@ Aiden – Ithink your doing okay. I mean that in a very positive way.
I understand where Don is coming from and good to see that you have a good ethic about charging and who should be charging. CC also nailed it as well, there are plenty of others out there that can’t focus to save their lives and put out utter crap as “professional” images, you could probably test the waters to see. I wouldn’t see any harm in that. If anyone were to ask, just say it is to pay for gas and such as you progress.
Word to the wise, don’t get too ahead of yourself if you do start to charge. If you start charging and start to get a good clientele base, it may be hard to increase your rate as you get better. That is where you’ll see who your “real” clients are.
Just take your time and keep your “dream” going and let the business end of it fall into place.
If you do anymore unpaid events, suck up as much knowledge as you can, techniques, workflows, editing styles, whatever you can, good or bad, then mesh that into your own style. You’ll make mistakes, we all do, just learn from them.
Good work, keep shooting