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Have you earned $$ from photography?
Feb 16, 2012, 16:20
Post: #1
Have you earned $$ from photography?
Most of us here aren't pros (well with some exceptions, who shoot for a living) so its nice to earn some money on the side from our hobbies.

Just wondering if any of us have had the opportunity to say, sell some prints in a cafe or gallery, or been paid to shoot a friend's wedding?

Share your stories - you don't have to disclose the amount, just how you've gained some extra pocket money. Smile

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Feb 16, 2012, 18:18
Post: #2
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I have sold stuff in exhibitions and galleries quite a few times, and i have made a few pennies on weddings and other commercial work over the years...but I certainly wouldn't describe myself as "pro" by any means despite what my website may imply.
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Feb 19, 2012, 20:36
Post: #3
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
Before I went pro I put my 'business cards' in some bridal shops and offered them $100 if I booked a referral from them. Had already photographed three weddings for friends/family and so had a small portfolio.

Booked some weddings through that strategy and then by God's grace got a contact with a large wedding venue and the hobby went pro in about a year.

Have been shooting pro as a wedding shooter for about 6 years now.
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Feb 20, 2012, 03:32
Post: #4
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
My turn to share. I've done some shoots for friends but never paid, and I don't think I've earned anything through photography, apart from this site. Big Grin

Then again, the actual revenue stream from this site is pretty depressing - honestly, it just barely covers the actual costs of hosting, domain registration, advertising and other hired services. My consolation is the joy of hanging out with a bunch of cool people here, and also the freebies and gizmos to play with (from product reviews). Big Grin

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Aug 4, 2012, 00:34
Post: #5
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I have yet to be paid to do a photo shoot, like a wedding or event, however I have earned some money from photography myself. I earn money with photos through the web development scene. Sometimes on contracts for websites, sometimes on my own websites, and sometimes just by themselves as an individual photo. There are lots of great sites out there where you can sell you pictures online, basically on consignment. So upload your photos like crazy, and then wait for the royalties to start flowing in. That's my next move for making money with photography.
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Aug 4, 2012, 01:36
Post: #6
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I have been selling some of my photos through art galleries and I did two (unsolicited) engagement shoots, one of which was for a family and thus free. With all my sales, it does not nearly cover my expenses. I do have fun though.
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Aug 4, 2012, 10:18
Post: #7
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I've done 2 paid weddings, a few mother's day / family portrait sessions. Made a few bucks selling prints, made some more matting and mounting other peoples prints.

I've made money shooting a couple of custom cars for sale on Ebay, and had a few jobs shooting interior / exterior pictures and designing flyers for for real estate sales. Shot a couple of functions for the company my wife works for.

I shot a bunch of stills for use in a TV commercial.

All that said, I don't advertise my services because i don't want to turn a hobby into a job. All the ones I have done I was approached by the people through friends who know I shoot.
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Nov 10, 2012, 16:45
Post: #8
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I haven't. I've only ever shot in one wedding and it was a family affair so I didn't take any pay for it. While it would be nice to earn some extra cash from photography, I think pursuing a career through this would mean the risk of losing a hobby.
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Nov 12, 2012, 14:13 (This post was last modified: Nov 13, 2012 02:44 by alessya.)
Post: #9
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I've done countless weddings, ever since I was in my first year of university, as well as wedding editing. Recently I've started working online, I'm doing paid retouching work and even though I'm studying for an MfA I haven't sold a print, yet. Truth be told, the Eastern part of Europe doesn't offer that much exposure to young artists and that may well be on of the reasons. I've never earned money from photographing friends/ acquaintances because it's really hard to find models anyway so it's win-win in my oppinion, especially because I shoot for personal projects. I believe I manage to set aside my personal work and my work for university from the work that I do for commercial purposes and that gives me confidence that, indeed, it is possible do both.
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Nov 12, 2012, 14:26
Post: #10
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I book photo sessions on the weekends and make a bit of money that way. My photo club has members that use Zenfolio and they sell a TON of prints that way. Zenfolio is a website, they can order the prints through the site.
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Nov 12, 2012, 23:50
Post: #11
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I'll give that a try. Does it work well for amateur photographers?
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Jan 18, 2013, 05:40
Post: #12
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
(Feb 16, 2012 16:20)shuttertalk Wrote:  Most of us here aren't pros (well with some exceptions, who shoot for a living) so its nice to earn some money on the side from our hobbies.

Just wondering if any of us have had the opportunity to say, sell some prints in a cafe or gallery, or been paid to shoot a friend's wedding?

