Research: How to work as a freelance photographer.

I feel pretty hypocritical writing this seeing as I have only just began working like this. If it were a metaphor of someone rearing their head through the door into freelance photography, I have only just found the keychain full of keys for this door, and have just started trying each key to find the correct fit.

None the less I have already learnt so much, I have also spent time online finding tips and tricks within this trade. Here I have compiled a list for things for beginners like myself to consider and take time to think about.

  1. Be careful who you listen to, it is very good to get advise from others, especially those more advanced than yourself but some people claim to be know-it-alls, when sometimes they know jack-all. Double check things with others, some people might not be wrong, but others may have differing opinions and then make up your own mind.
  2. It’s not all money money money, and I was someone who never expected it to be either, I came into this work experience unit, looking for experience. Then in the future the experience I have gained from this will then make me money. Also taking photos for experience is great, because for those who stress a lot, like me, you will feel less pressured by the task at hand. The photos that you have taken can also be shared over social media, this is where you may start to find paying clients.
  3. HARMLESS SELF PROMO – share it on Facebook, twitter and Instagram and don’t forget to hashtag like mad. Seriously though, when tagging a photo make sure all the tags are relevant so the right people find your work.
  4. Be confident. – one that I struggle with especially, it’s not that I’m worried I can’t take the photos, technically I can, it is everything surrounding that, approaching people, directing people etc. It’s doing something completely out of your comfort zone. If it scares you, do it. I have been nervous at the start of so many of my shoots, but these ones have been the best.
  5. Keep on top of your editing pile. One that I struggled with, because it just kept get bigger, even though I was spending days editing. When it gets like this make sure you have lots of short breaks and give your eyes a rest from the screen, you don’t want your editing to become sloppy.
  6. Memory cards coming out your ears! –  There are differing opinions on this, some people say it is best to have one huge memory card, whereas I am on the opposing side, and think lots of smaller ones are better. They remind you to keep them uploaded and empty. If I was to lose a 100GB memory card, full of thousands of photos I haven’t saved because I know I have lots of space left I’d be devastated, if I lost an 8GB I would still be in a state, but the damage would be far less.
  7. Invest wisely- During the course of this unit I purchased another lens, and more memory cards. I knew I needed a new lens because my old one was getting stiffer and stiffer, and is now no good. I purchased things I knew I would need and use regularly, I didn’t go out and buy a brand new camera so I had a spare, because this is something that yes, I will need in the near future, but it is something that will need to be budgeted for.  (for example I purchased cheap earplugs as I knew I’d only being doing 2 loud music gigs for now).
  8. I guess the same as number 2, but work for free! prove to people you are capable of doing the required job and then think about charging in the future.

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