Back when I first decided to become a professional photographer and get involved with photo marketing on a full time basis, I thought – foolishly – that all I had to do was practice and study all the latest techniques for creating stunning images! Then, once I learned to consistently do brilliant work, my career as a professional photographer would be more or less cast in stone.

Boy was I wrong! If you want to earn great money in photo marketing (I’ve lost count of how many $1000 days I’ve had) by becoming a professional photographer and working in the career of your dreams – here are 3 vital things you NEED to know. BTW – you can and should start part time!
graduation photographer

First, let me establish a few assumptions on my part. I assume you are interested in photography and that you have dreamed about working in a career that you love.

I also assume that you are either considering/dreaming about becoming a professional photographer or possibly have already tried your hand at photo marketing – at least part time.

Note: I didn’t assume you are a brilliant photographer. That was the first huge hurdle I faced when I wanted to start my photo marketing career. I just wasn’t that good. I was and still am competent, but I don’t see myself ever winning any major creative awards.

I’d shoot and shoot. Remember – this was in the olden days of film, when every shot cost about a dollar after considering time, film, developing and printing costs. No matter how much money I pumped into my “hobby”, no matter how many credit cards I maxed out buying the latest and greatest, I just couldn’t measure up to the photos I was seeing in all the photo books and magazines.

My dreams of a career as a professional photographer seemed totally out of reach.

Wrong. That’s myth #1. You don’t need to be Ansel Adams! Just competent!

I don’t remember where, but somewhere I stumbled across someone who said, “There’s room in professional photography for every skill level.”

That sentence changed my life. I’d buy the originator of that little snippet of gold a beer, if I could remember who it was.

For some reason, it really hit home and I decided to give photo marketing a try. Bottom line…I found out that 90% of all your photo shoots are going to be the same types of subjects, lit and posed the same basic ways.

Don’t get me wrong, every session you do should be your absolute best work, but save the creative stuff for contests – not day to day photo marketing. (Actually, if you are too creative, your sales will drop. The clients expect traditional portraits and don’t like it if you deviate very far from their expectations.)

My second major hurdle to getting started as a professional photographer was getting the money to open a studio. After all, rent is fairly expensive and when you add in decorating the space, signage, hiring a receptionist, utilities an

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