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Special Needs Photography


skinneroon 13 5 United Kingdom
9 Feb 2010 2:05PM
I am looking to see if anyone would be interested in attending a 1 day course ( in Leeds )that would enable them to maximise on a guaranteed niche market in their own area.
The short of it is our daughter passed away November 2008 after a fight with severe disability. I have spent alot of my time fundraising over the years and helped create a childrens Calendar for a local group to promote disability awareness. One thing came to light was that there are very little, if any photographers who attend Special Needs schools. The parents were so happy to finally have (semi) professional photos of their children at a reasonable cost. One even stated a high street photographer refused his services as the wheels on a wheelchair would "dirty" his studio.

Requirements would be the ability to attend a local school hall with a portable set up ( pref white/high-key ) backdrop. Potential earnings are approx 500 to 700 per day. The course would not teach you anything about photography but educate you on dealing with the special needs environment. How to find and approach your niche market and how to make money whilst connecting into a long term market for yourself. If you can simply make the family comfortable you are 100% of the way to a future in a very rewarding area of photography.
jusophine 14 104 1 England
9 Feb 2010 2:18PM
I just wanted to say that I was very sorry for your loss. I would never have a problem photographing children or adults with special needs but I don't do studio work unfortunately. However this sounds like a good idea and as you say I am sure there would be a market for it.

It's not the same thing but I have a background as a midwife/nurse and have often thought there was a need for a photographer to be on hand to photograph parents with sick, dying or unfortunately babies stillborn or who have passed away. Often these photographs are all the parents have left and yet are often shocking qaulity. Medical photographers based in hospitals are simply not coming from the same place. But would it be a business opportunity? Nope, it would have to be a purely voluntary arrangement. Just thought I would share.
skinneroon 13 5 United Kingdom
9 Feb 2010 2:22PM
http://www.nowilaymedowntosleep.org/
Always looking for volunteers. Not quite found the strength yet myself so hoping by doing the training courses i can help other photographers to help in a market where families find it hard to gain the services of a knowledgeable photographer. Thank you for your comments - nice to have someone who has an understanding.
JamesBurns 13 1.3k 7
9 Feb 2010 2:23PM

Quote:...and have often thought there was a need for a photographer to be on hand to photograph parents with sick, dying or unfortunately babies stillborn or who have passed away.

There is already a charity that does this called Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep. It's based in the US, but has a growing number of photographers in the UK now.
skinneroon 13 5 United Kingdom
9 Feb 2010 2:30PM
Thanks James
jusophine 14 104 1 England
9 Feb 2010 2:40PM
Thanks for the info, had a look at their website, think it would be something I could really do with my background in particular. May well contact their UK coordinator for more information.

Jules
ade_mcfade 17 15.2k 216 England
9 Feb 2010 2:42PM
Sounds interesting - I live in leeds - where/when/how much is the course?

Smile
skinneroon 13 5 United Kingdom
9 Feb 2010 3:03PM
Looking for numbers to guage it. Would you be so kind as to provide a mail address and i will update asap. Thanks
JamesBurns 13 1.3k 7
9 Feb 2010 9:27PM

Quote:Thanks for the info, had a look at their website, think it would be something I could really do with my background in particular. May well contact their UK coordinator for more information.

Jules


That's the best way forward. Anna just ran a seminar at SWPP last month, so I'm not sure when the next one will be, but you really don't want to start thinking about NILMDTS stuff until you've had a chance to digest all the information and spoken with a few people who have already been there.
jusophine 14 104 1 England
9 Feb 2010 9:36PM
No I realise that. I do have to say however that during 12 years of being a midwife I delivered many prem and stillborn babies and part of the after care was to photograph the baby for the parents, all be it with a crap camera.

Anyway I have emailed her and introduced myself.

Sorry to hijack the thread. : )

Jules
fran_weaver 11 44 United Kingdom
9 Feb 2010 9:47PM
I work in a special needs school and of course take all the photos required. I also have produced calanders and newspapers etc. You wouldn't believe how pleasurable it is seeing the parents joy at seeing a beautiful photo of their special child. I think half the problem is time. Photographers who in the past have come to our school to take photos don't have the time required to get the photo of all photos neither do they have the true understanding and knowledge of each individual child's disabilities/abilities. I have been known to take 200+ shots of a child with severe disabilities in order to get the right shot.
I am in the process of setting up a studio for special needs photography, looking in to purchasing hoists etc.
The only problem is that I love my job so much working with these wonderful people that seeing their happy faces is payment enough for me so I guess it wouldn't be very profitable.

Fran
photostoreuk 12 83
10 Feb 2010 6:55AM
good luck with the course, i know how much hard work it can be, my mother in law is a carer in leeds for children with disabilities, and i have been doing it since i was 18 over in manchester, it really is pleasurable to see how happy the kids are having there photos taken.
we also set up a little camera club where we took them out and they photographed there town with disposable cameras from there perspective, some very talented people out there
LesleyJ 14 247 England
11 Feb 2010 2:57PM

Quote:Quote:...and have often thought there was a need for a photographer to be on hand to photograph parents with sick, dying or unfortunately babies stillborn or who have passed away.There is already a charity that does this called Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep. It's based in the US, but has a growing number of photographers in the UK now.
My friend is doing her first NILMDTS shoot today. Got a call from the hospital about 11.30. Baby still born this morning. I admire her so much for volunteering, I am sure she will do a wonderful job for the family. Not sure I could do it but I am seriously considering it.
jusophine 14 104 1 England
11 Feb 2010 4:39PM
That's great, good for her. Had 3 midwifery friends round today and discussed my idea with them, they have suggested I speak with my ex manager about going in as I already have a connection with the hospital. They say there is a huge need for good quality photographs and they are still not able to achieve this with the camera they have. We originally had a Polaroid to do the job, can you imagine the terrible results we got!
LesleyJ 14 247 England
11 Feb 2010 9:36PM
I think its a fantastic thing to be able to help the parents and family in this way. I really admire all the photographers involved in NILMDTS and similar organisations.

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