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Wouldn’t it be nice to make money doing something you love – even if it were just enough to cover the costs of that hobby?
I’m going to share with you four ways that I have personally used to try and make money as a photographer. I’ll share with you my experience with each, advice on getting started, and whether or not I was successful in my attempts. I’ve also found a few more posts on DPS that will help you find more information on a few of these topics if they peak your interest.
Wedding photography is probably one of the more profitable ventures – I know for me even having only photographed one wedding I’ve made more in that one day than the other three methods I’ve tried combined. It has a relatively low cost to entry and if you’re lucky enough to be in or know a lot of people in their early to mid 20s you have a pontential gold mine of a client base to tap.
I recently was asked to photograph my sister’s friend’s wedding and after some convicing I finally said yes. Instantly I felt the pressure of the task before me. Even though I had nearly a year to prepare before the big day it still felt like I had a mountian to climb. Now I’d suggest that if you don’t feel this pressure when you’re about to photograph your first wedding then you probably shouldn’t be photographing a wedding. It was this pressure that pushed me to get help and make sure that I did the best I possibly could with the experience that I had.
Four words of advice if you’re going to try breaking into wedding photography
These are four of the most important ways to get started in wedding photography, but by no means is an exhaustive list of wedding photography tips. Here’s the first post in a great series here on DPS about wedding photography for more information.
Okay so the global economy is still pretty much in the ICU, but things are starting to look a little better right? After all the housing market is slowly starting to come back to life and as it does there’s an opportunity here for a photographer to make some money on the side photographing interior and exterior shots for real estate agents to use in order to sell the house.
I’ve only done this once and I wasn’t even really looking towards this as an option, but out of the blue a real estate agent who helped me buy my house contacted me after seeing the photographs I share on Facebook and asked if I’d be interested – I agreed to give it a shot.
Again – don’t fall for the working for experience line here if you’re serious about making money the worst thing you can do is start out giving your time away for free so come up with a price and stick with it. The going rate for real estate photography is going to change based on region so you might want to see if you can find local rates in your area.
A Couple Ideas for Pricing Your Real Estate Shoot
The best part about this type of photography is you don’t really need too much gear. A DSLR, a wide-angle lens and a tripod will go a long way. Here’s a post with a bunch of DPS reader comments on the subject of entering the real estate photography business if you’re interested in more information.
I’ll be honest here and tell you that I’ve only given stock photography a very half hearted attempt. I signed up for one of the many agencies out there and submitted a handful of my photographs – they didn’t sell – and I gave up.
It’s a very hard industry to break into if you’re just starting out because the agencies typically will feature popular photographer’s work first. One point I’d like to make is that you have to keep in mind that the photographs people are looking for are ones that will help them sell a product or service to their clients and therefore you have to think about that when you take your photos.
Just because I failed at selling anything through a stock agency doesn’t mean it’s not a good source of income for you. After all there are people out there who make good money with stock photography and that’s the main reason I chose to include it in this post.
So if you’d like to know more about getting into stock photography read this article on DPS it’s much more involved than what I’ve gone over here.
Fine art photography is probably the most competitive and most difficult avenue to break into due to the fact that the market is saturated with photographers trying to sell their photography and the fact that wall space is limited (we all only have four walls in each room to hang photographs on and typically we want those photographs to mean something to us).
Key Points to Think About as You Get Started
Ways To Sell Your Photography
Okay so now that we’ve gone over some of the basics of what you’ll need to do before you even begin to sell your photography how do you actually go about selling it?
Are you making money with your photography? If so are you using one of the options listed above or do you do something else? Share below!