October 25, 2014, 03:31:53 AM

Author Topic: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?  (Read 5328 times)

paul13walnut5

  • Guest
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2012, 10:12:15 AM »
@PeterJ
Quote
obscure terms like "composition" and "controlling light"

That's really very funny.  You won't realise it.  But it is. 

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2012, 10:12:15 AM »

Dylan777

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 4195
    • View Profile
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2012, 10:12:40 AM »
It's fun to do take photography as hobby. But when you switch a hobby into professional....this no longer fun.

I have 4 friends(Wedding Pro for 15yrs), they have their own studio(s) and most of their camera gear is always up to date. To cover the entile wedding, they always go out as a pair. Each carry 2 FF bodies and decent L lenses.

I talked to them quite often about photograhpy business - after all expenses, they take home around $50K - $65K a year(in Califonia, this considered as min income). Their work hours are not 9-5, they spend ave 10 to 12hrs per day in studio for PP, edit, printing etc (monday to friday). Their weekend is mostly at wedding events....

If your current income is $100K or above, I suggest you keep photography as a hobby.
Body: 1DX -- 5D III
Zoom: 16-35L f4 IS -- 24-70L II -- 70-200L f2.8 IS II
Prime: 40mm -- 85L II -- 135L -- 200L f2 IS -- 400L f2.8 IS II

PhotoBadger

  • Guest
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #17 on: October 16, 2012, 10:51:14 AM »
You could do a lot worse than spend some time reading Keith Cooper's stuff over at Northlight:
http://www.northlight-images.co.uk/stuff2/?cat=14

Lots of good stuff about turning pro and running a photography business.

Personally it just confirmed that I'll be a lot happier as a hobbyist!

agierke

  • Canon 6D
  • *****
  • Posts: 360
    • View Profile
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #18 on: October 16, 2012, 11:47:36 AM »
some good advice being bandied about here. i think you will find that in photography there is no single formula for success as each successful photographer will have a unique story as to the path they took.

my own path started with assisting (something i highly recommend) which led to second shooting which led to main shooting. i have been working solely in the field of photography for over 10 years now and it has only been in the last 2 years that my business has started to transition into me taking a more leading role rather than providing support for other photographers. patience will be an enormously important attribute.

there will be no comprehensive answer to the question you posed (too much stuff to cover not enough time) but i'll contribute a few thoughts.

assisting

this is where a big part of the patience comes in but where an great deal of knowledge can be gained that you wont find online or in books. assisting multiple established photographers will give you an opportunity to learn several things including different techniques with different gear, different philosophical approaches in terms of style, and maybe most importantly different business practices. if you are successful at assisting it will also offer you something that i have found invaluable...a network of working professionals that can provide you with back up for gear and shooters as well as access to jobs when they can't shoot something or don't want to shoot something. i still assist for others to gain access to new types of shooting and to maintain those relationships so that when they refer a job they can't do they call me first. this has been the number one most important thing that has fueled my success transitioning into a main shooter.

the pitfall here is that you have to be completely supportive of whoever you are assisting and NEVER promote yourself under any circumstance. i have seen countless people try to assist but were too eager to be the Man and it showed on other peoples jobs. they faded fast and lost access to that professional network that could have kept them afloat. additionally, i have seen many people try to forgo assisting in favor of running their own business immediately and ultimately they fade away as well (typically in under a year) because they are under prepared and arent aware of the numerous mistakes you can make that will ruin a business faster than you can say bankrupt.

2nd Shooting

i approach this with the mind of an assistant (complete support of the main shooter) but it provides the environment to safely refine your craft as you dont have that direct pressure of having to deliver for a paying client on deadline. 2nd shooting has taught me how to see light better, how to introduce light appropriately into available light, and the full capabilities of my lenses and cameras in a variety of situations. after a couple of years your decision making/problem solving becomes lighting quick. an important asset if you want to be a main shooter.

