The 80% cost 20% profit does not affect you

There are many advantages, besides being creative and doing what you enjoy most, to make a decent living from this business. Most businesses require a large capital injection to start up and thereafter, the running costs that eat into a large portion of your profit. Retailers have to consider holding large volumes of costly stock to ensure shelves are full and available to the needs of their consumers. Once the stock has been sold the remainder of the monies generated is allocated to rental, staff salaries and the likes. Not only is the stress factor high, as there are many costs to consider, but the staff as well as the upkeep of the appearance of your shop front need to be added to the expenses. Fortunately for photographers, very little of this applies. Initially there is a set up cost involved to get equipped initially with all the right camera gear, the rest is outsourced or rented as per the job requirements. It is only your time that needs to be costed, so if you market yourself in a sensible manner and remain constant with your workflow, most of your earnings are profit.


Freelancing is the way forward

Photography provides many avenues in which to provide services as there are so many genres from the advertiser and commercial sector through to the private sectors. Being freelance offers the opportunity to decide on the hours you wish to dedicate to your work, as well as when you want to work, so long as you keep the client happy. Choose the clients and the market you wish to focus on, and go get the work! Having mentioned these attributes for this profession, you can now understand why this is such a wonderful job.


Travel the world or work locally

Again, the choice is yours. Market yourself towards travel, reportage and wildlife and see the world, while meeting interesting people, and making work contacts, or work within your local proximity and focus on clients closer to home. The bottom line is that once you have “your tools for the trade”, you can use your skill anywhere, it’s a once off cost and off you go…Live the dream that others only romance about.

Sell your images online

From the word go, use the camera gear that you have and learn the rules of what online photography is all about to get noticed and build a name. Have fun taking images that client trends require, news related or other. This builds momentum and gets you out there, again meeting people and doing social networking.  There are many agencies to google that require these services, the likes of Shutterstock, Istock and Alamy to mention just a few.Sign up for the like of Instagram and Pinterest, the larger of the social platforms to get noticed while building your brand. A short course on social media will provide the tools and the knowledge to make this possible without having to outsource.


Enjoy socializing and meeting people

Events are always out there waiting for you. Night clubs, bars, corporate activations and launches, as well as festivals and outdoor markets require footage from their event for their brand and social influence. Be that photographer, spend more time on the relevant event and social sites and calendars and join all groups on this calendar, so you are notified in advance and have the lead time to pitch for the job. Half an hour per day is not a lot of time to spend to secure work that is paying decent hourly rates. Again, I say, focus on meeting people at these events, they could become clients. Everyone needs a photographer.

Spending lots of your time taking your children to parties

Use this time as a parent constructively, offering your service as a photographer. Word of mouth and trust is the best form of advertising and in most cases will secure the job. Every child has a birthday party and parents are spending more time and effort on the entertainment factor, to impress. Kiddies parties do not involve much editing and are normally only 2 ½ hours of a day, Saturday or Sunday, or both. Kiddies parties pay well and provide a platform to network and secure the market share for this industry, as well as the opportunity to chat to the parents about their photography requirements on a social level.

Enjoy architecture, interiors and design

If you prefer a quieter presence and like to work on your own, there is a huge market of developers, commercial and residential waiting to hear from you. Take a look at the online property sites and make appointments with the agents as well as those independent sellers in this market. Property does not sell unless it presents itself well enough visually to attract the attention of a potential buyer. Do not be fooled by estate agents offering you below wage rates, if you are focusing on an upmarket area, the level of estate values pay good commissions, so agents have to spend in order to sell.

I have many more ideas for you to discover, but at the moment, if you are in a state of procrastination and not feeling positive, take advantage of one of the above areas, it yours to make it happen.