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10 Attributes Professional Photographers Need to Succeed

10 Attributes Professional Photographers Need to Succeed

Written 9 years ago by Lee

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Comments
Jeffrey Byrnes  9 years ago

This might fit under “contacts” but, clients can provide a huge resource when it comes to landing more work. If a client is more than impressed with the quality of work that you have given them, chances are they will be more than happy to make recommendations as well as brag about your business. Having clients that are willing to help you when you are just starting out can also make establishing a photography business flow a little easier.

Lee Milthorpe  9 years ago

Definitely! Word of Mouth is the best form of advertising, it’s personal, people know exactly what they’ll be getting AND it’s free!

It actually ties in with a lot of the points above. If you have knowledge, good people skills and confidence, you have more chance of getting those few early clients to refer you to their colleagues, friends and family, leading to more contacts and more work!

Jackie Wu aka GeckoKid  9 years ago

May I also point out that one would need to learn to drive, that’s what my boss is telling me. For myself, not being able to drive is a massive hindrance as I cannot go to remote places on my own. I went to Galway, Ireland a month or so ago and I had to take a guided bus tour around the country for photos, hence there were a bus full of tourists surrounding me. Good for the first trip, and I was very lucky that the weather was gorgeous. However I do wish I could stay on the cliffs of Moher for a little bit longer.

Of course one could hire a driver but that’s just a little bit too expensive.

Lee Milthorpe  9 years ago

That one is a great point, obviously something I take for granted by missing it out but it’s definitely one of the more important things, especially if you plan on doing shoots all over the country. Imagine Attempting to get all that gear on public transport…

Paul Sveda  9 years ago

I agree with all points, except I think point 4 “Money”. Yes you do need it but how much capital you need can vary. I’ve seen PLENTY of photographers get by with mid range gear that is several years old and a home office all the while using the web (relatively cheap) as a place to show, print and distribute their work.

Your point 4 sounds a little “scare-tactic-y” would be my only concern.

Neill Watson  9 years ago

Number 10 is withouit doubt the most important and something that no photo courses ever tell you. I had a 15 year background in specialist cars before becoming a professional photographer in 2002. Without that and some advice from other professionals, I’d never have succeeded.
And selling / marketing is a constant thing, it never goes away and as technologies kill of one market and open another, you need to constantly re-invent yourself.
Paul’s comment about money and a scare tactic has some value, but it’s still scary how modern digital kit is without value in a short time. Film gear used to have a much longer life.

Hope this helps someone!

selina maitreya  9 years ago

I would add, faith, consistency of effort, tenacity, marketing skills,
marketing tools, and more faith!

Neal Pritchard  9 years ago

Very good post. The confidence to promote what you think is a good photograph is my point of focus in the next year

Terry Day  9 years ago

As a working professional for over 30 years I have to say.. Excellent post! Very helpful for anyone wanting to succeed in this industry.

Matthew Adam  9 years ago

very good tips! our business started up a few years ago from scratch and we are learning all the time.

SSB GERA  9 years ago

Excellent tips, particularly the 4th one and of course the 10th.

Lisa Lees  9 years ago

As a newly qualified and recently employed photographer, I found this post very helpful and informative, and even point 4 hasn’t put me off! Although I have a part-time photography job, I am also setting up a small studio so that I can start doing solo work. I still attend college and intend to continue on that path for the next couple of years at least. Passion and commitment are, I think, the two attributes that one needs in abundance; I am juggling work, studying and family life, but with one key ingredient – my husband’s total support, both emotionally and practically. Real support is a must and I would not be able to realise my dream of being a professional photographer without it.

BlueRose  8 years ago

Can I add one more ?

ALWAYS carry your business cards on you somewhere :)

Angel  8 years ago

This is very informative…I have so many people tell me I should go into business, but I know I am not ready. What holds me back is #2. I want to know more about my equipment, I know most things, but until I know everything about it, I am not ready. Post-processing is another skill I lack knowledge in. I have great programs, but dont know how to use them. Even though only a true photographer would be able to pick up on it, I know I am not 100% so I would not ba able to give 100% to my client.
Thanks again for this article.

Buddy  7 years ago

Hi Guys! just started photography a year back and im LOVING it!! i was on self study at the start, learning from youtube, pod casts, magazines, etc. i have a canon EOS 600D with 50mm f1.8 and 18-200mm f3.5-5.6. my friends asked me to shoot for their daughter’s birthday and they loved all the pictures. i know very much that i still have a LONG WAY to be very good in photography, since i love landscape and portrait photography, please suggest what lens to use. i dont have much financial budget for lenses and equipments, so please suggest me a good set-up to start with. thank you very much for your time in reading this and hope you will have a fabulous shooting days ahead of you. THANK YOU for these tips. this will make me better (i hope) in taking photos.

Cheers, :)

Steven  6 years ago

A lot of photographers forget that selling their art involves more than just the ability to produce great photos.

There’s plenty of starving artists out there who produce amazing work, but have no clients.

Thanks for sharing – I think it widens the perspective and illustrates that there’s a lot more to having a photography business than just taking good photos.

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