Advertising

this one is tricky for me as i have never in my 10+ years advertised myself....not even on facebook. every opportunity i have had has come through word of mouth. that is not to say i dont think advertising isnt important, i am gearing up to do my first run of advertising this off season.

i guess my feeling on this can be summed up by the question What and Who are you advertising? if you are just starting out then it is more than likely that you dont truly know who you are as a photographer and don't really know what kind of photography you are capable of providing in a professional manner. you may say that you want to do family portraits but when you actually get out there and do it you might discover you arent that good at it. if you advertise for that and it turns out not to be your strength then the word-of-mouth machine will work against you pretty quickly.

again, with a little patience, you can take some time to develop your techniques and style, do jobs in a safe environment, develop a portfolio that is professional that showcases work that YOU KNOW you can deliver competently and THEN advertise who you are and what you do.

there are thousands of other considerations that go into starting a successful business but i will end on this thought. be careful what you wish for. lol. running your own business (successfully) typically means you need to be available 7 days a week at 12+ hours a day....if things go well. running your own business can also mean lengthy dry spells, whether that means not having work for a few weeks to a month or doing jobs that clients are on a 30 to 60 day payment schedule (or worse 90+). because of this unpredictability, i have found it beneficial to remain diversified. i currently assist 4-6 photographers regularly, teach at a university, 2nd shoot for 3 different photographers, and shoot for myself (Weddings, Corporate/Collegiate Events, Architecture/Real estate, and Studio/Location Portraiture). i have in the past also worked at a lab, taught at a 2nd College, been a studio manager, and handled post production for several photographers.

all that being said....i have a really cool freaking job and i feel blessed that i get to do what i do. if you feel that you have this same passion then you will be fine and figure out your own path for success.

good luck!
5D3, 5D2, 5DC, s15mm Fish, 24mm TSE, 35mm F1.4L, 50mm F1.2L, 85mm F1.8, 100mm F2.8L, 24-70mm F2.8L, 70-200mm F2.8L, 580EX, 580EX2, 600EXRT

BruinBear

  • Rebel SL1
  • ***
  • Posts: 99
    • View Profile
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #19 on: October 16, 2012, 12:55:31 PM »
You could do a lot worse than spend some time reading Keith Cooper's stuff over at Northlight:
http://www.northlight-images.co.uk/stuff2/?cat=14

Lots of good stuff about turning pro and running a photography business.

Personally it just confirmed that I'll be a lot happier as a hobbyist!

+1 to this, definitely enjoy photography more as a hobbyist after doing weddings and events
6D, 60D, 17-40L, 70-200L 2.8 IS II, 24-105L, Sigma 35mm 1.4, 40mm Pancake, Helios 44-M4 (55mm f/2), 1.4X Extender III, 430EX II, Yongnuo YN-622 Flash Triggers.
EOS-M, 22mm, EF Adapter.
And Canonet QL-17 GIII Film!

RLPhoto

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 3507
  • Gear doesn't matter, Just a Matter of Convenience.
    • View Profile
    • My Portfolio
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #20 on: October 16, 2012, 01:07:28 PM »
I have a 5d3 24-105, 70-200 2.8 is ii, 50mm 1.4. I want to start a photography business shooting family portraits at family outings or where ever they want to shoot. I like Candids and would love to go and capture those moments for families like first days at schools, parties, holidays, etc. just not sure how to get started and if I should do some free work to gain experience, etc. Any suggestions would be helpful.

1. Start a Website, and Show your best work.

2. Hit free social networking sites and expand.

3. Make sure your keyworded for search engines.

4. Call previous clients and inform them about your new business.

5. Get out and exhibit your work locally.

6. Get into stock photography if possible. It brings me steady monthly income.

7. Never shoot for free, but shoot to cover gas at minimum.

These are just basic stuff but much more details can be researched.

awinphoto

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 2002
    • View Profile
    • AW Photography
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #21 on: October 16, 2012, 01:26:46 PM »
Most everything already has been covered so I'm not going to bother to regurgitate everything everyone else is saying... instead let me say this...  have people critique your work..  DO NOT have friends critique, DO NOT critique your own work... have honest people who dont know you critique...  other photographers both pro and novice...  You will find photographers are far more critical of photography than the general public is, but if there is a glaring problem that you may or may not be seeing, they will be able to find it... Dont forget your shooting not for yourself but for other people... The buyer of said photographs has to love the photo in order for them to buy.  Some pro's even have a shot list and shoot just to that shot list... they know what sells, they know what doesn't... that artsy fartsy photo you love may not be loved by the client...  Shoot the shots that sell first, then if you have time, do the creative stuff that may or may not sell well and go from there...  Lastly, treat it as a business, because frankly, it is.  1 happy customer may tell 1 person how much they loved you... 1 upset customer may tell 10 people how they didn't like you.   
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, Canon 85 1.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #21 on: October 16, 2012, 01:26:46 PM »

