Photography is an art that anyone can enjoy. The widespread availability of affordable digital cameras in the market today has led more and more people to take up photography as a hobby, and many are now seeking to turn that hobby into a career. There are many opportunities available to talented photographers. Follow these helpful tips to get started on the path to photography as a new career option.
- Stock Up On Equipment
Professional photographers don’t do their work on mobile phone cameras, unlike many hobbyists. If you’re serious about pursuing photography as a career path, start stocking up on equipment. Invest in high quality cameras and lenses. Build your experience and familiarity with the tools of the trade by working in both digital and film formats. Get to know what each different lens does, and how it affects the outcome of your work. Equipment is very important in photography, so make sure you have the tools to handle any project, as well as the skill needed to use those tools.
- Build Up Your Portfolio
Selling your services as a photographer will be nearly impossible without a professional portfolio for prospective clients to view. Save every image that you shoot, and compile all of your best work into a portfolio. Put together a personal book of prints to show to clients in person, and create a website as well to host a more expansive portfolio online. Take advantage of any possibility to create new work. Shoot photos at friends’ weddings, trips overseas, and even on walks around town. Always have a camera on hand to shoot new portfolio pieces.
- Register a Legitimate Business
Going into business means more than just convincing clients to pay you for your work. You may be able to make a little money on the side by fielding assignments like this, but turning your hobby into a career will require registering a legitimate business. Obtain all the required legal business licenses and certificates that you need to sell your services as a professional photographer, and draft a contract for your clients. After completing this step, you can truly call yourself a professional photographer!
- Take Advantage of Any Assignment
In your photography career, especially in the early days, you never want to turn down an assignment. Every opportunity, no matter how small, is another chance to build your portfolio, gain new experience and insight, network with new people, and grow as both a professional and an artist. Don’t pass on a potential project just because it seems boring, or because it doesn’t pay enough. Make it exciting by bringing your own unique vision to the table, and make the experience worthwhile by using it for personal growth.
- Become Your Own Promoter
Let the world know about your talents and your new career path by promoting your work everywhere you go. Social media networks are great places to start. Post and share your latest pieces of seascape photography, family portraits, experimental work and anything else that your friends and followers would like to see. Include water-stamps on all of your images, and link to your portfolio every time you post new work. Become your own promoter and gain the exposure you need to succeed as a professional photographer.