Would I like to make Photography a Profession (ie. my housing, food, transportation, living expenses based on the soul income from photography)? I'm not so sure. Would I like to get to the state of being thought of as a Pro due to the quality of the work I produce being on that scale (or the quality that jimmyd produces)? You bet your ass I would!
So if I attain the second goal (I have a LONG way to get there...but I'm getting better as time and shots go on), would I be able to attain the first goal? Well, maybe. I mean I've seen beautiful high quality work here on GG and not all of it being done by a Pro (see definition above). So maybe someone will come across my future work and offer some insane money to do a major shoot...but I'm more likely to win a lottery than that would happen.
Too many Pros I've talked to say that the actual photography bit of their business only occupies about 20 to 25% of their time (more like 10 to 20%). The rest of the time it's them taking care of business...hunting down jobs, hunting down payment, keeping the bankers, the creditors, and other such ilk from the door.
So, keeping in mind that I've often and strongly said that "...if my photography becomes 'just another job', I'll drop it...", I'm happy with the current state of things. Oh sure I'd like to at least cover my costs and maybe a few dollars ahead to buy more 'toys' but there's no sense in bemoaning the outgo of the money. Hell, I could be spending Way More money on wacking the bejeezus out of a little white ball and going in circles doing that...and not have the Fun I am having now.
So as an Enthusiastic Amateur I tip my hat at all the current and upcoming Pros out there. I wish them all the luck and skill in the world. As a standard thing I collect their business cards so that, if ever asked to do something I'm not good at (ie. Weddings) I can refer the potential client over to the Pros who do. I'm not going to 'scoop' them as it would be an insult to them and to the client to produce less than stellar work...and work I'm really not interested in.
I remember one Pro who, at the time, was doing SX70 Polaroid manipulations. My wife was just starting into it and so I went to ask him how he handled some problems she was running into. Well, his reaction was 'icy' to say the least and he stated that he was not in the business of giving away that information. Okay no prob but he sure as hell did not handle that well...*****!
So, does this mean that I (as a grunt photog) am taking away potential work from them? I'd rather like to think not and even if I were...they weren't there to pick it up, eh? But with my infrequency of shooting I don't think I'm making a dint in their backlog.
Truly, I do wish them all well. Life is going to get tougher.