by Angela Adams Published 01/04/2017
Most of us are aware of the big names in photography, but what about the jobbing photographer, those working hard at their craft to earn an income. Has the industry become devalued in the digital era – with all camera owners deemed photographers by the general public – are full-time professional photographers an endangered species? Or, can they still be found working diligently in our cities, towns and villages – not only providing their clients with great photographs, but earning a good living too? With this in mind I set out to discover a little more from those at grassroots level, working hard to keep our industry alive, promoting good practice and providing a professional product.
I met Karen a few years ago at the Convention, the first held at the London Hilton Metropole. During one lunchtime service, tables in the Edg bar and lounge were scarce, so we shared a table and got chatting. To my surprise Karen remembered our chat and approached me at the after-awards party at this year's Convention, again we got chatting. Soon after, she agreed to share her photographic journey with members, via this column.
Hello, I'm Karen Bennett. I’m a twin, wife, mother of two grown-up daughters and owner of an elderly and much-loved cat called Muckles and a very special dog named Bugsy. We live in a small Berkshire village surrounded by farms and countryside; although a rural setting, we're within easy access of the A4 between Newbury and Reading. We have a wide catchment area for clients, but it's also one densely populated with photographers. I'm always on the lookout for new ideas, so it’s tempting to spend time studying the competition. However, I've found this to be a pointless pursuit. Although in awe of their work, I’ve learned it’s important to cherish my own individual style, so focused on finding and valuing my own personal and professional sense of identity. In doing so, I've managed to carve a niche within the competitive market in which I work.
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