Can i make a living of of photography?

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by Relic123, Jul 2, 2007.

  1. Relic123

    Relic123 TPF Noob!

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    I was looking into black hills state for a college, majoring in mass communication with an emphasis in photography. My main question would be could I support myself to a reasonable extent with photography as my main profession? Or would i have to have a 9-5 mon-fri I hate so I could live and do photography as a side venture? Any input would be greatly appreciated
     
  2. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    It all depends.
    How good are you? How good are you at selling yourself? What area of photography are you considering? What are the market opportunities in your area? How committed are you (are you going to become a photographer because you have to - or are you just thinking about it because it seems easy and fun?)? Are you prepared to be poor and hungry for at least a year while you get established? And once established are you prepared to live on a knife edge knowing that next week the work might dry up and you'll go under?

    Of course it is possible to make a living doing Photography. But you have to do your research and put in a heck of a lot of hard work - and even then you might just scrape by.
    And it's getting tougher all the time because there are so many wannabe photographers who can't make it full time so just do a bit of it on the side. This leads to a lot more competition and so it's harder to get work.
    Only seek to become a photographer if you really cannot think of anything else you'd rather do - and then think twice - and then don't do it. Become an accountant instead. ;)
     
  3. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    not an accountant deadly boring be a male escort/photogralpher lol..
     
  4. danalec99

    danalec99 TPF Noob!

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    Reminded me of this > "[SIZE=-1]the worst day in an ad agency beats the best day a bank ever had." :)[/SIZE]
     
  5. jstuedle

    jstuedle No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The biggest single reason good photographers have a hard time in the marketplace is they almost always are bad business people. On the other hand, in our area there is a terrible wedding photographer that is making a killing. He was a small chain restaurant owner that took his marketing skills and applied it to a photography business. Now he has a staff of basically point and shooters he sends out and burns a CD instead of presenting the traditional album. He has sold this as the modern equivalent of the traditional wedding photographer and people have bought into the idea in droves. So, if I were to be contemplating school in todays marketplace, I would seriously consider a major in business management and a minor in photography. Yes, a minor in photography. You already have the drive to be a photographer, and if photography becomes just a 9 to 5 job and you loose your drive you have a foundation to fall back on. As for me, when photography became a job, I started to treat it as just a job. I needed to back away to learn to love it again.
     
  6. Rusty_Tripod

    Rusty_Tripod TPF Noob!

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    Sure you can. You just have to find a niche that will support you. That might be a challenge in light of the ever changing definition of photography brought on by developments in digital photography and magic software and the fact that public media are willing to accept and use images taken by poor quality camera phones. Aside from that I am not sure that people even know what good photography is anymore.

    Rusty Tripod
     
  7. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you think that you can make a just a small group of masterpieces say 10 of the most amazing pictures that people will buy an ilfochrome print of for $10000, then you can get on easily. But if you lack that you will need the business senses explained above. Something to make you stand out from every other photographer in the business.

    One of our engineering lecturers came up with a good analogy a while ago. "If you can't make something work, tell it to marketing."
     
  8. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Sadly, these days it is the accountants who run the Ad agencies.
     
  9. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    I was thinking, have you ever considered blackmail photography. It's a bit risky I hear but pays better than weddings.
     
  10. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    I hear the real money is in porn...
     
  11. Stretch Armstrong

    Stretch Armstrong TPF Noob!

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    Regardless of the money, it is bound to be more fun!:lol:
     
  12. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    I'm sure that after a while it would get to be the same old grind :mrgreen:
     

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