The thought of using a non-professional photographer over a professional photographer is always in the back of a potential client's mind. Why? ANSWER: Cost. Cutting costs are good right? Cheaper is better, right? Here's the thing: Professional photographers are a business and unlike non-professionals they are innovative, artistically competitive, and very customer oriented. Professional photographers earn their income through their photography. The professional photographer supports a family with their photography business. Although we all began as hobbyists we all took the leap to create and build a lifelong career (not a job) from photography. The building process entails continuous education regarding our equipment (camera, lighting, software, etc), photography principles (composition, color theory, lighting patterns, etc), customer relations, business practices, to name a few. We never stop learning because mainly we don't want to stop learning. Professional photographers join local and national organizations (PPA, VPPA, WPPI, etc), we teach (local schools, seminars), and we give back to our communities (local charity/school auctions, Flashes of Hope, Operation Smile, Reflection Judges, etc). We are relentless in our desire to master our craft by performing hours upon hours of photographic "self assignments" and continuous education. Professional photographers are a very proud bunch. We want to make our clients happy. We want to give our clients an experience they will never forget. We want to build long lasting relationships. We are in this for the long haul!