How To Be A Successful Photographer
Professional Photo Tips
9 Pieces Of Advice That Will Fast Track You To Becoming A Successful Photographer / Creative Artist
- Don’t Wait For Something To Fall Into Your Lap
God isn’t it easy to think that you can comfortably keep chipping away doing what you’re doing waiting for that someone to see your work and NEED you to work for them. It’s a pretty awesome thought isn’t it. However, for 98% of people it simply won’t work.
It’s simple, there has never been more people who are looking to land the exact same job your wanting to land. At a bare minimum for you to land the job of your dreams you have to at least buy a ticket. If you don’t approach people, brands, agencies… build relationships and ASK for work, most often they will simply find someone else from the masses.
2. Be Prepared For Rejection – It happens A Lot
Have you heard that song, “I get knocked down, but I get back up again, you’re never gonna keep me down”? When you get the email that never comes, the ‘thanks for your submissions’, the ‘unfortunately…’ you just have to remember that it isn’t the end of the world. The people you are contacting are more often than not very busy people. If they replied/wrote personalized emails to everyone that emailed them they probably wouldn’t have time to scratch their ass each day.
So don’t expect anything from people you contact. Focus on continuing to do your work and continuing to pitch your work to potential clients / brands. Eventually it will happen.
3. Find Areas Where People Need You – And Show Them What You Can Do For Them
If you have skills that you feel could further the business of particular companies or brands your wanting to work with, let them know about it! These days you need to offer something different and for free to stand out.
Don’t just approach (X) and say you would like to work for them. Approach (X) and say ‘I’d like to work for you. I noticed that your (company…) doesn’t have (X). I have a lot of experience creating (X) and would like to offer my services to do it for free! I’ve loved your (brand) for a long time so If there was any way I could get involved I would love to help out.”
It’s simple, there has never been more people who are looking to land the exact same job your wanting to land. At a bare minimum for you to land the job of your dreams you have to at least buy a ticket.
4. Your Works Worth As An Artist, Filmmaker Or Photographer Is Not Purely Reflected By How Many Followers You Have On Social Media
Social media is a great place to showcase your work. Not to get jobs. Don’t get caught into the trap of thinking that no one will want you to work for them because you have only just started and have 600 followers on instagram. If your work is good and can be beneficial to your clients, they will use you.
5. Trust The Process – It’s A Journey & Definitely Not A Short Game – You Have to Be In It For The Long Haul
Finding your style can take a long time. Once you find it you need to master it. You need to stick your head out amongst the screaming crowd of people wanting their work ‘shared’, ‘seen’, ‘followed’, ‘liked’… Then you need to create ways of finding time, resources, equipment to keep up with the workflow. This is not something that is going to happen in just a few years. For some it’s can take more than a decade. You need to trust that what you’re doing is eventually going to lead you where you want to go. So strap yourself in for the long haul, and focus on enjoying all the learning curves along the way.
Header Photo: Andrew Semark | Above Photo: Rachel Claire
6. Know Your Why!
When shit hits the fan, you have no work, your in a creative rut, or you’re wondering if what you doing is going to amount to anything; knowing your WHY will get you through it. Knowing why you want to be a photographer, artist, filmmaker, musician, actor.. Is the most important piece of information you own. Write down all the reasons why you want to be an (X), write down the pros, the cons, and goals you want to achieve being an (X). When your in dark times turn to your thought written down to keep you on track and moving forward.
7. Financial Problems Will Almost Always Be The Biggest Struggle Creatives Will Have In The Early Days
Working other jobs while pursuing your dreams/goals is always going to be a part of life. Look for work that might expand your knowledge on things your passionate about, but if that’s no possible just find a job and work it. Simple.
8. Be Original, Don’t Try And Compete In a Saturated Area
I’m sure a lot of you will have noticed the huge impact drone photography has had over the past three years. However I’m sure most of you will agree that most things have been done. The drone photos that used to stop you from scrolling on Instagram, you pass straight over now. It’s not to say that drone photos are finished or are no longer going to be popular in the future. Only that the easy angles/ideas have been done. So don’t try and jump on the bandwagon too far into its life cycle, but if you do find a niche and specialise your work towards it.
9. Don’t Look Too Far Ahead – Remember To Enjoy What Is Happening Around You
It’s easy to expect that after (X) months/years you’ll be doing this or that.. or making (X) money. However it’s not a good idea to focus your energy/happiness solely on achieving that goal. Because sometimes the goals you have set are going to take longer than you expected. You need to learn to enjoy the moment. A quote which I love regarding business wanting to grow is “the fastest way for a tadpole to become a frog is to live everyday happily as a tadpole”. One day you will just look behind you and see your growing legs while simply enjoying the ride.