Photography is a commodity; It's not a secret, and we all know it. When I meet a new group of people, it seems that every time the conversation of “jobs” or “careers” is brought up, inevitably, someone is always a “photographer” by trade. Commodification is a process that happens to every industry, and we couldn’t prevent it even if we tried. So since becoming a commodity is unavoidable in any market, we, as small business owners, have to learn to overcome being branded a “commodity.”
If you work with people, whether it be kids, families, seniors, adults, or professional models, male or female, then you have almost certainly shot a TFP (trade for print) shoot before. While the definition of TFP is flexible these days, as most commonly we mean "trade time for digital images" rather than physical prints, these kinds of shoots have and will continue to be an industry staple. The most important aspect of these shoots is the one thing that often gets forgotten: getting a return on your investment of time.
Does the idea of finding clients and networking fill you with dread? I know most of us would much prefer to stay behind the camera, taking pictures all day long, but that's really only part of being a professional. If you lack the confidence or game plan to gain new clients, then these strategies could really make a difference.
Award-winning Wedding Photographer Susan Stripling recently shared an open letter she wrote dealing with sexism in the photography industry. In the letter, she shares her experiences with male peers, wedding guests, employees at camera stores, and everyone in between who makes gender an issue in a field where sex shouldn't matter.
Working as a video editor can be a hectic and tedious experience. Spending some time to think about organizational tools and methods can help you out significantly when working with a lot of files, or in a large group of colleagues. Renaming files, creating proper folder structure, logging metadata, backing up files, and developing a workflow can make your life much, much easier. While some of the advice listed below is geared for Premiere Pro users, any video editor can take advantage of these tips.
At this point, we should all know that almost all jobs and opportunities to find success in photography are built off networking. Now there are tons of ways to network and the path you pick will depend solely on the niche you associate with. Either way, the main goal is to meet people with the same professional interests as yourself to feed off each other creatively and to broaden your reach in the community. We tend to forget about the community aspect as we get caught up in chasing money or companies but what we sometimes need to go to that next level is support system built off our love for photography.
As the summer starts to wind down I know it means one thing. It's going to get a lot colder here in Boston. It also means It's time to start getting ready for Photo Plus Expo as well as some of the other winter conferences. For some, this might be simply booking travel, but for me, it's a big weekend. One that I spend a lot of time preparing for. In part, because it's one of the bigger speaking engagements for me but also its one of the best networking opportunities to help build my brand.
Securing your cameras and laptops for your business during storms is just the start of the preparations that need to be considered before a storm hits. Safe guarding the essentials is not the only issue when storms arise but also the thought of how can you keep your business running if you are not able to work?
Is this an age-old debate? Probably not, but I hear many voices touting the need for photographers to self-promote in order expand their client base. At the same time, I get many invitations to networking events for photographers with the intention of building their businesses. Are these the same thing, or not
There are many variables that play a part in the career of a successful photographer. While some of these elements are completely out of your control things like your lifestyle and outgoings are not. If you want to maximize your chances of having a successful career you may need to make a few adjustments before it's too late.
I'm not a strong supporter of business cards nowadays. It's not because they don't do any good, but because most people are throwing them in the trash bin without even visiting your website and seeing what you do. Despite of that it's good to have some in your pocket. Here is my solution to using a special type of business cards that your potential clients may not throw away.