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Going Pro: How to Make the Leap from Aspiring to Professional Photographer [Paperback]

Scott Bourne , Skip Cohen
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 18, 2011
You’ve got the gear, the training, and the technology. You’re ready to make the leap from aspiring to professional photographer. Now what?

With today’s affordable, high-quality cameras, Internet technology, and training, any weekend warrior can hang a shingle and open a photography business. But what then? While anyone can buy a professional quality camera, few have the skills to turn their dreams into a profitable business.

Going Pro is the essential guide to leaping successfully into any genre of professional photography. Industry powerhouses Scott Bourne and Skip Cohen share invaluable advice on defining your niche, putting together a portfolio, pricing and showing your work, marketing, positioning your brand, and, most important, building an online social media platform from the ground up. Throughout, advice and tips are offered from 25 of the biggest names in the industry, including Chase Jarvis, Vincent Laforet, Matthew Jordan Smith, Jeremy Cowart, Jules Bianchi, Bambi Cantrell, Tony Corbell, Kevin Kubota, Jerry Ghionis, and more.

Hundreds of thousands of photographers are already tuning in to the Going Pro podcast and blog (goingpro2011.com). Going Pro, the book, now joins the movement, giving amateurs everywhere the confidence and tools they need to make the leap into professional photography.

Frequently Bought Together

Going Pro: How to Make the Leap from Aspiring to Professional Photographer + Best Business Practices for Photographers, Second Edition + Photography Business Secrets: The Savvy Photographer's Guide to Sales, Marketing, and More
Price for all three: $66.75

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

SCOTT BOURNE is president and founder of Bourne Media Group, publisher of Photofocus.com, and the #1 most influential photographer on Twitter, according to wefollow.com. His images have received more than 100 awards, and he has led more than 150 workshops and seminars worldwide. Scott is co-founder of The Professional Wedding & Studio Photographers International (PWSPI) and GoingPro2011. He has been featured in numerous publications, including Photo District News (PDN), PPA Magazine, Outdoor Photographer, and PhotoMedia. Scott can be found at photofocus.com.

SKIP COHEN is president of Marketing Essentials International, a consulting firm specializing in photography projects. He is past president of Rangefinder Publishing Inc., where he oversaw Rangefinder and AfterCapture magazines, the Wedding and Portrait Photographers International (WPPI) Association, and the WPPI trade show.
He is founder of Skip’s Summer School and the Akron Photo Series, and co-founder of GhostRighters.com, GoingPro2011.com, and PWSPI. Skip has co-authored five previous books on photography and can be found
at SkipsPhotoNetwork.com.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Amphoto Books; Original edition (October 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0817435794
  • ISBN-13: 978-0817435790
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 8.6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #513,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
66 of 69 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, mostly filler content March 13, 2012
By RSPhoto
Format:Paperback
I received a Kindle as a gift and was very excited to see that this title was available as an e-book. The description made it seem like it would be perfect for someone like me - someone working a full time job and trying to transition into making their photography work their full time job. I'm at the point where I'm starting to get a fair amount of editorial work and the occasional smaller commercial job. I, like many in my position, am just not sure how to make the leap into being a full
time photographer(or "going pro")

I felt that the book didn't actually offer very much helpful, original content. The chapters were made up of generic advice mostly centered around social media. I didn't expect(or want) a book teaching me how to shoot photos, which Going Pro doesn't do. I wanted something that might give me some new insight on where to go with the photos I've already taken and know how to take. In one of the final chapters the authors list companies that they recommend for certain services and some of those listed felt like they were only listed because they were a sponsor or affiliate of the authors rather than objective opinions to actually help the reader.

