Paint is Cheap - Phil Rose Photography

Paint is Cheap

Wedding couple by Phil Rose

Hello there. I think of this as a resource mostly for those who are looking for a photographer through Thumbtack but it certainly applies to everyone looking for a professional photographer no matter how they got here. 

So what does the title above mean? It is just a comparison I came up with. Paint is cheap but you wouldn't just hire someone to paint your portrait simply because they could afford a tube of acrylics. The image above shows what you would get if you hired me to memorialize your wedding in paint. Photography is suffering something of a similar issue. Technology is a wonderful thing and very high quality cameras are now cheaper than ever. It is amazing that a phone can now produce images almost on par with those coming from a $2,000 camera from the 1990s. 

BUT- just because Uncle Dave has spent $700 on a good camera does not mean that he will be able to cover your wedding and deliver the memories you are looking for (not to mention it means Uncle Dave won't get to enjoy the day! Just because cousin Julie has a decent camera doesn't mean she can produce product shots that will actually sell your products. Just because your friend Mike has a Nikon doesn't mean he can capture your kids looking sweet and not awkward. 

A photo shoot can be expensive but, if you go with the cheaper option you very well may end up with photographs that are good for nothing but your computer's recycle bin. 

I used to find a lot of my work through Thumbtack but, despite my having almost thirty-five star reviews, I have found the work drying up and I THINK that that is due to the flood of inexperienced amateur photographers who are making themselves accounts and undercutting people like myself who are trying to make a living. Now I sound bitter! I don't mean to.

So why should you consider spending rather more and hiring me or someone like me? 

Firstly, thirty three years of experience. I bought my first camera (a Chinon body and Pentax 50mm lens) in 1988 at the age of 19. I have a degree in visual communication. I have run my company for 20 years. 

Equipment. I have a full range of cameras and lenses, flashes and tripods. Three SLR bodies (one slung on each hip and a back up) means I won't come to you just before the ceremony and tell you that I'm sorry but my camera broke. Oops! I have full studio lighting and access to a downtown studio. 

Confidence and artistic vision. This is not so easily quantified but hopefully the short sections below will show what I mean. 

To sum up, you would be unwise to hire me to paint your portrait just because I bought a set of oil paints on Amazon (you would be very disappointed with the results!) and the same goes for Uncle Dave with his Canon. A photo shoot is only undertaken when the results are important so make sure you hire someone   who can provide the results you need!


Creativity and vision. Abigail and Brian had an idea. They wanted to use smoke bombs in a woodland setting. I made it happen. This was not an easy shot to pull off as it was dark in those woods! 

The captured moment. A lot of the skill in wedding photography comes from an intuitive ability (helped along by the presence of the assistant I bring to every wedding and her intuition) to be in the right place at the right time to capture that moment. That moment can capture the joy, the passion or the sheer meaning of the day. All three of these elements must be preserved if the client is to receive a gallery of images that will give them joy for years to come. 

Photo booth. Many wedding couples would love to have a photo booth at their reception but the hiring of such a thing can be prohibitively expensive. I can bring studio lights and backdrops and create a photo booth for you. This can lead to so many hilarious and fun memories to remind you of all your friends and family who shared your joyful day. You can see a bunch more examples here

Food and commercial

Food photography is one of the most challenging areas in the world of photography. Lighting is everything. If you photograph your food under a strip light you will not get photographs that make people want to come to your establishment. Phil Rose Photography brings with him a full set of for studio flash units which will ensure that, in conjunction with available light and thirty years of photographic experience, that you will and up with mouthwatering images that will help your business to grow stop

The same is true of product and commercial photography. Without wanting to be rude the maxim "buy cheap get cheap" applies to all areas of photography and this is no exception. As with food photography, lighting is everything and I have the equipment and experience that counts.

Portraiture and Modeling/fashion.

Fashion, modelling and portraiture are areas where creativity is key. It is also one of the areas of my work where price can actually be a lot more flexible depending on your budget. At the higher end we can go into studio with full lighting and create something extraordinary with the incredible flexibility available that way. If your budget does not extend to that there are so many places in Bellingham to create interesting, unusual and beautiful work. My 30 years of experience and creative eye will allow you to shine in your portfolio. If creativity is not your key concern but rather you are looking for professional business head shots please take a look at this page which has all the information you might need.


Children can be difficult to photograph. You need to win their trust in order to let them be them and bring out their inner personalities. 

There are many techniques for doing this which I've learned over my years as a photographer. It is certainly worth spending the money to hire somebody who really knows what they're doing whether that be in studio or on location.

Art Reproduction

Art reproduction is far from simply pointing a camera at the canvas and pressing the button. You need full studio lighting, and knowledge of light and color balance, geometry and a host of other formal photographic rules. If you want your photographs to look like the original pieces of art go with a professional. Go with Phil Rose Photography.

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