Here are the phrases that irk me an my fellow photographers.
"Canon or Nikon?" - Honestly, the brand of camera that is used doesn't matter. Each brand is competitive. Each has pros and cons. It matters more what level of camera (point and shoot, entry level DSLR, full frame DSLR, Medium format, etc. And far more important is the experience and the knowledge of the photographer wielding the camera.
"I'm a natural light photographer." - Usually code for, I don't have the money or experience working with studio lighting. Truth is, all photographers need to have experience with natural light and studio lights. Continous lighting and strobe. They are different skill sets but a great photographer will use whatever is necessary to get the images that the client needs.
"Do you have a real job?" - This implies that one cannot make a living as a photographer (or as an artist for that matter). It is a devaluation of the arts despite the fact that art is involved in nearly every aspect of our modern lives. Everything we purchase is in a box designed with, at the very least, graphics if not photos. We watch entertainment on TV, our phones, and our computers. We decorate with art. We are literally surrounded by art. So yes, I can and I do make a living making photographs and artwork.
"I'll fix it in post." - Yes, with the power of our computers, many issues can be fixed in post processing. Photoshop is an amazing tool that can and should be utilized when necessary. But that does not mean that we photographers should get lazy with our lighting, staging, posing, or any other aspects of photography.
"Say Cheese." - It is just a way to make someone smile, but forming the word cheese ends up stretching the lips and making a forced looking smile. A better alternative is to make the motions for saying "Oooo" or "Ahhh." The best way is to connect with your subject to create real emotions that can be captured. Find common enjoyment. Tell a joke. Have them recall their favorite vacation. Use real emotions, it makes all the difference.
"What filter do you use?" - Please... just don't ask. No, we don't use filters. Filters are canned shortcuts to give similar results between photos every time. They are quick, blunt methods to achieve results that usually don't turn out that well. Any photographers or retouchers will not use filters for anything larger or more meaningful than little social media blurbs. Have fun using them yourselves, but don't assume we do.
If you have any phrases that bother you, feel free to leave them in the comments below. And as always, thanks for reading this.