21 June 2013

Life of Art SitRep #176 Pro, yo

This week, a close friend of my Mom's who I've known since I got my first library card in elementary school reached out to me to see if I'd take some photographs for her. She told me what she could afford, I asked a lot of questions, and we set up the shoot which I completed yesterday.

We were chatting as I packed up my gear and I said, "Thanks again for thinking of me."

"You're the only professional photographer I know."

You could interpret that as she didn't have any other options, but what I heard was the absolutely matter-of-fact way she called me a professional photographer. Felt good I must admit.

Naturally, I heard the reverse of that sentiment less than an hour later.

"You didn't charge her for that, did you?" Mom asked accusatorily.

"She offered. I did a job for her. She paid me what we agreed."

I didn't try to explain that our friend had initially contacted me with an offer of money or that one could get paid and still be doing someone a favor. Also, people pay for what they value and photography is a thing some people value. (I've heard so many instructors say this on creative LIVE, but I really saw the truth of it this week.)

Later I was talking to my Dad. He'd been present for the previous exchange, but now Mom was elsewhere. I made some snarky remark that referenced that conversation and he said, "Yeah, I could tell you didn't appreciate her comment."

"No. It's not like someone could appreciate my skill and expertise and be willing to pay for it. Apparently I didn't make it from the right people though."

"And she'd be the first to criticize you for not making enough."

"Yup," I said. "There's no way to win."

"Just let it go," Dad said, gently enough it didn't irritate me.

"I know." I started to head for the door.

"You've got it right though, you can't win."

My hope is that by writing, I will get it out of my system so I can focus on the person who treated me and my work with respect instead. Sigh.

During the week I also made new stickers for Green, White, Red Diamond Pattern; Light Blue and Dark Blue Rectangles, Light Blue and White Gingham Pattern, Navy and Grey Rectangles, Navy and White Diamond Pattern, Navy and White Gingham Pattern, and Navy and White Zigzag.

Also Rocklawn Arts blogged Purple and White Diamond Pattern.

I do actually feel a bit better now. Time to edit some photographs.

3 years ago on TTaT: Goddamn motherfrakking ants


  1. I'm a big fan of paying for things. Especially with the wedding planning I have some favors I am going to ask friends but I am also going to say I can pay this much is that reasonable because I am asking for them to do some work and unless they offered I would never think of asking without compensation of some kind.

    So good for you for knowing your work has value and you should be compensated for it.

    1. Thanks, Sarah. I, for one, appreciate your take on paying for things very much! I think that's a very respectful approach to take with your wedding planning.