Making a career in photography is a dream of many around the world. Having the job role of capturing the world through a lens is indeed very mesmerizing. Add to that the liberty to travel and work, voila!
You have one of the most popular dream jobs amongst the youth.
Simply put, photography is the process of capturing light with a camera to create an image. However, professional photographers take it upon themselves to turn it into an art and express themselves through their clicks.
The industry is very competitive and it is one that is difficult to cut into and make your name. As a result, the average salary of a photographer in India is around INR 3.6 Lakhs per annum.
Maybe you wish to get a job as a photographer in the future or perhaps you simply want to know how you can earn a little side cash. In other words, you wish to know
How to earn money from photography while you are still in college or have a job?
In this article, we will help you understand the different ways in which you can earn money by clicking pictures. From becoming a freelance photographer to understanding how to sell photos on Shutterstock and others, MyCaptain will help you make a professional photography career.
Let’s get started…
Work with small businesses
Taking everything online is becoming a common phenomenon amongst all the businesses and now more than ever, even small businesses will hop on the bandwagon of the digital world.
This gives new aspiring photographers an amazing opportunity to earn money and make a career in photography.
Start contacting small businesses and dial-up that entrepreneur friend’s number who just launched a startup. Help them enlist their products and services online.
For instance, you can click photos of their products which can then be used to better sell the product.
Moreover, you can help people in the real estate business to enlist their properties for rent online. For example, there are many people who are starting to enlist their properties on platforms like Airbnb, look for them, and help them out in return for money.
Sell digital and physical prints
Who doesn’t like to look at a landscape of a sunset on a beach while sitting on the couch of their living room? If you’ve been clicking photos for a long time, chances are that you have some amazing shots in your camera roll.
A great way to answer, how to earn money from photography is by selling prints of those amazing photographs. You can either sell digital prints or physical copies of your photographs.
There are a few ways you can use to sell your prints…
Firstly, you can create your own website and enlist your photographs there. However, this may become hectic as you will have to take responsibility for attracting customers, framing, and shipping the photographs.
Another way is by collaborating with local shops and sell your work through them.
And lastly, you can use a third-party website and leave all the work to them. You can use platforms like Etsy to enlist the digital prints of your photographs. All you have to do is send the print to the buyer.
Sell photos to magazines
Here’s an amazing way to not only make big bucks but also make your name in the community. Magazines invest a lot of money to make sure that their quality stays up to the mark every month.
And a part of their investment is to buy amazing photos.
You being the master at clicking photos, can take advantage of this wonderful opportunity and sell your photos to various magazines. Many professionals have made a career in photography by only working with popular magazines.
However, do keep in mind that certain magazines will only buy certain kinds of photographs. For instance, a travel magazine like National Geographic Traveler will mostly be interested in buying landscape photographs instead of fashion or automobile photography.
So find your niche and then find magazines within that niche and start contacting them. You can even try to do business with international magazines.
After all… it is a digital world we live in. Why not take advantage of it?
Sell photos on Shutterstock and others
You go to your photographer friend or classmate and ask him, how to earn money from photography?
The answer you will most probably receive is stock photography. In other words, you get suggested to click and sell photos on Shutterstock or other stock websites.
Stock websites are one of the most popular ways for photographers to earn money. Let’s just say that there are many clicks in your camera roll which you probably won’t be using anywhere else.
Well… you can earn money from them if stock photography websites accept them.
Here are the top 5 stock websites you can use to sell your photographs in India:
Be sure to go through every website’s guidelines and make your decision accordingly.
Start a photography/travel blog
Who says that blogs are only supposed to be for writers. As a photographer, you can start a professional photography or travel blog and make a bank out of it.
If you already have amazing camera skills and know your way with words then all you need to do is start a website. Don’t worry, you don’t need to learn programming or web development.
Platforms like WordPress, Wix, and Bluehost makes your job much easier.
Once you’ve set up your blog and are posting on it regularly, you can learn how to earn money from photography by using Google Adsense.
Click on this article to know about it more.
Become an influencer
Similar to starting a blog, becoming an influencer is also an amazing way to make a career in photography.
Becoming an influencer may seem like a long and difficult journey but once you’ve reached the summit, there’s nothing better.
Influencers get paid to do brand deals, give a speech on talk shows, and are constantly approached by many companies or individuals for collaborations. Not to mention the fan following they have.
Anything you are interested in clicking photos of, chances are that your audience will be interested in double-tapping them.
Become a freelance photographer
There’s a lot that goes into becoming a freelance photographer but looking at how much profit you can make out of it – Worth it!
To become a freelance photographer you will need to first create a photography portfolio, this can be a website or on a platform like Behance.
While creating your portfolio, make sure to follow a theme and include your best work within your niche. Nobody wants to hire a jack of all trades but master of none.
You will then need to start expanding your network and attract your first few clients. You might need to work for free in order to gain exposure but we also suggest using your personal contacts and land a client through references.
Wish to improve your skills, get tips by professionals, and at the same time have a chance to earn money?
Photography contests offer all of the above along with the opportunity to expand your network and connect with other photographers.
Look for photography competitions on the internet, Facebook, and even in your city. Enter them with the hopes of improving and learning something new. All the best!
Events are usually held at a large scale – big open spaces filled with thousands of people.
Event organizers put a special emphasis on post-event marketing as this gives a sneak peek of all the madness that happened this year. These marketing efforts also ensure that the next year’s event is going to be a hit as well.
But because events are held at such a massive scale, organizers always need photographers. As a result, you have plenty of opportunities to make good money.
It can be exhausting both physically and mentally but once you get the hang of it, you will not only know how to earn money from photography, you will also get to enjoy many events for free.
To land clients, you will again need a portfolio and a good web of network. You can also search the internet for event organizers and start contacting them.
You probably won’t be able to charge much in the beginning but as you grow your reputation, your income will increase.
Start Teaching photography
Do you think you are at a pro-level already – knowing all about composition, lighting, environment, pre and post-production techniques, and other aspects of photography?
If yes then a great way to earn money is by sharing your wisdom with those in need of it.
You can start by giving beginners lessons to new photographers in your city. This will help you get the hang of becoming a teacher or mentor.
Once you get the hang of it and have extended your knowledge in the art of capturing lights, you can take things online and create your own professional course.
You can create your own course and sell it using platforms like Udemy or you can cut the middle man and use your own website.
However, be ready to constantly market and advertise your course on social media in addition to wherever you go.
How to make a career in photography?
Making a career in photography may seem like an overwhelming task with so many different tools, equipment, and techniques to learn.
But we suggest that you simply stop overthinking and go turning your passion into a proper career.
The first step to becoming a photographer is to have a passion for photography and simply start clicking as many pictures as you can.
Believe it or not, you don’t need to enroll in some expensive college course, most professional photographers didn’t either. They just kept on clicking and eventually, they became so good that the world couldn’t help but acknowledge their art.
Lastly, keep learning new things by reading books or taking online classes and keep reaching new heights.
You will get there eventually, we believe you!