When should I start my photography business?
How do I know if I should start a photography business?
These are two questions that I have not been personally asked as of yet. But I felt I should be ready with an answer when the day comes. Starting a business is not something one does on a whim. It’s not easy. However, it’s not impossible either. Before we start a little disclaimer. I do not have a degree in business and by no means am I claiming to be an expert on the subject. What I can share is my experience!
I have been a military spouse for nearly 19 years. All of my children have been born in different states as we have moved 8 times across the U.S. Therefore, I have not followed a traditional career path. When you move every three years it’s rather difficult to grow a career. So I always tried to find something that could easily move with me when the time came. After trying a variety of home-based businesses I landed on photography.
Well the first thing you need is professional camera gear. Right? WRONG! At least that is my opinion. First thing I would suggest you need is education! Under the main umbrella of education there are some subcategories to consider: business, camera use, editing, posing, off camera flash. The list goes on and on. So where you do you start? I began with two things a book, and a shooting and editing course.
The book I suggest is START – Punch Fear in the Face by Jon Acuff! Is that an awesome title or what? By then end of chapter one Jon spells it out so plainly. “Regardless of your age or station in life, it all comes down to one simple truth: you just have to start.” You can plan, prepare and practice all you want but at some point you are going to have to start! For me starting simply meant taking steps forward. It was time to quit talking about, thinking about or dreaming about a photography business; it was time to make some moves.
After all I didn’t pick up my camera to spend hours behind my computer in photoshop. I picked it up to spend hours shooting and sharing beautiful images.
My first move wasn’t to launch a website or open a business account. Learning how to really use my camera was my first move. It was time to get serious and flip that dial to M. I loved snapping pictures but would I love all the details and intricacies of shooting on manual? Words like F-stop, aperture, shutter speed and ISO scared me. After weeks of trolling for free lesson I decided if I was going to be serious photographer then I would need serious education. No more quick tips and tidbits. Only good solid instruction would do! Enter Amy & Jordan’s Shooting & Editing Course! Amy & Jordan’s philosophy is that “great photography doesn’t happen in Photoshop. It happens in camera.” After all I didn’t pick up my camera to spend hours behind my computer in photoshop. I picked it up to spend hours shooting and sharing beautiful images. After 9 1/2 hours of classroom content I was shooting better, editing faster and my confidence in capturing consistent quality images had grown. I will always be in pursuit of improving but with this course I took a giant leap forward in my photography.
So if you are thinking you may want to take your photography from hobby to business and you aren’t spinning those dials and punching those buttons as professionally as your child does their playstation remote; my first suggestion would be invest in some quality education! It’s time to flip that switch from auto to manual.
Here are a few before and afters. All images were taken with the same camera! Upgrading is still on my to do list!