Share your stories - you don't have to disclose the amount, just how you've gained some extra pocket money. Smile

After my retirement, I began to get serious about photography. In the beginning,
1-1/2 years ago, I had minimal equipment. A NIKON D-40 and kit lenses. I guess you could say I started with an idea. Living in a small town, we have several weekly newspapers. These publications do not have the money to hire staff photographers. One day I took the incentive to go to a local publication and show them samples of my sports photography. I met a few writers (who by the way HATE to take pictures) and offered my services just for the photo credits in the paper. This offer was taken up by 2 of the 3 publications in my town. Now I shoot a lot of local High School sports maybe 4 assignments per week for a small amount for each assignment. Not nearly enough to make a living but enough to upgrade my equipment and tackle more difficult assignments. I now shoot with a NIKON D-7000 and have purchased several lenses for sports photography. A NIKON 70-300mm F3.5-5.6 VR ED and a 70-200mmF2.8. So far there is not a lot of money in my pocket but a lot more in my camera bag.
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Jan 18, 2013, 06:28
Post: #13
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
Jimbo - this is great to hear. It sounds like a start for you to earn a little on the side doing what you enjoy!

Barbara - Life is what you make of it!
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Jan 18, 2013, 07:13
Post: #14
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
(Jan 18, 2013 06:28)Barbara G. Wrote:  Jimbo - this is great to hear. It sounds like a start for you to earn a little on the side doing what you enjoy!

I do have another thing going. I do pet photography. I have partnered with a Dog specialty store and arranged photo sessions with scenes created for seasonal events such as, HOWL-O-WEEN, SANTAPAWS and soon VALENTINE'S DAY. We also do regular session about once a month. Again not much income (About $100 for a days work) but I am giving folks a quality product for an affordable price.


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Jan 18, 2013, 10:15
Post: #15
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
Jimbo, that's pretty awesome, I might say! And the image looks amazing! As for the pay, I agree it's not that much, even though I make 100$ a week and you make in a days work Smile
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Jan 18, 2013, 10:50
Post: #16
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
(Jan 18, 2013 10:15)alessya Wrote:  Jimbo, that's pretty awesome, I might say! And the image looks amazing! As for the pay, I agree it's not that much, even though I make 100$ a week and you make in a days work Smile

I just wish it was EVERY day LOL
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Jan 19, 2013, 23:40
Post: #17
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
I've managed to make a living doing this for several decades, some years better than others though. Being a pro photographer is very difficult but it's definitely easy to make some extra cash. Network and sell yourself, be friendly and don't price yourself too low. I know the last one seems counter-intuitive but it really isn't.

Shoot what you love and the money will come
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Jan 25, 2013, 04:37
Post: #18
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
(Jan 19, 2013 23:40)photokev Wrote:  Shoot what you love and the money will come

This is the advice that should be framed on the wall of every artist who's thinking about making living from his passion.

(unfortunately, we all tend to forget that one as soon as we actually need money to survive)
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Jan 25, 2013, 16:15
Post: #19
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
Yeah, Korry, I hear you! I've considered leaving my master program 3 or 4 times until now, only because I can't get something steady to work and I'm in need of money all the time...and part time jobs here are payed way too low...
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Apr 9, 2013, 07:29
Post: #20
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
(Jan 25, 2013 04:37)Korry Wrote:  
(Jan 19, 2013 23:40)photokev Wrote:  Shoot what you love and the money will come

This is the advice that should be framed on the wall of every artist who's thinking about making living from his passion.

(unfortunately, we all tend to forget that one as soon as we actually need money to survive)
i'm travelling but having a break in london and probably here now for a further 6 months .. so a little bored i googled all the local wedding photographers, got their mob numbers and rang the lot...
Thought maybe i'd help out one of them while picking up a bit of experience at the same time.. what happened is that no one wants any help.. not even free.. was a bit surprised ..
Had a look at local blogs about on wedding photographers in my area and it was full of complaints about overcharging and quality of work.
Most i rang said there was almost no work and not a living .. I do feel sorry for them but i'm thinking that the whole photographic industry is changing now that everybody can buy a reasonable digital camera.
Its harder to sell a £3000 pound wedding assignment with the availability of lots of pretty good amateurs and money being tight.

I'm wondering if there isn't another way to work by offering your services free and selling prints and hi-resolution images direct to the customer. If your work was good you might make money ... if rubbish you'd fail...
Isn't that how it works anyway.
I've been shooting for 30 yrs and was prepared to use my pro gear for free and couldn't get a taker.. what does that tell you?

Thats my 2 bobs worth hoo roo folks Jim Truscott
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Apr 10, 2013, 11:50
Post: #21
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
Hi Jim - I am more of a hobbyist, but I do think so many things are changing in the world. I am sure this applies to photography to some degree as well.

My first thought when reading about your experience is the need to find out where the market is for photographers and plan to go there (so to speak) if you are looking to make money. This may be easier said than done??

I am amazed that no one wanted to take you up on the offer to help them for free..this could be for various reasons unknown. It sounds like it would be a fabulous idea - but in that area you may have to "know" someone to get your foot in the door for the experience! Keep us posted! :0)

Barbara - Life is what you make of it!
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Apr 11, 2013, 13:08
Post: #22
RE: Have you earned $$ from photography?
Interesting stories all around.
Kudos to those who have been able to earn even a single dollar from photography!
As far as I am concerned, have not been able to earn even a single penny Sad
Maybe I have not approached people, maybe I have not thought about asking someone to hire me for a paid shoot?

So maybe I will setup another post to see what are the suggestions/tips/ideas to earn money from photography? Smile

Cheers
Samy
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