A big tip you hear about for getting clicks for your blog posts is to create lists for a given topic("Five ways to shoot more interesting photos", etc) and this book is packed with lists that I felt didn't actually offer much but generic fluff. Another trick that felt "bloggy" was having a series of big names(Chase Jarvis, Matthew Jordan Smith, Jeremy Cowart, etc) write short bits throughout the book.
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and packed with information October 18, 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Going Pro just arrived in my mailbox a few hours ago, but it's been tough to put it down. So many valuable tips packed into 240 beautiful pages. I often work with photographers who aren't sure what they should be doing to market themselves. I've often wished there was an up-to-date manual of all the correct/smart/right things for photographers to do when it comes to their marketing and online presence. Turns out this is that manual! From harnessing social media to just getting out there and networking, this book gives beginners and pros alike the tools in concise, step by step fashion on how to give themselves an edge. My only suggested improvement to this book would have been the addition of EXIF data and the gear used to create the beautiful images. Would be been interesting to know the reach needed to get some of the incredible shots highlighted through the book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars not what I thought exactly February 12, 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was ok, not as informative as thought it would be. It doesn't really explain "how to make the leap from aspiring to professional photographer" as the titles states
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
I will say this. I have read some of the other reviews, and I feel that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. While I have heard of Skip Cohen and have seen many of his blogs, I have recently followed the Photofocus blog a few years back. Until then, the only thing I knew about Scott Bourne was that he gave away cameras, like all the time. The thing I admire most about these two, is their continuous effort to give back to the photographic community. So any bias in this review comes not from my knowledge of them, but from my own background.

I have been doing photography since the early 90's and started in film. I decided to go "pro" back around 2003. Even then, many of my mentors at that time had been in business for over 20 years, with very successful studios. But in the past 5 years, I have seen a NUMBER of studios close all over the place. I have a bachelor's in business, and I preach to my proteges, this simple question. If it takes the average business 3-5 years to break even in the US, then why is it that the average new photography studio closes in less than 18 months?

I think this question, for me, was subconsciously tackled in GoingPro(GP). The power of the net is an ever evolving tool. And for those that take the time to harness that power, it can be an amazing boost to your photography business. If we think of all the photographers that are big within the community, how many of them would even be known without the internet? I bought the paperback version and use it as a great desk reference. I love the in depth explanation and tips on using twitter, and being able to converse with potential clients in your area.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars marketing side of photography October 20, 2011
By Lmayz
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
this is not a how-to take pictures book. it assumes you know your gear and have a good understanding of composure, lighting, editing, etc. it focuses on how to market yourself and get noticed in the competetive field of professional photography. I enjoyed reading the book, there are several pro's giving advice on what made them successful and it lists common themes in their advice. I did notice an error on page 58, David Zisar is (incorrectly) quoted as saying the same thing as Vincent Laforet on page 48. which is a shame because I really wanted to hear what he had to say about focal length!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars I also love how they get past the beginner bull and just ...
I found a typo in the book itself. They used the same quote for two different people. Maybe people don't read through things? But I have so far everything, its is very informative. Read more
Published 13 days ago by TheKrautMonster
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, worth reading and keeping for reference..
Very well written, very well illustrated, if your into social media, its a very good read, lots of good advice. Lots of good advice in general....
Published 1 month ago by Tony Williams
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
Not worth it.
Published 1 month ago by David Mausey
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the details I was looking for
Many photographer are looking for the details of running a business. What software, branding, clients relations. To much time I think spent on social media. My thoughts
Published 3 months ago by Terence Farmer
5.0 out of 5 stars I LOVE this book
GREAT ideas and straight talk on how to go pro. It has up to date info on SEO and utilizing social media to its fullest -- I followed their advice and now follow the authors and... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars good read
a really easy read
good ideas in the book
covers different types of photography fields in an easy to read book
Published 14 months ago by jay f green
5.0 out of 5 stars How to Make the Leap to Pro
This is an Excellent book on the many steps and ideas one must take and think about when wanting to become a professional photographer.
Published 18 months ago by Tami
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
Skip Cohen is a photography genius, with many years of professional photography and marketing experience. Google him for massive info! Or check [...]
Published 19 months ago by Billie J Rich
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent advice from recognized pros
This excellent book provides enough detailed advice to be the basis for a detailed action plan to make the leap from aspiring photographer to full-time, money-making professional. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Robert J. Olsson
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book!
Excellent qualtiy of information about how to make money as a professional. My daughter loves this book and it will be an excellent resource for her education.
Published 21 months ago by Rachelle Anna Warren
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