Archive for the ‘The Business Of Photography’ Category

Brand Over Benefits

December 27th, 2011

A couple months ago, I was putting my 2 year old daughter down for a nap, and she asked for her Strawberry Shortcake blanket. The blanket was in another room so I didn’t want to go get it (ok, I think it was on the other side of the room, but who cares?). I had another blanket right at the end of the bed, so I started to cover her with that one. She took her binky out – “NO THE STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE BLANKEY”. Again, Strawberry was hanging out at the other side of the room, and I had stuff to get done. I told her the blanket I had was softer, warmer, and bigger. None of that mattered to her. It wasn’t about comfort. It was about a cartoon image on the t[...]

What’s Your Photo Lab Doing For You?

November 1st, 2011

One of the questions we get asked most frequently by newer photographers is which photo lab we use. It’s pretty interesting to me that even early on these photographers have figured out that professional photographers typically stick to one lab – it’s usually an unspoken exclusive relationship. With that being the case, you want to make sure that you’re compatible with your lab. Since there’s no e-harmony for photo labs, you’ve probably found yourself asking around to learn more about a lab before you commit. I’ll break the suspense right now, and let you know that we almost always use H&H for our prints and professional products. We lik[...]

Make Money With Photography By Cutting Costs

February 1st, 2011

If you want to make money with your photography business, the easiest way to start is by saving money on expenses. Cutting back on spending may not be glamorous (actually, it definitely isn’t), but saving money means a fat paycheck at the end of the day for you – the business owner, and that’s pretty fantastic in my book. So if you’re ready to start treating your photography business like an income producing machine, read on to find ways to minimize what comes out of your pocket.

Stay Out Of Debt Avoid debt like the plague. Both personal debt and business debt make interest work against you, when you should be using it to your benefit. If you can’t[...]

Advantages To Being A Part-Time Photographer

January 18th, 2011

If running a photography business full-time makes you drool just thinking about the possibility, you’ll probably want to wipe your face, then let’s have a chat before you decide that going full-time tomorrow is your best bet at success. If you’ve got a 9-5 (ok, I know it’s realistically more like 8 to 6 for most of you guys), you may have it better than you think. There are plenty of reasons to stick with your day job for a while – at least until you get your photography business ready to catch you when you jump.

Test The Waters With your photography being only a part time job, you’ll feel more free to experiment than if you had made the move t[...]

Wedding Photography On Overpaid Jobs List

January 17th, 2011

I ran across an old article from 2003 (read the article here) where wedding photography is listed as one of the most overpaid jobs in the US. While the article is dated, I can tell you that same attitude still exists. We hear fairly frequently at weddings a conversation that goes like this: Random guy – “You make $2500 a wedding?” Me – “Not really. We don’t get to keep all that money.” (Statement ignored, dollar signs still in random guy’s eyes). Random guy – “And you do a wedding a weekend?” Me – “Yea, on average it’s about a wedding a weekend. There’s slow season where we don’t shoot a lo[...]

2011 State Of The Photography Industry

January 14th, 2011

If you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past few years, you might not have noticed that the photography industry has gone through some major changes in the last few years. The digital revolution and slow economy have both been major players in many of the changes. With 2011 just starting out, it’s a good time to get the pulse of the photography world. If you can get a good grasp on where the photo industry is at, and where it’s headed, you can make better choices in planning where you want to go as a studio. This is by no means a comprehensive list of trends, but they’re the changes that we’ve noticed based on our experience with consumers and photogra[...]

15 Factors For Pricing Wedding Photography

December 19th, 2010

Pricing wedding photography can be a difficult excercise, and there’s as much art as there is science in setting your prices. You may also find a previous post on pricing sessions to be useful in making your decision. After 7 years of gradually adjusting wedding prices and comparing rates with other wedding photographers, here’s a list of 15 factors that I’d like to share with you guys so you can make smart decisions when setting rates and packages.

Ballpark Prices If you’ve done any looking around at other photographers websites, you have probably seen prices starting at $300, or maybe even a little lower. This is one step away from listing your services[...]

Redesigned Photography Blog – A Service Trade

December 11th, 2010

As you guys may have noticed, I’ve got a completely redesigned blog interface. A local business owner friend of ours runs a St Louis web design company, and does some pretty amazing work. The good news for us is that he also recently had twins, and needed some photography. Perfect! We had ourselves a service exchange.

Why a service exchange? It’s simple. Service exchanges give businesses that are strapped for cash or business a chance to work and to get another professional’s talent in return. Obviously it only works if both professionals need each other’s services, but at least for photographers, you may be able to be picky about what you want to exch[...]

Photography As A Career – Interview Response

November 28th, 2010

Last week, we were contacted with a few interview questions on life as a photographer. Because I’m all about killing 2 birds with one stone, I’ll respond to the interview questions for the interviewee (thanks for sending those over Sara), and also score a bonus blog post from the answers. These answers are from my (TJ’s) perspective, not Larissa’s. She’d have a different perspective since she does different roles in the studio. She does sessions during the week, and we both shoot at weddings. I do also do videography at weddings, and I run the non-shooting part of the studio during the week.

1. What got you interested in photography? Larissa dragg[...]

Photography Education Required To Be A Wedding Photographer

November 22nd, 2010

So there’s good news and bad news about how much photography education is required to be a wedding photographer. Some wedding photographers get a 4 year degree in photography before starting, while other wedding photographers jump right in with no formal education. I’ll run through some of the most popular forms of photography education and give you my take on their effectiveness.

4 Year Degree I can’t even begin to tell you how many people I’ve talked to who have a photography degree from some university, and they still have no real-world photography skills. Oh sure, they could tell you about all kinds of famous photographers of years gone by, and they c[...]