If you’re reading this, it would be fair to assume you have had a camera for some amount of time. You’ve learnt the basics, tried your hand at various projects, maybe even been part of the school or college club. Now you’re considering taking photography more seriously, and why wouldn’t you? It allows you to show the world your perspective in a way that you enjoy.
You will also be aware that photography is not an easy field; the technicalities are innumerable, the competition is fierce, and the scope for growth is never-ending. Yet for some, that is precisely what makes it the field they wish to conquer. If you are one of those eager, skilled artists, with a want to make this your primary, or even secondary source of income, this blog will give you some essential tips and guidance.
Photography to pursue a hobby and professional photography differ vastly. Being aware of those differences, learning how to hone the skills you need to bridge that gap, and understanding what the field truly offers is the first step for every photographer.
Professional Photography is divided into multiple genres, and more often than not, photographers choose a particular genre and remain in it. Being a photographer does allow for flexibility within the field, but many professionals suggest honing your skills to perfection in one genre once you have learnt your strengths.
Keeping all this in mind, it is important to understand the professional aspects of photography beyond the technicalities. To help with that, this blog aims to introduce you to three major ways to gain profits from photography. We will also be discussing GoPro, and how you can use it to increase profits. These tips will speak to you as an individual, however, they are equally applicable to your brand. Ensure you look at them from the perspective that is relevant to you.
Profiting from Photography
Setting a Standard Price
Many creative professionals and brands make the common error of not appropriately pricing their services. Clients are unaware of the technical and physical effort that goes into a photoshoot, regardless of genre. As a professional you are investing majorly in terms of money, physical labour, and most of all, intellectual labour.
- It is important to remind yourself of the fact that photography does not end at capturing the images; more often than not it extends to filtering, and editing the images. A photoshoot of 250 pictures, can eventually produce approximately 20-30 perfect images, even lesser for beginners.
- When you pitch your services, or a client approaches you, ensure that you evaluate what you are investing into the project, and state the price accordingly. In the beginning, it will be tempting to compromise and provide room for adjustment, however, after a certain point, confidence in your skill is your biggest strength, do not fail to price it accordingly.
- Set a standard list of prices for the different services you offer, and stick to your decision. Varying prices too much can cause discomfort and distrust with a range of interconnected clients.
- Most importantly, no one wants to hear this, but friend and family discounts are not optimal for a growing artist or brand. Do your best to avoid working within personal spheres, or emphasise on a certain degree of professionalism in case you do. Note that this is open to your discretion in every way.
Know Your Equipment
Being smart when you choose and use equipment can be one of your biggest boons as a professional or brand. Over time you will interact with a wide range of clients, requesting varying services, themes, and ideas. In many cases, themes or concepts can need varying equipment to maintain a certain standard and quality.
- As you grow professionally, so will the collection of equipment you own. When you buy equipment ensure that you evaluate your market, your clients’ needs, and what you aim to achieve in the long term. If your work often requires different lenses, try to invest in lenses that are a little more adaptable, instead of buying multiple single-purpose lenses.
- Learn about the equipment available to you outside of your own collection. For instance, in your network of photographers, see what your colleagues, employees or acquaintances can offer, and try to utilise this network as best you can. Creating a system to use equipment can save a major amount of income. However, remember to always emphasise on safety and care of all the equipment that is circulated.
- Similarly, learn about equipment rental places. All photography and videography related equipment can be rented on an hour or day basis. This can be expensive, however, so it would be wise to list and compare all those near you, and possibly build strong professional relationships with the most convenient ones.
Simply speaking with or learning from current professionals in the industry is not enough, you must also work towards interning, learning and building your identity in the field. Working with these skilled individuals will help you grow in many ways.
- Their guidance, and tutoring, or consultation can help you improve on your skill set and achieve the practical knowledge that you need to improve. Their experience, their portfolios, and their current projects are all sources of learning for you.
- The exposure you gain, not only to skills, but to the way the industry works, the way the market works, what clients want and need, is irreplaceable. Being within the industry while still learning allows you to identify problem spots and eventually be the solution that clients need.
- Most importantly, pertinent to this blog, is that professionals are paid for their services, and they do not accept projects that do not compensate. As an intern, or brand collaborator, this could be your first step towards establishing this as a source of income. As stated earlier, know your price and ask for it. Being a fellow creative, they are aware of the effort you are investing and must reward it accordingly.
