How to find jobs was one of the questions I had when I first started out. How can I monetize my hobby? There wasn’t much online advice to be found. So, here is my suggestion for anyone who wishes to advance and profit from their artistic endeavors.
I am aware of the anxiety associated with performing for pay for the first time. You worry about making a mistake. Just remember that you did everything right if you were able to land your first paying job. You just need to show up there, shoot, and send the files at this point.
However, let’s go back to the point where you’re receiving that job because that is the part that is unclear. Online authors do, in all honesty, make it look quite simple, but it is not. If you already have some professional experience, it’s one thing; if you just graduated from high school, it’s quite another.
We won’t get into the specifics of creating a portfolio, identifying a specialty, or creating your own style in this article. That occurs much later. We will just discuss how a person with a camera can be compensated for their labor instead.
The three simplest types of photography, to begin with, are headshots, events, and weddings (with a catch). A fourth choice exists, but that is the icing on the cake.
Photography of Events
I made my first money as an event photographer when I first began out. To do it, you essentially need no portfolio, and often, someone is looking for a photographer to cover their event.
In general, any event photography should be compensated. If you have covered two or more events and the “client” was satisfied with the images, there is no reason why you shouldn’t start charging.
Even though I don’t want to imply that all event photographers are amateurs, I will state that the barrier to entry is relatively low. Professional event photographers are amazing people with gazillion eyes that notice even the smallest details. I have a lot of respect for folks who can move about while wearing equipment.
By no means did I consider myself a professional event photographer. I only had a single camera, one lens, and a partially functional Neewer Speedlight on one of the gigs. The images were good.
Offering your services for free to someone in charge of any event organizing is one approach to getting started filming events. Then, while networking at the event, politely mention that you shoot events.
There will very probably be a lead on a job for upcoming pay. Try searching for as many events in your city as you can and emailing the planning teams if you’re looking for immediate payment.
Photography for Weddings: There Is a Catch
Don’t ruin someone’s special day by shooting poor pictures, please, please, please. If you can’t, don’t say you can shoot a wedding. I’ve never photographed a wedding before, and I don’t intend to start now. Despite my event experience, those pictures will be terrible.
You can work alongside a wedding photographer at the same time as an assistant or second shooter. Knowing how busy and stressful weddings may be, it is not simple for photographers.
Anybody’s health can suffer from spending 12 hours standing up, carrying strobes, and maintaining a positive attitude. Because of this, many wedding photographers employ second shooters and helpers.
A typical wedding kit has at least three to four lenses, two bodies, numerous strobes, stands, and numerous other accessories. It will be your responsibility to document the process from a unique perspective, hold the lamp for your employer, and generally lend a helping hand.
Reach out to a few wedding photographers in your city and inquire about any potential volunteer opportunities.
Each person requires a headshot. Years of experience are required to take a decent headshot. But if you have good people skills, taking an easy headshot with a white background and simple lighting is not too difficult. You can get started by looking up how to set up a 1-2 light setup for headshots.
A straightforward two-umbrella setup is my personal go-to for headshots: one in the rear for the fill light and one to the subject’s right or left for the key. Check out our tutorial with Peter Hurley if you want to learn more about the craft of headshot photography.
Then, how does it work? Actually, it is pretty simple. Just gather some friends, make sure they look presentable and shoot a few pictures that you may subsequently utilize in advertisements. Create an Eventbrite page now that the marketing has been completed.
Make it as straightforward as you can; for example, “20 minutes of studio photography, two edited photographs in two weeks.” You are taking group headshots; you are not photographing King Charles III.
Make it affordable based on the price of a headshot in your city. This is where Eventbrite excels because a huge portion of the organization process is automated.
Additional Option: Help!
Many photographers have egos corresponding to the price of their cameras. In response, I advise reading Ego Is The Enemy. I would not be shooting fashion if I never provided assistance. Being a helpful hand on a shoot was the only way I ever made my first contact with the profession.
Making new relationships while offering assistance allows you to observe how professionals interact with one another. The photographers are always willing to reward good helpers. An excellent assistant makes your shoot day infinitely nicer and infinitely less stressful.
Brandon, my finest assistant thus far, provided a top-notch on-set neck massage (on top of knowing exactly where everything goes).
Getting along well with a photographer can have many advantages, believe me: from employment to contacts to getting free access to the studio and equipment.