Acting Professional turns into being professional.

When I started getting serious about photography again about 3 years ago, I wanted to be better. Then I started to make a little money with my pics and I wanted to be more professional. Then I wanted to be published. All this time, I had felt like I was still a "hobbyist". I was reading "pro sites", "pro books" and conversing with other professional photographer and not feeling out of place.

This fall while shooting a cyclocross race, someone asked me if I was a professional photographer. This was the first time I hesitated and didn't instantly say it was a hobby, or I was a weekend shooter. I realized, from his perception, I looked like a professional photographer. I had professional equipment and I was "working" like a Pro and even hoped to get paid from the event. Why did I hesitate to answer, "Yes, I am."

For me at least, it seems like it's a big step for me to consider myself a professional. I feel more comfortable in most shooting situations and can even sit back and identify a problem with a shot and think around it during the shot. Just the way I would with a problem with a web page at work.

I've always believed that acting professional, leads to being professional, but it's really more then that. The next step is believing in your abilities as a pro.