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An apology to teachers everywhere

A couple weeks ago, I published a post called So who gets to call themselves a professional, anyway? In it, I made a sweeping statement about university photography professors only teaching “because they can’t be doing”. I got two comments from teachers who felt hurt by my comment and you know what? That was a pretty ridiculous thing for me to say. Mainly because I AM A TEACHER! And I have been accused of running this blog and consulting/mentoring other photographers purely because I can’t make it in the business.

Specifically, it’s been said that I “whore herself out to the rest of the world as yet another tog who can teach YOU how to make loads of money!” And so there you have it. Someone accusing me of teaching because I can’t be doing {which, by the way, is 100% untrue}. So it seems that I have been a bit dense in making the same statement about university professors teaching photography and, in a broader sense, it appears that I was making that statement about all teachers.

So from the bottom of my heart, I’m so sorry for that. It’s never my intention to bully, alienate or single out others for my own personal gain. Forgive me, teachers!

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  • Ejhubbard81

    I’m a photographer and a teacher and I didn’t take offense.  Your work – and your advice – is always wonderful!

  • Newenglandart

    LOL People should know if something does not apply to them. I’s like you can’t reference a small segment of the population without someone screaming that you meant it about EVERYONE.

  • http://www.photographybycaryn.com Caryn

    Totally knew where you were coming from and your intentions.  No apology required. (From a photog and teacher)

  • Mamaduso5

    I appreciate how humble you are!

  • Cindy Kay

    I just appreciate that there are extraordinarily talented photographers out there like you who are WILLING to teach newbies like me!  I tried to learn the traditional way (sitting in a classroom), but I’m too visual and kinetic of a learner…I need to “see” how to do it or go through the motions…you are truly blessed with the ability to explain things in a way I can comprehend.  I think it was obvious (to me at least) that you do not disdain teachers, but rather you recognize that there is a society of knowledgeable people out there who are not good at sharing unless they’re being paid. 

  • Moira

    It is obvious by the wonderfully educational posts on your blog and your Gracie May Photography website that you can indeed do both, TEACH AND DO and I’m sure that I am not alone in saying that you help hundreds of us by mentoring us this way.  As for the nasty remarks like the one you mentioned in your post, you do know that those kind of remarkds are written by INTERNET TROLLS, hate filled people who scour the internet searching for ways to spread their hatred and cause pain, best to just ignore them, they eventually go away ugh! Keep it up Elizabeth, we all love you!

  • Rosie Fluegel

    I completely understood what you meant in your original post.  I do understand both sides of this story, though, and I admire how you have handled the issue.  As an educator, I wasn’t offended, but I am so grateful that you have offered another perspective for others who feel that way.  By the way, I think you are fantastic teacher helping so many of us and I loved that particular post about “who gets to call themselves a professional, anyway?”  It was inspirational and just what I needed to read at the time.  Many thanks!   

  • Angelamdunn

    Being human is normal! This is why you are good at the things you do! Making mistakes and taking ownership of them makes you all the better. I personally love your work/teachings. It’s all anyone can ask for really….Just to be loved for who and what they are. Imperfections and all. Keep up the good work because I know it helps me as I am sure it does others.

  • Meagan

    I love your blog!  I really wish I could meet you in person.  All of this discussion on who can call themselves “professional” is really starting to get old to me.  I don’t call myself a “pro” but others do.  By some standards I am and some I am not. I find you and others like you more professional than the ones who set up a site to bash people who want to follow a dream.  Instead of make fun of them why don’t they help?  Because it is easier to sit at a computer and make fun than it would be to say all those nasty comments outright.  As for me, I look back and see where I have been.  What I am most interested in is the path on where I am going.  

  • Info

    Its a shame that the internet has made it so that no one is allowed to have a personal opinion anymore, P/C or not. I’m all for being empathetic and doing my best to consider all sides of the equation but it is a sad sight that people have to be nice to everyone and include everyone etc . Frankly, write what you feel, just don’t be belligerent. Love your blog, keep it up :)