio in their title and often include very elaborate staged scenes,
    costumes, stage makeup & professional lighting. The only thing that
    makes this competition amateur is that amateurs are allowed to pay $39
    to enter :)

    If you look at past submissions, it's pretty clear most of the winners
    are shown with pro titles.


    --
    Paul Furman
    www.edgehill.net
    www.baynatives.com

    all google groups messages filtered due to spam
     
    Paul Furman, Dec 23, 2009
    #9
  10. ^Tems^

    K W Hart Guest

    In my opinion, if he is employed "full-time" as a photographer
    ('second-shooter' or not), then he is disqualified from an amatuer photo
    competition. Employment in the capacity of photographer would imply a
    certain level of skill. On the other hand, maybe he isn't a very good
    'second-shooter'!
     
    K W Hart, Dec 24, 2009
    #10
  11. ^Tems^

    K W Hart Guest

    (Disclaimer: I am not a tax accountant, nor do I play one on TV)
    If you made a profit in three out of five years, you could deduct the losses
    you had in the other two years (or do I have that backwards?). So, let's say
    in year one, you buy all your equipment, clothing (with must be specific to
    the job- if you buy a tux with the words "Horn Man" across the back, it's
    deductable). sheet music, etc., and because of these expenses you have a 5K
    lose. If you made an effort to actually run a business- separate checking
    account, keeping records- it's deductable. In year two- since you made all
    these long term expenditures in year one, you show a profit. You can carry
    back the profit (or carry forward the loses), and again pay little or no
    taxes.
    Technically, you can show a negative income, as long as you show a positive
    income within a five year period.
    Then there is the issue of gross profits versus net profits, not likely to
    be applicable to a musician, but very applicable to me as a photographer who
    prints his own work in a conventional darkroom. If I make $10K selling
    portraits, and I spend $2K on film, paper, and chemicals, I've made a gross
    profit of $8K. If I spend an additional $13K on business insurance, phone,
    electricity, etc, I have a net loss of $5K, and no tax liability.
    (Please re=read the disclaimer)
     
    K W Hart, Dec 24, 2009
    #11
  12. ^Tems^

    Mr.T Guest

    Lot's of professionals are not very good, doesn't mean they are not
    professionals. That is not an absolute requirement of being a professional
    in any field.
    However it seems the competition was not just for amateurs, regardless of
    what some entrants expected.

    MrT.
     
    Mr.T, Dec 24, 2009
    #12
  13. ^Tems^

    Eric Miller Guest

    I think the five year requirement (in the US) is no more. However, you
    may not deduct the depreciation of equipment that is used outside of the
    business, i.e., if you also use the stuff for personal enjoyment, then
    its not deductible.

    However, I too am neither an accountant nor do I play one on TV and the
    above is quite likely incorrect.

    Eric Miller
    www.dyesscreek.com
     
    Eric Miller, Dec 28, 2009
    #13
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