How To Turn Your Photography Hobby Into A Career

by Tanya June 09, 2024

Photography is quite an easy hobby to take up, considering that even smartphones nowadays have quality cameras you can use to take stunning photos.

Some of you may develop a deeper passion for the craft and eventually consider pursuing it as an actual career.

However, the jump from a photography hobby to a career will certainly require effort, dedication, and patience.

You should be willing to exert all of these and more, or your venture likely won’t take off.

Whether you’re a complete amateur photographer, or want to pursue it full-time, here are some tips on how to jumpstart your career in photography.

1. Build a portfolio

If you want to offer your photography skills to clients, the first thing you should do is prove your competence.

With hobby photography, you may get away without knowing any composition techniques but the same cannot be said when practicing photography professionally.

People looking to hire you would want to see that you’ve got a good grasp of the craft so that they can be assured doing business with you will be worth it. To this end, you would need a portfolio to showcase your skills.

Luckily, if you’ve been doing hobby photography for quite some time, you probably have a wealth of photos to choose from to include in your portfolio.

Compile your best ones and make sure there’s variety as well—such as shots of people, objects, and sceneries—to show your range.

Your portfolio can be physical, complete with an album, although an online portfolio may be more convenient so you can just link it to clients who may be interested.

2. Make sure you have the right equipment

Shifting from hobbyist to professional photographer often entails upgrading equipment, especially if your current one won’t be able to meet the demands of the job.

While an entry-level camera is completely fine to start with, you’ll eventually find yourself wanting better gears to gain access to features and settings that can further improve your photos.

Equipment in this case isn’t only limited to the camera itself but also accessories such as lenses, tripods, and the like.

If you find yourself unable to upgrade just yet,  you can always rent camera equipment in the meantime. Just make sure that you are renting from reputable sources.

3. Find a niche

Being a jack of all trades in photography isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but you’d find that clients are more drawn to those with specialties.

Try to find your niche and put that at the forefront of your practice.

Do you want to be a wedding photographer or perhaps you want to focus on portraits?

How about someone who takes product photos for advertising?

Whatever it is, carve a niche for yourself so it’s easier for clients to see what you’re all about.

4. Market yourself

Now that you’ve chosen a niche, it’s time to incorporate that in the way you market yourself.

You may also incorporate your specialty in your promotional materials such as logos or business cards.

With that in mind, create various marketing essentials like business cards, posters, or flyers, as well as a website or social media account for people to easily find and discover more about you. Learn more about digital marketing strategies.

5. Actively seek out clients

This can be done through something as simple as asking family and friends if they know someone who may need a photographer for an event; you can also try advertising your services on social media or Google.

Being consistent in spreading the word about your photography services can help reach the right people and eventually get you clients.

6. Ask for referrals and testimonials

After you’ve bagged your first few clients, politely ask them to give a testimonial about your service and if they won’t mind referring you to others should the opportunity arise.

You can then include the testimony on your website or social media page to boost the credibility of your work.

Likewise, a past client’s referral may lead you to your next project.

With this in mind, make sure that you do excellent and professional work to ensure you’ll be getting enthusiastic feedback from your clients.

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The first Millennial blogger in the UK. Twitter @_luckyattitude

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