7 things not to say to a photographer

Stay calm and don’t hit anybody; we’ve collected up seven of the most inflammatory phrases for photographers, guaranteed to send even the most patient flying into a rage. Take a deep breath and read on… if you dare!


 1.    Your camera takes really good pictures

professional camera

This had to be number one on our list because we could not think of a bigger faux pas so say to a photographer. It’s not the camera, it’s the user knowing how to use it properly and having an eye for a great photo.

2.    I have a friend who edits photos, can you just give me the RAW images?

Travel postcards

Another cardinal sin; would you ask a doctor for a diagnosis then ask a friend for medication? No. Would you ask a builder for bricks then build the wall yourself? No. Essentially you are asking a photographer to only half do their job. No one wants to half finish a job then see it butchered by someone else.

 3.    I’m inviting you to my wedding – don’t forget your camera

Bride and Groom

To a photographer this is just code for ‘I want a professional photographer but don’t want to pay for one’. If you want your photographer friend to take your pictures ask them outright, they may do it as a wedding present or give you a discounted rate. Sometimes it’s just nice for a photographer to relax, enjoy the day and not have to work throughout it.


4.    You can’t take pictures here

Forbidden take photos signal

Legally as long as you are on public property you can take photos of both public and private property. This means as long as you are standing on public property there is very little that anyone can say to you. They can not confiscate your camera or make you delete photos.

5.    Can you leave your watermarks off?

Forest in autumn

Many photographers will send you watermarked photos to preview. For a lot of photographers, this is a key method of advertising their images. Your photographer will remove watermarks on the finished and paid for images, so let your photographer get a little publicity where they can. It also means you only get the photos you pay for, and that’s only fair.

 6.    Your job must be so easy. You just press a button all day.

hand pressing a red bottom

Photography is a fine art that requires skill, just like drawing or painting. Saying this just belittles photographers’ skill, professionalism and talents. Lots of thought, planning and setting up has to happen before the shutter button gets pressed.


7.    Can’t you just Photoshop that?

couple doing paddling on the sea

If it’s not in front of the camera in the first place, it’s best not to ask for it. Photographers are just photographers, not magicians. While most photographers don’t mind touching up the odd spot, mole or wrinkle, having to make someone look skinnier or even adding things into picture in the first place crosses the line between photographer and retoucher.

If you’ve come up against any of these or have some new gripes you’d like to add to the list? Drop a comment in the box below and let us know!

About the author

Bex is our Senior Content Manager and lover of all things community. When she's not glued to her phone you can find her out cycling in the Chiltern Hills or braving the London commute on her Brompton.

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