Is there alot of money in photography?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Salad Tounge, Oct 15, 2008.

  1. Salad Tounge

    Salad Tounge TPF Noob!

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    I'm 13 and living in the UK, my ambition is to become a professional photographer. Possibly a photojournalist, media photographer or fashion photographer. How much can i expect to make? Any tips on what i need to do to become one would also be a nice touch.
     
  2. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    The secret to getting rich with photography is to come up with things to sell to photographers. ;)
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    There is plenty of money in photography, but there are also plenty of photographers competing for that money.

    You can make money in photography...you can make money in just about any field...if you are good at it and if you have the determination for it.

    As for how to get there, start with education. Take classes in school if you can. It would also be a great benefit if you could find someone to mentor you. Approach some working professionals and try to become an apprentice or assistant etc. It might be hard, at your age, and you may not get paid for it, but the experience you gain will be worth more than money at this point.
     
  4. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    For the vast majority of professional photographers, there's very little money in it because everyone and their grandmother owns a D40 or Rebel and people think that the bigger the camera the better the pictures.

    Too many people always blame the camera for bad pictures, and think that if they upgrade their D40 to a D3 they'll *magically* be able to shoot commercial grade stuff, but in the end their crap is still crap, and they're frustrated because they can't justify 5g's anymore. Worse yet, they had to get a plastic fantastic 28-90 f/5.6 because they had to re-fi their house and refuse to spend the time to actually learn how to use their camera. (true story, i've had 3 people come into the store with d3's asking how to turn on or off the dx crop because they didn't know that the 18-55VR and sigma 10-20 don't cover full frame. I asked this one womanwho came in a question at about the time i got my D700, wh shoots sports on a D3. I asked her, "now when you're shooting something like football, what AF system do you use? i've heard that the 9pt continuous is the best inbetween." She said she didn't know how to set that and she said she just sets it to auto af and continuous and just holds down the shutter till the camera slows down, and then proceeded to ask me why it does that.)

    enough of the rant, basically you need to work your bloody butt off and start meeting a boatload of people all the time if you want to really succeeed big time in photography, and the more money those people have, the better.
     
  5. K_Pugh

    K_Pugh No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    It's not really about succeeding in photography, it's about succeeding in marketing. I'd start learning about both, the sooner the better.
     
  6. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    The best place to get answers to your question is to contact the Association of Photographers in London. The nearest thing UK photographers have to a union.
    http://hub.the-aop.org/
    They are very nice, helpful people.

    In the 80's they went under the acronym AFAEP and were a boon to photo assistants. I got a lot of work through them.
     
  7. Phranquey

    Phranquey TPF Noob!

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    Think of pro photography like the music business:

    Most musicians are hobbyists, maybe getting the occasional weekend gig, but carry a day job.

    Some musicians are talented enough to make a comfortable living doing what they love.

    Few musicians have the chops to be rock stars and make the big bucks.


    You can easily substitute "photographer" for "musician".
     
  8. mdsoares

    mdsoares TPF Noob!

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    Generally photojournalism jobs are few and far between, with many not paying much unless you become a staff photographer for a large publication.

    The majority of professional photographers are entrepreneurs who have opened their own photography business. If they come across a gig do to a shoot for a magazine or are asked to do some photojournalism work and it interests them, they'll do it.

    However if you ONLY want to do photojournalism and work for a magazine or newpaper...it is very very difficult. You need to be very luck, or know the right people. There are very limited staff positions and a lot of pro photographers.

    Your best bet to make money and be a pro photographer is to open your own business. You can tailor this to your interests. If you are very artistic you can focus on being more of an artist, doing your own work and reselling online or in galleries. This can be a difficult way to go and often leads to starving artists. More commonly, you can focus on events like wedding, or children's sports. Maybe you like studio work, so rent a studio and do portraits.

    While being a solid photographer is very important, I would say that being a good business person and knowing how to effectively market yourself is even more important. Alot of sucessful photographers out there are NOT the best in their field, however they market themselves extremely well. You can be a good photographer and make great photographer money if you know how to sell yourself.

    If you're serious about being a photographer majoring in photography does help, but I think at least a minor in business is even more helpful. Alot of people major in an art and forget the business side. Then when they graduate they fall on their face. They take great photos or paint perfect pictures, but they don't know crap about running themselves as a business, and they fail.

    If I had to chose a "best" way to make money in photography, I would have to say Weddings. There is a lot of liability in being a wedding photographer, but also a lot of money. Most weddings will run at least a $1000US, often more depending on where you are located. If you are a good businessman you can make nice money in the wedding photography field.

    I would suggest as others have that you look into being an assistant for someone. I'm sure a local photographer can use an ambitious teenager for a helping hand. At your age you may not get paid, but the experience is valuable.
     
  9. iflynething

    iflynething TPF Noob!

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    Most photographers are hobbyists, maybe getting the occasional weekend gig, but carry a day job.

    Some photographers are talented enough to make a comfortable living doing what they love.

    Few photographers have the chops to be rock stars and make the big bucks.


    You can easily substitute "photographer" for "musician"


    :) I can be a rock star?




    ~Michael~
     
  10. Phranquey

    Phranquey TPF Noob!

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    :lol: Absolutely
     
  11. PictureThis

    PictureThis TPF Noob!

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    that is very very VERY true...well put
     
  12. cherry30

    cherry30 TPF Noob!

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    First, you have to love what you do. Before you can make it big in the business, you will have to learn all there is to know. And as long as you love taking photographs, you will definitely succeed.
     

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