I have to say that I am so excited with the amount of feedback we've been getting and Leah and I are pumped in taking that next step to getting certified.  I sat back while reading the comments yesterday and I thought I should give my two cents now.  When I first heard about the certification process I was a little intimidated by it and let the moment pass.  Then seriously a week later I heard about Certify with Sam Puc.  That was it!  I HAD to do it!  Why?  Because she just raised the bar.  She just announced that she is making sure 1,000 photographers are going to certify.  That means 1,000 photographers are going to have a leg up on me if I don't.  Did you know that there are less than 8% of photographers in the world, less than 1,725, who are certified?  We are constantly being counseled to differentiate ourselves from our fellow photographers and I know this will do just that for me.  I did, however, have five minutes of hesitation.  The artist in me, which is the bigger part of me, was talking me out of it.  Who do I have to prove myself to?  What's the need?  Honestly, I have to prove myself to myself.  I want to say I am a Certified Professional Photographer.  I'm not somebody who picked up a camera and decided to put the word Professional in front of Photographer.  Somebody else declared that for me because I worked hard for it.  Nobody can Knight themselves.  If I had graduated from college in Photography I probably wouldn't be doing this but because I always feel insufficient saying that my most formal education in photography was two years in high school, I'm doing it!  Seriously why not?  Is it going to hurt me or the industry?  Heck no!  If I know my camera like the back of my hand, if I know how to properly expose a photo, the best lighting techniques yada, yada, yada, then why would I be afraid to become certified?  I should only be afraid if I don't know these things and calling myself professional.  I'm not saying that if you're not certified you don't know these things but I know saying I'm a CPP it's telling my clients and myself that I do.  That's assurance right there.  

But actually the real reason for this post is to announce a new Q and A form!  Ask us anything and we will answer!  That way if you have the same question as somebody else... voila!  It's right there for you!

So ask away!


  1. Q and A...yay! Can you discuss how you handle a family shoot, complete with crying kids, an annoyed father, and a stressed out mother? What techniques do you use to help relax everyone and garner the childrens' attention? Also, how do you achieve candid photos? Do you give instructions at the beginning of the shoot? I would love any advice on this topic. Thanks so much!

  2. Thank you for these last two post. I too have joined Sandy Puc and plan on taking the test in January. Everything you have stated here is exactly how I have felt. I have read everything I could get my hands on and practiced until I could hold my camera up. But still don't feel qualified to call myself a professional. I appreciate all you do for us also and hope to meet you in San Antonio!

  3. Received your twitter note....Love your helpful as I'm just starting out. Would love to get your business opinion/critique on my site if you feel like checking it out at No fancy logos or branding though...did it myself. Thanks again for all of your useful info!