Our journey to the AIPP
Our journey to the AIPP...
Its been a long,long,long journey. We have gone from photographing weddings, marathons, martial arts competitions, landscaping, to finally finding our niche.
A lot of the time people assume that you just happen to fall into newborn photography, or that you yourself have children and happen to take photographs of your children, and then you take on the challenging world of newborns and babies. Or some people become baby photographers if they aren't able to conceive themselves.
Sometimes people are surprised and almost shocked to find out that this isn't always the case.
So why newborn and baby photography then?
Well after all the countless hours, meltdowns and money spent on the other genres, I came to realise, none of it made me happy...
I wasn't relaxed nor did I enjoy what I was doing, infact I was more of a "drill seargant" and workaholic...Germanic way of working springs to mind.
Don't get me wrong, of course I enjoyed meeting the lovely people I have met on the way... I was just not happy.
Something had to change.
I browsed Creative live one day,(an online education site for creatives), and came across Kelly Brown, (and for those of you that know me you know that to me Kelly is one of the most inspiring people and photographers on the planet) and Julia Kelleher.
Together these two ladies awoke something in me, and I knew I HAD to be a newborn photographer. Yep. As simple as that!
Of course all this has the added bonus of presenting our clients with the amazing tangible memories of their little ones, so small and fragile.
This was all back in the UK. I didn't waste time and started my research and training immediately. When we found out were in fact moving to Australia, one of my biggest and personal goals was to achieve my accreditation with the Australian Insititute for Professional Photographers.
As soon as we arrived in Australia, I carried on my training and research. Many, many tears and lots of investment went into my training, but I knew I wanted to do it. I had to do it.
"So, this is all good and well but what is the AIPP?" I hear you ask!
The AIPP tells us the following:
"- An Accredited Professional Photographer is a photographer, who doesn't just claim to be a "professional" but earns that title by successfully completing the rigorous AIPP accreditation process.
Accreditation is designed to give you, the consumer, confidence that your Professional Photographer is a proven, experienced, technically capable, professional practitioner, who complies with all legal business requirements, has appropriate insurance and who is willing to agree to the mandatory Code of Professional Practice and to the requirement to continually improve their photographic skills by committing to continue their professional development.
To become accredited, a Professional Photographer has to:
- Demonstrate that they have been practising for a minimum of 2 years.
- Demonstrate that they have satisfied clients and suppliers by providing written references.
- Demonstrate that they comply with all legal, ethical and moral business requirements to practice as a professional in Australia.
- Demonstrate that their photographic skills are of our required "Professional Standard".
- Agree to have a portfolio of their work, assessed by a panel of experienced AIPP image assessors.
- Achieve the required portfolio assessment standard.
- Agree to continue their professional development through the AIPP CPD program, maintaining up to date skills and business practices each year.
The AIPP continually monitors its ACCC certified accreditation requirements to ensure that the standard for accredited membership is appropriate for the profession of photography in 2017 and beyond."
The above is just a little snippet of what is required.
Now I know what you are thinking. No, this isn't a requirement to be an amazing photographer and yes, there are plenty of amazing photographers without this accredition, and you might even come accross someone that tells you that it's just a fancy title.
Well it's not. It's not given out lightly. You have to work your bum off and continue to keep up the standard and comply with the code of conduct.
An accreditation from a professional body such as the AIPP, tells our current and future clients that we take our craft and the safety of your little one seriously and we will take all measures necessary to show this.
After all, your little one's safety is of the utmost importance. Please choose someone experienced to handle your fragile and precious little gift.
However as much as I love snuggling your baby, I ask you to remember that this is a business.
I do not put on a suit and heels and head to the office every day, but I have bills to pay, just like all of you.
These days, it seems like anyone and everyone can call themselves a photographer. However, it really takes time, money and passion to get to know your craft and give your clients quality and professionalism.
The cost of documenting your memories is priceless.
Hire a photographer who is trained to keep your baby safe and comfortable!
Please keep an eye out for my next blog, "Newborn Safety in photography" and "Why can it be so expensive"
Thank you for taking the time to read and have a wonderful day! :-)