These tips will help you save and earn large sums of money in both short term and long term projects. As a growing professional or brand, these small changes can be what make the difference between scraping by and making profit. Every source of income counts at a time like this.
As a brand, incorporating these tips into the services you offer is crucial. Supposing you are an agency offering product photography, food photography, and other themed photography services to your clients, remember to pitch your services, and build your long term strategies in accordance with these tips.
Always remember that these are simply tips to help you get a start on becoming a professional photographer. However, as any professional should, over time you will have to adapt and modify your strategies, and your approach to your career, as well as gaining profit.
What is it?
GoPro Inc. is the name of a technology company originating in America, founded in 2002. The company manufactures brilliant action cameras, and has taken multiple action-based fields by storm. Individuals in a variety of adventure sports, parkour athletes, bikers, cyclists, videographers, and many others have found GoPro cameras (commonly referred to as GoPros) to be a brilliant addition to their equipment.
Built to be small, light, and compact, they can be attached to helmets, placed on your body using different types of harnesses, attached to monopods, tripods, or even selfie sticks. These cameras are extremely versatile and can be used in multiple settings.
This range of features makes the GoPro range highly sought after equipment, which also makes it a major investment. If one decides to buy a GoPro, the next step will be making the purchase worthwhile, by using it to gain profit or returns. Being used mostly for the purpose of personal activity tracking, its potential for profit is often overlooked.
How to profit from using it?
If you have recently purchased a GoPro, we have listed three potential ways to gain income with it, outside of using it for the activity of your choice.
Create and Sell Stock Footage:
Individuals and brands in various fields require a range of stock footage for their advertisements and other video based content. This stock footage is generally bought off various websites and platforms, such as Shutterstock.
This is where your potential source of income enters. This stock footage is posted by individual creators on these websites, for a certain price. Although individually the price of this footage does not amount to much for a brand, in the long run, the amount can combine to a large amount.
To gain access to this, you simply have to take your GoPro with you when you’re participating in an activity of any kind. Even something as simple as watching a sunset, record it, create an account on a stock footage website and upload the footage for sale. GoPros have a wide range in terms of what they can do, whether you wish to record a timelapse of the night skyline of your city, or simply the traffic outside your window, it can be done, and sell that footage.
As a brand, you can create this stock footage and sell it. If you are an agency that provides other video marketing and advertising services, you can utilise it to create footage and use it for your own brand, which majorly reduces costs in video production.
Vlogging is the video form of blogging and has recently become a very popular form of documenting one’s experiences or even simply their daily life. Many vloggers record their daily activities, their travels, their favourite activities, and a range of other things.
To gain profit, you must build a large following, and loyal audience. This will bring your vlog or channel to the notice of major brands, and they will approach you to promote their products or services. You can also gain profit by allowing brands to advertise before, and during your videos, and on your platform.
If you are still not sure on how to start on this process, refer to the video shown above to learn How to Vlog. Also make it a point to watch other vloggers, understand what content you wish to produce and post, and simply begin. Utilise the help of your friends, acquaintance, and other followers to increase your followers, and build an identity online.
Bring Two Worlds Together:
Do you like to spend your weekends riding? Show the world using your GoPro. Trekkers, travellers, professional riding groups or solo riders, and other adventure sport enthusiasts often record their activities and create a medium through which other enthusiasts can experience what they have and provide recognition.
This activity doesn’t simply provide you with the opportunity to display your skills, but it also gives companies within your field the opportunity to reach out to you. Supposing you create a Youtube channel wherein you post videos of your expeditions on your motorcycle, a riding gear brand may see your follower numbers and approach you to promote their gear.
This video shows GoPro itself collaborating with a motorcycle rider and supporting him on this expedition, GoPro: Highest Road in the World.
This may also present you with the opportunities to grow in your field of interest. For instance, being invited to test ride new bikes, or participate in races and bike launches due to the establishment of your identity via your GoPro videos. This can be achieved by simply combining two of your worlds and creating experiences, using GoPros.
If you plan, strategise, and execute well, a GoPro can be a highly fruitful investment in the long run. Think it through, evaluate your options, and make your choice.
Profiting from photography and GoPro are novel concepts and are still in the process of developing. However, that simultaneously means that there is a lot of attention on these fields. Content consumers are fascinated, and brands are realising the value.
Photography has been a crucial part of brand work for a while now. Commercial photography, product photography, and other such forms have been and continue to be widely used. Further developing and growing with the field requires adaptation and this blog aims to help you adapt to these new changes.