wickidwombat

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 4522
    • View Profile
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #22 on: October 16, 2012, 06:37:49 PM »
I have a 5d3 24-105, 70-200 2.8 is ii, 50mm 1.4. I want to start a photography business shooting family portraits at family outings or where ever they want to shoot. I like Candids and would love to go and capture those moments for families like first days at schools, parties, holidays, etc. just not sure how to get started and if I should do some free work to gain experience, etc. Any suggestions would be helpful.

look at risk of sounding like a an ass and dont take this the wrong way, but based on many of your questions on this forum you seem to be a long way from proffessional shooting.

Think of mastering the camera as merely the very very basics, beyond that there is the ability to direct people this is particularly difficult with non models, there are lots of techniques that can be used to elicit the "look" you are chasing. proffessional models are much easier to deal with as they know how to work the camera.

Basically its not about the gear but about much more than that.

Definatley see if you can find a local photographer that is interested in a free assistant and while you are assisting pay special attention to how he directs the model and also how they react to certain directions.
being able to direct people the right way is not something everyone can do.

you might be able to second shoot a bit too but use this opportunity to see how they move and interact, the trouble is not many photographers are keen on training their future competition so its a bit catch 22

Remember if you want to shoot people its all about the people how they move what makes the insecure and stiffen up, what makes them relax and let their guard down without breaking down some barriers first you will just get a bunch of mug shots or snap shots. I would also strongly recommend reading everything from joe mcnally and looking at his work.

Good luck dont try jump in boots and all too deep because it might do more damage to your confidence than working up to it slowly.
APS-H Fanboy

KKCFamilyman

  • Canon 7D MK II
  • *****
  • Posts: 458
    • View Profile
    • Nicholas J Allo Photography
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #23 on: October 16, 2012, 11:58:33 PM »
Thanks everyone. I was going to do a joint partnership with a more experienced photographer friend. I think for now I am going to look at trying to get an assistant gig. That sounds like a good idea. I have a busy career so not sure when this will be my calling but just want to be heading in the right direction.
1Dx, 5D3, 16-35 f4 L IS, 24-70L II, 70-200 f2.8 IS II L, Sigma 35mm 1.4, 85mm 1.2 ii L, 100mm 2.8L macro, 70-300 L, 40mm 2.8, 3 x 600ex rt, ST-E3

PeterJ

  • Canon 6D
  • *****
  • Posts: 342
    • View Profile
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #24 on: October 17, 2012, 05:35:37 AM »
@PeterJ
Quote
obscure terms like "composition" and "controlling light"

That's really very funny.  You won't realise it.  But it is.
Thanks, sometimes people don't get my dry humour ;).

paul13walnut5

  • Guest
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #25 on: October 17, 2012, 07:44:34 PM »
@PeterJ

Guilty as charged, now that is funny!

I guess I read so much stuff like that, that I don't even question it anymore. 


dirtcastle

  • Canon 6D
  • *****
  • Posts: 391
    • View Profile
    • Eric Nord Flickr Page
Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #26 on: October 17, 2012, 09:02:42 PM »
I have a 5d3 24-105, 70-200 2.8 is ii, 50mm 1.4. I want to start a photography business shooting family portraits at family outings or where ever they want to shoot. I like Candids and would love to go and capture those moments for families like first days at schools, parties, holidays, etc. just not sure how to get started and if I should do some free work to gain experience, etc. Any suggestions would be helpful.

If you're passionate, talented, and entrepreneurial, you'll find a way to make it work.

Otherwise, you'll join the graveyard with the other 99% of photographers who wanted to be a pro photographer (but for whom it didn't work out).

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Want to start shooting professionally aNy suggestions?
« Reply #26 on: October 17, 2012, 09:02:42 PM »