How did you Get Started? Ask Anything | For Photographers

Late one night in college, I sent an email.  You see I had this idea in my head, that after nine months of owning a camera, that maybe, just maybe, I could be a photographer.  So I did the only thing I knew how and I emailed a photographer who’s work I had looked up to for the last year – the one who’s blog I read and re-read to learn everything I could about becoming a photographer.  In (probably a somewhat crazy) stream of conscious email, I explained that I had this dream of being a photographer, and could she possibly tell me how to run a business!  Guys, I kid you not, the email headline said:

 

“A crazy probably incredibly unrealistic request prompted by last night’s dream!”

Sent at 12am on April 4, 2012

 

Well bless her heart, she didn’t laugh in my face and instead we booked a coaching session together for June and we broke down the basics of business and how to get started with a strategy.  This served as the push I need to get started and her advise helped lay the framework for where my business is today.  Katelyn, I’m forever grateful for you! I shared this story because I wanted to remember exactly what it was like to be in your shoes – chasing a dream!

Recently I’ve gotten quite a few emails asking me about how I got started and so I figured I would share a few tangible tips and tricks here for those of y’all that are in the beginning stages of wanting to pursue a business.

 

Just Start Talking About It! 

One of the first hurdles but best things you can do to launch a business is to start sharing your photography work with people you already know!  Share what you’re learning and why you love it on Facebook, on Instagram, with your family and friends – they’ll see you building something and they’ll want to cheer you on! This can be one of your greatest assets and the first steps towards booking clients.  However, you want to be sure not to share too much, it’s a fine balance of reminding people you love photography and making sure you’re not annoying them!  Be sure not to post thoughtfully about it so that they start to take you seriously!

Make an Online Home for Your Work 

Once people know that this is a passion you’re pursuing, they’ll love it if you have your work featured in one space!  This can take various forms (and eventually I would recommend all of them) like Facebook, Instagram, a website, or a blog!  These are all things that can be created with a relatively low budget to start from, and then as your business grows can be customized and expanded to fit what you want to pursue more specifically.

Join Local Facebook Groups 

Once you have an online home that you’re posting regularly to, you’ll have a place to send potential clients!  The next step that helped me to book clients that weren’t just people I already knew, was to join a Facebook group and to get engaged in it.  There are a ton of great photographer’s group pages where people pass on referrals to people who are just getting started.  That’s how I booked my first wedding, and its a great place to start!  But remember, you should do this after you have some work to send some potential clients and an online home so that they have a way to view it!

 

And just for kicks and giggles, here are my first headshots ever from my coaching session with Katelyn.

No make-up, crimped hair, and a belted dress.  We all start somewhere,  folks.

screen-shot-2016-12-02-at-10-04-11-am screen-shot-2016-12-02-at-10-03-45-am

Friends who are just getting started – I can’t wait to cheer you on! When you get your online presence up and running, leave it in the comments below!

Posted:

December 2, 2016

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Wife, mama, wielder of light & joy, and capturer of moments.  I thrive off of conversation and genuine connection.  In between wrangling our kiddos, and hanging my husband, you'll find me dreaming up my next idea or creative endeavour.  It's these things that culminate to give my imagery a warmth and joy to them - the greatest compliment I could receive.

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