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Photographic work???

13 Mar 2007 8:08AM
Im fairly new to photography, my experience consists of 2 years travel photography (off my own back) and 2 years at A-Level (college) 10 years ago! I am seeking any form of photographic employment and im unsure as to the best route in. Initial advice to myself might be actually whether or not my work would be to a standard to even get a job! Im Southampton based. Thanks for reading. Ian
mattw 17 5.2k 10 United Kingdom
13 Mar 2007 8:52AM
Welcome to EPZ Ian.

We see varations of this question asked reguarly, so it is worth checking back through the history of the 'Freelance' forum for plenty of advice.

There are very few opportunities for 'photographic employment' - The majority of photographic professionals are freelance.

Starting a careera in Photography takes a lot of hard graft, and it can be many many years before you start to earn enouph to live on.

13 Mar 2007 8:59AM
Good response Matt, perhaps not what i was after....but honest!

keithh 18 25.8k 33 Wallis And Futuna
13 Mar 2007 9:06AM
One of the first things to consider is what area of photography do you want to get into?
13 Mar 2007 9:20AM
Choices choices on that be honest, im not sure what is my strongest area?
keithh 18 25.8k 33 Wallis And Futuna
13 Mar 2007 9:23AM
You need to make your mind up on that one then you can target the right companies, studios and possible clients.

and it's a question you'll get asked as you do.
mattw 17 5.2k 10 United Kingdom
13 Mar 2007 9:54AM

Quote:Choices choices on that be honest, im not sure what is my strongest area?

My advice would be to have a good long think about what you are most pasionately interesrted in photographing - be it people, sports, landsacpe or whatever, then build up a good portfolio in that area.

Origami_Owl 18 786
13 Mar 2007 11:34AM
It is important to think about what you're passionate about, but of course it is equally valid to set yourself up as a general photographer.

Although there is always going to be areas which you are better at than others - and those areas are the ones which you'll make a big deal of on your website and will impress people and get the work in - so you may find yourself naturally finding a niche.... I'm kind of talking about myself here, but I think you'll find it true too, if that's what you choose to do.

samfurlong 15 2.5k United Kingdom
13 Mar 2007 11:54AM
I think one important thing is to decide what kind of photographer you are and then go and try and get work in that area, not see whats out there and try and get work in any area of photography.

Sort yourself out first, establish the kind of photography you are good at and enjoy (for example architectural photography)then go out and market yourself as a specialist architectural photographer (assuming the quality of your work bears this up).
You will have more chance of landing the work and you also get to charge more because you are a 'specialist'.
13 Mar 2007 12:01PM
Thanks one and all, this is all being soaked up!
Origami_Owl 18 786
13 Mar 2007 12:12PM
Anyhow - assuming you decide on what type of photography you're going to do, one way to get into the market is by taking on small jobs and doing them alongside your normal job, pretty soon this will become fairly limiting because people want you to do jobs on days that you're working.

At this point it's worth considering going part time with your normal job if they'll let you. If the money coming in allows you to lose the salary from your normal job of course.

If you are really serious then it's worth asking your local council if they do a small business course - or can advise where to look for one. I fell upon a great one which gave a small grant and about 15 sessions teaching about accounting and handling customers - it was invaluable, and makes you feel like you can really do it.

ZenTog 19 7.9k 1 England
13 Mar 2007 2:22PM
go and get some work expieriance as an assistant then find your strengths etc,
often you find itsa completely different field of work that will make you the most money , than you will be expecting
I know this, as i am now photographing horses for a living, if you had said that to me 5 years ago I would have laughed at you. but it makes the money keeps the bank manager away and lets me have enough big boys toys to play with
Origami_Owl 18 786
13 Mar 2007 2:38PM
Totally agree, it is funny where it all takes you - I have sometimes found that the jobs which sound amazing turn out to be a real pain/laborious, and jobs which on the surface sound dull can be really rewarding. It's a topsy turvy world - and sometimes it's who is commissioning the work that can make it enjoyable or not, if they treat you well, give you a good brief etc etc.
stevekhart 15 4.5k 3 United Kingdom
13 Mar 2007 2:56PM
Anyone read the article in this week's BJP on ad agencies? Was wondering what format a tog's "book" should be for presenting to them.
13 Mar 2007 3:32PM
Ok, the assistant idea sounds great! Do i have the skills for an assistant though? I have no "formal qualifications" only what you see here plus a portfolio of work of which i was selling in Melbourne Oz.

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