Only passion for photography won’t cut it. To bag a photography job, you need to carefully prepare yourself. And close the gap between an amateur photographer and a professional one.
Even if you think, you’re a good photographer; following these steps will make you better. And yes, it will help you bag a lucrative one from all the photography jobs available in the marketplace.
Create a Portfolio of Your Work
You’re as good as your portfolio.
When you’re applying for photography jobs, sending your portfolio is much better than your resume.
Your portfolio talks about how good you are as a photographer. But the question remains how would you build one that helps you do a photography job?
Here’s how –
- First, collect all your photographs. Even if you’re a total beginner, you can still look into the storage of your computer or mobile.
- If you’re a beginner, it’s wise to put all kinds of photographs in one generic portfolio. You can narrow down your niche once you get a job and gain more clarity.
- Create a website and create a few pages (about, portfolio, services, contact) and upload all your photographs under your ‘portfolio’ page.
- If you don’t want to go to the route of creating a website and expending a bunch, you can also create a ‘Google Doc’ and upload your photographs. Write interesting captions under them. And you’re good to go.
Brush Up Your Photography Skills
Before you work on your photography skills, first decide what’s that one thing that helps you stand out in photography.
What you do well, so well that others can’t copy it or emulate it (yes, it’s about your core competency)!
Work on it first and then work on the rest of the micro-skills of photography, e.g. choosing the right locations, editing & doing the retouch on images, taking the right frames, reproducing the images & reframing them, etc.
It’s the practice that helps you progress. And once you work on your strength/s, you’ll be confident during the job discussion.
Even a Photography Job Demands Good Selling Acumen
Why are the best photography jobs are for YOU and not for any other Tom, Dick, and Harry?
What’s your USP?
If you know what helps you stand out, that’s amazing. But you need to communicate why your USP is the most important aspect and not anything else (or even if something is as important as your USP, you still stand a chance).
The way you communicate your USP will either get you the job or increase your odds against your candidature.
So, here are a few things you can do –
- Prepare yourself for situational questions. The mojo is in the details. And you’re sitting with your interviewer, she has only one thing to crack you open and see what’s inside. And that’s situational questions. She may ask you to describe how you take the photos of a cat on the fence – what’s your angle, aperture, lens used, etc.!
- Do thorough research on the company profile. Find out the role of the photographer. And what they’re trying to achieve by hiring a professional photographer! If you can find the big picture you’ll figure out how to bag the photography job as well.
- See the work of photography maestros and see how they talk about their job (the photography, what they do, their habits, their way of thinking, their framework, system, and try to train yourself in whatever works for you).
Find Your Niche
It’s a tough task to narrow down your niche, especially if you’re a beginner.
It’s also hard to look for a photography job in your niche.
But what’s interesting is, when you’re good in your niche, you become a magnet and photography jobs (like travel, wedding, kids, etc.) come to you instead of you, going toward them.
The reason you should narrow down your niche is a narrower niche makes you an expert and compensates you better.
Result? More pay, better lifestyle, better equipment for your photography, and eventually, becoming a far better niche photographer.
The best way to find your niche is to explore all niches and then see what suits your work style, work ethic, your personality, and financials (see the market trends for a particular niche of photography jobs)!
Market Your Work/Skills
Here are the five ways to market your work –
- Publish your work on your social media channels. Instagram is a great place to start.
- Document your process on social media channels. Show how you work, how you set up the equipment, how you edit & retouch your photographs – you get the idea.
- Write about your work online. Your write-up would portray you as an expert in your niche.
- Teach a free photography course. Make 10 3-4 minute videos. Upload on Udemy. And whoa, you’re a photography instructor cum expert.
- Write a book on photography and upload it on Amazon Kindle. And send the link whenever you send a proposal for a photography job.
Know the Whereabouts Your Work
It’s important to know what your work demands you to do.
Let’s say that you’re interested in travel photography jobs. Before you ever get a job, it’s important that you know drill.
Along with the thrill of adventure and fun, travel photography is also about a lot of standing in the scorching sun, dealing with bad weather, a lot of hotels, travel, and dealing with clients’ demands.
It’s better to be pragmatic so that you can work your way to a better photography job.
Get Yourself Some Quality Camera Equipment
It’s okay to start photography with your mobile set.
But if you want to build a career out of photography, get yourself some quality equipment.
Of course, there can always potentially be a higher range of equipment, but you can start with a decent one. And then go your way up.
So, here’s a comprehensive guide for bagging the best photography jobs. Follow these step by step. And you’d be on your way to shine bright.