I am sure most of us look back on our lives and think, “You stupid idiot, what on earth possessed you to do/think/try that?” I am certainly no exception to this, especially in the professional arena. During my early years as a photographer, I made a heap of mistakes and I worried about all the wrong things.
It really doesn't matter what kind of photography you do if you get paid for your services I guarantee that at some point you will be faced with price objections from a client. If you haven't already you definitely should arm yourself with a few tactics for when the inevitable happens.
As a U.S. citizen, I have to abide by the laws of my country; As a drone operator, I have to abide by the rules of the FAA, just like anybody else. Yesterday I was at a wedding in New York when I found out President Trump was venturing to his golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey for a 17 day vacation. Along the way, he brought an amazing Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) that is stopping me and many other people from flying with in a 30 NM radius of his location.
Like many photographers, I've been scratching my head at how to win the Instagram game. Over the last six months, I decided to up my game and upload daily content and be more active on the platform. The results are out, I still totally suck at it. My reach, engagement, and even numbers of followers have gone down. So rather than blame the platform or the evil algorithm, I did some detective work to find out why I was really bad at it, and chances are you will recognize yourself in some of those points.
When I first started my business, I was keeping track of my clients, contracts, and everything else in this old, white, hand-me-down filing cabinet. It creaked every time I opened one of the four drawers. To be very honest with you, I finally just sold the thing for $40 last week.
Organizing a photoshoot, professional or otherwise, can be a daunting task. From a small portrait sitting with a local band to a worldwide ad campaign, there are some key steps that will reduce stress, ensure everyone feels understood, and ultimately help everyone work towards the same goals. As a bit of a disclaimer, I work in the U.K. as a commercial photographer, but most of these steps can be dialed up or reduced for any project, wherever they happen to take place and whether paid or not.
You may have just started your journey in photography or you have been on the market for quite some time, and you still wonder if your website has more to do with getting more clients than you might think. The answer is yes, but only to some extent. Let me tell you what I thought was important for my website and what I think is important today.
No matter how young and beautiful your models are for business stock photos, buyers often feel that the images come across as stuffy and old-fashioned. That’s not just a guess, it comes from many years of experience in the industry. Here are a few things you need to pay attention to when working with models for a business photo-shoot that will help make your business stock photos more attractive to buyers.
Wedding photography is not what it used to be. I don't mean this in a good way or a bad way, it just seems like with any advancement in technology comes a new challenge. Many couples today want both still photos and video of their wedding. This makes sense since it is often the biggest day of their life. Does that mean we now have videographers to deal with in our shots? No, it's a two-way street. We, as professionals, both have to work together to deliver the best possible product to the lucky couple. Saying someone got in the way means you didn't try hard enough.
Contrary to delusional beliefs, not everyone is hooked up to a high-speed connection capable of streaming 8k video at magnificent buttery smoothness. Extremely fast connectivity is an amazing thing that is still out of reach for the vast majority of users. You can't assume that the viewers of your website are going to be piloting a computer hard-lined into the latest fiber optic goodness. Instead, we have to optimize for the most common user in order to give them the best experience possible without sacrificing image quality.
I am a doer. I pride myself on getting things accomplished. Doing things rather than talking about them. I even keep a strict log to make sure that I make the absolute most out of every 24 hour period. Productivity is my spirit animal. Now, I know what you’re thinking. Isn’t that a bit excessive? The answer is more than likely yes. And I don’t open that way as a means of boasting. Like many, my greatest strength is often my greatest weakness. My obsessiveness over getting things done has driven me to compile a diverse list of accomplishments (and failures). But, in a profession where the best course of action can require patience, obsessing over productivity can often drive you plum crazy.
Free? Working for free? When I started out, being asked to work for free made my blood boil; Didn’t people know I had bills to pay, rent to make, black T-shirts to buy, rounds of beer to shout, girls to woo? These things cost money, and it still makes my blood boil when I’m asked to work for free. And yet I often work for free. Confused? Here’s how working for free is a good thing and how to ensure your blood doesn’t boil in the process.
I’ve learned a lot over the past 15 years as a professional artist. I’ve learned a lot about fear, failure, and success. I’ve been fortunate enough to mentor and educate thousands of photographers all over the world. Even as a young four-year photographer who many would still consider “green,” I’ve taught photographers from all walks of life, all levels of advancement, and even some who had reached a level of comfortable success.
“Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.” What an inspiring, hopeful idea. Unfortunately, it’s not always true. According to this article on USA Today, only about 20 percent of businesses last past their first year, and even less survive past the five-year mark. So, what happens when someone falls in love with photography and thinks to themselves, I should start a business? The answer is: a lot of stuff that is not related to photography and, sometimes, the death of a passion.