Success with my Licentiate Qualification with the Master Photographers Association!
I am absolutely delighted to announce that in Sunday 19th October I passed my Licentiate Panel with the Master Photographers Association! What does that mean? Probably not a lot to many people as so many photographers claim to be professionals, however it was important to me to put time and effort into putting together a panel of images and the effort into writing a professional working document to show that I am indeed a Professional Wedding Photographer and have been recognised as such by the most stringent of professional bodies.
6 years ago I passed my Licentiate with the British Institute of Professional Photographers but the process was so much harder with the MPA. My Mentor, James Musselwhite (who was awarded the BEST Fellowship Panel
of 2014 on Sunday – probably the highest accolade you can be awarded – well done James!) went through a huge number of my images commenting on them and together we whittled down over the last 6 months to 20 images which worked the best as a panel (you display your images in 2 rows of ten for the judges) and those which demonstrated my range of skills as a professional photographer the best.
The most interesting part of the process was receiving James’ critique – images that I absolutely LOVE were thrown in the no pile without discussion!! Just goes to show how much personal emotional connection you can have with an image – I blame it on my excessive pride of my work LOL!
The working document you have to put together includes things like your business plan for the next couple of years, your personal and professional goals, Health & Safety & Customer Care policies – basically everything a Business of any sort should have, many people think a professional photographer just takes and edits photos but we also have to manage and direct our businesses to provide an income to live on!
I was the last candidate to go through the judging panel on Sunday and unfortunately the lady before me wasn’t passed so you can imagine how nervous I was. You hand over your images to the 5 judges then wait to be called into the room for the verdict! Those 25 minutes felt as if they took 25 hours and when I was called in, the judges introduced themselves the the head judge asked me what I thought of the panel to which I replied rather dubiously “Well I like it” to which he replied – “So did we!” Yey! I’d passed!
I then was lucky enough to get a critique on every image from Desi Fontaine FMPA which was really interesting and helpful, especially as some of her favourites were definitely not mine! I can look forward to a more detailed critique of all the images from all the judges in the next cupel of weeks when my actual points are sent through.
To round off the fabulous (but nerve wracking!) experience, I left the room to receive a text from James, asking to meet up where he and his wife Fliss had bought me a bottle of bubbly and box of chocolates to celebrate my success! As we were off to the MPA Awards that night it was a great way to start off a fabulous evening and toast the success of my panel. THANKS JAMES & FLISS and THANKS to the MPA for a) passing my panel and b) a great evening of celebration!
So I guess you need to see which images I was judged on… I’ve popped them into 4 rows rather than 2 so you can actually see the images and hope you like them as much as me, James & the judges did!