How to start a home based photography business
There are so many things happening around us and our environment can be a great source of business whereby you can fulfill the peoples need of capturing memorable moments by being a professional photographer.
It is a common feeling for someone to want to capture special memories such as baptisms, birthdays, weddings or anniversaries in the form of photographs. After all, pictures do say a thousand words and they have a different way of relaying the story better as compared to a narration.
To cut the long story short, there is a huge market for your photography business. The onus will be on you to settle on what niche you want to carve for you and your business.
After being given the nudge of inspiration by the environment, what you need to look for next to get started on your home based photography business is the equipment. Since you are just starting out, it is important that you invest in a good camera. Of course the camera of your choice will depend on the type of photography you want to specialize in. A lot of information is available on the internet about good cameras and usually a DSLR or digital SLR camera will do. A digital camera allows a photographer to see the picture they have taken after they have framed and clicked. The camera is not the only thing you will need. You will have to work with a tripod, a pair of good lights or flash sets, memory cards for your digital camera, batteries,battery charger as well as a computer complete with photography software.
Truth be told, good equipment is not cheap. Depending on your business vision, you can write up a solid business plan detailing all information that is required and presenting it to a financial institution and use that to get a loan. Taking a loan is a personal preference and is dependent on an individuals vision. That said, you can still make a home based photography business with what you have and a little boost from your friends and family. That coupled with self belief and genuine interest in working behind the lens and you have enough to get started.
Your target customers will depend on the niche you have picked for your business. For instance, it can be fashion, portrait, landscape, nature, travel or wedding photography. It is advisable that you pick a field that comes naturally to you. The passion you have for the work will show in the final prints.
With a camera and the right attitude, you are now ready to market yourself. You can do this in many ways. Let it be a known secret among your family members, peers, and friends that you have a keen interest in photography. There is a lot of power in referrals if your job is good.
While you wait for clients, practice practice practice the art of taking photographs. Go out there and take lots of pictures. If you are more interested in doing wedding photography, practice how to use your camera inside and outside the church. Learn how to adjust the different lighting settings and learn how to use the manual settings of your camera. The more familiar you are with your surroundings, the more natural it will be to frame and capture a beautiful picture. Preparation is everything. Remember, someone is counting on you to make his or her special day truly memorable. Make your very own portfolio and use that to market yourself and your skills. Ensure that your portfolio offers the different types of photography. Let your pictures show that you are an all round and seasoned artist.
Depending on your marketing technique and target audience, you stand to get huge earnings from this kind of business. For instance, you can offer yourself as a call in photographer for family, or baby portraits whereby you charge clients by the hour and they can have as many photos taken and the client foots any extra printing and framing charges. A tweak to the above example would be to offer collages of pictures they like from the ones you took which can be produced with the right photography software and you can charge the client more for such a production. The sky is the limit and the more creative you are the more ways to get money this way.
Journal all important events near you and sell your service when there is opportunity to do so. In the case of wedding photography, one can charge different amounts based on different packages. The difference in the packages can be determined by the number of prints and the type of album to be used.
The reason why a home based photography business is quickly becoming a choice for many is the fact that you are not tied down by permits and licenses. It is important though that as a photographer you ensure you know the laws that regulate taking photos in particular buildings if at all such laws exist in your locality.
What you Can & Can’t Photograph
Sometimes, as a photographer, you run across people who will insist you don’t have a right to photograph this or that. Well, you might be surprised to discover that they are not correct! Here are your rights as a photographer:
You are allowed to photograph anything with the following exceptions:
• Certain military installations or operations
• People who have a reasonable expectation of privacy. In other words, people who are in their apartments (& you’re attempting to shoot through their window)
The ONLY one who has the right to confiscate your camera/memory cards/film are the police IF they have a WARRANT. If you are arrested for any reason, the police do NOT have the right to delete your photos/memory cards or otherwise destroy your film. It is ILLEGAL for them to do so.
To be clear, if it is out in the open and you can see it, you have the right to photograph it. This includes children (many people mistakenly think it’s not legal to photography someones children without their consent, rude – YES, illegal, NO.
If you are on private property, the owner can request that you LEAVE if they are unhappy with you photographing something, but they do NOT have the right to touch your camera or equipment or force you to delete any photos at any time.
The following is document outlining your rights as a photographer. It’s great to print and have on hand if you have a habit of snapping shots in public places.
Your Legal Rights as a Photographer
© Can Stock Photo Inc. / wacker