As a member of the Professional Photographers of Canada, I can submit images for accreditation in various categories. Recently, I submitted the above images (individually) and received my 4th accreditation, this time in Location Executive Portraiture. My others are for General Portrait, Wedding Portrait and Wedding Story.
I’m proud of these accreditations, as a jury panel examines all 10 images and has to find them all above average, sellable images. If they reject one, the whole submission is rejected. Full details here.
The benefit to me is a nice framed certificate to add to my wall, but more than that, it’s something I can point to and advertise to show the buying public that I’m not just calling myself ‘professional’ because I walked into a store with a credit card and walked out with an entry-level DSLR and kit lens. In other words, it conveys ability, trust and value. Value is important to me because I pay my bills and enjoy my life through the value of my photography as seen in the wallets of my clients. No value = no clients = unhappy me.
These accreditations, I think, are better than the ubiquitous ‘award-winning’ labels seen on so many photographer’s marketing. I compete and I’m proud every time I win an award (see Slingshot Blues) but gaining an accreditation is a little less usual. In this industry, I need to differentiate myself from Uncle-Bob-who-won-that-award-in-high-school when he decides he’ll be a wedding photographer for a little extra cash on the side.
Feel free to ask anything about the images, I’ll respond.